Poll: Voters support gov’t consolidation if it is good, oppose it if it’s bad

That’s the “take away” from a new survey on public perceptions about government consolidation in New York State.  New Yorkers will support consolidation if it improves the quality of services, makes the community more attractive to business or promotes efficiency in services.  Of course, there’s no guarantee that consolidation can do any of these things.  Check out the video above to see a summary of the survey sponsored by the Dyson Foundation.

Our experience suggests that, if local government is effective and capable, it can consolidate services in an effective and capable manner.  If local government isn’t effective and capable, it will consolidate local services in a manner that is likely to be neither effective nor capable.  We’ve been involved in situations where consolidation of services really helped a community.  The bottom line is that consolidation is a tool that can be used by an effective government.  But consolidation by itself can’t make local government more effective.  In that sense, it has been oversold.

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