Being Strategic with Surpluses

For the first time in years, many states are experiencing fiscal budget surpluses. While the United States has been in economic recovery since 2009, the recovery has been so slow that income, property and sales taxes have not surged to the point that states have funds beyond their projections. Until now. The question is what [...]

Helping Communities Succeed

I am so pleased to share my new book with the economic development community: Why Some Communities Succeed, Why Some Fail–and What to do About It. Find it here on Amazon: When it comes to creating jobs and improving local quality of life, some communities succeed and others fail. But why? What explains this? [...]

The Divided Fates of America

Our nation has not been this divided since the Civil War. Red State, Blue State, Conservative, Liberal, College Degree, no College Degree.  The Divided Fates of America. As John Ondrasik (Five for Fighting) writes in his song “Slice:” Have you read my blog today 300 million little USA’s Your doorstep is just a click away [...]

Being Ready for Opportunity

With only five months left for the Obama Administration, some big final decisions and actions are likely very soon. For the communities that have their plans in order, this could result in immediate opportunity to fund projects and to gain momentum. I have always thought that money should chase projects, rather than the other way [...]

The Political Silly Season

The shenanigans American’s are witnessing thanks to the campaign for the U.S. Presidency is a reminder of the content of the Preface in the Why Some Communities Succeed… book. The challenge for the candidates is whether they will message to the lowest common denominator (fear, scarcity, doubt) or the highest one (hope, abundance, belief). The [...]

Washington State Tribes are Preparing for The Big One

Sometimes you would rather be lucky than good. For Paul Johnson at the Washington State Office of USDA Rural Development, the national publicity coinciding with his Tsunami Tribal Summit was priceless.  His effort to bring coastal tribes together to discuss preparedness for The Big One coincided with one of America’s biggest breaking stories in the [...]