Regional Community Development News – April 23, 2008 [regions_work]

A weekly compilation of news links about and for regional communities pursuing local and regional development.

Published on line since November 11, 2003.



Top Regional Community stories of the this week … 1. – 9.

U.S. Regional Communities - sub-State, State or multi-State – news articles … 10.01 -.27

Other Regional Community News for Our Local Planet … 11.01 - .17

Blogging about Regional Communities … 12.01 - .24

Announcements and Regional Links13.01 - .07

Subscription access news stories … 14.02

Custom search: region, regions, regional communities … 15.

Top Regional Community stories of this week

1. America could learn from others how to combat climate change - Daily Press, VA

Are Americans up to shedding their mental blindfolds to learn powerful climate-change strategies from Europe's metropolitan regions?

Or put another way: Can we afford to wait any longer?

The issue was front and center earlier this month as the first-ever joint conference of major U.S. and European regional councils met in Northern Virginia. The regional leaders adopted a Declaration of Cooperation focused on innovative strategies to promote a raft of climate-friendly development practices.

Areas in which Europe has outpaced the United States include energy efficiency, renewable sources such as wind, solar and geothermal power, "green" buildings, more transit and less car use, and smarter land use practices.

The Alexandria setting was fitting because the Northern Virginia Regional Commission — through a decade of exchanges with counterparts in Stuttgart, Germany — has been inspired to adopt a range of conserving strategies. Among them: pedestrian-friendly streets and traffic-calming measures, car-sharing, low-impact stormwater management, and steps to make the entire Washington capital region a national leader in green rooftop gardens that consume carbon dioxide.

But such success stories are rare.

Bottom line: We lose out, lagging both environmentally and economically. In today's fiercely competitive and dangerously warming world, it seems high time to kick our superior attitudes of "American exceptionalism." That's the notion that since we led the world on every step from the Declaration of Independence to winning two world wars and putting men on the moon, we're inherently superior and don't need to learn from others.

Another European advantage is the Network of European Metropolitan Regions and Areas, or METREX, formed in 1996 in Glasgow, Scotland. Today METREX has grown to 50 member regions — I'd call them citistates — spread from Moscow to Lisbon, Helsinki to Rome. And it's adopted strong values: clear, unified planning to achieve …

2. OPINION: Don’t turn on valuable friend - Enterprise News, MA, USA

Picking friends based on whether they support a casino in town could be an expensive and foolish gamble for Middleboro.

Yet that seems to be the central idea behind a recent discussion among members of the Board of Selectmen on whether to continue what has been a valuable association with a regional planning group.

The Southeastern Regional Planning & Economic Development District has long held that strains on the region’s infrastructure need careful consideration before a decision is made on whether to support the Mashpee Wampanoag tribe’s plans for a casino in Middleboro.

But some on the Board of Selectmen have interpreted that as “anti-casino” and further suggested that being anti-casino is akin to being anti-Middleboro.

Slow down, folks.

What SRPEDD is doing now with regard to the casino plan is what it has done with every major development proposal: making sure the region doesn’t lose more than it gains.

This winter SRPEDD Executive Director Stephen C. Smith met with selectmen to make it clear the group is concerned with the impact on surrounding towns in terms of traffic, population increase and road improvements.

He also assured the board that SRPEDD is neither a proponent nor opponent of the proposed facility.

Town Manager Stephen Lombard has counseled the board against severing its ties to SRPEDD, reminding members that the group has important sway in bringing state and federal funds for projects that benefit the town.

We think his suggestion that selectmen talk rather than walk is a wiser course of action.

The board last week voted to postpone making a decision until they meet with town planner Ruth McCawley Geoffroy and selectmen Chairman Adam Bond, who was not present at the meeting where talk of quitting the group first arose.

4. Community discussion to focus on recycling - Kansas City Star - MO, USA

One KC Voice will host a community discussion in Roeland Park

The input received from citizens will help the Mid-America Regional Council’s Solid Waste Management District design better programs, inform elected officials and develop a long-term strategy for responsible regional waste management.

One KC Voice, a regional community engagement program, is hosting 31 “Landfilled” discussions across the region. …


The mission of One KC Voice is to develop a community culture that values and invites citizen participation as an integral part of community decision-making and to offer the region a variety of methods to accomplish this goal.

How One KC Voice Works

5. Regional Effort Required - Hartford Courant - United States

The New England region is burdened with some of the oldest transportation infrastructure in the country. Age, accelerated wear and tear from acid rain and road salt, and our harsh climate have all contributed to deterioration throughout our transportation network. The result: an infrastructure that requires ever-increasing expenditures to barely maintain the status quo.

But New England is also fortunate to have an influential congressional delegation. And to have enough common cause among the states to plan intelligent solutions, together.

All six New England states are included among the top 15 having the most structurally deficient and obsolete bridges in the country. Our bridges, highways, rail and transit lines are crumbling under traffic levels far beyond those originally anticipated by their planners and designers. Since 1990, our road traffic increased two to three times faster than our population growth. New England relies heavily on trucks for freight delivery — with the consequent highway wear and tear — and truck traffic is projected to increase 60 to 100 percent by 2020.

