Cost Accounting in Local Government

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Privatizing the Water Utility – Issues

There are many issues and unintended consequences to privatizing a public utility.

The Legacy of Fads

The Legacy of Fads in municipal budgeting

Budgetary Pitfalls

Budgetary Pitfalls to watch out for.

Water Conservation and the Commons Dilemma

Water Conservation and the Commons Dilemma

We do not have a Water Crisis

Yes, we have a drought and it critical that we do something about it. But, we need to do something smart and the criminalization of water waste by the California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) is just plain dumb. In our system of capitalism, which no one except SWRCB suggests abandoning, the marketplace determines […]

Musings on Food-Truck Safety

I love the expression “Accountants just want to have fun.” When the accountant is also a consultant, the “fun” can mean enjoying the “inspirational” posters on despair.com and wishing that I had thought of that business first. I’d like to add a new idea to the list, “If you can’t be a ‘good’ example, maybe […]

Planning for the Future without Contracting

There has been a groundswell of California local governments contracting out the delivery of services that formerly were provided by employees.  The latest was the decision by the City of Newport Beach to contract out lifeguard services at one of their popular beaches. The rationale was bluntly stated in words to the effect that the […]

Benchmarking in Local Government

I noticed the other day that some of the groups I’ve joined on LinkedIn are discussing benchmarking. I went through my benchmarking phase two decades ago. After conceptualizing an approach that I thought would be valuable, I realized that I didn’t have the time to follow-up and, as an “outsider,” would not get the cooperation […]

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