The Board of Directors of the Open Justice Broker Consortium (OJBC) today released the core components of the Open Justice Broker (OJB) publicly under an open source license.  Along with the open source release, the OJBC is expanding its Membership options to enable a wider range of participation from jurisdictions and justice agencies across the United States.

The released components are available on GitHub.  They are licensed under the Reciprocal Public License, version 1.5.

“Our efforts to release our work as open source today is the natural evolution of our mission to support wider and more cost-effective sharing of justice information across the nation,” said Matthew Ruel, Director of the State Bureau of Identification, Maine State Police, and Chair of the OJBC Board.  “We are hopeful that more jurisdictions will build upon the OJB platform rather than incurring the costs, in time and money, to re-build what already exists.  Open source licensing will support this goal and provide a path for continuing to grow the platform as more jurisdictions participate.”

The released components include a portal application that provides federated query and custom event subscription functions, as well as two dozen “intermediary” components that automate core justice information flows like incident reporting, submissions to the FBI N-DEx service, arrest/booking, and disposition reporting.  These components have served as the foundation for mission-critical exchanges implemented in the four current Member jurisdictions:  the states of Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, and Vermont.

The OJBC has fully embraced open justice community standards since its inception, and the open source release reflects this commitment.  All information exchange implementations included in the release adhere to Global Reference Architecture (GRA) service specifications, which use National Information Exchange Model (NIEM) Information Exchange Package Documentation (IEPDs) for their information models.  The release also includes a component that automates the enforcement of privacy, security, and access control policies, in conformance with the Global Technical Privacy Framework.

The Consortium is also expanding OJBC Membership options.  Justice agencies and jurisdictions can now select from three participation levels:

  • A “Full” Membership level with annual dues of $85,000, which provides extensive support from OJBC staff.
  • A “Support” Membership level with annual dues of $24,995, targeted to Members with basic support needs.
  • An “Associate” membership level, with annual dues of $995, which includes dedicated email support from OJBC staff.

All Membership levels include admission to an annual OJB Implementers Conference, the first of which will occur in Spring 2016.

OJBC Executive Director Scott Came noted that the open source release will continue to evolve in the near future: “Today’s release of the OJB is a significant step, and contains the core components needed to make integrated justice work.  These components represent more than three years and thousands of person-hours of effort invested by the founding Members with the support of SEARCH.  But we recognize that there is much work yet to be done.  In the coming months, the community will see the contribution of additional components, as well as roll-out of ‘how-to’ guides and other documentation to assist adopters.  We hope the broader community will become part of this process by joining and contributing, as well.”