In New England, transportation-related delays cost some $1.7 billion annually. With business leaders continually citing the quality of transportation infrastructure — and the ability to move both goods and people — as key factors in their location decisions, New England's commercial areas become less and less competitive every year.

Ideally, these problems should be addressed regionally, but New England's transportation network is not treated as an integrated system. Delays caused by commuter congestion slow freight deliveries, while increases in freight delivery by trucks slow commuters. It makes little sense to relieve congestion in one area if bottlenecks just appear elsewhere along the route.

The closeness of New England's states, along with shared characteristics, creates an opportunity for important collaboration.

The New England Council recently hosted a forum on regional cooperation, …

5. O’Brien: Regionalism is a reality - Youngstown Vindicator - Youngstown, OH, USA

The mayor says residents and businesses must feel safe to thrive.

Warren Mayor Michael J. O’Brien says the regional approach to improving the economic viability of the area is not a choice, it’s a reality.

“For too long, we have competed with each other for economic growth. Now, we look forward to ways to share economic success regionally, ” O’Brien said Friday.

His comments about the region and city were made during his State of the City address to members of The Regional Chamber at the Avalon Inn.

“As I have stated in the past, we must be collaborators, not competitors. Regionalism is not a choice, it’s a reality, ” the mayor commented.

He pointed out he is an advisory committee member of the Northeast Regional Economic Revenue Study being done to promote and stimulate economic conditions in 16 northeastern Ohio counties.

The study is looking at successful communities throughout the country and how they achieved their goals so they can be applied to the region.

“We will be changing the way we think, that is, more regionally, ” O’Brien said, noting the counties will be better able to position themselves for development.

The mayor said he believes that change, both good and bad, has never happened so rapidly. “We live in a time of a diminishing tax base, yet we live in a time where technology is accelerating at warp speed, ” he added.

The mayor noted that the safety forces are the key to a safe city.

“For any community to be successful, for any community to attempt to attract industry, for any community to retain existing companies, their customers, their employees, their service personnel must feel safe, ”

6. High-speed rail plans unveiled - Marshall News Messenger - Marshall, TX, USA

Plans for the establishment of a high-speed rail service that would connect Marshall with points east, west and north were announced during a press conference Thursday afternoon at The Marshall.

A partnership with the East Texas Council of Governments, the North Louisiana Council of Governments and the North-Central Council of Governments links every county and parish between Fort Worth and Bossier, La., in the effort, according to Richard Anderson, Harrison County judge and chairman of the ETCC governmental relations committee. Ultimately, the rail line would extend from Marshall northward to Texarkana and Little Rock, eastward to Shreveport, and westward to Longview, Mineola, Dallas and Fort Worth.

"This is bottoms-up government, " Anderson said. "We have local governments coming together to reach out and request participation from the state and federal governments. This is a regional effort — the Ark-La-Tex region."

Anderson stressed that this is not a short-term plan.

… the $250 million price tag would produce 954 miles of double-tracking "from San Antonio to Austin to Fort Worth to Dallas to Marshall to Texarkana to Little Rock" with "a 30-mile stretch we're calling 'The Louisiana Leg' to take you from Marshall to Shreveport/Bossier." Trains would travel at speed of 105 to 115 along that rail line.

"This is truly a regional approach, " said Shreveport City Council Calvin Lester. "Many times in government, cities and municipalities work very hard at competing against each other, we don't work very well together. This is one of those unique situations where it's in everyone's interest that we make this happen."

7. What or who is Futures? - Tidewater News - Franklin, VA, USA

Readers, if you've been reading The Tidewater News lately, you may have noticed a few references to Franklin-Southampton Futures Inc.

You may be hearing about or seeing more of this very important organization, but if we are doing the job we have set out to do, you will more likely experience the effects of our efforts on behalf of all citizens in our region.

Futures Inc. is an outgrowth of the same body of work that produced a joint Franklin-Southampton Economic Development Commission. Futures Inc. is the result of a collaborative effort of the City of Franklin, Southampton County, the Chamber of Commerce, the Charities and the Camp Foundation to find ways the two local governments can work together beyond economic development.

The board of directors of Futures is made up of individuals who have been appointed by each of the above-mentioned organizations.

There is no prototype for a group such as Futures Inc. After the above-mentioned organizations birthed this baby without any funding, it was up to the board of directors to raise Futures into a responsible citizen, so to speak.

Our mission is a simple one: We wish to enhance the quality of life for all citizens within our region by promoting cooperative efforts between the two governments.

We are not seeking merger. That is for others to contemplate.

Both the City of Franklin and Southampton County strive to offer the best quality and the highest level of service for its citizens within the parameters of affordability to taxpayers. The goal of Futures Inc is to identify areas of redundancy or opportunities for the two to work together. Sharing costs where identified:

* Reduces the cost borne by each.

* Improves the level of program quality for each.

* And enables more citizens of our region to be served.

