Largely a post Word-War II phenomenon, the word sprawl describes what its name evokes: formless, spreading, inefficent consumption of land. A "sprawling" landscape generally has no center and few public spaces where people congregate. Many Americans feel that sprawling development has accrued too many costs: The environment has suffered as Americans make more and more… Continue reading
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This 1989 law prohibited the use of once-through water systems in the Twin Cities after 2010, and immediately raised the price of using once-through water 200-fold for commercial users and 50-fold for non-profits and schools. The Act, administered by the Division of Waters of the Department of Natural Resources, requires that a conversion plan be submitted by users by Jan 1992. The once-through systems must be converted within the design life of the equipment based on the ASHRAE service life for primary system components. Continue reading
Can a land tax reduce sprawl and strengthen urban economies? The evidence is persuasive though not conclusive. Political economist Henry George first proposed a land value tax over 100 years ago, as a way to eliminate land specualtion and make more land available for production.
Today,some observers hail it as a way to curb sprawl. Current property taxes are based in the value of property, reflecting both the land and structure value, in a proportion determined by local property assessors. Decisions to reinvest or remodel currently result in higher assessment valuations and thus higher taxes.
During the past decade, the national recycling rate (including composting) has climbed to 32%. Hundreds of communities have surpassed this level. Dozens report waste reduction levels above 50%. What features are common to these successful programs? It is usually a combination of good rules that together help to achieve a high rate of recycling and… Continue reading
According to the Center for Municipal Solutions, there have been more than 150,000 communication tower facilities erected in the last 5 years and industry estimates are that more than 1 million more will be needed in the next few years. CMS suggests that as many as 50% of the towers erected in the last 5… Continue reading
Jim Keating, Executive Director of Rainforest Relief has been engaging communities to limit their use of tropical hardwoods in waterfront development. To that end the group has developed a model ordinance that cities can use to ensure that the use of tropical hardwoods and the associated environmental impacts are minimized. One modification to this ordinance under consideration is that there should be a provision that materials come from within 500 miles of the point of use. The New Rules Project supports this preference for a local alternative to tropical hardwoods as a modification to the model ordinance. Continue reading
Centered around Sebastopol, California, the Western Sonoma County Internet Cooperative Corporation has a membership of around 50, offering wireless Internet access main to those who do not have any other options. Over the years, they have encountered many issues relating to equipment reliability, especially during harsh weather.
They started as an offshoot of NoCat but are no longer associated with it.
Ketchikan provides a 10% preference for local businesses on bids valued at up to $100,000 and a 7% preference on those between $100,000 and $200,000. No preference is awarded on contracts above that amount. Continue reading
Columbus grants a 5% preference to local businesses for the procurement of supplies valued at $20,000 or less, other than construction and professional services, and a 1% preference to local businesses otherwise. Continue reading
Albuquerque provides a 5% preference to local businesses and small businesses (under 20 employees). Continue reading