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Financial Management: The “Big Picture,” Part 1

Financial Management: The “Big Picture,” Part 1

March 18, 2019 by Mike Bailey
Category: Financial Management

This 2-part series will look at how all staff can contribute to the big-picture fiscal health of an agency, from establishing an agency-wide blueprint to finding the rights tools to monitor fiscal progress or setbacks.

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Lessons Learned from Snowmaggedon

Lessons Learned from Snowmaggedon

March 14, 2019 by Jill Dvorkin
Category: Personnel Policies , Emergency Management

This blog post will address a few of the frequently asked questions MRSC received during “Snowmageddon” this past February.

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2020 Census: Ensuring a Complete Count

2020 Census: Ensuring a Complete Count

March 14, 2019 by Lisa McLean
Category: Economic, Population and Historical Tax Data

The 2020 Census begins in mid-March 2020, and this blog post provides both an overview of the process and what your local government can do to facilitate the effort.

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Introducing the PRA & Records Management Technology Guide!

Introducing the PRA & Records Management Technology Guide!

March 7, 2019 by Oskar Rey
Category: Public Records Act

MRSC has partnered with the SAO Center for Government Innovation to provide local governments with information and resources for managing electronic public records, and we are proud to introduce the PRA & Management Technology Guide.

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Now Is the Time to Look at Opportunity Zones

Now Is the Time to Look at Opportunity Zones

March 6, 2019 by Sam Alcorn
Category: Strategies and Programs

This post describes Opportunity Zones, how the zones work, what municipalities are doing to attract investment, and how to make sure investment is in the community’s best interest.

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Past Due Payments and Use of Collection Agencies

Past Due Payments and Use of Collection Agencies

March 4, 2019 by Oskar Rey
Category: Accounting , Utilities - Billing and Collection

This blog post provides an overview of the requirements for use of a collection agency and will address some frequently asked questions that arise when doing so. 

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The Annual Financial Report for 2018 (Part 2)

The Annual Financial Report for 2018 (Part 2)

February 27, 2019 by Toni Nelson
Category: Financial Reporting

This 2-part series highlights changes to the annual update to accounting and reporting requirements (BARS Alerts & Overview of Significant Changes). This post focuses on changes to Notes to Financials and in the Supplemental Schedules.

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​The Annual Financial Report for 2018 (Part 1)

​The Annual Financial Report for 2018 (Part 1)

February 25, 2019 by Toni Nelson
Category: Financial Reporting

In this 2-part series, Financial Consultant Toni Nelson will be highlighting changes to the annual update to accounting and reporting requirements (BARS Alerts & Overview of Significant Changes) from the State Auditor's Office. Part 1 focuses on changes to the Chart of Accounts. 

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Conflict of Interest and the Spouse

Conflict of Interest and the Spouse

February 22, 2019 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Ethics and Conflicts of Interest

Contractual situations involving spouses of local government officials can present complications that are not immediately apparent. This blog post delves into the issue. 

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New City and County Revenue Guides Published!

New City and County Revenue Guides Published!

February 19, 2019 by Toni Nelson
Category: Revenues

For many years, city and county officials have relied on MRSC’s Revenue Guides to better understand their various revenue options. In partnership with the State Auditor’s Office, we’ve completely rewritten and republished these important documents.

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Point of Order and Appeal Are the Heart of Democracy

Point of Order and Appeal Are the Heart of Democracy

February 11, 2019 by Ann G. Macfarlane
Category: Legislative Body

This blog post answers the question: What is a Point of Order and how do I use it? 

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Cannabis Laws – What’s New?

Cannabis Laws – What’s New?

February 8, 2019 by Linda Gallagher
Category: Marijuana

This blog post offers 10 things to know about what's new with the cannabis industry from the perspective of local, state, and federal government. 

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Two New Guides Address Dockless Vehicles

Two New Guides Address Dockless Vehicles

February 4, 2019 by Leah LaCivita
Category: Cycling and Walking

This blog will summarize some of the main points of agreements between new reports issued that provide guidance on regulating small, dockless shared vehicles like e-bikes and e-scooters.

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Court Rules that Proposed Initiative Allowing Unfettered Questioning of Immigration Status by City Employees Not Subject to Initiative

Court Rules that Proposed Initiative Allowing Unfettered Questioning of Immigration Status by City Employees Not Subject to Initiative

January 30, 2019 by Jill Dvorkin
Category: Court Decisions, AGO Opinions and Regulations

This blog post will summarize the recent decision in Global Neighborhood v. Respect Washington, as well as provide links to resources regarding the power of initiative and referendum for Washington cities and counties.

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Annexing Territory Outside City Limits

Annexing Territory Outside City Limits

January 24, 2019 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Annexation

An annexation of territory outside a city's geographic limits can be tricky but is not impossible. Legal Consultant Paul Sullivan covers the basics in this blog post.

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Does the Shutdown Mean Shutoffs?

Does the Shutdown Mean Shutoffs?

January 23, 2019 by Laura Crandall
Category: Utilities - Billing and Collection

For utility deferments and fee waivers, the key is to have policies in place to avoid gifting of public funds, and to ensure that the jurisdiction is not being arbitrary in its decision-making. 

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Reading the Economic Tea Leaves: When and How to Prepare for an Eventual Downturn

Reading the Economic Tea Leaves: When and How to Prepare for an Eventual Downturn

January 18, 2019 by Mike Bailey
Category: Financial Management

While it's impossible to predict the economic future, this blog post pulls together insights from a variety of sources to help you try to understand when and how to prepare for a slowing economy.

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Pop Quiz: Family Leave and Sick Leave Edition

Pop Quiz: Family Leave and Sick Leave Edition

January 14, 2019 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Leave Policies

Take a short quiz to test your understanding of the Paid Family Leave and Sick Leave for employees.

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Balance of Power Struggles in City Government Redux

Balance of Power Struggles in City Government Redux

January 10, 2019 by Flannary Collins
Category: Administrative and Elected Officials

With a focus on code and second-class cities, this blog post looks at power struggles that often arise between city staff and elected officials and among elected officials themselves. 

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FCC’s Declaratory Ruling on 5G Small Cell Wireless Facilities

FCC’s Declaratory Ruling on 5G Small Cell Wireless Facilities

January 8, 2019 by Laura Crandall
Category: Telecommunications

The FCC recently issued a 2-part Declaratory Ruling with the intent to streamline the deployment of 4G and 5G mobile communication infrastructure. Key points of the ruling are listed and briefly discussed in this post.

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