8. Centralina Council Of Governments Adopts Resolution Opposing Private Ownership of The Yadkin River - Carolina Newswire

Centralina Council of Governments (CCOG) has publicly announced its support for North Carolina citizens and state officials who oppose Alcoa’s request to obtain a 50-year license to control, govern and sustain ownership of water flowing from the Yadkin River, one of the longest rivers in North Carolina. On Wednesday, April 9, at its Executive Board meeting, The Centralina Council of Governments voted unanimously to adopt a resolution opposing private ownership of the Yadkin River. The resolution supports the North Carolina Governor’s intervention and request to delay the application to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) by Alcoa for a 50-year license to control the waters of the Yadkin River and its lakes and tributaries.

The text of the resolution is as follows:

WHEREAS, the Centralina Council of Governments has numerous member governments located within the Yadkin-Pee Dee Watershed;

WHEREAS, almost one quarter of the citizens of our region depend on the availability of potable water from the Yadkin River;

WHEREAS, Yadkin Basin will continue to grow and our region is expected to double in population by 2030;

About This Effort:
In 1958, Alcoa, the world’s leading producer of primary aluminum, secured a federal hydroelectric license for the Yadkin Project on the Yadkin River in Stanly, Davidson, Montgomery and Rowan Counties in the Central Piedmont. In return, Alcoa promised aluminum manufacturing jobs for Stanly County for years to come. Alcoa has now essentially disappeared as a major employer in the region and shut down its manufacturing plants, but it wants to continue reaping the benefits of the Yadkin River after its license expires in April of this year. In addition, …

9. Iceland seeking strategic links with the Caribbean - Jamaica Gleaner - Kingston, Jamaica

It is hard to imagine nations less like each other than the islands of the Caribbean and Iceland.

Despite this, the government in Reykjavik recently made it clear that it shares many of the region's concerns and wishes to develop a stronger relationship with the Caribbean.

Late last month, Iceland's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir, told participants at a conference in Barbados that her small sub-Arctic northern nation of 0.3 million people had much in common with the Caribbean.

Shared features

Climate apart, she said, Iceland as a small island state shares many features with the Caribbean. These include small population, limited resources, remoteness, susceptibility to natural disasters, a disproportionate dependence on international trade and high communications and transport costs.


This may all seem marginal in relation to the regular meetings and power summits that Caribbean governments attend in Washington or in Europe, but Iceland's ability to take its case to the world despite its smallness warrants more than passing attention.


Economic globalisation

This points to a fact, still hard for many in a far-from-integrated region to accept: the old order has gone and they are largely on their own.

This suggests that as economic globalisation proceeds and the last vestiges of preference disappear, the region has no option other than to rely on its own ability to build a new and genuinely single market and economy, whether based on services or a new approach to agriculture and fisheries.


If the Caribbean is not to become, as some in the region fear, the poodle of Europe or US economic interests, time might be spent on better understanding how diverse countries such as Iceland, Ireland, Dubai, Mauritius and other small or once-poor nations have driven forward their economic development and global inter-relationships to their own benefit.

10. U.S. Regional Communities - sub-State, State or multi-State - in news articles.

Bold font words are Google search terms. Bold italic words considered worth noting. In this and section 11, links to websites of organizations are added to the news excerpt when this is the first time an organization has been found. A goal of this newsletter is to find every regional council in the U.S. in a news story as well as recognizing other regional organizations. In most cases, where a full name is present, a Google search will quickly get one to that organization. News reports do not always get the organization name correct. Contents

.01 Smaller, better
Detroit Free Press - United States

Here's the stark truth, unpopular as it may be. To survive, Detroit has to get smaller. Way smaller -- as in more compact and efficient, and less strained to provide services across a sprawling, 139-square-mile landscape with a population density that is, on average, less than half what it was 50 years ago. …

.02 Stirring Things Up, Regionally Speaking
New York Times - United States

THE show inspired a fevered debate online as well as angry e-mail and conversations across the country among the major players of the American regional theater. And that was before most people had seen it. …

.03 Rural EMS in financial straits
Stockton Record - Stockton, CA, USA
The regional EMS agencies serve two-thirds of California's geographic area. More than one in every six Californians lives within the boundaries of those ...

.04 Update on the regional cooperation
The Next Mayor – WHYY - y Dan
Though not quite as daunting a task as bringing peace to the Middle East, fostering cooperation among the 5 southeastern Pennsylvania counties would be nothing short of a miracle. You know we'll be keeping track of these developments.

.05 Erie leaders deserve credit for airport deal - Erie, PA, USA
Regionalism works. Watching Erie County Executive Mark DiVecchio, Erie Mayor Joe Sinnott and Erie Municipal Airport Authority President Louis Porreco working through issues and conflicts over the last several weeks wasn't easy. But in the end, and when it mattered, these three regional leaders forged an agreement for the local share of money needed to build a runway extension at Erie International Airport. ...

