Cover Story

The Long Road to Recovery After Years of Severe Budget Cuts

BY Alan Greenblatt

Eight years of state government atrophy may be coming to an end in Kansas. But it will take a long time, and quite a bit of pain.

FEATURES

Urban

What Cities Can Learn From Burning Man

The annual gathering is a radical experiment in urban design that rebuilds itself in the desert every year -- with the help of its residents. BY
Urban

8 Ways to Make Your City More Like Burning Man

From building public art to creating "sacred spaces," the annual event is inspiring leaders across America. BY
Management & Labor

After Federal Minimum Wage Bill Advances, What’s the Future of the Fight for $15?

The policy is already law in some states and cities, and has become a talking point for Democratic leaders and presidential candidates. But while it has helped lift some Americans out of poverty, it has cost others their jobs. BY
Public Safety & Justice

How Cities Are Bringing 911 Into the 21st Century

Community paramedicine is changing the way some places respond to health emergencies. BY
Infrastructure & Environment

The Parking Garages of the Future

As many of them fall into disrepair, some are adapting to cities' changing needs. BY

OBSERVER

Politics & Elections

More Than 700: Why So Many People Are Running for Office in Seattle This Year

A booming population and new campaign finance options have brought out a record number of candidates. BY
Management & Labor

A License for a Lemonade Stand? States Rethink Business Licensing

The debate is playing out around the country but has been most controversial in Texas. BY
Public Safety & Justice

America Has a Health-Care Crisis — in Prisons

Privatization and years of inadequate resources have left the incarcerated population with abysmal medical care. BY
Assessments

The Democrats’ Biggest Problem for 2020 — and Beyond

By clustering in cities, even small ones, they have weakened their political impact. BY
Washington Watch

Red America, Blue America: Why Political Polarization Will Only Worsen

Liberal and conservative states are both stirring things up. Very different things. BY
Urban Notebook

It's Time for Suburbs to Talk About Race

They face a growing list of challenges as they diversify. BY
Management & Labor

Where Nonprofits Are Most Prevalent in America

When a community is in fiscal trouble, nonprofits are often a big help. But some places have far fewer of them. BY

THE BUSINESS OF GOVERNMENT

On Leadership

Government Purchasers Could Do Far More to Help Minority-Owned Businesses

They need to correct the long history of discrimination baked into the system. BY
Public Money

The Change That Could Shift Public Opinion on Taxes

We’ve been wary of taxation since the Boston Tea Party. New finance ethics rules will help. BY
Infrastructure & Environment

First Bags Then Straws: The Next Front in the War on Plastic

States are wading into what used to be a local issue, and styrofoam containers are their next target in the effort to reduce waste that pollutes the environment. BY

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REPRINTS

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