City-County Consolidation: Promises Made, Promises Kept?

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Suzanne M. Leland, Kurt Thurmaier
Georgetown University Press, 2010 - Political Science - 322 pages
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Although a frequently discussed reform, campaigns to merge a major municipality and county to form a unified government fail to win voter approval eighty per cent of the time. One cause for the low success rate may be that little systematic analysis of consolidated governments has been done. In CityCounty Consolidation, Suzanne Leland and Kurt Thurmaier compare nine citycounty consolidationsincorporating data from 10 years before and after each consolidationto similar cities and counties that did not consolidate. Their groundbreaking study offers valuable insight into whether consolidation meets those promises made to voters to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of these governments. The book will appeal to those with an interest in urban affairs, economic development, local government management, general public administration, and scholars of policy, political science, sociology, and geography.
 

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Contents

A Research Design for Evaluating Consolidation Performance
1
An Assessment of the CityCounty Consolidation of Nashville and Davidson County Tennessee
25
Does Consolidation Make a Difference?
57
What Difference Does CityCounty Consolidation Make?
83
CityCounty Consolidation
105
The Urge to Merge
135
From Company Town to Consolidated Government
161
The Case of Lynchburg and Moore County Tennessee Consolidation
179
Unification Promises and Outcomes
215
Improving the Efficiency and Effectiveness of Service Delivery in Local Government
245
Promises Made Promises Kept
271
Contributors
311
Index
315
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About the author (2010)

Suzanne M. Leland is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science at University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Kurt Thurmaier is a professor and director of the Division of Public Administration at Northern Illinois University.

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