.06 Fairfax Prepares to Raise Tax Rate As Region's Fiscal Outlook Darkens
Washington Post - United States

Fairfax County yesterday joined a growing list of communities across the region that have raised property taxes this year to protect government services and public schools in the face of declining real estate values and a generally sluggish economy. The bad news is that, for Fairfax and many other communities, next year's outlook is even worse. …

.07 Trading the driver seat for a bike saddle: Tahoe prepares for Bike to Work Week
Nevada Appeal - Carson City, NV, USA
The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency and the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition are encouraging Tahoe residents to pedal themselves into spring with their third annual Bike to Work week. ...

.08 Region must tackle housing, expert says

Richmond Times-Dispatch – Richmond, VA, USA
Regional cooperation will be required to address affordable-housing needs in the Richmond area, said the lead speaker at a symposium yesterday kicking off Affordable Housing Awareness Week. The cry is for regional mixed-income housing, ...

.09 State Invests To Keep Port On The Map
TheDay - New London, CT, USA
… state's willingness to shore up regional efforts to grow New London's reputation as a cruise ship destination. … Just a couple years ago, Connecticut used a full-court press to reverse a preliminary decision by the Bush administration to shutter our state's submarine base. For months on end, regardless of political party, branch of government, local, state, or federal affiliation, we went to great lengths to preserve an historic cornerstone of our region.

.10 Blumenauer, Pelosi Address Infrastructure Crisis
Trading Markets (press release), CA
Regional Plan Association (RPA) is an independent, not-for-profit regional planning organization that improves the livability, sustainability and economic ...

.11 Clovis gets look at plan for regional community
Clovis Independent - Clovis, CA, USA
… creating a 50-year blueprint for development in the region. The blueprint will be a guideline for local government officials in the Valley while they make decisions regarding land use, air quality and transportation. …

.12 Chattanooga: Rape center a first in five-county area

Chattanooga Times Free Press - Chattanooga, TN, USA
Volunteers will be trained next week to begin staffing a rape counseling center in Fort Oglethorpe that will be the only dedicated facility for sex crime victims in a five-county region.

.13 A comparative look regionally

Richmond Times-Dispatch – Richmond, VA, USA
The Richmond area has the highest number of Fortune 500 companies when grouped with regions of about the same population. The chart is ranked in order of population from smallest to largest: Metro areaPopulationFortune 500 cos. ...

.14 Mapping a 'special' place
The Casper Star Tribune - Casper, WY, USA
... people and businesses of cultural, historical and natural significance to be highlighted on a "Geotourism MapGuide" of the greater Yellowstone region. ...

.15 MORPC honors community leaders, names new officers
ThisWeekNews - Columbus, OH, USA
Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission Executive Director Chester R. Jourdan Jr. praised central Ohio leaders for their work ... The William C. Habig Collaborative Achievement Award was presented to a group of entities that came together to form the Central Ohio Green Pact. …

.16 Public Reacts to Home Rule Charter
NEWSLANC-com - Lancaster County, PA
Finally, it encourages regional cooperation by establishing a "Municipal Conference." The Study Commission held the first of three public hearings on the finalized draft of the Home Rule Charter at the Farm & Home Center, Thursday night ...

.17 RDA has right to ask about airport's future
Gary Post Tribune - Gary, IN, USA
The Regional Development Authority is exerting more muscle into the management of the Gary/Chicago International Airport. ... Given the rapid changes in the air industry, the RDA wants to be sure its investment in the airport is a solid one. Since its inception, the RDA has given about 30 percent of its $68 million in grant money to the airport. …

.18 Town Copes With a Mountain of Change
Washington Post - United States
Total purchases were more than 40 percent higher in 2006 than in 2004. The increase came as the Washington region's demand for electricity grew 18 percent since 2001, driven by population growth and an increasingly wired culture. D.C. area plants do not send their electricity straight to local homes but feed it into the multi-state regional power grid

.19 Energy map ranks regions
Durango Herald - Durango, CO, USA
Legislators asked for the survey last year to see which regions of Colorado would benefit most from investment in renewable energy. ... Connecting Colorado's Renewable Resources to the Markets (PDF 4.1 MB)
Published by the Colorado Senate Bill 07-091 Renewable Resource Generation Development Areas Task Force ©2007

.20 Texas Youth Commission aims to abandon large, remote prisons
Dallas Morning News - Dallas, TX, USA

closing rural youth prisons won't come without strong local opposition. Traditionally, plans to shut institutions – which are major employers in their communities – have caused outrage in the towns where they are located. … While many lawmakers at Wednesday's hearing seemed to support regionalization in theory, the plan may face greater opposition when specific youth prisons are on the chopping block. In some cases, even school districts have fought to keep TYC prisons open, to prevent losing state education dollars.

.21 Democrats in 118th state cases
Wilkes Barre Times-Leader - Wilkes Barre, PA, USA
Vying to be the Democratic nominee in the 118th District, both candidates tackled property-tax relief, crime, health care, regionalization, ...

.22 Regional Development Center recommends going ahead with US 411 retail center
Rome News-Tribune - Rome, GA, USA
The Coosa Valley RDC said that the project is "in the best interest of the region and therefore of the state." …

.23 Rumford BOS Moving Towards Regionalization
By Editor(Kevin N. Saisi)
The Rumford BOS have been discussing the idea of regionalization for quite some time now and feel that this would be a perfect opportunity once again to broach the subject.

