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When it comes to voting, taxes, environmental regulations, social services, education, criminal justice, political parties, property rights, gun control, marriage and a whole host of other modern American issues, the state in which a citizen resides makes a difference. That idea-that the political decisions made by those in state-level offices are of tremendous importance to the lives of people whose states they govern-is the fundamental concept explored in this book. Gary F. Moncrief and Peverill Squire introduce students to the very tangible and constantly evolving implications, limitations, and foundations of America's state political institutions, and accessibly explain the ways that the political powers of the states manifest themselves in the cultures, economies, and lives of everyday Americans, and always will.
Once described by The Washington Post as "the most interesting mayor you've never heard of", Pete Buttigieg, the thirty-six-year-old Democratic mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has improbably emerged as one of the nation's most visionary politicians. First elected in 2011, Buttigieg left a successful business career to move back to his hometown, previously tagged by Newsweek as a "dying city", because the industrial Midwest beckoned as a challenge to the McKinsey-trained Harvard graduate. Whether meeting with city residents on middle-school basketball courts, reclaiming abandoned houses, confronting gun violence, or attracting high-tech industry, Buttigieg has transformed South Bend into a shining model of urban reinvention. While Washington reels with scandal, Shortest Way Home interweaves two once-unthinkable success stories: that of an Afghanistan veteran who came out and found love and acceptance, all while in office, and that of a Rust Belt city so thoroughly transformed that it shatters the way we view America's so-called flyover country.
Migrant children separated from their parents. A scheme to defraud Cook County using property tax breaks. An undisclosed thirty-year business relationship between city officials in Baltimore. These are the sorts of headlines regularly generated by offices of inspector general (OIGs) - bureaucratic units dedicated to government accountability that are commonly independent of the agencies they are charged with overseeing. In 1976, OIGs were virtually unheard of and were largely at the federal level, but today there are more than 170 OIGs overseeing state and local government entities. Why have OIGs been so widely adopted, and what do they do? How do they contribute to accountability, and what are their limitations? In The Power of Accountability Robin J. Kempf sets out to address these questions with empirical data and to examine the conflicts that have led to variations in the design and implementation of OIGs. In doing so she explores the power of the concept of the inspector general: an institutional model for keeping subnational government units accountable to the public. As more and more government entities have created offices of inspector general, practitioners in this developing field have recommended an archetypal structure for these agencies that assures their authority and independence. Why then, The Power of Accountability asks, have so many states and localities incorporated significant deviations from this recommended model in their design? Through an extensive review of government websites, laws, and ordinances; original surveys of the identified OIGs; legislative histories; and interviews with thirty-eight OIG staff in eight states, Kempf analyzes why OIGs have proliferated, why and how they work differently in various jurisdictions, and what effect these variations in design have on the effectiveness of OIGs as a mechanism of accountability. The ever-expanding call for accountability in government drives the increasing demand for offices of inspector general, which necessarily entails intense political maneuvering. The Power of Accountability is a uniquely useful resource for judging whether, under what circumstances, and how well OIGs fulfill their intended purpose and serve the public interest.
The disputes around fracking, and oil and gas policy, follow a long tradition of complicated intergovernmental relationships. Proponents argue that fracking supports new and well-paying jobs, revitalizes state and local economies, and that it can help replace reliance on other fossil fuels. Skeptics and opponents contend that oil and gas production via fracking contaminates air and water resources, causes earthquakes, and can ruin the character of many communities. Examining the intergovernmental politics of the first oil and natural gas boom of the 21st century, The Fracking Debate, Second edition offers a holistic understanding of the politics that characterize oil and natural gas operations, including why local governments are challenging their state's preemptive authority, in order to initiate a larger conversation about improving intergovernmental relationships. Author Jonathan Fisk presents a novel argument about the ways in which local, state, regional, and national approaches to governance of shale gas development can work together to reduce conflict and forward the interests of the communities exposed to development, asking important questions such as: What state structures govern state-local relations? What state institutions impact and shape oil and gas production? What is the policymaking context in the state? What are the costs and benefits of hydraulic fracturing at the national, state, and local levels? How are risks and rewards distributed within states? What local policies have challenged the state, and why would local communities challenge the state? The result is a book that demonstrates that when stakeholders acknowledge their interdependencies and one another's expertise, they create, design, and implement more responsive, strategic, and targeted public policies. The Fracking Debate, Second edition will be required reading for courses on oil and gas policy in the United States, environmental politics, and domestic energy politics, as well as a vital reference for practitioners and policymakers working in these fields.
