12.30.11 The Morning Buzz

And the Knope of the Week Goes To. . . .

City of Sherwood planner Zoe Monahan. Zoe was appointed as an alternate to the City of Tigard Budget Committee. Her appointment reflects the mission of ELGL which is to,

“to enhance communication between emerging and experienced government professionals; provide for professional advancement in the field by identifying employment opportunities and through targeted training and education; and support the advancement of professional local government management.”

Previous Knope of the Week Recipients

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ELGL Headlines

In the Profession

Using GFOA’s New Financial Management Assessment Tool to Improve Performance

GFOA has developed a new financial management self-assessment tool, called the “FM Model”. It invites users to test their own financial management practices against public sector financial management best practices. FM Model contains over 50 “Good Practice Statements,” which are fundamental statements of how a government organization should operate its finances. Each Good Practice Statement is supported by a series of detailed evaluation questions – it is at this level that the self-assessment takes place.

Seen and Heard: a helpful stranger, rider art and rumor of Zooey Deschanel

“Seen and Heard on TriMet” is a bi-weekly compilation of some of the funny, entertaining and uplifting content we see posted about our system every day.

City of Tualatin Newsletter

Winter Driving – Sandy Streets – Community Enhancement – Heritage Tree Nominations

National News

Darker Nights as Some Cities Turn Off the Lights

In a deal to save money, two-thirds of the streetlights were yanked from the ground and hauled away this year, and the resulting darkness is a look that is familiar in the wide open cornfields of Iowa but not here, in a struggling community surrounded on nearly all sides by Detroit.

Instead of Work, Younger Women Head to School

Workers are dropping out of the labor force in droves, and they are mostly women. In fact, many are young women. But they are not dropping out forever; instead, these young women seem to be postponing their working lives to get more education. There are now — for the first time in three decades — more young women in school than in the work force.

State government reorganizes seeking more efficiency

RALEIGH — The inmates have hauled office furniture. Name plates have changed on doors. And whole new state agencies are being created or dissolved. North Carolina state government is undergoing the biggest reorganization in 40 years, the largest since Gov. Bob Scott lead an effort in the legislature to reshape state government in the early 1970s. It’s an effort by Democratic Gov. Bev Perdue – with the support of the GOP legislature – to save money during difficult financial times. But how much will actually be saved has yet to play out.

S.F. parklets: a little tour of a major trend

The most significant change to San Francisco’s landscape in 2011 involves a conjuring act that turns parking spaces into pedestrian nooks.

Wonkbook: How the economy could come back in 2012

There are days when I hit “send” on Wonkbook and feel a little guilty. It can be a lot of bad news for 7am. “Good morning. We’re doomed!” But not today. Today, Wonkbook is optimistic. Sort of. A little.

Regional Headlines

Bridges, boundaries, bosses and birds – Metro’s 2011 stories of the year

You know it’s been a busy year at Metro when a list of the Top 10 stories in regional governance has an urban growth boundary expansion at No. 6. But 2011 was just that – a year of new faces, big decisions and even a bit of pop culture. Here’s a look back at what made news at Metro in 2011.

TEMECULA: Leader says ‘it’s time to rest’

Shawn Nelson’s career grew as his city did — rapidly. As Temecula’s first community services director in 1990, Nelson scrambled to add parks. Nine years later as city manager, he kept pace with the city’s explosive growth while ensuring its finances weren’t winded.

Morales named interim Yakima city manager

YAKIMA, Wash. — The City Council tonight accepted the unexpected resignation of City Manager Don Cooper and named Michael Morales interim manager through at least March 31.