.24 Uncertainties abound in water planning
Arizona Daily Star - Tucson, AZ, USA

This water is not included in Tucson Water's plans, nor the plans of any other water provider. That's one example of the uncertainties of water planning for the region. It is the case that the Tucson region's ability to meet the requirements of the Assured Water Supply Rules depends on utilization of CAP water.

.25 Local chambers form collaborative
Wicked Local Eastham - Orleans, MA, USA
... formed a professional collaborative, breaking new ground and setting an example of the benefits of regionalization on the Cape and in the Commonwealth. ...

.26 Hallowell joins regional waterfront effort
Kennebec Journal - Augusta, ME, USA
... an ongoing Municipal Infrastructure Trust Fund with a May 9 deadline -- regional cooperation is an important factor in the judging, Cervone said. ...

.27 ICPR Finds Governments Spent $5 Million to Lobby State Government

Business Wire (press release)

The complete text of “Governments Lobbying State Government” is available at In the midst of legislative debates on mass transit reform and funding, the Chicago region’s four mass transit agencies had combined spending of nearly ...

11. Other Regional Community News for Our Local Planet Contents

.01 Mixed Media A Sober Earth Day – Philippines

Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet: The New Geopolitics of Energy, is disturbing but highly recommended reading for realists. ... nowhere is the impact of climate change on agriculture more dramatically illustrated than in the recent closing of what was once the largest rice mill in the Southern Hemisphere.

That mill in Deniliquin, New South Wales, Australia, was processing enough rice for 20 million people worldwide, reports the New York Times, until the last six years of drought reduced Australia’s rice crop by a staggering 98 percent. That was one of the major factors in the doubling of world rice prices over the past three months, it turns out.

This event also counts “among the earliest signs that a warming planet is starting to affect food production, ” just as the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned in its climate change report last July. …

.02 Peak Water: Aquifers and Rivers Are Running Dry. How Three Regions are Coping
Wired News - USA
That data already shows the era of easy water is ending. Even economically advanced regions face unavoidable pressures — on their industrial output, the quality of life in their cities, their food supply. Wired visited three such areas: the American Southwest, southeastern England, and southeastern Australia. The difficulties these places face today are harbingers of the dawning era of peak water, and their struggles to find solutions offer a glimpse of the challenge ahead. …

.03 NFL to hold games in Toronto, London
"As we've said all along this series is about regionalization." For the second time in as many seasons, the NFL also will venture across the pond as the San Diego Chargers take on the New Orleans Saints in London …

.04 A firm proposal for an innovation hub in Ottawa is only weeks away - Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
The group says Ottawa is behind other cities when it comes to integrating and maximizing its economic strengths, and they roundly support the centre as a way to fix this. The Ottawa Partnership … idea behind the centre is that good things happen when the research and development branches of governments, universities, colleges, and businesses have a place to interact.

.05 Council approves regional governance submission

Auckland City Council News
The council would provide strategic regional leadership, speaking with one clear voice for the region, and be accountable at a local level with local neighbourhood leadership, advocacy and decision making. …

.06 Shot in the arm for war against crime as region brands its guns

Daily Nation - Kenya

The decision by 12 countries to mark all guns is a major step towards curbing the illegal entry of firearms into the Great Lakes region and the Horn of Africa. Under the programme, the guns and other small arms in the hands of the police and the armed forces are to be branded to help identify them. The programme was launched during a five-day workshop of the Regional Centre on Small Arms. …

.07 Workplaces that protect the planet
Calgary Herald - AB, Canada
... enough power of their own to add energy to the regional power grid, according to architects and designers leading the charge in green building design. ...

.08 ADB calls for closer cooperation in the Pacific
Matangi Tonga - Nuku'alofa, Tonga
"Pacific regionalism is one approach to addressing these national challenges. Working together provides economies of scale and opportunities to share capacity, " … "Regionalism in no way replaces national policies and programs, it aims to support and supplement them."...

.09 News Analysis: World Bank move for regional integration
The New Nation - Bangladesh
… World Bank experts deplored that South Asia is the world's least integrated region with intra-regional trade being a mere five percent of total official trade as against 45 per cent in East Asia. …

.10 Ask and the experts answer
Tehelka - New Delhi, India
Do you see more regionalism in the country and more parties flaunting their regionalist agenda? Talking about political parties flaunting their regional ...

.11 Danuta Hübner launches the new European regional policy in Extremadura
eGov monitor - London, UK
The only cloud in the sky is that the region has not increased its spending on research and development, devoting only 0.68% of its regional GDP to it. ...

.12 No open skies in Africa
ITWeb - Gauteng, South Africa
“Both in terms of footprint and frequency, satellite does not recognise regional boundaries, ” he says. “Considering the dependence on satellite in Africa, ...

.13 GS1 UK - Supply Chain Strategies
GS1 UK - Supply Chain Strategies

National and regional boundaries will become less important as companies begin to organise by value creation rather than geography. This could mean grouping consumer markets in terms of growth potential rather than location, ...