Known in his day as the man who built the Town Hall, Abel Heywood was a leading Manchester publisher who entertained royalty at his home and twice became Mayor of Manchester. Yet before he found success his life was one of poverty and hardship, marked by a prison term in his pursuit of a free press. A campaigner for votes for all and social reform, Heywood attempted to enter Parliament twice, but his working-class origins and radical ideas proved an insurmountable obstacle. As councillor, alderman and mayor, he worked passionately and tirelessly to build the road, railway and tram systems, develop education, improve the provision of hospitals, museums and libraries, better the living conditions of the poor, and make Manchester a great city. Going beyond the experiences of one man, this book explores the wider political, cultural and class context of the Victorian city. It is an honest tale of rags to riches that will appeal to all who wish to discover more about the dramatic history of industrial Manchester and its people.
English local government is in a state of decline after 40 years of incremental but cumulative centralisation by central government. This book is the first to directly address this trend's impact upon the institution of local government, a crucial element in the democratic viability of a unitary state. The process of centralisation, and its corrosive effect on the status and responsibilities of local government, have been widely recognised and deplored among politicians and senior officers within local government, and by academics with an interest in this field. However, there has been no study exploring in detail its impact, and, equally important, suggesting ways in which the growing imbalance between the powers of central and local government should be rectified. This book fills this gap. This text will be of key interest to scholars, students and practitioners of local government, and more generally to those interested in what has been happening to British politics and governance.
In defence of councillors is an unashamed defence of local representative democracy and of those elected to serve as councillors from the often ill-informed, ill-judged and inaccurate criticism made by the media, government and public, of councillors' personal, political and professional roles. By using qualitative research from a number of related projects, the book examines the roles, functions and responsibilities of councillors and the expectations placed upon them by citizens, communities and government. It also examines the impact council membership has on other facets of the councillor's life. The book examines how councillors develop strategies to overcome the constraints and restrictions on their office so as to be able to govern their communities, balance their political and public life and democratise and hold to account a vast array of unelected bodies that spend public money and develop public policy without the electoral mandate and legitimacy held by our councillors. -- .
Over the past forty years, conservatives have mastered the art of pursuing policy change across the states, while similar liberal efforts have floundered. Using a diverse array of original evidence, including interviews, previously-unexamined archival records, and new surveys, State Capture explains why and how conservatives developed cross-state political clout while progressives did not. The book also carefully documents the implications of conservative cross-state network-building for American democracy, spelling out its consequences for political inequality and representation, as well as for our understanding of the relationship between private-sector businesses, political activists, and wealthy donors. In State Capture, Alexander Hertel-Fernandez details the development of a trio of conservative groups operating within and outside of state legislatures responsible for the right's success in the states. This right-leaning "troika" includes the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which brings together state legislators, conservative activists, and businesses to draft model legislation for the states; the free-market think-tanks operating as part of the State Policy Network (SPN), which together offer research and commentary in support of the policies ALEC develops; and Americans for Prosperity (AFP), a federated grassroots advocacy group with millions of volunteers and a hefty campaign warchest dedicated to pressing state governments to adopt conservative legislation, including ALEC model bills. Following the histories of each group across their victories but also their missteps, the book sheds light on broader themes in American political development and helps us to better understand longstanding issues about how businesses shape policy and politics. A timely and accessible book that tackles important long-term shifts in American politics, State Capture is essential reading for anyone interested in understanding the intersection between private power and democracy.
Many developing countries have a history of highly centralized governments. Since the late 1980s, a large number of these governments have introduced decentralization to increase democracy and improve services, especially in small communities far from capital cities. In "Going Local," an unprecedented study of the effects of decentralization on thirty Mexican municipalities, Merilee Grindle describes how local governments respond when they are assigned new responsibilities and resources under decentralization policies. She explains why decentralization leads to better local governments in some cases--and why it fails to in others.
