Month: December 2012

Medicaid: On the Supreme Court’s Docket Again

Medicaid was the show-stopper in the Supreme Court’s last term: the Court unexpectedly held in the Affordable Care Act case that requiring states to participate in the Medicaid expansion was unconstitutionally coercive. Medicaid apparently was still on the Justices’ minds three months later when the Court, on its first day back in session, decided to

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Violence Prevention Efforts in California Cities Continue Strong Despite Challenges

Ten California cities — nine longtime participants in a statewide gang prevention network, plus newly added Long Beach — gathered a few weeks ago to share practices and develop a 2013 policy agenda.  Despite prevailing challenges such as resumed high rates of violent crime, significant turnover among mayors, chiefs of police, city councils, and diminished police forces, and fewer resources than

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Angels on Ice!

The worlds of city economic development and youth development came together for a brief shining moment last week, at the LA Live! entertainment complex in Los Angeles.  Dense new residential and commercial development in and around the complex brings verve and people well into the evening, many nights each week. With oversize statues of LA

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Supporting Food Systems, Supporting Communities

“The best way to preserve farmland is to make farmers successful on that land.” This call to action from participants attending the Supporting Local Food Systems Roundtable at NLC’s Congress of Cities (CoC), speaks to just one of the many factors driving the National League of Cities’ (NLC) commitment to addressing sustainable food issues in

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New Report on Homelessness: The Good, The Bad, and What You Can Do

Last week, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development released their latest national estimate of the number of homeless across the country. While there are several points of good news, there are also sober realities that must be acknowledged. The Good News Broadly speaking, in January of this year 633,783 people were homeless. This

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Elevating the Principles of Net-Zero Buildings to Teach Us About Building Sustainable Communities

A few weeks ago, at the Greenbuild conference in San Francisco, I attended a session that featured NREL’s Research Support Facility (RSF) in Golden, CO. The session’s speakers described the design and construction process of the RSF, a net-zero energy building (NZEB) that today serves as a model for performance-based design. The possibilities presented about

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Opportunities and Impact for Small-Town Sustainability

Of the many misconceptions that sustainability as a field encounters, the notion that it is an approach exclusive to large, well-resourced cities is as pervasive as it is untrue. Last week I had the opportunity to attend a roundtable discussion on strategies to connect and support sustainability efforts in cities and towns across the state

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The Soft Stuff is the Hard Stuff

“I’d rather be wanted for murder than not wanted at all,” a juvenile murderer said to me when I served as Commissioner of Youth Services in Massachusetts.  This frightening statement throws into sharp relief the fundamental need shared by all of us, namely that we must be seen as important in someone’s eyes, claimed, “beloved.”

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The Latest in Economic Development

This week’s blog discusses an innovative, localized way to fund local development projects, two regions focused on mutually beneficial cooperation, an NPR story on insourcing, and the startup culture between the coasts. Comment below or send to common@nlc.org. Get the last edition of “The Latest in Economic Development.” “Why couldn’t people in the community invest

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