Highlights from the last few months in the online local government community
Even though it's still vacation season and the weather's plenty hot for many of us, it won't be long before school starts and the days cool off again. Before summer ends, take a look at some of the highlights from the Knowledge Network over the past few months. Local government leaders have been asking questions, discussing their experiences, and sharing resources to better manage their communities.
Questions and Answers
Questions are a great way to quickly tap the expertise of your colleagues. Many of the questions below generated lively discussion, and each was among the most-viewed questions of the summer:
- How do you manage permits for food trucks and farmers markets?
- What are good performance measures for economic development?
- What’s your civic engagement strategy?
- How do you define value in intergovernmental cooperation agreements?
- Does your jurisdiction have an inventory of its core services?
- Do you use an assessment tool to prioritize projects?
- How do you find the salary range for an open manager position?
- What’s the average length of severance compensation?
To join the latest discussion, or to ask a question of your own, go to icma.org/questions.
The collection of more than 7,100 documents on the Knowledge Network continued to expand this summer. Some of the most useful resources on the Knowledge Network are the reports, policies, and sample documents that come directly from local governments. Here are a few of the new additions:
- The Town of Danville, California posted its citizen guides to the budget and capital improvement program.
- From the City of Sparks, Nev. comes a report on the possibility of merging some services.
- The City of Reno, Nev. shared its strategic communications plan and social media policy.
- From Manatee County, Fla. comes a proposal to better coordinate agencies in the development review process.
- The City of Lynchburg, Va.’s sustainability plan joins the many sustainability resources on the site.
If you have a resource like these, or any other document that might be useful to share with the community, submit it to the Knowledge Network.
The documents section has also welcomed many new resources produced by ICMA and other organizations covering issues in local government, like these:
- A presentation from ICMA’s Ron Carlee summarizing the main external forces affecting local government.
- Solar case studies from Park City, Utah and Aurora, Colorado, a fact sheet on the biggest misconceptions about solar power, and a presentation from a workshop on solar powering your community.
- Case studies on reducing healthcare costs at the Port of Houston Authority and saving millions with a county-built fiber optic network in Marin County, Fla.
- Reports on using data to make decisions in Michigan’s local governments, the fiscal impact of the recession on state and local governments nationwide, improving public sector operations with “lean” principles, and expanding the arts to new audiences.
You'll find much more at icma.org/docs.
Finally, the blogs section of the Knowledge Network has recently seen some especially exciting new posts. For ongoing discussion of local government issues, check out the blogs that have been the most active this summer:
- Sustainable Communities discusses new ideas for creating stronger, more resilient and sustainable communities.
- 311/CRM Systems brings you developments in the 311/CRM field from the experts.
- Government Affairs & Public Policy shares policy insights from the Center for State and Local Government Excellence.
- Notes from CityLinks offers updates from the ICMA program that connects communities around the world working on climate change, food security, and water & sanitation.
- In the Know shares the latest highlights from the Knowledge Network.
If you'd like to find more information on the Knowledge Network, learn about browsing by topics to focus on the content that's most relevant to you. The Getting Started page is the best place to learn how to set up your account and participate in the communitiy.