Monday, August 06, 2007
Managing local government overheads represents a significant competitive challenge among the Northern states.
For example, Northern states generally have a higher number of local government employees per capita that Southern states. This employment structure leads to continuous upward pressure on tax rates. As personal incomes grow more slowly, local elected officials face growing pressure to maintain social services by raising tax rates.
In part, the difference between the North and South reflects old patterns of settlement. In general, the Northern states have a lot more local political jurisdictions per capita then Southern states. (For an interesting book that touches on this history, read Measuring America.)
The Brookings institution has highlighted this challenge and its recent reports on Pennsylvania and Maine. In Maine, the number of efforts are underway to explore streamlining local government. Read more.
Here's an article on the fragmented local government environment in Pittsburgh. Read more.
posted by Ed Morrison |
Some Background on EDPro Weblog
The purpose of this weblog is to help economic development professionals -- EDPros -- keep up with the changes sweeping our profession. Strap on your goggles. It's a whole new game. There are no experts any more. The only place to learn about economic development is from other EDPros who are doing it.
One other point: the prevaling approach (paradigm, if you like) in economic development is shifting from competition to collaboration. There are a lot of reaasons underlying this shift, but here's the important insight: You, your community, and your region will do better by collaborating and sharing information.
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Speaking and workshops on Open Source Economic Development
As the idea of Open Source Economic Development starts spreading, more people are asking about it. Visit the I-Open web site to learn more. My colleagues and I are happy to explain the basic concepts in a talk or a workshop. E-mail Susan Alshuler if you'd like to learn more about workshops and speaking.
Background on Ed Morrison
Download some background information on me here.