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Super Staff Work: Comparison of Impact Fees

Call me crazy, but I get a real thrill out of reading an outstanding staff report. It's based on data! It lays out options! It gives a well-considered recommendation! I love it.{C} A lot of us are in this business to give elected officials and other leaders the information they need to make excellent decisions. Sure, lots of decisions are influenced by politics. That's not a bad thing—it's important to consider a decision's impact on people. But, good staff can stand as a bulwark against over-politicizing a decision.

In today's world, information is cheap. But anyone who's been in this business a while knows how precious reliable information can be. If you can become known for providing consistently reliable information, you will be golden. That's what we here at MRSC aspire to.

So that brings me to the city of Bellingham's 2013 Comparison of Transportation Impact Fee Base Rates in Western Washington. It gets my juices flowing. It presents really interesting information and it's well-documented. Decisionmakers are always interested in what their peer communities are doing on a particular topic. Here you've got data from 60 cities and 5 counties to choose from in an eye-catching graphic format.

Have you got an example of brilliant staff work that you're really proud of? Send it our way so we can share it with your colleagues. They will appreciate it, and maybe even get a bit of a thrill from it!

MRSC is a private nonprofit organization serving local governments in Washington State. Eligible government agencies in Washington State may use our free, one-on-one Ask MRSC service to get answers to legal, policy, or financial questions.

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About Tracy Burrows

As MRSC’s Executive Director, Tracy seeks out innovations in local government, tracking trends in management and technology that impact your work. She has over 20 years of local government and non-profit experience, specializing in growth management, transportation, and general city management issues.