Mark Stencel was previously GOVERNING's executive editor and deputy publisher.E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley's "intensely statistics-based approach to governance" was the subject of the latest article in Jonathan Walters's ongoing Citizens and Performance series. It also was the subject of much discussion at Governing's Management Performance conference last week in Austin. So we were pleased that O'Malley was able to explain his StateStat program himself in a video address during the closing session of the conference on Oct. 3. (The video is embedded at the end of this entry and is also on YouTube.)
The governor originally planned to deliver his remarks in person, before he was called on to speak that same morning at the funeral of Mickey Lippy, a state police flight paramedic who was among those killed the previous weekend in a helicopter crash. Despite the understandable change in plans, O'Malley and his staff went to considerable effort to pre-record his speech and deliver them to us in Texas in time for his scheduled remarks.
In addition to discussing StateStat, O'Malley described the CitiStat management system he implemented as Baltimore's mayor, and the New York City police program on which his approach was closely modeled. (Former New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton, now chief of the Los Angeles Police Department and a Governing Public Official of the Year in 2007, also discussed the NYPD's efforts during the Austin conference.)
The key question we asked Gov. O'Malley to address: Is good management in fact good politics? His conclusion:
"It's my belief that the lessons we are learning in Maryland can be applied to any government, at any level, anywhere in the world. You really only need a few good people and some off-the-shelf computer to revolutionize government. And although we contend that good management is good politics, performance-based management is truly omni-partisan, apolitical, and essential for making progress for the people we all serve."
Here's the video of Gov. O'Malley's complete remarks....
Written and compiled by staff writers and editors, GOVERNING View is an on-the-ground, and sometimes behind-the-scenes, look at the topics we're covering in print and online. From notes on what's up in statehouses, county courthouses and city halls, to encounters with people, places and things, GOVERNING View is a window into the side of state and local government you don't always see.