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STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT

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STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT Chapter 4 O Connor and Sabato American Government: Continuity and Change STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT In this chapter we will cover – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT


1
STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT
  • Chapter 4
  • OConnor and Sabato
  • American Government
  • Continuity and Change

2
STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT
  • In this chapter we will cover
  • The Evolution of State and Local Governments
  • Grassroots Power and Politics
  • State Governments
  • Local Governments
  • Relations with Indian Nations
  • Finances

3
The Evolution of State and Local Governments
  • Governance in the United States is by multiple
    authorities. Sometimes they work together, other
    times they seem to work at cross purposes.
  • At independence, the thirteen colonial
    governments became states tied together in a
    loose confederation under the Articles.
  • They formed a federal union in the late 1780s in
    order to address the weakness of the
    confederative model.
  • States create and determine the powers of local
    governments in our system.

4
The Evolution Continued
  • In 1962, the Supreme Court forced the states to
    redistrict and become more representative of the
    states population. In Baker v. Carr, the Court
    applied the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal
    Protection Clause to voters.
  • The ruling of one man, one vote required that
    legislatures redistrict so that all districts
    have an equal number of constituents.

5
The Evolution Continued
  • During the 1960s and 1970s, the national
    government added to the responsibilities of the
    state and local governments.
  • Federal programs to fight poverty, promote urban
    renewal, and protect the environment were
    administered at the state and local levels.

6
The Evolution Continued
  • In the 1990s, the clear message was that state
    and local governments were increasingly
    important.
  • States, cities, and local governments are taking
    bold initiatives and establishing direct ties
    with each other and with other countries to spur
    economic growth.
  • Governors have become important national actors.
    State legislators, county officials, city
    managers, and other officials now travel the
    globe promoting the interests of their
    constituents.

7
Grassroots Power and Politics
  • Most small towns have a local dynasty--some big
    towns have them, too.
  • State politics, and particularly local politics,
    are often more personal, non-partisan, and
    issue-oriented than national politics.
  • A full understanding of what happens at the
    grassroots includes an appreciation of local
    elites, local issues, local news media, and
    issue-specific organizations through which local
    and state governments make and implement policies.

8
State Governments
  • The primary responsibilities of state governments
    are
  • education
  • public health
  • transportation
  • economic development
  • criminal justice
  • the licensing and regulation of professions
    (teachers, social workers, doctors, lawyers,
    barbers/stylists, architects, etc.)
  • Additionally, states have become more active in
    welfare and environmental issues both on their
    own and as administrators of national programs.

9
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10
State Constitutions
  • State constitutions generally limit the powers of
    the state governments.
  • After the Civil War, the states of the South were
    forced to adopt new constitutions acceptable to
    the victorious North. Often these constitutions
    gave significant powers to former slaves and
    disenfranchised the traditional elites.
  • After Reconstruction, these states adopted yet
    newer constitutions reflecting white distrust of
    power and providing for weak governments.

11
State Constitutions
  • Western states also chose weak governments.
  • Many Western states allow voters to enact
    legislation through initiatives and recall
    elections to remove officials from office.
  • The trend has been to strengthen state
    governments so that they can more effectively
    deal with important issues.
  • Terms of governors have been lengthened, and they
    have been given additional authority over
    spending.
  • Legislatures have become full-time with more
    adequate pay, and courts were strengthened.

12
Governors
  • Governors are the chief executive officers of the
    states. They have both ceremonial and
    policymaking roles.
  • In most states, governors
  • propose the budget
  • have veto authority
  • have appointment powers
  • have power to pardon someone who has been
    convicted of a crime
  • can commute sentences, grant parole, and
    extradite individuals

13
State Legislatures
  • All states except Nebraska have bicameral
    legislatures.
  • By 1999, twenty states limited the number of
    terms a legislator could serve. The limits range
    from six to twelve years.
  • State legislatures are still primarily part-time
    bodies. There is abundant turnover--over 25 of
    seats each election.

14
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15
State Courts
  • The primary function of courts is to settle
    disputes. Criminal behavior, family law,
    contracts, and land use are all issues for state
    law and state courts.
  • State court judges are are usually elected to the
    bench for a specific term.
  • Sixteen states have partisan elections to the
    bench, another sixteen states hold nonpartisan
    elections.
  • Six states use gubernatorial appointments. The
    remaining states use the Missouri Plan in which
    the governor selects appointees from a list
    prepared by an independent panel.

16
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17
Elections
  • Elections are the methodology for determining who
    will direct the institutions of state government.
  • Highly partisan however, campaigns are usually
    centered on individual candidates.

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20
Direct Democracy
  • Direct initiative The process in which voters
    can place a proposal on a ballot and enact it
    into law without involving the legislature or the
    governor.
  • Indirect initiative The process in which the
    legislature places a proposal on a ballot and
    allows voters to enact it into law without
    involving the legislature or the governor.

21
Local Governments
  • Formed by a chartera document that specifies
    basic procedures, politics, and institutions of
    any local municipality. Similar to a
    constitution.
  • Counties subdivisions of every state except
    Connecticut and Rhode Island.
  • Towns government in which everyone is invited
    to an annual meeting for elections, budget
    discussions, etc.
  • Municipalities villages, towns, and cities
  • Special Districts school districts, etc.

22
Types of Charters for Local Governments
  • Special Charters
  • General Charters
  • Classified Charters
  • Optional Charters
  • Home Rule Charters

23
Executives and Legislatures
  • Local governments have some or all of the
    following decision-making positions
  • Elected executive mayor, village president.
  • Elected council or commission city council,
    school board, county board.
  • Appointed manager city manager, school
    superintendent.

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25
Relations With Indian Nations
  • Treaties between the national government and
    Indian nations directly affect thirty-four
    states.
  • The status of Indian tribes today is that of
    domestic dependent nations.
  • The national government has ceded authority to
    the states, except for several specific areas
    such as gaming and criminal behavior.
  • The two most important features of federal-tribal
    relations for state and local governments are
    land rights and treaty provisions for hunting,
    fishing, and gathering.

26
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27
Finances
  • Unlike the national government, states and
    localities must balance their budgets.
  • States receive as much as 25 of their funds from
    Washington, D.C.
  • Local governments get as much as 15 of their
    money from the federal government.
  • Different governments depend on different taxes
    and fees for revenue.
  • States rely primarily on income and sales taxes.
  • Local governments tend to rely on property taxes
    and some sales tax income.
  • Both local and state governments levy users fees
    for parks, hunting licenses, tuition, and so on.

28
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