Combining quantitative and qualitative methods, Grindle examines data based on a random sample of Mexican municipalities--and ventures into town halls to follow public officials as they seek to manage a variety of tasks amid conflicting pressures and new expectations. Decentralization, she discovers, is a double-edged sword. While it allows public leaders to make significant reforms quickly, institutional weaknesses undermine the durability of change, and legacies of the past continue to affect how public problems are addressed. Citizens participate, but they are more successful at extracting resources from government than in holding local officials and agencies accountable for their actions. The benefits of decentralization regularly predicted by economists, political scientists, and management specialists are not inevitable, she argues. Rather, they are strongly influenced by the quality of local leadership and politics.
The demand on local government to do more with less by improving operations, increasing productivity, and making better and more informed decisions increases constantly. On a departmental level Geographic Information Systems are helping meet this demand but the majority of local government organizations do not take the time to understand the GIS needs and opportunities of each and every department. This book: Discusses how towns, cities and counties and their specific departments should actually use GIS Explains the best ways to use GIS tools through many specific case studies and step by step instructions Emphasises local government needs first before offering solutions Gives readers a practical and understandable way of thinking about managing and making GIS successful This book is the guide that details best GIS applications and practices for the 34 departments in local government that can, and should, use GIS technology. It explains in details how, why, and what each department should implement, a clear and understandable explanation of departmental GIS.
Since the early 1990s there has been a global trend towards governmental devolution. However, in Australia, alongside deregulation, public-private partnerships and privatisation, there has been increasing centralisation rather than decentralisation of urban governance. Australian state governments are responsible for the planning, management and much of the funding of the cities, but the Commonwealth government has on occasion asserted much the same role. Disjointed policy and funding priorities between levels of government have compromised metropolitan economies, fairness and the environment. Australia's Metropolitan Imperative: An Agenda for Governance Reform makes the case that metropolitan governments would promote the economic competitiveness of Australia's cities and enable more effective and democratic planning and management. The contributors explore the global metropolitan `renaissance', document the history of metropolitan debate in Australia and demonstrate metropolitan governance failures. They then discuss the merits of establishing metropolitan governments, including economic, fiscal, transport, land use, housing and environmental benefits. The book will be a useful resource for those engaged in strategic, transport and land use planning, and a core reference for students and academics of urban governance and government. Features The first comprehensive examination of the need for a fourth sphere of governance in Australia, covering the country's major city-regions, the metropolitan areas. Empowers readers to be able to analyse and critique the policy propositions of federal and state governments for Australia's cities. Includes comparative international case studies.
The treasurers' and chamberlains' accounts of Elizabethan Ipswich are a detailed record of the annual income and expenditure of the town's ruling body during one of the most fascinating periods of its history. A major source for any detailed study of the Suffolk borough at a time when it was among the country's ten richest provincial towns, the entries selected from the accounts not only shed light on sixteenth-century urban administration but also provide vivid insights into the social and economic life of the period: the equipping of soldiers, ducking of scolds, and performances of town minstrels and itinerant players.JOHN WEBB was formerly Principal Lecturer in History at Portsmouth Polytechnic.
Conflict, Improvisation, Governance presents a carefully crafted and edited collection of first hand accounts of diverse public sector and non-profit urban practitioners facing the practical challenges of "doing democracy" in the global/local context of the interconnected major European city of Amsterdam and its region. The book examines street level democratic processes through the experiences of planning and city governance practitioners in community development, youth work, public service delivery, urban public administration, immigration and multi-cultural social policy. These profiles and case studies show widely shared challenges in global and local urban environments, and new, "bottom-up," democratic and improvisational strategies that community members and public officials alike can use to make more inclusive, democratic cities.
