Sunday, September 18, 2011

The March of Municipal Privatization (AKA the Erosion of Local Government)

I just came across this video from the PBS series Need to Know. The trend discussed is scary and should be sounding alarm bells for everyone. 

Watch the full episode. See more Need To Know.

I understand that cities need cash. In relatively difficult economic times such as these, there may be limited options for municipalities to raise revenue. But I just don't think this is the way to do it.

The primary function of government, be it national or local, is to provide for the health, safety, and welfare of its people. That phrase, "health, safety, and welfare" (HSW) has been interpreted time and time again by the courts and repeatedly upheld as the basis for so much of what local government does. HSW concerns serve as the basis for municipal zoning laws and land use regulations. Relinquishing control over parking infrastructure, regulations, and rates, as in many of these cases, for decades on end (with heavy handed contract terms for the city if it makes any changes that threaten the profit of the corporations involved) makes no sense. It compromises the city's very ability to effectively regulate elements of the transportation system or other vital municipal infrastructure that are critical to its performance of its primary function. And that's just plain wrong...

No comments:

Post a Comment