Brian Cherry (Political Science) gave a presentation titled
"Public/Public versus Public/Private: Which do City Managers Prefer?" at the Urban Affairs Association meeting in Honolulu.
Local governments face increased financial pressure compounded by the national economic downturn, declining general revenue sharing from the state and the public's anti-tax tax sentiment. Traditionally, the literature suggests that forms of public/private partnerships are possible solutions to this problem. But recent concerns over these methods include lack of oversight, the lowering of standard of living in the community, interpretation of contract language for services and increases in costs after the initial contract. Cherry sent an electronic survey to city managers in all cities nationwide with populations of at least 10,000 residents. The purpose of his study was to see if there is a change in the trend of private/public partnerships to public/public partnerships to limit or avoid some of the potential problems listed above. It also examined cost, satisfaction, planning, reasons behind, the effect on unions and the types of services involved in public/private and public/public partnerships.
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