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February 12, 2013
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Building livable communities that improve people's lives

  Leadership and Management 
  • When was the last time you said, "Thank you"?
    Valentine's Day actions that can make employees feel more appreciated include a "gratitude board" to encourage employees to write thank-you notes to one another and providing lunch for employees attending a meeting, says Mary Kelly, a business-leadership keynote speaker. "There is no one singular action or activity that will motivate everyone, but sometimes just being thanked goes a long way," Kelly said. (2/11)
  Budgeting and Finance 
  • N.C. city council weighs increase to food and beverage tax
    The Charlotte, N.C., City Council is considering increasing the food and beverage tax by 1%. The plan could raise $1 billion over three decades. The money would be divided between the city and the cost of renovating Bank of America Stadium. However, the restaurant industry has expressed opposition, saying an increase would make purchasing prepared food more expensive for consumers and would hurt the industry. WCCB-TV (Charlotte, N.C.) (2/11) Email this Story
  Emergency Management and Public Safety 
  • Mich. governor seeks city patience with public-safety plan
    Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has advised Flint to give his public-safety plan time to kick in, after preliminary FBI data revealed that the city is the most violent large city nationwide. Snyder's plan has added state troopers, and a state-funded city lockup is in operation. Meanwhile, Snyder proposed that $15 million go toward expanding the Michigan State Police by 107 troopers. The Flint Journal (Mich.) (2/8) Email this Story
  • Okla. city council receives group's public-safety findings
    A group created to address public-safety concerns in Tulsa, Okla., told the City Council that the Police Department's outdated computer system and a lack of understanding of the Crime Stoppers Unit are major contributors to public-safety problems. The group was formed last month, when the city saw almost one-quarter of murders recorded in 2012. KJRH-TV (Tulsa, Okla.) (2/7) Email this Story
  Economic Development, Restoration and Sustainability  
  • N.Y. city council report reveals shrinking middle class
    The middle class accounts for a smaller percentage of New York City's population compared with upper- and lower-class residents, according to a report by the City Council. The report says the city is one of the most expensive places to live and that jobs that pay middle-class wages are becoming scarce. "This report demonstrates the need to address long-term housing costs, develop opportunities for middle-class workers and help create a New York City that middle-class families continue to seek out as a place to call home," Council Speaker Christine Quinn said., N.Y. (2/11) Email this Story
  • Calif. city council delays vote on development
    The Pismo Beach, Calif., City Council has postponed until next month a vote on a development that would include residential units, senior housing, a hotel and conference center, a golf course, vineyards, parks and trails. A councilor was absent, and the council decided all members should be present for the vote. However, residents say they want the development on a ballot so they can decide its fate. Santa Maria Times (Calif.) (2/11) Email this Story
  Legislation, Policy and Grants 
  Public Works and Infrastructure 
  • N.H. city department says snow removal could take days
    The Portsmouth, N.H., Public Works Department has ended a downtown parking ban but says it will take as long as three days to clear sidewalks and snow piles, after a blizzard dumped 2 feet of snow on the city. Crews were able to clear streets and municipal parking lots during the weekend, but they didn't begin working on sidewalks until Sunday night., N.H. (2/11) Email this Story
  ICMA News 
  • 2012 edition of stats book focuses on essentials for local-government managers
    ICMA has released the second edition of "Statistics for Public Administration: Practical Uses for Better Decision Making," an accessible and informative update of the 2010 edition. While this second edition describes research design and basic applied statistics, the book's primary purpose is to demonstrate how statistics can help local-government professionals do their jobs more effectively, rather than help readers master statistical theory. To find out what's new in the second edition, visit
  • Sign up for the 2013 Brownfields Conference in Atlanta
    The National Brownfields Conference is the largest training and networking event in the nation focused on economic redevelopment and sustainability. This event is designed to bring people together from a wide range of fields to learn, discuss and take action on brownfield sites to ultimately revitalize communities and restore the environment. In its 15th year, this event attracts thousands of attendees and more than 200 exhibitors for 2½ days of interactive educational sessions, mobile workshops, keynote speakers and the exclusive economic-redevelopment forum. The National Brownfields Conference, co-sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency and ICMA, invites you to be part of the solution from May 15 to 17. See details and register.
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The only man I know who behaves sensibly is my tailor; he takes my measurements anew each time he sees me. ... The rest go on with their old measurements and expect me to fit them."
--George Bernard Shaw,
Irish playwright

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