Webinar Promoting Excellence in Local Government

April 11, 2016

Each year, hundreds of elected and appointed government officials and administrators work to improve their knowledge and skills through professional development opportunities offered by University of Illinois Extension. Participants benefit from the advanced instructional tools and broad expertise that instructors bring to education and professional development programming for local government officials.

On Thursday, April 21, from noon to 1 p.m., a webinar discussion will highlight a recent report released by the Governmental Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates Task Force.

Norman Walzer will present a summary of the report recently released by the task force. His discussion will focus on the governmental structure in Illinois, modernization efforts in other states, task force activities and recommendations, and resource-sharing efforts already underway across Illinois.

Walzer, a senior research scholar in the Center for Governmental Studies (CGS) at Northern Illinois University is director emeritus of the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University. He researches best practices in community-supported businesses with the support of a grant from the North Central Regional Center for Rural Development. Recently Walzer led a team to assist the Governor’s Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates Task Force.

In February 2015, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner created the bi-partisan task force, chaired by Lt. Government Evelyn Sanguinetti. The task force, which includes legislators, local public officials, and citizens, met 17 times and approved 27 recommendations for state actions to remove mandates and/or improve opportunities for residents and local governments to modernize their governmental structure and reduce costs.

Task force results are based on input from local public officials across Illinois. The CGS at Northern Illinois University, as an independent agency, assisted with the data collection and analyses of the more than 500 responses received from a statewide survey. CGS also examined promising practices in other states and successful collaborations by governments in Illinois to share resources and reduce costs.

There is no cost to attend the webinars, however pre-registration is required. Register online at go.illinois.edu/LGIEN. For more information, contact Pam Schallhorn, community and economic development educator, U of I Extension at pscha2@illinois.edu.

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