.14 A bigger nation isn't always better
International Herald Tribune - France
In today's world, Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai punch well above their weight, again for historical and geopolitical reasons. ...

.15 The Complete University Guide
Independent - London, England, UK
The guide will include how universities perform regionally and there will be four pages of subjects showing the top 20 departments in each discipline.

.16 MEDA WATER – Resource management

Reinforces regional cooperation and develops proposals on water management, through capacity strengthening, training, information and know-how exchanges.

.17 Stronger Auckland regional governance sought
Radio New Zealand - Wellington, New Zealand
Most submissions to a royal commission that will advise the Government on how Auckland should be run want to see a stronger top tier of regional government. …

12. Blogging about Regional Communities Contents

.01 Should the Puget Sound secede?
Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels kicked off a City Club forum today with what he said would be a “provocative” idea. The Puget Sound region should “declare its independence” and form a more powerful regional government with more authority on decision-making and spending, he said. “I would look to the Puget Sound Regional Council and I would put it on steroids, …

.02 Seattle mayor jokes Puget region should secede
Seattle Times - United States
The office of Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels says he was kidding when he told a CityClub meeting the Puget Sound region should declare its independence and ...

.03 Launch Day at West Michigan Rising, or The Third Wave of the Blogosphere
By philgoblue
Eric at MichiganLiberal just yesterday called us "the best regional community blog ... ever" (I took out the "probably" part so it looks better, don't tell anyone). I cannot tell you how thrilled and touched by the support that Eric, ...

.04 Regional: Getting it Right, Size Wise
Disaster Zone: Emergency Management in the Blogosphere
In my personal experience this move to look at “regions” vs. just larger cities in themselves was a wonderful move in the right direction. I believe “regions” should reflect the socio-economic make-up of the people, businesses, and governments that relate to one another every day. …

.05 MORPC: Changes needed to accommodate Columbus growth
Bulen Avenue
... us a good chance to take a step back and look at a new reality we’re facing and think pragmatically about how we’re going to grow when the next spurt comes, ” said Matt LaMantia, the commission’s regional development coordinator. ...

.06 Losing Akron's Identity
Letters from the Editor
This isn't the kind of thing the "Cleveland +" campaign folks and regionalism supporters like to talk about; showcasing northeast Ohio as one giant metro area, united. Instead we become one giant metro area, still made up of dozens of ...

.07 life between mega-regions
Digital Digs
As Richard Florida notes, while nations are based on imaginary boundaries, you can basically see mega-regions by looking at the night-side of the planet. …

.08 Defining Local
Theater Ideas
Nevertheless, localism can generally be described as related to Regionalism, and in opposition to Centralism." Here is Asheville, as in many communities across America, there is a strong "Eat Local" movement that surfaces in a strong ...

.09 Here we go again
Bellicose Bumpkin
Selectmen may not renew their membership to the Southeastern Regional Planning & Economic Development District which expires May 21 due to SRPEDD's vocal criticism of the proposed Mashpee Wampanoag casino and for failing to ...

.10 Talking about acting
Pique newsmagazine - Whistler, BC, Canada

“I think we need to take action on a local and regional perspective, ” Greenwood said. Sometimes, it seems, talk leads to research, which inevitably leads to more talk. But, as with the RGS, which will eventually move to a public consultation phase, talk can be the first step towards action.

.11 City or town?
The Fred Review
I will note that we do cooperate on a number of items, such as the regional library, jail, parks, and a whole lot more. Cooperation is the key, as a certain regional jurisdiction has thrown up roadblocks at various times over the ...

.12 Being Regional is a Team Sport
Disaster Zone
Yesterday I was out raking leaves doing my fall clean-up in April, and I started thinking about regional stuff—as I seem to do. The thought came to mind about the Celebrity Apprentice TV Show that aired this year on NBC. ...

.13 OKI Regional Bicycle Plan Presentation
Queen City Bike
Our Regional Bicycle Plan has been under review for the past year, along with the overall 2030 Regional Transportation Plan. The bike plan will be presented for approval by OKI’s technical and policy committees in May. ...

.14 The Metro joins Google Transit

Kansas Citians can celebrate Earth Day by committing to ride The Metro. Planning a bus trip is now easier with Google Transit. …

.15 Regional Rail Redux
Track Twenty-Nine
… without further ado, here's my revised regional rail plan. Remember, this plan only deals with the commuter/regional rail element of Washington's transit future. … The first alignment I considered would connect Baltimore and Annapolis by running trains south on the Northeast Corridor from Penn Station (or Camden Station using the M1 connection) as far as Bowie State. Just south of the existing ...

