Shots Fired! Is Your Community Ready for an Active Shooter?

by Rod Gould, ICMA-CM, and Jack Brown

Active shooter incidents are increasing in America and around the globe. Local government managers and assistants have an affirmative duty to guide preparation, prevention, and response actions to limit the loss of life in the face of this alarming trend.

Not only must these efforts knit together first responders, including police, fire, and EMS personnel, into an integrated response, but research and experience indicates that local governments must increasingly involve and educate residents and business people in what to do when confronted with such a threat or an actual shooting itself.

Big or small, no community is immune from this deadly behavior. According to the Gun Violence Archive, there were 277 mass shootings in 2014, 332 in 2015, and 191 mass shootings in 2016 up through July 16, 2016.

Time and learning from experience teaches that there are a number of actions a local government can take to preempt a lethal shooting or effectively cope when one occurs.

Click here to read the full article.

Tune Up Your Emergency Prepardness

by: Rod Gould, ICMA-CM

Steps to Take Now

Responding to an emergency in the community is the one local government service a manager hopes never to provide. Yet, chances are the service will be needed, perhaps multiple times, during a manager’s career. Earthquakes, floods, mass shootings, toxic spills, tornados, wildfires, and even terrorist incidents are not out of the question. The time spent preparing and practicing will pay off many times over when an emergency does occur. It is local government’s greatest opportunity to shine or fail.

To learn more about what steps to follow to become ready for such an event, click here.


A Building Block to Better Performance: Using Council-Manager Goal-Setting to Support Performance Evaluation

by: Rod Gould, ICMA-CM

As managers, we’re used to setting goals. We help our city councils set annual and long-range goals. We ask our department managers to set goals for the budget. We measure the success of our local governments by whether we meet organization-wide goals.

But, like cobblers’ children who go shoeless, many of us do our jobs in the absence of specific goals for our own work. The lack of annual goals for the manager does a disservice to not only to the manager, but to the local government as a whole.

Goal-setting at the manager’s level will reinforce organization-wide goals, while neglecting the exercise for an individual manager hinders the government’s ability to perform at maximum effectiveness.

To read the full article, click here.

A Scorecard for Public Engagement

by: Rod Gould, ICMA-CM

If you’re a local-government manager or elected official, by now you’ve probably heard a fair amount about the need for better citizen engagement in government decision-making. You may even have your own success stories about times your city or agency made a special effort to involve community members in policies that affect them. And you may also have been scalded when your agency failed to properly engage residents. It probably wasn’t pretty.

You likely have a few ideas of your own about what is appreciated and works with stakeholders and what simply wastes everyone’s time. As your agency takes steps to strengthen its involvement with residents and businesses, do you know how you measure up compared to other agencies?

There are many reasons to give your public engagement strategies and techniques some serious scrutiny: bolstering local representative democracy, improving governmental decision-making, repairing damaged public relations, increasing civility and trust in government, enhancing public support of important civic decisions — or just making your work more pleasant and satisfying.

To read the full article click here.