skip navigation

MRSC Insight Blog


Recent Posts

Use of Electronic Devices During Council/Commission Meetings

Use of Electronic Devices During Council/Commission Meetings

June 23, 2017 by Jim Doherty
Category: Open Public Meetings Act , Public Records Act

It seems that everybody is always looking at a screen or sending messages these days, sometimes using a smartphone, a notebook computer, or tablet—what’s the big deal? This blog post examines the issues that arise when members of a governing body text, meassage, or email during a public meeting. 

Read more | 0 comments


A Tale of Many Cities, Counties, Special Districts and ….

A Tale of Many Cities, Counties, Special Districts and ….

June 21, 2017 by John W. Carpita, PE
Category:

After more than 20 years working as a Public Works Consultant for MRSC, John Carpita will be retiring at the end of this month.  In this post, he shares a few of his favorite memories. 

Read more | 4 comments


Summer Fun: Tips on Holding Summer Community Celebrations

Summer Fun: Tips on Holding Summer Community Celebrations

June 19, 2017 by Flannary Collins
Category: Administration and Management

Summer officially commences on Tuesday, June 20, and a lot of Washington cities and counties take advantage of the lovely Washington summers by holding a community celebration. In this post, Flannary Collins covers how to incorporate food and drink into your festivities as well as considerations related to parades. 

Read more | 0 comments


Food Truck Laws and Regulations

Food Truck Laws and Regulations

June 15, 2017 by Oskar Rey
Category: Licensing and Regulation

In this blog post, Oskar Rey sorts through applicable food truck laws and regulations and cites examples of approaches taken by Washington municipalities that regulate food trucks in their jurisdictions.  

Read more | 0 comments


Funding Utility Infrastructure

Funding Utility Infrastructure

June 14, 2017 by Courtney Black
Category: Finance , Finance Advisor , Utilities

The facilities that make up your utility infrastructure won’t last forever. This post looks at how asset management options can help a utility avoid significant funding challenges or impacts to ratepayers during infrastructure replacement.

Read more | 1 comments


The Supreme Court Narrowly Construes the “Minimum-Value” Executive Session Exception to the OPMA

The Supreme Court Narrowly Construes the “Minimum-Value” Executive Session Exception to the OPMA

June 12, 2017 by Ramsey Ramerman
Category: Court Decisions, AGO Opinions and Regulations , Open Public Meetings Act , Open Government Advisor

On June 8, the Washington Supreme Court issued its opinion in Columbia Riverkeepers v. Port of Vancouver, adopting a very narrow interpretation of the executive session “exception” to the OPMA for discussion about the sale or lease of real estate (the “minimum-value exception”). In this blog post, guest author Ramsey Ramerman breaks down the case. 

Read more | 0 comments


Easy Problem Solving Using the 4-step Method

Easy Problem Solving Using the 4-step Method

June 7, 2017 by Jennifer Haury
Category: Management

Is your worksite suffering from 'change fatigue' and your staff, leery of any new improvements? Guest author Jennifer Haury offers a 4-step problem solving method to help you avoid making new changes that ultimately fail to address old, underlying issues. 

Read more | 0 comments


Regulating Sky Lanterns

Regulating Sky Lanterns

June 6, 2017 by Davis Abbott
Category: Licensing and Regulation

Between the Fourth of July, summer weddings, and other celebrations, sky lanterns are becoming an increasingly popular way to celebrate on summer nights. But Sky Lanterns may not be as innocent as they seem. This blog post will explore how sky lanterns are regulated in Washington State.

Read more | 2 comments


Big Cybersecurity for Small Jurisdictions

Big Cybersecurity for Small Jurisdictions

June 1, 2017 by Mike Kaser
Category: Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity is complicated. Guest author Mike Kaser suggests that the best place to start is to determine what can be done within the current resources and skill sets of your organization, then decentralize the risk beyond IT. 

Read more | 0 comments


New PRA Legislation: To Boldly Go Where the PRA Hasn’t Gone Before

New PRA Legislation: To Boldly Go Where the PRA Hasn’t Gone Before

May 30, 2017 by Flannary Collins
Category: Public Records Act , New Legislation

Governor Inslee signed ESHB 1594 and EHB 1595 on May 16, putting into place a number of notable changes to the PRA and records retention laws applicable to electronic records. So, what has changed in the PRA? In this blog, Flannary Collins takes a look at the highlights.