.16 The Importance of Global Collaboration


Companies are increasingly looking to pursue cross-border partnerships to augment their global expansion strategies. Large and midsize firms alike are searching for partnerships that bring greater economies, talent and efficiency to their operations. …

.17 A Union for the MED: What for?
By rhein
The Euro-MED partnership does neither need a new name nor additional institutional and bureaucratic gimmicks. It needs more sincere debates on what is going wrong in the south. It needs more focus on the four basic issues the south will increasingly face in the coming decades: high unemployment, inadequate education, increasing environmental strains and last, not least, poor governance. …

.18 2020 Summit: Australia’s future in the region
Blogocracy 2020
The final topic from the list at the 2020 Summit is this: Australia’s future in the region and the world. …

.19 CFR: The Age of Nonpolarity...A Newer World Order - Pt. 1 of 2
By SadInAmerica

States are being challenged from above, by regional and global organizations; from below, by militias; and from the side, by a variety of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and corporations. Power is now found in many hands and in many places. …

.20 Scenic Rim Ordinary meeting Tuesday 15 April
Cedar Grove View
Scenic Rim Regional Council held its second Ordinary Meeting on Tuesday. I was unable to go to the meeting, due to prior commitments, but there is a good set of Agenda papers at the link from this title or the last sentence. ...

.21 Oration [introduction] for Dr Surin Pitsuwan
... Dr Surin’s job to maintain ASEAN’s position as a cohesive regional community, infuse it with new ideas and approaches to help tackle complex challenges, and uphold its image as the driver of a new brand of cosmopolitan regionalism. ...

.22 Critical regionalism | Hydro Wall

Sameness is waste

critical regionalism should adopt modern architecture critically for its universal progressive qualities but at the same time should value responses particular to the context. …

.23 Memory in Political Dialogue

Clioptria: A Group Blog – History News Network
In the 1940s and 50s regionalism offered alternative interpretations of the German past. Adenauer’s policies were predicated on giving the federal republic the most western face he could. …

.24 266 - Where News Breaks

Strange Maps

Researchers extracted the dateline from about 72, 000 wire-service news stories from 1994 to 1998 and modified a standard map of the Lower 48 US states (above) to show the size of the states in proportion to the frequency of their appearance in those datelines.

13. Announcements and Regional Links. Contents

.01 "Data Governance Part I – An Introduction" - National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO)

This issue brief is part of NASCIO’s series on Enterprise Governance and presents an overview of this very broad subject. Data governance is presented as an operating discipline that must ultimately encompass all types of electronic data, information and knowledge as enterprise assets that must be well managed in order to enable government to deliver positive citizen outcomes. The governance challenge was ranked as one of the top ten priorities of state CIOs in a survey of the states conducted in October 2007. This issue brief is available at:

For more information, please contact Eric Sweden, NASCIO Enterprise Architect, at (859) 514-9189 or

.02 Google Transit – Video demo

Ride smarter. Plan your public transportation online. Use Google Maps to:. Get step-by-step transit directions; Find transit stops in your area; View station information & schedules.

.03 Government for Growth: Forging a Bright Future—Built on Unity, Efficiency, Equity, and Equality—for the People of Allegheny County and the City of Pittsburgh - The Report of the Citizens Advisory Committee on the Efficiency and Effectiveness of City-County Government - PDF

In late October of 2006, Allegheny County Chief Executive Dan Onorato and City of Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl announced the creation of the Citizens Advisory Committee on the Efficiency and Effectiveness of City-County Government. An otherwise diverse group, the Committee’s members were bound together by their commitment to the Pittsburgh region and by their capacity for hard work.

After devoting the remaining weeks of 2006 to organizational issues and the review of existing reports and related materials, the Committee pressed forward with its own efforts in January of 2007. Though all of its members shouldered other demanding responsibilities, the Committee met regularly on a twice-monthly basis, received informative presentations from more than 40 individuals with relevant expertise, participated in a fact-finding mission to the recently-consolidated “Metro Louisville, ” and commissioned a RAND study focused on economic development.


This report is the product of the Committee’s best thinking. It was prepared to stimulate constructive consideration of the most efficient and effective structures for City and County government as we move to meet the challenges and seize the opportunities that the 21st century will bring. Most fundamentally, it is tendered to the Mayor and the County Chief Executive respectfully and in the hope that the ideas advanced will be of use to them as they move forward to meet their responsibilities as stewards of a region that has long commanded unusual levels of respect and that we all consider to be a treasure.

.04 Resources | Cooperation Commons

This document lists off-site project publications, external resources and video related to cooperation commons. The Cooperation Commons aims to create an interdisciplinary study of cooperation and collective action by:

* compiling and synthesizing current knowledge

* mapping the outlines of the emerging field

* convening meetings of the best minds in relevant disciplines, and

* encouraging ongoing discourse, research, and practice.

The Cooperation Commons is a collaboration between the Institute for the Future and Howard Rheingold.

.05 The Human Security Gateway

The Human Security Gateway is a research and information database regrouping electronic and bibliographic resources on human security. The Gateway is an initiative of the Human Security Report Project.

.06 FORE: Disciplines-Policy-Global Trends-Regionalization

Globalization has recently become a hot topic in popular discourse, yet through the 1980s and 1990s political economists have, in addition to globalization, focused on regionalization, the growth of networks of interdependence within multinational regions of the world..

