Time for New Charters: The Regional Future of Local Government, Citiwire.net

June 20, 2010

By Bill Dodge, former Executive Director of the National Association of Regional Councils

"Local governments have strengthened their capacities multifold during my professional life. I recall vividly working with some that once keep financial records by hand, depended on snail mail for communications, and only responded to their neighbors under court order. Conversely, I have seen local governments earn the respect, and accompanying tax dollars, to provide state-of-the-art roads and sewers, public safety and recreation programs, and even bus service and affordable housing.

Yet in spite of this increased competency, individual local governments have been losing the ability to address many of their toughest challenges — the ones that cut across jurisdictional boundaries — at an increasing pace since the turn of the century. If there has ever been a time for innovation in local government, it is now. " For the complete Citiwire.net article, please click here.