City-County Consolidation

Promises Made, Promises Kept?

by Suzanne M. Leland, Kurt Thurmaier

Series: American Governance and Public Policy

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 CityûCounty Consolidation, Suzanne Leland and Kurt Thurmaier compare nine cityûcounty consolidationsùincorporating data from 10 years before and after each consolidationùto 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.