Tuesday, July 23, 2013

CPBB "Summit" Local Government High: PBB from an Elected Officials Perspective, Civic Engagement and Citizen Surveys Recap

Co-founders of CPBB: Chris Fabian & Jon Johnson

What an exciting CPBB 2013 "Summit of Leading Practices" Annual Conference last week! I know we are still riding high from the creative energy and innovative concepts discussed during the two day "Summit." We hope you're feeling the "local government high" and take this energy home and apply it in your organization! Thanks to all conference attendees, sponsors, exhibitors, partners and friends!

Beyond the "high", we also left the "Summit" full of  innovative "Leading Practice" inspiration and we're hungry for more! To satisfy your infectious cravings, the CPBB is revisiting each conference session on this blog over the next 1-2 weeks. The intent is to recap the energetic session presentation(s) and reinforce the innovative "leading practice" concepts discussed at the "Summit!"

To continue this blog series, we will review the riveting Day 1 afternoon conference sessions. ENJOY!

Kathie Novak, Senior Advisor, Center for Priority Based Budgeting, Lecturer at the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver

Kathie Novak kicked-off the afternoon with a unique session The Imperative of Fiscal Health and
Kathie Novak
Priority Based Budgeting from the Elected Officials Perspective.
She is able to provide this perspective as a former long-term Council member, former two-term Mayor of the City of Northglenn, Colorado, and former President of the National League of Cities.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Key to Kathie's presentation was how the tools of Fiscal Health and Priority Based Budgeting are being introduced as a way to help elected officials guide policy in the way they approach various budget decisions. Kathie shared insights about organizations who want to bring their elected officials into the process, and who want to help coach their elected officials how to use Priority Based Budgeting to guide policy-oriented discussions.  
One of the benefits of the process is that it creates specific roles for elected officials to participate and succeed. According to Kathie, when elected officials can focus on key policy questions that impact resource allocation, when they’re provided input and transparency in the way their policy questions are answered, and when they can make decisions based on policy impacts, then they’ve played a successful role in budgeting. 

Kathie states, "I so believe in what the Center is doing…helping elected officials and communities really understand their financial situation, better communicate that information to their citizens, and use that information to make the best decisions possible for their communities in light of  changing economic situations.    The tools they have developed help policy makers move from the “What we know we need/would like to do”  to the “How do we actually make it happen.”  I wish I had this available when I was in office!"

Mike Coen, Peak Democracy

Following Kathie was Mike Coen of Peak Democracy with the conference Technology & Tools Showcase #3: Online Citizen Engagement Tool, Peak Democracy on Civic Engagement in Context of PBB.  Civic Engagement is one of the four pillars of ICMA's Center for Management Strategies "Leading Practices" and Peak Democracy is one of the leading experts in providing online citizen engagement tools for local governments.

Mike led attendees through the importance of online civic engagement and how this can increase public trust in government by empowering constituents to participate and have a voice in their community. Mike went on to explain that constituents are already engaging with friends, family, banks, utilities and other private service providers online... why not with their government? 

Mike summarized by stating, "Constituents want to participate in civil online forums and government leaders need online forums that build public trust in government."

See this Priority Based Budgeting + Peak Democracy civic engagement case study featuring Douglas County, NV.

Tom Miller, President, National Research Center

The Day 1 grand finale conference session was presented by Tom Miller, President of the National Research Center.  Tom's presentation, Technology and Tools Showcase #4: Using Resident Opinion to Influence Decision Making, encouraged local government leaders to listen to the voices of residents (can you really hear them?).

The National Research Center, home of the National Citizen Survey, is a research firm specializing in
Tom Miller speaking at the "Summit"
performance measurement and evaluation. They conduct survey research by mail, phone, in-person and on the Internet. They analyze new and existing data sets using sophisticated inferential techniques or simple descriptive statistics. In addition to quantitative analyses, they design and conduct focus groups and other qualitative assessments. Their clients often are local governments, foundations and not-for-profit human service agencies.                                                                                           
Tom launched his presentation discussing the history of surveys, their purpose and their power in gaging public opinion. He highlighted the NRC's survey work and the value the survey results brought to staff and elected officials.

Tom summarized his presentation by highlighting the power and influence surveys can have when the information gathered leads to collaboration between elected officials, residents and city staff leads to thoughtful and innovative community decisions. Great work NRC!

150+ local government "Summit" attendee rock-stars can't be wrong!!!!
 Day 1 of the "Summit" was an enormous success highlighting two critical local government "Leading Practices" (Priority Based Budgeting and Civic Engagement) while also rolling out not 1, not 2, but 4 local gov tech tools. An amazing day of learning, creativity and innovation! Stay tuned for the next series of blogs highlighting the amazing Day 2 "Summit" sessions!

Finally, in an effort to ensure everybody has access to the conference session presentation slides, we've set up two additional folders within the ICMA Knowledge Network Center for Management Strategies Group and DropBox to help those who don't have access to Google Docs. Both of these sites will require people to sign-in (if they already have an account), or create an account and then sign-in (if they don't already have an account).

ICMA Center for Management Strategies Group 


Keep an eye on the CPBB blog for further updates and to feed the "local government high" inspired by the "Summit." Sign-up for our social media pages so you stay connected with TEAM CPBB!

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If you're thinking of jumping into the world of Fiscal Health and Wellness through Priority Based Budgeting we would certainly like to be part of your efforts! Contact us to schedule a free webinar and identify the best CPBB service option(s) to meet your organization's particular needs.

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