The State of the Cities in 2012: Investing in People

Mayors across the country are in agreement that youth must reach higher educational standards and develop problem-solving, conceptual, and analytic skills previously reserved for only a small number of students. The reasons for these high expectations reflect broad social and technological changes that have unfolded over many decades and drastically altered the pathways to a

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NLC Launches Project #Cities2012

This year’s election will be one of the most important to date.  To influence the process, NLC launches Project #cities2012 to let all candidates – Presidential and Congressional – know what Washington must do to encourage city innovation. Using social media, local leaders will have the information and tools needed to engage citizens and candidates on

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State and Local Public Pensions – Let the Truth Be Told

By Neil Bomberg A General Accountability Office (GAO) study of state and local government pension plans released on Friday, March 2, confirmed what the National League of Cities (NLC) and many other national groups representing employers and state and local pension plans have been saying for years:  Public pensions are not facing a short-term crisis.

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The Latest in Economic Development – 3.5.2012

This week’s blog continues our recent dialogue regarding advanced manufacturing and its employment implications, as well as the emotionally popular draw of professional sports complexes. We also explore the uncertain future of urban retail, “rural gentrification” in small cities and towns, urban revitalization in former industrial powerhouses, and a new program to help small wineries

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Innovation and Cities: Reframing the Dialogue

The first installment in a series on “Innovation and Cities” These are tough times for cities, economically and politically.  Our own research points to a period of managed retrenchment where city leaders are confronted with undesirable choices — cuts in vital services, laying off personnel, delaying needed infrastructure investments, to name a few.  But, times

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Muni Default & Bankruptcy-Chasing Continues

For a moment I thought it was April Fool’s Day, not Leap Day.  Why? Former Kansas City Mayor Mark Funkhouser, now with Governing, blogged on February 29 that Stockton, California’s plan to declare default on $2 million in debt payments might be evidence that Meredith Whitney’s 2010 prediction of 50-100 sizeable muni defaults in the

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Congress Shouldn’t Act as a National Zoning Board

Seven years after the Supreme Court affirmed the right of cities to use eminent domain to secure land for proposed private commercial development, and after more than 40 States that have reassessed and limited their own state eminent domain laws in response, a bipartisan group of federal lawmakers is still seeking to legislatively overturn the

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The Latest in Economic Development – 2.23.12

This week’s blog entry explores the economics behind Major League Baseball’s spring training, looks deeper into “Smart Growth” strategies, provides small business hiring poll results, and explains Richard Florida’s take on Obama’s manufacturing focus.  Comment below or send to common@nlc.org. Get last week’s blog here. As Major League Baseball returns to its sunny spring training

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The Latest in Economic Development – 2.16.12

This week’s blog entry explores the complicated issue of FDI from China, highlights a few recommendations for economic development in the face of a stagnant economy, and uncovers recently released job creation figures from the “app economy.” Comment below or send to common@nlc.org. Get last week’s blog here. Should the United States actively seek investment

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