Tag: Local Government

How Bad Is China’s Debt? A City Hospital Is Asking Nurses for Loans

RUZHOU, China — When the call came for local doctors and nurses to step up for their troubled community, the emergency wasn’t medical. It was financial. Ruzhou, a city of one million people in central China, urgently needed a new hospital, their bosses said. To pay for it, the administrators were asking health care workers […]

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California Mayors Back Plan to Make PG&E a Cooperative

Frustrated with wildfires and intentional blackouts caused by Pacific Gas & Electric, more than two dozen California mayors and county leaders are calling for a customer-owned power company to replace the giant utility. In a letter delivered Tuesday to the California Public Utilities Commission, the local officials embraced a proposal by Mayor Sam Liccardo of […]

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Push to Raise Minimum Wage Goes Local, at Airports and Hotels

Labor unions and community groups are pursuing an increasingly successful strategy to force employers to pay their workers more: minimum wages for specific occupations and industries. The effort has resulted in several noteworthy victories recently — mandatory pay of up to $20 an hour for hotel workers in Oakland, and raises for airport employees in […]

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Judge Strikes Down Gun Laws Enacted in Wake of Pittsburgh Synagogue Massacre

A Pennsylvania judge on Tuesday struck down three gun control ordinances enacted by the City of Pittsburgh after the mass shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue last year, saying that state law prevented the city from regulating firearms. The ordinances, announced in December, include an assault weapons ban, a ban on large-capacity magazines and […]

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Building for Real With Digital Blocks

In 2011, Jorgen Hallstrom, a project manager at Swedish Building Services, was redesigning public housing complexes around Stockholm. The buildings were rundown and bleak, the public spaces uninviting. Mr. Hallstrom, like any developer, wanted to get residents’ views. But he knew that very few would come to hear about the project, and those that did […]

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Suburbanites in Louisiana Vote to Create a New City of Their Own

BATON ROUGE, La. — Residents of a largely white suburb of Baton Rouge voted on Saturday to incorporate a new city of their own — to be called St. George — and take away control of the community’s taxes, schools and other services from the less affluent, more diverse surrounding parish. The outcome was a […]

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A Far-Right Dilemma for Europe’s Mainstream: Contain It or Join It?

FRANKENSTEIN, Germany — They called it the Frankenstein coalition, and not just for the location. When the Frankenstein chapter of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative party defied Berlin and formed an alliance with the far right in the village council, some considered it monstrous. To many, the alliance violated one of the biggest taboos in German […]

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In the Land of Self-Defeat

CLINTON, Ark. — Inside Washington, there’s a sense that this scandal really is different. Even the White House’s memorandum of the phone conversation President Trump had with the Ukrainian president in July makes it clear that Mr. Trump asked a foreign country to help him undermine a political rival. But while national polls show support […]

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This Politician Lives in His Mom’s Basement and He’s Campaigning on It

Twelve-year-old Nicholas Fernandes didn’t spend his vacation at camp or playing Xbox all day. Instead, he devoted his summer to work on a political campaign. Between June and August, Nicholas, along with 75 other student interns (ages 12 to 22), researched policy positions, stuffed envelopes and distributed campaign literature on behalf of Legislator Josh Lafazan […]

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Would a Purdue Bankruptcy Protect the Sacklers? Good Question.

After months of negotiations and threats, Purdue Pharma has finally filed for bankruptcy. But it’s hardly a done deal. The bankruptcy filing is part of a settlement agreement that the company and its owners negotiated with lawyers for states and thousands of local governments that have struggled for years with the opioid crisis. They support […]

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Sacklers vs. States: Settlement Talks Stumble Over Foreign Business

Purdue Pharma’s negotiations to settle thousands of lawsuits over the company’s role in the opioids crisis have turned into a standoff between members of the Sackler family, who own the company, and a group of state attorneys general over how much the family should pay and whether it can continue selling drugs abroad. The Sacklers […]

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A Hot Job Market Is Causing Labor Pains for State Governments

Peanut season is nearly upon South Carolina and, like governments across the country, the state has been scrambling to hire. Its Department of Agriculture is lifting pay for crop inspectors to $13 to $16 an hour from the previous $9.50 to $11.50, and creating an “aide” version of the position that requires less education and […]

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Ransomware Attack Hits 23 Texas Towns, Authorities Say

Computer systems in 23 small Texas towns have been hacked, seized and held for ransom in a widespread, coordinated cyberattack, the authorities said this week. The Texas Department of Information Resources said Monday that it was racing to bring systems back online after the “ransomware attack,” in which hackers remotely block access to important data […]

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When Cities Try to Limit Guns, State Laws Bar the Way

A day after six Philadelphia police officers were wounded in a long, tense standoff with a gunman, the city’s mayor angrily called for tougher restrictions on guns. “I say to our state and federal lawmakers: Step up — or step aside,” Mayor Jim Kenney said, hours after the surrender of the suspect, who the police […]

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What’s the Future of Syrian Refugees in Turkey?

ISTANBUL — Walid Zeidan, a 37-year-old Syrian man, works as a cook in the bustling Malta Bazaar in the Fatih district adjacent to the Golden Horn in Istanbul. Mr. Zeidan, who ran a restaurant in the Eastern Ghouta suburb of Damascus, lost his home and business in a bombing by the forces of the Syrian […]

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Local News Needs Federal Help

As a conservative, I’m not quick to invoke the term “market failure” as a justification for government intervention. But that’s exactly what the decline of local journalism requires. Local newspapers, the first line of democratic accountability for local government, are in free fall. The Youngstown Vindicator, the latest victim, just announced that it is closing, […]

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A City Paid a Hefty Ransom to Hackers. But Its Pains Are Far From Over.

LAKE CITY, Fla. — Audrey Sikes, city clerk of Lake City, Fla., has a thing for documents: She does not like losing them. It falls to Ms. Sikes, as official custodian of records for this city of 12,000 people about an hour west of Jacksonville, to maintain Lake City’s archives. She keeps a log of […]

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When Paying a Traffic Ticket Can End in Deportation

[What you need to know to start the day: Get New York Today in your inbox.] MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. — After immigration authorities tried to arrest a young man who was paying a traffic ticket at City Hall in April, word spread quickly through this city, where a third of the residents are foreign-born. The effect […]

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Smile, Your City Is Watching You

Walking through the streets of New York City, you can feel the thrill of being lost in the crowd. As throngs of people filter past, each going about their days, it seems possible to blend in without being noticed. But as municipalities and companies pursue the dream of “smart cities,” creating hyper-connected urban spaces designed […]

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Austerity Has Ravaged U.K. Communities. It Has Also Spurred Reinvention.

PRESTON, England — In communities across Britain, funding from London was shrinking to nothing — the central equation of national austerity. But here in the fading industrial belt of northwestern England, the city of Preston took the crisis of budget-cutting as impetus for a basic refashioning. In what has come to be known as the […]

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