In the wake of the 2016 presidential election there was widespread shock that the Midwest, the Democrats' so-called blue wall, had been so effectively breached by Donald Trump. But the blue wall, as The Conservative Heartland makes clear, was never quite as secure as so many observers assumed. A deep look at the Midwest's history of conservative politics, this timely volume reveals how conservative victories in state houses, legislatures, and national elections in the early twenty-first century, far from coming out of nowhere, in fact had extensive roots across decades of political organization in the region. Focusing on nine states, from Iowa and the Dakotas to Indiana and Ohio, the essays in this collection detail the rise of midwestern conservatism after World War II - a trend that coincided with the transformation of the prewar Republican Party into the New Right. This transformation, the authors contend, involved the Midwest and the Sunbelt states. Through the lenses of race, class, gender, and sexuality, their essays explore the development of midwestern conservative politics in light of deindustrialization, environmentalism, second wave feminism, mass incarceration, privatization, and debates over same-sex marriage and abortion, among other issues. Together these essays map the region's complex patchwork of viable rural and urban areas, variously subject to a wide array of conflicting interests and concerns; the perspective they provide, at once broad and in-depth, offers unique historical insight into the Midwest's political complexity - and its status as the last real competitive battleground in presidential elections.
Local officials are responsible for a number of important tasks that have a significant impact on the quality of life of most Americans. Arguably, the policy choices made by local governments in the United States more directly impact individual well-being than do the choices made at any other level of government. From zoning decisions to the creation of parks and the maintenance of sidewalks and trails, local governments are largely responsible for direct services to the public and can provide the necessary tools and skills to create an attractive and vibrant community. And yet one area of significant importance for both individuals and for the country as a whole, local sustainability, is a relatively new policy area for many American municipalities. For example, how many local governments are adopting sustainability policies and plans? How are those initiatives performing? Without an honest and robust examination of both the effectiveness and the efficiency of local sustainability policies, the success of the entire sustainability movement in the United States is uncertain. This book provides readers with a comprehensive understanding of what constitutes local sustainability and why it matters. Focusing closely on environmental initiatives, economic development issues, and social equity concerns, each chapter offers both an account of the sustainability policies being adopted and a close exploration of the performance measurement activities of cities in that policy area. Readers are introduced to the metrics that American cities are using to measure the performance of their sustainability efforts, as well as benchmarks and comparison statistics that may be used to develop and evaluate the performance assessment efforts in their own sustainability programs. Students of public administration, urban planning, and political science - as well as public officials - will find this book useful to understand the complexity of sustainability and local government.
Veteran journalist Peter Schrag argues that California's role in the era of Donald Trump is twofold: to act as a leader in the resistance to the current administration, and to be held up as an alternative to the course being pursued in Washington. Given the Democratic Party's stronghold on all statewide elected offices and legislature, it isn't surprising that California has become a beacon of progressivism. But this is hardly an inevitability. California was almost where much of the GOP wants to take the nation today, leading the country in tax revolt, passage of the Three Strikes criminal sentencing law, and virtual prohibition of bilingual education in public schools. Schrag points to the state's shifting demographics and the erosion of the Republican Party in the wake of Proposition 187 as two major reasons behind California's shift to the left. It is particularly pertinent, then, that a state that formerly espoused these values now negotiates with other nations on climate control, asks its agents not to sweep courthouses in search of people to deport, and has approved major tax increases. California Fights Back gives proof that things can be better, and raises the possibility of this becoming the story of other states.
This book's approach to governance underscores the need for a broader look at governance beyond networks and network governance. Its focus on ambiguities, which are part of governance, raises the question of how those ambiguities are handled and resolved through the institutionalization of practices, and on the social, political, and policy outcomes and consequences of these institutional solutions. As a result, contributions to this volume explicitly address ambiguities in governance dynamics, institutions, and actors, shedding light on their complex interactions. The book presents a comparative perspective to governance arrangements, providing detailed information on case studies in a number of crucial policy sectors, including health care, rural and urban development, and local planning. The book is structured in three parts: 1) ambiguities, hybridity, and failures; 2) networks, participation, and community; and 3) decision making, democracy, and power. (Series: European Civil Society - Vol. 11)
As recently as the early 1960s, Latinos were almost totally excluded from city politics. This makes the rise of Latino mayors in the past three decades a remarkable American story-one that explains ethnic succession, changing urban demography, and political contexts. The vibrant collection Latino Mayors features case studies of eleven Latino mayors in six American cities: San Antonio, Los Angeles, Denver, Hartford, Miami, and Providence.The editors and contributors analyze Latino mayors for their governing styles and policies. They describe how candidates shaped race, class, and economic issues-particularly in deracialized campaigns. Latino Mayors also addresses coalition politics, political incorporation, and how community groups operate, as well as the challenges these pioneers have faced in office from political tensions and governance issues that sometimes even harm Latinos. Ultimately, Latino Mayors charts the performances, successes, and failures of these elected officials to represent their constituents in a changing economic and urban environment.Contributors include: Stefanie Chambers, Carlos E. Cuellar, Emily M. Farris, Maria Ilcheva, Robert Preuhs, Heywood T. Sanders, Ellen Shiau, and the editors.
