TABLE of CONTENTS August 2006

Cover Story

Meltdown

BY Ellen Perlman

How a promising technology mega-project went awry.

Features

A Revenue Revives

Left for dead, corporate income taxes are making an unexpected contribution to state income. BY Christopher Swope

The Fine Art of Reporting Results

A growing number of localities are experimenting with alternatives to annual financial reports to inform citizens about government performance. BY Jonathan Walters

The Fine Art of Reporting Results

A growing number of localities are experimenting with alternatives to annual financial reports to inform citizens about government performance. BY Jonathan Walters

Smuggler's Delight

The American marketplace is awash in illegal fake products. Governments are supposed to police them, but most don't. BY Josh Goodman

Can Dallas Govern Itself?

Over the past decade, political chaos and bureaucratic mismanagement turned Big D into a Big Mess. It's struggling to recover. BY Rob Gurwitt

Work of Arts

Paducah refines a way to restore a decaying community. BY Zach Patton

Up Front

Potomac Chronicle

Race Revisited

The U.S. Supreme Court is going to rule on racial quotas in the schools. The decision may shape social policy for decades. BY Donald F. Kettl
Politics

Power Reclaimed

California's term-limit law was turning Assembly speakers into ciphers--until Fabian Nunez came along. BY Rob Gurwitt
Politics

Trenton's Folly

New Jersey's budget has been built on illusion for a long time. This year, reality intruded. BY Alan Greenblatt
Education

Summer School

The old custom of starting class after Labor Day is gone in most of the country. Not everyone likes that. BY Alan Greenblatt
Politics

Spitzer's Gamble

Who's got more clout in a state--the governor or the attorney general? In New York, that's not an easy question. BY Alan Greenblatt
Economic Development

Scalp Irritation

Laws controlling ticket prices are usually an exercise in futility. BY Alan Greenblatt
Politics

Graduation Time

When the term-limit clock starts ticking for legislators, state jobs begin to look more attractive. BY Alan Greenblatt
Politics

Graduation Time

When the term-limit clock starts ticking for legislators, state jobs begin to look more attractive. BY Alan Greenblatt
Politics

The Veto Gambit

Anecdotal evidence seems to suggest that 2006 may be something more than a routine veto year. BY Alan Ehrenhalt

The Business of Government

Infrastructure & Environment

Back Up On the Interstate

The national highway system is marking its Golden Anniversary, but that's not much cause for celebration. BY Alex Marshall
Tech Talk

The Hit Record

When it comes to using technology to streamline the health care system, the biggest buzz is about digitizing individuals' health records--putting them in a standardized format and connecting them via the Web. BY Ellen Perlman
Education

In Utah, It's Gracias but no Gracias

State takes a hard line on English only. BY Zach Patton
Education

In Utah, It's Gracias but no Gracias

State takes a hard line on English only. BY Zach Patton
Politics

Elder Insurance: Florida Puts a Lid On Rate Hikes

Florida's legislature has passed what may be the nation's strictest guidelines for long-term-care insurance. "We think this is going to become a model for the nation," says Bob Lotane, spokesman for the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation BY Zach Patton
Politics

Elder Insurance: Florida Puts a Lid On Rate Hikes

Florida's legislature has passed what may be the nation's strictest guidelines for long-term-care insurance. "We think this is going to become a model for the nation," says Bob Lotane, spokesman for the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation BY Zach Patton
Public Workforce

Web Custodians

Kentucky's decision to block political blogs has rankled many state employees. BY Christopher Swope
Finance

Revenue Retiree: A Michigan Tax Faces the Ax

It sounds like a drama-series finale where the scriptwriters can't agree: Michigan's unusual Single Business Tax is going to die, but how remains a matter of debate. BY Josh Goodman
Energy & Environment

The Reactor Factor

The nation needs to invest in sources for electricity that won't emit greenhouse gases. Nuclear power could be the best, safest solution. BY Tom Arrandale
Economic Engines

Reversing the Brain Drain

Cities are starting to use scholarships to local colleges to keep promising young people from moving away. BY William Fulton