by Neil Bergsman, Senior Policy Analyst at Maryland Nonprofits with a 35-year background in Maryland government finance, both executive and legislative branches. In the federal government, and in many states and localities the budget process is contentious with lots of drama. It’s exciting: red lines, brinkmanship and shut-downs. But excitement isn’t a good thing for budgeting. In Maryland, there has been plenty of contention about budget priorities, what’s in and what’s ou
By Joshua Avila, MPA, Deputy Chief Operating Officer, City of Providence, Office of Mayor Jorge O. Elorza I joined the City of Providence in the fall of 2019 as a Mayoral Fellow, optimistic and eager to advance a career in public administration. That initial optimism and enthusiasm quickly transitioned, however, into uncertainty and anxiety as the world drastically changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
What would we do? How would we serve our constituents during a once-in
By Doug Criscitello, Managing Director, Grant Thornton Public Sector Trust, perhaps the most important ingredient to a well-functioning society, is in very short supply these days. As the Pew Research Center regularly reports, trust in the U.S. government has generally been on a downward trajectory for decades. As pointed out in a recent survey conducted by the Partnership for Public Service, we now find ourselves at a point where a majority of Americans do not trust the go
Typically, when people think about efforts to help deal with the byproducts of global warming, they focus on the power of federal governments. But there’s an important contribution to be made by cities. It’s highlighted in a special report, released on May 4th, from the Trust for Public Land, titled “The Power of Parks to Address Climate Change.” As the report states, “Park acres, it turns out, are very good at buffering the effects of climate change. Green space has the powe
On May 3rd, The Trust for Public Land (TPS) released its annual ParkScore rankings of parks in the 100 most populous cities, based on five factors: Equity, Access, Acreage, Investment and Amenities. The five cities that scored highest in this ranking were Washington D.C.; St. Paul, Minnesota; Arlington, Virginia; Cincinnati, Ohio and Minneapolis, Minnesota. "Washington, DC, was rated the best big city park system in the country for the second consecutive year," according to T
We’ve been spending our day watching the Association of Local Government Auditors Annual Conference online. We wish we could be there in person – as ALGA’s membership represents one of the best group of sources for our work in state and local government. The session that’s ended about ten minutes ago was titled, “The Role of Internal Audit in Municipal Government.” The panel, made up of four city managers from Texas, focused largely on ways the audit community can get along p