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The High Five
D.C. streetcars’ success will be measured by more than just passenger counts – When the D.C. streetcars start carrying passengers, don’t look for them to be an immediate hit as people-movers.
Takeover Fever – Across America, states are taking over cities and school boards. Does it make a difference? You’re a local government. You have a mostly minority population in an impoverished post-industrial area. You’re in debt by the billions, but paying it off would require taxes that residents can’t afford. But wait, you’re in luck! Or maybe you’re out of luck? Either way, get ready: You’re about to get taken over.
Boston’s water: public or private? In the 19th century, the city fought over who should own our infrastructure—and made a choice that spoke volumes.
Town Centers Seek Another Shot at a Bar – Local officials who want a more lively town center and a development team seeking to restore a landmark hotel were hoping to put a new watering hole on Main Street. Then they ran smack into New Jersey’s strict, Prohibition-era alcohol laws, which restrict the number of liquor licenses per town. Flemington had just three—two belonging to establishments in strip malls and one for a Veterans of Foreign Wars hall.
The Future of Public Roads Is in Private Hands – A few weeks ago, the Colorado Department of Transportation reached a 50-year deal with a private investment group to handle the improvement, maintenance, and operation of US 36 between Denver and Boulder. On paper, everyone seems to have made out well.
4-1-1 on E-L-G-L
Michael Rizzitiello, City of Beaverton, Economic Development Project Coordinator
May 8: OPB President Steve Bass
Weekly Reader – Top 5 Blog Posts of the Week
- 05.03.13: Jobs, Jobs, Jobs (Crocs Remix)
- Waldron HR Resume Handouts
- Updated (5/3) Can I Bum a Ride to OPB Forum?
- 05.03.13: Your Premium Buzz
- The Assistant with David Donaldson, City of Lake Oswego
I’m Just a Bill
Rail line would get tax break under bill – A 10-year exemption would aid the link between Eugene and the Coos Bay area
Tampa’s hope to hold city-only transit referendum dies in the Legislature – It was a long shot from the start, and now Tampa’s hope to hold its own transit tax referendum is dead for the year.
What Happened to Federalism? Washington used to know how to listen to the states; there was even a commission for intergovernmental relations. Can Washington overcome politics and partisanship to work together again?
Stephen Henderson: Bing’s accomplished more than you think -Be clear: I’m not endorsing him for a second term. We’re not nearly at that point. I’m not even saying I think he could win. There’s no other way to describe Bing’s first four years than as a disappointment, and the hurdles he would have to clear to win a second term — including building a political campaign from scratch because he hasn’t maintained much of a political presence — would be formidable.
Mental health crisis center fighting Portland Mayor Charlie Hales’ plan to cut money – Carol Slaney woke up Jan. 31 to find her 26-year-old son dead beside her bed from an accidental drug overdose. She grabbed a .45-caliber revolver and disappeared, hiding in an abandoned house behind her Southeast Portland apartment.
Stories of Struggle and Creativity as Sequestration Cuts Hit Home – The $85 billion in federal budget cuts known as sequestration are beginning to be felt far from the nation’s capital, like at a Head Start program in Pejepscot, Me., that is being closed and a cancer center in Birmingham, Ala., that is looking at layoffs. Kidney patients are losing their free transportation to dialysis centers in Stark County, Ohio, and flood gauges are being shut down on the Red River in North Dakota.
Without transit plans, Twin Cities can’t compete – The Twin Cities has fallen behind on transit, and that’s a liability to commerce.
Who Should Pay for Transportation Infrastructure? What is Fair? In Washington State there is a proposal to tax bicycles so that bicyclists help pay for the roads they use. On the other hand, there is considerable political resistence to increasing fuel taxes to offset inflation, or to charging road tolls or parking fees to cover facility costs. These are part of a larger debate concerning what is the most equitable way to finance transportation infrastructure.
John Laird: Focusing the fire extinguisher on complaints about CRC – This scorched scalp has not prevented other people from continually igniting their coiffures and going all pyrotechnic over the Columbia River Crossing.
No need to rush on Metro lands levy: Editorial endorsement – Were the economy stronger and Oregon’s property tax system more straightforward, those questions would be less important. But because of compression, a byproduct of past property-tax limitation measures, when a levy passes some existing programs lose money. For that reason, 19 suburban mayors signed a letter last year that urged Metro to delay the levy.
Strictly Business: Benton lucky to be inside man – That memory come to mind with last week’s news that the Clark County commissioners David Madore and Tom Mielke will hire state Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, as director of the county’s environmental services department. Benton isn’t quite coming through the back door: he’s walking through a front door no one else knew was open, since the job has never been posted.
Benton predecessor forced out – In 2011, Clark County’s director of environmental services launched an investigation into Vegetation Management Department employees misusing county time, resources and funds.
Anonymous author claims discrimination, inappropriate sexual behavior with Olympia Waste Resources director – Olympia’s parks operations director resigned, and the city’s Waste Resources director was placed on paid leave, after the city’s human resources department received an anonymous letter in March alleging improper sexual behavior, sexual harassment, discrimination and misuse of city time and equipment, primarily in the parks department.
Abusing the forest – Proposed restrictions target damage done by homeless campers
Immigrants Are Transforming a New York Town – The Westchester County community of Port Chester, N.Y., presents a microcosm of the costs and benefits that immigration reform could offer the United States.
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