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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Essay on State and Local Government

Essay on State and Local Government

1. Has the expansion of the Internet weakened the power of the state and local government? 

The Internet has indeed become a powerful force for education as well as information. The continuous development of technology however, has also caused the power of the state and the local government to weaken in terms of concealing classified information from the public. The prevalence of mobile gadgets such as cell phones, laptops, tablets, and camera has made the Internet and technology a necessary part of people’s lives. This has made it difficult for the government to practice secrecy and clandestinity. This may be considered as both a benefit and disadvantage on the public’s part. It can be seen as a benefit because it allows the people to know important information; therefore fostering the public’s right know. Some information however, is best left kept from public knowledge as it may interfere with important State activities. This includes military plans as well as negotiation tactics (Gaubatz, 2010, p1).

2.  Should private groups in a community be allowed to operate “charter” schools with public funds? Explain. Do you favour the state providing tax-supported vouchers to parents to use at any public or private school of their children? Explain.

The tax supported school vouchers is one way of promoting both saving and efficiency of tax dollars. In fact, reports suggest that the voucher program of the state of Florida has allowed the state to save more as it will only cost $4,000 per student as compared to the public school system’s spending of $7,000 per student. A reason behind this is because a system that promotes monopoly rarely produces any positive results. Whether it is apparent or not, the US public school is an inefficient monopoly. Extending the voucher program will allow the government to appropriate part of the budget for public schools to other equally important projects such as security and improvement of public infrastructures among many others (VonderHaar, 2013, p.1).

3. What are some of the issues involved in planning and zoning by local government: Explain and give examples.

Over the years, the public has experienced a number of issues regarding the government’s planning and zoning practices and procedures. For example most people complain that the current code in their city is too dense and complex. In addition to this, the current codes for most cities tend to be inappropriate because of the outdated zoning practices and category. This then results to a number of illegal structures as well as low compliance from the public. The Philadelphia Zoning Code for instance, has been experiencing a number of difficulties which includes a complex and convoluted zoning code. As such, the state decided to create a simple and more user-friendly code which is up to date with their modern city. Similarly, the city decided to develop the quality and planning design of the city. At the same time, the local government coordinated the zoning reform with standards that must be followed by the entire city (Zoning Matters, 2013, p.1).

4. Should the state and local government provide some assistance to upper middle class and wealthy residents hit hard by deep recession and collapsing home prices?

Recession as well as the collapsing home process has certainly left many Americans financially challenged. Although the government is mostly focusing its assistance to low-income and poor families, it is important to note that the middle class are similarly suffering the same ordeal caused by the recession. Hence, it is important for the State and local governments to extend their support to help individuals from the middle class. As this social class is responsible for most of the labor force, helping them will result to the invigoration of the economy (Plummer, 2013, p.1).
Gaubatz, D. (2010). Secrets Your Government Hides. Family Security Matter. Retrieved 1 July
2013, from
“Issues in Zoning Code”. (2013) Zoning Matters. Retrieved 1 July 2013, from
Plummer, B. (2013) How recession turned middle class jobs to low wage jobs. The Washington
Post. Retrieved 1 July 2013, from
VonderHaar, J. (2012). School Vouchers. The Heartland Institute. Retrieved 1 July 2013, from

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