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Focus Archive - October 2005

Please note that Focus section links were valid at the time of their original posting. However, since Web sites and addresses change frequently, we cannot guarantee that all links will remain operative.

Transportation - Making the Connection (October 25)
Regardless of their size, communities can realize three major benefits from better connectivity: shorter trips; a wider variety of travel choices; and more cost-effective public services and infrastructure. More from the Planning Commissioners Journal (Adobe Acrobat Document547kb).

Cash Management Technology Survey Results (October 25)
The Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) and JPMorgan recently surveyed more than 900 state and local government finance officials about their use of collection and disbursement technologies, online banking services, and fraud prevention tools. More from Government Finance Review (Adobe Acrobat Document4445kb).

2006 Brownfields Grants (October 25)
The FY06 Proposal Guidelines for the Brownfields Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund, and Cleanup Grants have been posted to EPA's Brownfields Web site. The proposal deadline is December 14, 2005 for funding in the Summer of 2006.

Pepper Spray Policy Redux (October 25)
It is imperative that a police department's policies and procedures incorporate the ability to control and document the issuance and use of pepper spray and to conclusively determine the amount of spray expended in a given incident. More from The Police Chief.

Creating a New Future for a Downsizing Organization (October 25)
Local government executives face more than a financial challenge in cutting budgets. An even bigger dilemma for executives is the leadership challenge of crafting a new and vital future for the downsizing organization. More from Public Management.

DOR Roundtable Meeting to Discuss Strategic Business Plan (October 25)
The State Department of Revenue (DOR) is holding meetings with taxpayer groups to gather input on its strategic business plan. A meeting for cities and counties is set for Friday, November 18 in Olympia. For more information or to RSVP, see the invitation (Adobe Acrobat Document24kb).

Cities 101 (October 25)
The National League of Cities' "Cities 101" Web page offers a variety of information to introduce and explain municipal government in the United States.

Complying with HAVA Mandates (October 25)
The Help America Vote Act (HAVA) imposes numerous mandates on states and counties related to the administration of federal elections. Most of these requirements kick in on Jan. 1, 2006. More from NACo's County News.

Environment - The Used-Food Market (October 25)
With oil prices jumping, local governments may want to take another look at turning into energy material their garbage trucks pick up every day. More from Governing.

Bremerton Fire Station Receives National Award (October 25)
Bremerton Fire Station #1 recently won Fire Chief Magazine's Station Style Bronze Award for a new career station. More from the City of Bremerton.

Local Governments Receive More than $760,000 for Litter Cleanup (October 25)
Litter-cleanup efforts in 12 counties in southwestern Washington will benefit from more than $760,000 in grants from the Department of Ecology over the next two years. More form Access Washington.

Smart City - Leaders on the Front Line (October 19)
Beverly O'Neill, President, U.S. Conference of Mayors, and Don Borut, Executive Director, National League of Cities, talk about the most pressing challenges cities face and what municipal leaders are doing to respond on this week's Smart City Radio show.

Living Too Large in Exurbia (October 19)
Big houses. Big cars. Now, bigger bills. A lifestyle built on cheap energy and cheap credit is in jeopardy. More from Business Week.

Web Sightings – Emergency Management (October 19)
Web Sightings – Emergency Management In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, many local governments are examining their emergency management programs plans. This month we’ve selected sites on emergency management and disaster planning:

Washington State and Local Governments

U.S. Government
General Resources

Citizen Priorities for Thurston County Government (October 19)
Through their "Citizen Priorities for Thurston County Government" project, Thurston County hopes to better understand which programs and services county residents most want their county government to concentrate on in the coming years.

New GPS Applications Track Moving Targets (October 19)
Global Positioning Systems have long been used by local governments to map street lines, coordinate pothole repairs and keep track of other stationary features. Now, they are beginning to track moving targets. More from Governing.

Top Ten Trends: Traffic Enforcement (October 19)
From hamlets to major cities, whenever a law enforcement agency conducts a citizen survey, traffic issues emerge as the number one concern that the community wants the police to address more effectively. More from The Police Chief.

A Guide for Enhancing Rural Emergency Medical Services (October 19)
The Transportation Research Board's Guide for Enhancing Rural Emergency Medical Services provides strategies that can be employed to enhance rural emergency medical services.

Katrina's Window: Confronting Concentrated Poverty in America (October 19)
Hurricane Katrina's assault on New Orleans' most vulnerable residents and neighborhoods has reinvigorated a dialogue on race and class in America. More from The Brookings Institution.

Regulation of Obscenity, Indecency and Profanity (October 19)
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has launched a new website explaining its broadcast obscenity, indecency and profanity rules, complaint procedures and enforcement acttions. More from the FCC.

