TABLE of CONTENTS June 2009

Cover Story

Desert Storm

BY John Buntin

From the front yard of her house in Redlands, California, Sherli Leonard looks out over the foothills of nearby mountains to San Timoteo Canyon. In...

Features

Get Smart

Mention smart-grid technology to Frederick Butler, a utility regulator in New Jersey, and he'll immediately remind you of two recent crises. The first is the... BY Tom Arrandale

Laura Chick Is Watching

It took Laura Chick barely a month in Sacramento to start making waves. As California's new inspector general charged with overseeing how the state spends... BY Rob Gurwitt

Shortfall Shock

Given a climate of national recession, Maine's budget process went pretty smoothly in 2009. Despite some scary revenue shortfalls, the legislature passed a $5.8 billion budget bill... BY Alan Greenblatt

The Costliest Ride

In Sioux Falls, South Dakota, a city of just over 150,000 people, almost half of the annual public transit budget doesn't go for buses, or trolleys,... BY Josh Goodman

Departments

Hidden Section

A Deep Bench

When the governor retires, does it help to have obvious successors? BY Alan Ehrenhalt

Politics + Policy

Energy & Environment

Coal-Fired Compromise

No one expected Mark Parkinson to pursue an aggressive agenda as governor of Kansas. When he took over on an interim basis in April, after... BY Alan Greenblatt
Finance

Too Broke to Fix?

Fiscal shortfalls in the tens of billions of dollars are virtually an annual occurrence in California. But this year, the state's voters seem even more... BY Alan Greenblatt
Finance

Stalled Trains

Transportation might seem like the one issue best suited for local, state and federal cooperation. No transit system is built without affecting the planning process... BY Alan Greenblatt
Potomac Chronicle

Devolution? What's That?

Right now, federalism means the feds are running the show. BY Peter Harkness
Economic Development

Franchise Frustration

The recent bankruptcies of Chrysler and General Motors are halting, for now, a furious burst of state legislative lobbying by the nation's car dealers. As... BY Josh Goodman
Politics

Vive Le Roy?

When Roy Barnes lost his reelection bid as Georgia's Democratic governor in 2002, it was the surprise of the year. Now, the man his opponents once... BY Josh Goodman
Politics

Vacuum in Oakland

Ron Dellums never really wanted to be mayor of Oakland. He expressed doubts when civic leaders recruited him to run in 2006, and ever since then,... BY Alan Greenblatt
Health & Human Services

The End-of-Life Imperative

The president brought it up himself. He talked seriously to a New York Times reporter in May about end-of-life health care choices--the tremendous drain they... BY Penelope Lemov
Economic Engines

New Rules for Hard Times

Manufacturing is down even in China. Now what? BY William Fulton
Urban Notebook

High Time for the High Line

New York City is creating a park in the sky BY Christopher Swope
Energy & Environment

The Superbarrel Solution

As an engineer with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, John Chang is always on the lookout for ways to save water. Recently,... BY Brendan Schlauch

Problem Solver

Management & Labor

Hold That Hire

"It's not an easy job being a jailer," says Captain Hunter Petray, who works in the sheriff's office in Benton County, Arkansas. Few would dispute... BY Will Wilson
Smart Management

Performance Rules

Managing for results is making a bigger difference during this downturn. BY Katherine Barrett & Richard Greene
Tech Talk

Grab the Fee and Run

No phone charge is too small to escape a governor's grasp. BY Ellen Perlman
Public Money

Breaking Bonds

A subsection of the federal recovery act may kill off the muni bond as we know it. BY John E. Petersen