Find out where your money's going, if you can understand it...
TAX payers will have a better idea of what Bristol City Council spends its money on, with the launch of a new online service.
All payments above £500 will be published on a monthly basis from now on, in a bid to make local authority spending more transparent.
But residents will need a degree in jargon to understand it, as the information is far from easy to grasp.
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles wrote to all local authorities in June, calling for them to reveal the details.
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Until now councils have only had to make such information available for one month of the year during the public audit process.
Two months ago the Evening Post revealed Bristol's intention to adopt the £500 and above system from October – three months ahead of the government deadline – and now the service is due to go live this week.
The first batch covers payments made in September, all 10,000 of them.
A spreadsheet listing all of them can be downloaded from www.bristol.gov.uk/968/500/2010/08/
Each entry states the company named and the amount paid down to the penny.
The problem is the descriptions range from general – "people with learning difficulties" to impenetrable – "mandatory DFGs".
The council has also stopped short of posting the specific invoices online.
If anyone wants to see those they will have to phone the council with a reference number or make a request under the Freedom of Information Act. The cost of putting images of 10,000 invoices a month online would be in the hundreds of thousands of pounds, officers estimate.
Executive member for efficiency Councillor Mark Wright hopes to make the descriptions clearer over the coming months and agreed the public had a right to know.
He said: "It is important that local councils show transparency in our spending, especially at a time like this when we are looking at budget savings.
"Council tax payers have a right to see how their money is being spent.
"I fully expect an avalanche of FOI requests in the first few months.
"The next few months will be a learning experience and we will get to know what people want."
Mr Wright said they would consider providing information on payments below £500 if there was a demand for it.
He also hoped to encourage local bloggers and website design companies to take the information in the accounts and present it in a way that is easier for people to understand.