Managing the Fiscal Metropolis

cover art
320 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9781589017764 (1589017765)

ISBN: 9781589017900

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November 2011
LC: 2011006194

American Governance and Public Policy series


Table of Contents
Press Release

Managing the Fiscal Metropolis
The Financial Policies, Practices, and Health of Suburban Municipalities
Rebecca M. Hendrick
Managing the Fiscal Metropolis: The Financial Policies, Practices, and Health of Suburban Municipalities is an important book. This first comprehensive analysis of the financial condition, management, and policy making of local governments in a metropolitan region offers local governments currently dealing with the Great Recession a better understanding of what affects them financially and how to operate with less revenue.

Hendrick's groundbreaking study covers 264 Chicago suburban municipalities from the late 1990s to the present. In it she identifies and describes the primary factors and events that affect municipal financial decisions and financial conditions, explores the strategies these governments use to manage financial conditions and solve financial problems, and looks at the impact of contextual factors and stresses on government financial decisions. Managing the Fiscal Metropolis offers new evidence about the role of contextual factors— including other local governments—in the financial condition of municipalities and how municipal financial decisions and practices alter these effects. The wide economic and social diversity of the municipalities studied make its findings relevant on a national scale.
Rebecca M. Hendrick is an associate professor in the Department of Public Administration at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Gerard W. Boychuk, Karen Mossberger, and Mark C. Rom, Series Editors
"Hendrick provides a path-breaking examination of the financial health and fiscal decision-making strategies of suburban governments competing in a thriving metropolis. From front-page stories of government finance to many cursory academic studies, the common practice is to draw conclusions from a grab bag of indicators with weak theoretical connections. Tomorrow's students and serious researchers should build their work on the comprehensive framework offered here if the goal is to truly diagnose and understand the fiscal heartbeat of local government finance."—W. Bartley Hildreth, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. Local Government, Financial Condition, and Fiscal Stress

3. Financial Decision Making in Municipal Government

4. Suburban Fiscal Governance

5. Fiscal Threats and Opportunities: What Creates Fiscal Threats and Munificence

6. Financial Problem Solving: Tools for Managing Threats and Opportunities

7. Financial Problem Solving: Tools for Managing Financial Condition

8. Municipal Fiscal Health: Practice, Governance, and Policies

Appendix 1: Operationalization of Financial Condition Measures and All Other Variables

Appendix 2: Sampling Methodology for Interviews of Municipal Governments, 2003

Appendix 3: Interview Questions, 2003

Appendix 4: Interview Codes, 2003

Appendix 5: News Article Codes, 2001-6

Appendix 6: Interviewed Agencies in 2009-10

Appendix 7: Grouping of Municipalities and Their Features