Author: NLC Staff

Cities Can Amplify Formerly Incarcerated Voices to Drive Justice Reform

This is a guest post form Ronald Simpson-Bey, who serves as the Director of Outreach and Alumni Engagement at JustLeadershipUSA. For any criminal justice reform policy to be truly effective, and for it to deliver the results that are long overdue — the decarceration and decriminalization of black and brown communities and communities experiencing poverty

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Three Ways Blockchain Could Transform Local Government

While the United States government has not yet publicly promoted or experimented with blockchain, other nations have used the secure and unchangeable platform technology to pursue new forms and applications of governance. In May 2017, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security granted awards of $2.25 million each in research contracts to three blockchain startups as

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A Suburban Model for Successful Downtown Growth

This is a guest post by Noam Bramson, mayor of New Rochelle, New York. In my city of New Rochelle, New York, our innovative and successful downtown development plan illustrates the critical role that small cities can play in achieving sustainable regional growth. Our experience could serve as a model for similar communities throughout America.

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Preparing for the Future of Work

This is a guest post by Mayor Mark Stodola, Little Rock, Arkansas, president of the National League of Cities. Since January, the National League of Cities has been looking at work in cities in a whole new way. We’ve been conducting new research, highlighting promising practices, engaging new partners, and publishing new resources. Our focus

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How to Attract and Retain a Talented Workforce

This is a guest post by Steve Vermette, vice president of brokerage at Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company. While the 2018 State of the Cities report listed economic development, infrastructure, budgets, housing and public safety as the top priorities for U.S. mayors, many communities are not properly staffed to tackle these initiatives. Budget shortfalls and static pay

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Getting Beyond the Hype About Uber and Gig Work

This is a guest post by Lawrence Mishel, distinguished fellow at the Economic Policy Institute. Over the last few years, a persistent wave of media stories has used the emergence of gig jobs to illustrate the expansion of “freelancing,” often describing a rapidly “changing nature of work” that will eventually result in a large share

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Seven Strategies for Data-Driven Economic Development

For cities, effective economic development demands informed, careful leadership from elected officials. Measuring the impact of economic development initiatives and projects can help city leaders determine whether they are meeting the needs of their community and local businesses. It’s important to point out that in the context of short-term political cycles, it may be tempting to stray

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Pensions, Retiree Health Benefits, and Your City’s Bond Rating

This is a guest post by Les Richmond, Vice President and Actuary of Build America Mutual (BAM). Credit ratings are the most visible (and sometimes only) independent assessment of the fiscal status of a city’s government – they have a direct impact on borrowing costs and the affordability of infrastructure investments, and they can also

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What City Leaders Should Know about South Dakota v. Wayfair

On Thursday, in a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court handed down a major victory in South Dakota v. Wayfair, concluding that state and local governments can require remote retailers with no physical presence in the state to collect and remit sales taxes. After years of congressional inaction, the decision brings cities one significant step closer

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