While the "grab bag" series usually entails grant-related news for our readership, today's news items happened to align solely with local government without necessarily linking to grant information—hence the slight title change. Whether we're talking funding sources, government advocacy, or collaboration, all these efforts seek to improve communities by following best practices and listening to the experts:
- How can small and rural communities attract new residents? By leveraging common natural economic, cultural, and environmental assets to develop local and regional economies. ICMA's webinar on this topic will include stories and best practices of three communities. Register here for September 13, 2013, at 1:00 p.m. EST.
- Mapping data for government: We have more data than ever these days, so there’s an increased need to present it in a digestible way—and visualized data can help. How, specifically, can spatial data help inform public policy making and connect with stakeholders? Read more from this white paper on GIS, presented through GovLoop and titled “The Mapping Revolution: Incorporating Geographic Information Systems in Government.”
- Municipal insecurities: "State and local governments overall remain at a substantial deficit as a percentage of GDP,” writes Mark Funkhouser, director of the Governing Institute. Unless there is major structural changes, “things are just going to continue getting worse at least through 2060.” How can transparency play a role? Read more from Governing.
- eCivis upcoming conferences: Be sure to check in on the conferences that we’ll be attending in the next couple months, including League of California Cities and ICMA this month: http://www.ecivis.com/news-events/conferences.html