In imperial China, workers drawn from the local populace performed many of the basic functions of local administration. Standing between the rulers and the ruled, these men mediated in both directions. McKnight's study concentrates on the nature of this village-level subbureaucratic activity in the Sung period; it sheds new light on the emergence of early Chinese society while providing a background against which to assess social changes during later dynasties.
This book is a compilation of 15 chapters that examine in ethnographic detail the ways in which democracy is actually experienced and implemented across South Asia.
The first part of the book comprises 9 chapters on Nepal. These provide diverse case studies of the actual practice of democracy in particular villages, ethnic organizations, historically evolving developmental processes, the politically volatile Tarai region and the areas controlled by the Nepalese Maoist movement. Other chapters examine the roles of leaders and of groups that capture control of state-owned resources in remote areas.
The second part of the book consists of studies from across South Asia, including Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. The juxtaposition of these different studies brings out common themes relating to the struggle for gender equality, the challenge of ethnic and caste subordination, the rise to power of previously 'backward groups' and the ways in which patron-client links structure politics and resource allocation in the region.
This volume is unusual in its attention to ethnographic detail combined with its insistence on looking at how democracy actually does work, rather than how it should work according to some ideal schema. The volume suggests that many of the social and political processes at work need to be understood simultaneously from both supra- and subnational perspectives.
The public sector in India has evolved over the past two centuries to adapt to contextual changes like political framework, economic conditions, and people's expectations. Certain systemic and institutional changes reflect the ongoing transformation within the sector. One such change has been in the role of the District Officer (DO). Beginning as an area administrator-with the agenda of revenue collection and representation of colonial authority-in the 18th century, the office has today evolved into a multi-faceted functionary at the centre of district administration. Unfortunately, this process of evolution and response to the deepening of democracy has often been mistaken for a diminution of the office. This book brings into perspective the processes and impact of public sector reforms that have gone virtually unnoticed by studying developments that have quietly, but irreversibly, altered the way the Indian State provides goods and services to its citizen-customers. It calls upon the State to support the new, evolving and transformational role of the DO in the context of rapid changes. This book also identifies gaps in current research in this area. A comprehensive study, this book would appeal to a wide audience-including students, civil servants, NGOs, and candidates for the civil services.
The Sunsphere, World's Fair Site, and Neyland Stadium are Knoxville landmarks of pride and passion, history and culture. But anyone who has resided in this mid-sized southern city knows that it derives its unique glow not so much from its locale but from its people - the ones who built it and stayed true to it over the years. In East Tennessee Newsmakers Georgiana Vines pays tribute to some remarkable individuals and their contributions to Knoxville and the history, civic and cultural life, and politics of East Tennessee. Some personalities linked with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are part of the blend. While many of these profiles celebrate personal achievement and local renown, the true narrative is found in the tapestry as a whole. Presenting the narrative in five parts - Political Notes, UT Spotlights, Media Sparks, Park Personalities, and About Town - Vines prefaces the stories with insight into her inspiration for the collection, discussing her career in journalism and how a Knoxville News Sentinel features series bloomed into the present book-length work on notable and interconnected Knoxvillians and other East Tennesseans. From political figures like Jimmy Duncan and Tipper Gore to well-known local personalities, including Sam Beall and Mary Lynn Majors, their stories and many more have here been updated and expanded into an impressively researched, entertaining, and valuable history of the colorful and dynamic city of Knoxville and the people who have made it so.
This book explores how political structures and relations affect the 'black box of power' between governmental levels. It draws on case studies in Canada, the UK and continental Europe to illustrate how the design of political structures and the relative hierarchy of the relations between actors affect how governments deliver services.
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