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View from the Cordillera

A Commentary on Achieving Excellence in Local Government
Read by Municipal Leaders on 4 Continents
Published by the Cordillera Institute
Local-Government Reform (part 6): The Better Way to Budget (Vol. 4, Issue 39)
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Summary of This Commentary
Will another myth finally be laid to rest?  In the U.S. alone, layoffs by municipalities and other local-government agencies have passed 100,000 – with no end in sight.  This is despite trillions of dollars in what our senior governments call 'stimulus' spending but, in reality, are just more of their failed attempts to prime the pump.  With our economies in the doldrums and unemployment remaining stubbornly high, should we be worrying about local-government reform?  To this observer, it's more urgent than ever.  Here's why.  The mismanagement of our economies by so many of our senior governments points to the pressing need for local governments everywhere to be weaned from financial dependence on senior government.  So, what's next on the reform agenda?  It's ABB (activity-based budgeting).  ABB is also called performance budgeting because not only can it improve and simplify your budget process, it can become an important part of your overall performance-improvement program.  How does ABB simplify the budget process?  What other benefits does ABB offer?  What challenges might you encounter?  For answers to those questions and more, be sure to read this issue.  Since ABB is a key part of achieving excellence, adopting it as your budget process will take you that much closer to your goal.
As always, we welcome your comments.
David Barber
Director
Cordillera Institute
(416) 293-9300
DBarber@cordillera-institute.org
http://cordillera-institute.org/

VFC Catalog
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Achieving Sustainable Local Government
Characteristics of Good Government
Structuring Local Government
Assessing Policy Proposals
Paradigms of Leadership
Choosing Our Elected Officials
Building a Win-Win Organization
Accomplishing Your Objectives
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Growing a Robust Economy
Planning for the Future of Your Community
Moving People and Goods
Delivering Services
Reforming Social Programs
Improving Our Environment
Responding to Crises
What Can We Learn from ...?
Special Issues
Recent VFC Commentaries
Below are links to summaries of recent VFC commentaries.  To read a summary, just click on its title in the list below.
High Noon at the Statehouse (part 1)
High Noon at the Statehouse (part 2)
High Noon at the Statehouse (part 3)
Will It Be Bailouts or Bankruptcies? (part 1)
Will It Be Bailouts or Bankruptcies? (part 2)
Local-Government Reform (part 1)
Local-Government Reform (part 2)
Local-Government Reform (part 3)
Local-Government Reform (part 4)
Local-Government Reform (part 5)
Local-Government Reform (part 6)
Smart Growth and the Ideal City
In Praise of Smaller Municipalities
The Health-Care Dilemma (part 1)
The Health-Care Dilemma (part 2)
The Health-Care Dilemma (part 3)
The Health-Care Dilemma (part 4)
The Major Media: Is the 4th Estate Acting as a 5th Column?
Surviving and Thriving in an Irrational World (part 1)
Surviving and Thriving in an Irrational World (part 2)
Is Man-Made Global Warming Just Another Manufactured Crisis? (part 1)
Is Man-Made Global Warming Just Another Manufactured Crisis? (part 2)
Why Your Council Makes Dumb Decisions (part 1)
Why Your Council Makes Dumb Decisions (part 2)
Should We Plant the Cultural-Planning Seed in the Senior-Government Garden?
Are Some Green Policies Turning Our Communities Brown?
To Merge or Not to Merge ...
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About This Publication
VFC (View from the Cordillera) is an electronic publication serving those who govern, administer, manage, support, and sustain our local governments.  Since its inaugural issue, this publication has presented commentaries on a variety of topics vital to local government.  For more information on VFC, click here.
About the Cordillera Institute
The Cordillera Institute is an independent research and public policy organization dedicated to excellence in local government.  Since our founding in 1994, we have studied many high-performance organizations to learn what makes them successful.  From this research, we have distilled a set of principles, paradigms, policies, programs, and practices which are the key elements of their success.  Our mission is to be a catalyst – to empower municipalities, school districts, public utilities, and other local public agencies to achieve excellence by adopting and applying these success elements.  For more information on the Institute, click here.
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