.07 Community Supported Agriculture

Community supported agriculture (CSA) is a new idea in farming, one that has been gaining momentum since its introduction to the United States from Europe in the mid-1980s. The CSA concept originated in the 1960s in Switzerland and Japan, where consumers interested in safe food and farmers seeking stable markets for their crops joined together in economic partnerships. Today, CSA farms in the U.S., known as CSAs, currently number more than 400. Most are located near urban centers in New England, the Mid-Atlantic states, and the Great Lakes region, with growing numbers in other areas, including the West Coast.

14. Subscription access news stories. Contents

.01 LATIN AMERICA: 'Development Must Be Inclusive" - Inter Press Service (subscription) - Rome, Italy

The Latin American Economic System (SELA) will promote a regional secretariat on social inclusion, "based on the idea that development, to be worthy of the name, must be inclusive, " said the regional body’s new permanent secretary, José Rivera.

The secretariat "should articulate the efforts of governments, regional entities, academic institutions, non-governmental organisations and other social agents, to share information on what is being done in terms of social policy in the region, achievements, experiences and proposals to improve living conditions in Latin America and the Caribbean, " Rivera said in an interview with IPS correspondent Humberto Márquez.

The 61-year-old Mexican economist, formerly assistant secretary of the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI), was unanimously elected this month by the SELA ministerial council to head the regional body made up of 26 Latin American and Caribbean states, until 2012.

Founded in 1975 with the aim of promoting regional cooperation and coordinating Latin American positions in international economic forums, SELA was the first regional body to admit Cuba after it was excluded from the Organisation of American States (OAS) in 1962.

With regard to Ecuador’s suggestion of the creation of an organisation of Latin American states, to study regional questions without the presence of the United States and Canada, both of which are members of the OAS, Rivera says that when such a regional entity is discussed, "they are describing SELA, which has already existed for 33 years."

IPS: In what regional initiatives would you like SELA to get involved?

JOSÉ RIVERA: SELA can be a support for the analysis of social policies and a boost for the network of proposals. We believe it can build a secretariat of social inclusion, to make available databases, documents, forums for reflection, proposals and projects at the service of the member countries. Development must be inclusive, and to achieve that, the voices of the people, of all social actors, have to be heard.

IPS: In what way has the integration seen up to now fallen short?

JR: Regional integration as it stands satisfies no one. It has moved slowly, hesitantly and with setbacks. For example, the idea of a Latin American common market began to take shape 50 years ago, at the same time that Europe had the idea to create a common market. But the very different speeds and progress are all too obvious.

Europe is a solid integrated zone, with powerful regional scaffolding. We, in the meantime, have had to seek alternative spaces for integration in order to achieve some goals, and we don't even have a regional dispute settlement mechanism.

.02 The Knoware Tree and the Regional Intellectual Capital Index: An assessment within Italy - Journal of Intellectual Capital - Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relevance of intellectual capital (IC) as a strategic resource and source of regional value creation dynamics. Adopting a knowledge-based approach, the authors aim to argue that knowledge assets represent the IC's components, and the Knoware Tree and the Knoware Dashboard are proposed as frameworks to assess the IC within regions. For the global assessment of the IC, the Regional Intellectual Capital Index (RICI) is to be introduced and its application is proposed for the assessment of the IC within Italian regions. Finally, in order to explore the links between the IC ownership of a region and its value creation dynamics, the Value Creation Index (VCI) is adopted and linear correlations of the RICI and VCI are performed, providing first empirical evidences of the positive links between IC and value creation.

Design/methodology/approach – The paper integrates the results of an intensive literature review with a longitudinal empirical research applied to Italian regions.
Findings – The paper provides a knowledge-based understanding of the IC, highlighting the existence of a positive correlation between IC and value creation of the Italian regions.

15. Custom search: region, regions, regional communities Contents

To search on topics like those in Regional Community Development News use this custom search engine which utilizes regional related sites. Entering the term metropolitan returned 294 items; metro returned 192 items. Please recommend links for inclusion.

My name is Tom Christoffel. I've worked in the field of intergovernmental cooperation since 1973. As a consequence, "I see regions work." Regional Community Development News is published weekly based on news reports as of Wednesday.

Making visible analysis and actions at multi-jurisdictional regional scales is its purpose. "Think globally, act locally" was innovative in its time. Today the local scale is often too small to address today's needs and opportunities. "Think local planet, act regionally, " is my candidate paradigm. (No one said we're only allowed one paradigm.)

We can see that “regional communities” are organized locally and now act both to avoid tragedy in the commons and gain benefits. An effective multi-jurisdictional regional community has DNA: it is geographically Defined; has a common Name and its Alignment is inclusive of smaller communities and participatory in larger communities. So, by scanning this compilation, reading articles and checking organizations - you too will be able to see the regional communities that already exist.

News references are found using the Google News search service. Media article links are “fair use” to transform globally scattered reports to make regional approaches visible. Links go to the publisher and do not compete with it. Such publishers are likely to have related stories and thus be seen by new customers. “Regional” is an emerging news category. There is no charge for this service and no profit is made from its use, though any user can become more aware of the topic itself.

To read and search previous issues go to:

The term “Development” was added to the name in January, 2006.

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Thomas J. (Tom) Christoffel, AICP Making regions visible for Leaders and Problem-solvers.

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