Read more | 4 comments


Don’t Get Hacked - Cybersecurity Basics

Don’t Get Hacked - Cybersecurity Basics

May 24, 2017 by Lynn Nordby
Category: Cybersecurity

You don’t have to be an information technology (IT) professional to be a soldier in the cybersecurity war. This blog post looks at some basic steps that anyone, or any worksite, can implement. 

Read more | 0 comments


Disqualification: What if a Candidate Doesn’t Meet the Required Qualifications for Office?

Disqualification: What if a Candidate Doesn’t Meet the Required Qualifications for Office?

May 22, 2017 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Elections

The candidate filing period for this year's election ended on Friday, May 19. To be qualified for an office, candidates must satisfy certain legal requirements, such as citizenship, residency, and voter registration. But what if they aren't legally qualified?

Read more | 0 comments


Voter-Approved Tax Measures: Five Years of Washington State Trends

Voter-Approved Tax Measures: Five Years of Washington State Trends

May 19, 2017 by Tracy Burrows
Category: Elections

Using data from over 1,200 local ballot measures put out to voters since 2011, our online Local Ballot Measure Database can offer insight into voting trends and what makes a ballot measure successful.

Read more | 0 comments


Tips for Local Governments in the Aftermath of the WannaCry Ransomware Attack

Tips for Local Governments in the Aftermath of the WannaCry Ransomware Attack

May 15, 2017 by Leah LaCivita
Category: Cybersecurity

The WannaCry cybersecurity attack is making news for worm-like behavior that allows it to spread across networks, infecting connected systems without user interaction. All it takes is for one infected user to put a whole network at risk. Here are some tips for local governments on how to combat it.

Read more | 0 comments


Flag Display: What Every Jurisdiction Should Know

Flag Display: What Every Jurisdiction Should Know

May 10, 2017 by Jill Dvorkin
Category: Flag Display

Most of us are aware that there are certain rules and etiquette to follow when flying the U.S. and Washington State flags, but what are they exactly and to whom do they apply? This post summarizes those rules and etiquette and highlights some important dates to keep in mind when it comes to flying these flags.

Read more | 3 comments


Treat Your Elders Well

Treat Your Elders Well

May 3, 2017 by Jillian Barron
Category: Personnel , HR Advisor

It's estimated individuals age 55 and older will make up 25% of the U.S. workforce by 2020. The ADEA promotes employment of “older persons” based on ability and prohibits arbitrary age discrimination. Treat Your Elders Well: They can do the job, and they can also sue you for age discrimination 

Read more | 0 comments


Time to Start Thinking About Fireworks . . . for 2018

Time to Start Thinking About Fireworks . . . for 2018

May 2, 2017 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Licensing and Regulation

If your community wants to ban the sale or use of fireworks, now is the time for its legislative body to start considering it. It’s too late now for the 2017 season, but if a ban is to be adopted for 2018, it must be adopted by June 28, 2017.

Read more | 2 comments


MRSC Expands its Financial Policy Guidance

MRSC Expands its Financial Policy Guidance

April 27, 2017 by Toni Nelson
Category: Finance Policies

MRSC and the State Auditor’s Office Local Government Performance Center have launched a series of online resources to help Washington State local governments develop and adopt effective financial policies and procedures, while complying with SAO’s policy requirements.

Read more | 0 comments


Which Financial Policies Work Best?

Which Financial Policies Work Best? 'It Depends.'

April 26, 2017 by Mike Bailey
Category: Financial Management , Fund Balance and Reserves

What is the right level of fund balance for local government? For many reasons, "It depends" is the best place to start when answering that question. 

Read more | 0 comments


Taking Action: Ordinances, Resolutions, Motions, & Proclamations

Taking Action: Ordinances, Resolutions, Motions, & Proclamations

April 24, 2017 by Jim Doherty
Category: Governance

MRSC is frequently asked about the procedure to use when a legislative body (council, commission, or board) is taking action on an issue. Here is how we generally explain the options.

Read more | 0 comments


LOAD MORE
 more

Blog Archives

GO

Follow Our Blog