City States – What This Means

As Stanely Kurtz wrote in a recent article:

What state is Dubuque in? If you answered Chicago, you are correct. Chicago’s no state, you say? Don’t be so 18th century — so “constitutional.” Dubuque is in Chicago, which is now a kind of state. Or to put it differently, the Obama administration is in the process of replacing our entire system of government — made up of nested local, state, and national, levels — with a regional framework. In Obama’s new dispensation, suburbs, small towns, and modest-sized cities like Dubuque will be turned into subordinate satellites of regional mega-cities like Chicago, regardless of which state these local governments are formally a part of.

This my friends is the goal of regionalism — to replace town and city governments with ‘city states’ that represent regions. All local governance would be cast aside. Indeed this goal was outlined on the front page of this very blog, taken straight from the NH RPC’s “recommended reading”.

1. Empowering Urban Counties
The most direct and efficient way to create metropolitan government in the majority of metro areas is to empower urban county government. In this scenario, the county government assumes the functions and responsibilities of the municipal governments within its boundaries, and municipalities are abolished.

2. Consolidating Cities and Counties
This involves creating area-wide governmental units, focusing on consolidating municipal governments with their surrounding county governments. Consolidation brings unification of the tax base and centralization of planning and zoning.

3. Combining Counties into Regional Governments
This involves combining several counties in the same metropolitan area into one regional government. Challenges to these regional approaches include potential loss of power at the local level.

Please read more of Kurtz’s article to better understand why regionalism is a danger.