Tracking the Telecommunications Reform Debate (October 19)
The Benton Foundation has an excellent website providing basic information about the issues and proposed bills in this significant federal rewrite of the Telecommunications act. The issues are big, and will impact local government finances and consumer rights.

Workshop - Land Use Planning for Pipelines (October 18)
The Association of Washington Cities, together with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission and other sponsors will be hosting several free workshops this November to foster greater understanding about the effects of land use planning and practices around pipelines.

Tips on Police Leadership (October 11)
Police executives of smaller agencies have to be generalists in police work and organization management. Their daily duties often combine those of a line officer, a first-line supervisor, a middle manager, and an executive. More from The Police Chief.

Smart City - Resilient Cities (October 11)
What gives a city the ability to re-group and come back from natural disaster and human tragedies stronger than before? This week's guests on Smart City™ talk about what makes a city resilient.

Zen & the Art of Bicycling (October 11)
How can public policies make cycling safer and encourage people to ride more often? Hint: It doesn’t involve helmets. More from Governing.

Ten Qualities of Successful Public Markets (October 11)
Much can be learned about what make places great by observing successful markets - and vice versa. The Project for Public Spaces presents 100 well-tested tips on how you can create your own great market.

What Features Make Communities More Walkable? (October 11)
The King County Land Use, Transportation, Air Quality and Health Study (executive summary) (Adobe Acrobat Document935kb) examines the features that help cities and suburban neighborhoods to become less auto-dependent and more foot-friendly.

Fiber-To-The-Premises (FTTP) Conference in Portland (October 11)
On October 28th There will be an all day workshop on Fiber-To-The-Premises Networks at Portland State University. Representatives of various cities and technology companies will be speaking.

Main Street Workshop Planned (October 11)
The Washington State Main Street Program will host a workshop about "Organizing a Successful Downtown Revitalization Program Using the Main Street Approach" on November 2 in Connell, Washington and November 3 in Monroe, Washington. More from Access Washington.

Sprawl, Growth Boundaries and the Rehnquist Court (October 11)
A recent Utah Law Review article looks at whether Oregon's urban growth boundaries are constitutional under recent Supreme Court case law and whether the UGB has in fact saved Portland from the social problems caused by sprawl. More from the Social Science Research Network.

School Choice could be an Answer to Sprawl (October 11)
Ignoring the chain of causality between bad schools and sprawl leads many to overlook the simplest and potentially most powerful anti-sprawl measure available. More from Grist Magazine.

Two Municipal WiFi Projects go Forward (October 11)
The cities of Philadelphia and San Francisco reached new milestones on their respective paths toward providing citywide wireless Internet access. More from Government Computer News.

IPD Increase from July 2004 to July 2005 is 2.541 Percent (October 05)
The increase in the implicit price deflator (IPD) from July 2004 to July 2005 Is 2.541 percent. This means, for most jurisdictions, the maximum allowable levy increase for 2006 is 1 percent of the 2005 levy (plus taxes on new construction and the change in the value of state-assessed utility property). More from MRSC.

The Epidemic of Fear (October 05)
Fear is a constant presence in America's cities, now filled with surveillance cameras, bomb-sniffing dogs and metal detectors. But are our fears warranted? Dr. Marc Siegel, this week's guest on Smart City™, says it's a false alarm and challenges what he calls our epidemic of fear.

A New View of Sprawl (October 05)
The conventional wisdom about suburbs and sprawl can change dramatically over time. More from Governing.

The Density Dilemma (October 05)
An investigation of compact and transit-oriented development in Texas, California, Oregon, Maryland and Massachusetts suggests serious challenges ahead for density in America. More from the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.

Rethinking the Urban Speedway (October 05)
For decades, highway engineers focused on designing wider, straighter, faster roads. Now, moving traffic quickly is no longer the sole goal. More from Governing.

Statewide Emergency Perparedness Report (October 05)
The State Emergency Management Council's (EMC) recently released annual report to the Governor (Adobe Acrobat Document4553kb) focuses heavily on local emergency management, including a summary of the findings and recommendations from the EMC's Task Force on Local Programs.

Governor Gregoire's 2006 Land Use Agenda (October 05)
Governor Gregoire has identified a land use agenda for 2006 that will focus on system improvements, efficiencies to reduce costs, and to provide better clarity for local governments and other GMA participants.

Minimum Wage to Increase to $7.63 an Hour Jan. 1, 2006 (October 05)
Washington's minimum wage will increase 28 cents to $7.63 an hour beginning Jan. 1, 2006. More from the Department of Labor & Industries.

Cities and Counties in the News (October)
Here are the latest news clippings from around the state highlighting current events, trends and other news affecting Washington city and county governments:

Need more information?

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