AUTHORS

Peter Harkness  |  Founder, Publisher Emeritus
pharkness@governing.com

Peter Harkness, founder and publisher emeritus of GOVERNING, now serves as a co-writer of the Potomac Chronicle column. He launched GOVERNING in 1987 after serving as editor and deputy publisher of the Congressional Quarterly news service. Peter currently also is a senior policy adviser to the Pew Center on the States.

Peter Harkness
September 1, 2014

Are Governments Neglecting Planes and Trains?

Even though airports and public transportation systems are in need of upgrades, all anyone ever talks about is roads and bridges.
July 1, 2014

The Great Water Paradox

With far too little water in some places and far too much in others, U.S. governments can no longer ignore climate change.
May 1, 2014

How Big Cities Push Big New Ideas

As urban populations have grown, cities have become centers of innovation.
March 1, 2014

Poverty Won't Be Solved by Congress

Since Congress has trouble tying its shoes, states and localities must take the lead reversing the dangerous trends of rising inequality and stagnant mobility.
January 1, 2014

America Risks Wasting Fracking’s Potential

Hydraulic fracking holds so much promise for generating inexpensive, relatively clean energy. But first, we need to figure out how to regulate it.
September 1, 2013

What (Not) to Expect from Congress This Session

Congress is back, but don’t expect the players in this sad comedy to know or care much about how any pieces of legislation they pass will affect our states, regions or metros.
February 28, 2013

Federalism from the Bottom Up

More than ever, the feds need states and local regions to take the lead in crafting promising new programs.
December 28, 2012

Who Pays for Superstorm Sandy?

States don’t just want money to rebuild -- they want money to make far-reaching changes to infrastructure too.
October 31, 2012

It's Time for States, Localities to Think Boldly

Elections and governance have become so intertwined that it’s hard to know when campaigns begin or end. We do know we need big ideas.
August 31, 2012

Washington, D.C.’s Other 1-Percent Problem

The nation’s capital is more about what you own these days than what you do.
June 29, 2012

The Politics of Rising Tuition Costs

Obama blames the states, but the problem is more complicated.
May 31, 2012

Public Universities Reach a Tipping Point

Severe funding cuts and the record-high numbers of people going to college are forcing state university systems to make tough decisions about financial aid, curriculums, research and more.
April 30, 2012

The Affordable Care Act: A Case Study for Cooperative Federalism?

If the health reform law is upheld, the flexibility it will give states on health insurance exchanges could be a model for healthy federal-state relations.
February 29, 2012

Despite Corruption Concerns, D.C. Improves Services

Amid several ethics scandals, the city government has dramatically improved its delivery of services -- even as demand has increased.
January 1, 2012

What Brand of Federalism Is Next?

Obama’s mixed approach of coercion and collaboration seems to be working, but that may not last.
October 31, 2011

Housing Policy Deserves a Demotion

GOVERNING Publisher Emeritus Peter Harkness says it may be time for government to get out of the business of promoting homeownership.
August 31, 2011

Severe Budget Cuts Ahead

With stimulus funding gone, a misinformed citizenry is unprepared for the funding cuts on the horizon.
June 30, 2011

Cities Must Find the Economy's Fix

With Washington paralyzed by its debt and states facing deficits, the pressure is on local governments to raise more revenue or make significant structural changes to reduce costs.
April 29, 2011

The Truth about Bankruptcy

Exaggerating problems is more about politics than budget balancing.
February 28, 2011

Public Servants as Public Enemy #1

At all levels, denigration of public service is a legacy of the recession.
January 1, 2011

The Nation's Outlook on Trains

Bullet trains may be sidetracked, but not commuter rail.
November 1, 2010

Finding a Leader With Answers

As problems cry out for solutions, we need more Richard Daleys.

State and Federal Immigration Policy Challenges Republicans and Democrats

The politics of immigration policy are tricky for both parties.

Restoring the Balance of Federalism

In the recession's wake, states and localities face new realities.

Education Reform is the New Game in Town

What's not to like about the Race to the Top? Plenty, it seems.

States, Localities Face a 'Lost Decade'

Economic recovery will be slow, subduing any ambitions state and local governments may harbor to play a role in shaping national policy.

Washington Plays Catch Up On Climate Change

States, localities and the private sector are already confronting climate change. Washington has just scratched the surface.

The Ticking Fiscal Clock

In this state and local fiscal mess, realism may be the only option.

Tying Federal Funding to Regional Cooperation

For the White House, the new mantra is 'metro regions.'

Devolution? What's That?

Right now, federalism means the feds are running the show.

When the Well Runs Dry

The stimulus won't last forever. That's worth remembering.

Tackling Taxophobia

We can't keep pretending tax increases are a fatal disease.

Obama and the States

President Bush promised governors a close relationship and didn't deliver. Can states trust the reassuring words of his successor?

In Search of Revenue

Local governments could have more impact than the capital this year, but they'll have to tackle deficits first.
March 31, 2007

Low-Flow Revenue Stream

When some labor unions in Rockford, Ill., came out in support of an increase in the local sales tax last month, it wasn't big news....
March 25, 2007

Test, but Verify

Almost two years ago, this space discussed George W. Bush's centerpiece education program in a column that started off this way: "There is a rebellion...