National Trends in County Government

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The National Association of Counties (NACo) surveyed a portion of their members to gain perspectives on the latest trends in county government – ranging in topics from social media to the impact of natural disasters.

There are 3,068 county governments in the U.S. Discover if your viewpoints closely align with what others in local government offices are thinking – or, if they are way off base.

Read on to discover key findings and stats from the frame of reference of county officials nationwide!

Survey Says…

19% meet with their Congressional delegations in person or by phone more than 10 times per year.

20% served on a local tourism board to promote economic development.

24% believe a better trained workforce would improve their local economy.

25% think Tax Reform is the top issue facing congress.

34% do not categorize their county as urban, suburban, or rural. They describe it as a “strong mix of all”.

40% are anticipating a local revenue shortfall in the current fiscal year, which may result in reducing services to the people in their communities.

48% operated a county jail at or above capacity, placing additional burdens on the county justice system.

51% selected “economic growth” as their public service passion.

52% said state policies and programs have had a positive impact on their county – but amidst other policy challenges, reductions in state funding are the most common source of counties’ current revenue shortfalls.

63% want to keep the federal tax deduction for local property taxes.

66% are using Facebook and Twitter.

70% were in counties that received a Major Disaster Declaration over the last 5 years, appearing that the “new normal” of natural disasters is having widespread impact – reinforcing the importance of disaster aid for response and recovery.

72% support increasing the federal gas tax to boost the Highway Trust Fund and give high priority to new local investments in infrastructure, business development and workforce development.

73% authorized county funding for economic development.

78% support maintaining the tax-exempt status of municipal bonds, a key federal-state-local partnership.

81% support early voting measures in the election system.

Source: 2013 NACo Outlook and Opinion: National Trends through the County Lens

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