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Can Governments Cooperate to Save Tax Dollars? Meeting in Lansing Jan. 31

January 17, 2007       Leave a Comment
By: Dave Rogers

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As the City of Bay City grapples with a budget deficit and explores intergovernmental cooperation to save costs, a pertinent discussion of these issues is slated in Lansing.

The Institute for Public Policy and Social Research (IPPSR) at Michigan State University states that intergovernmental cooperation is gaining the attention of local and state government leaders.

"Local communities working together to provide essential public services such as public works and safety is being researched as a means of preventing further cost burden on citizens and maintaining or raising the quality of services required by state government," says Douglas B. Roberts, Ph.D., director of IPPSR.

The Institute for Public Policy and Social Research is sponsoring a meeting with the title "Communities Collaborating to Meet Service Needs, Share Costs" Wednesday, Jan. 31 in the Mackinac Room, Anderson House Building, Lansing. Sessions will be held 11:30 to 1:30 p.m. (No Charge. Lunch is served on a first-come, first- served basis).

Speakers include Eric Scorsone, MSU Extension and Land Policy Institute; Dan Gilmartin, Michigan Municipal League; Tim McGuire, Michigan Association of Counties; and Larry Merrill, Michigan Township Association.

Some public officials view cooperation as giving to or dividing control of services with others who may have less of a vested interest in their immediate community, thereby weakening services.

Issues to be explored include:

  • What does research and observation tell us about intergovernmental cooperation on service provision in our state?

  • How effective is a cooperative effort in saving costs and maintaining the quality of services?

    What are barriers to intergovernmental cooperation?

    The advance meeting information states: "This forum will bring together local government association leaders who are examining the workings of intergovernmental cooperation in Michigan communities. Discussion will focus on its pluses and minuses as well as subsequent recommendations to state lawmakers on policy that further supports local government service provision." ###

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    Dave Rogers

    Dave Rogers is a former editorial writer for the Bay City Times and a widely read,
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