AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Michael Grass

Executive Editor Michael Grass, who joined the Government Executive Media Group in June 2014, is the founding co-editor of DCist.com and worked as a copy editor at Roll Call, local and online editor at The Washington Post's Express newspaper, deputy managing editor at The New York Observer's Politicker.com, deputy managing editor at Washington City Paper and the D.C., Maryland and Virginia local editor for The Huffington Post. He also managed a non-profit network of state-based policy news sites in Colorado, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota and New Mexico.
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Missouri County’s Big Spending on Birthday Cards; No Pay Raise for N.C. State Workers

May 4, 2016 CLAY COUNTY, MISSOURI BIRTHDAY CARDS | There’s no harm in public officials wishing seniors in their community a happy birthday. But if they mail registered voters that are 62 or older birthday cards or, say, free museum passes, using taxpayer money, that can lead to trouble. A lawsuit filed by...

Performance Management vs. Data Analytics: An Interview With Mike Flowers

May 3, 2016 This article was originally published in Route Fifty’s recently released ebook, “Preparing for Tomorrow’s State and Local Government Workforce” | DOWNLOAD THE EBOOK During last year’s Code for America Summit in Oakland, California, Oliver Wise, the director of the Office of Performance and Accountability for the city of New Orleans,...

Examining the Risks and Realities Facing Cybersecurity Decision-Makers

May 2, 2016 This week in Baltimore, the state government IT and cybersecurity community will be gathering for the National Association of State Chief Information Officers 2016 mid-year meetings. On the agenda will be issues including procurement, digital privacy, legacy IT systems and collaboration. Cybersecurity is always an ongoing topic of dialogue for...

Big Drop in Fla. HIV Cases Raises Questions; Texas High Court Blocks Houston’s Air Quality Rules

May 1, 2016 TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA PUBLIC HEALTH | When the Florida Department of Health revised its 2014 numbers of new HIV infections downward from 6,147 to 4,613, the 25 percent reduction prompted 11 members of Congress, a group of Republicans and Democrats, to send a letter of inquiry to Gov. Rick Scott. In...

Dennis ‘Hastert’ Mix-Up Frustrates Officials in Neighboring Chicago Suburbs

April 28, 2016 Attention residents in the city of Naperville, Illinois, and the neighboring village of Bolingbrook. “Hassert” Boulevard was not named after Dennis “Hastert,” the disgraced former speaker of the House, who admitted in court this week that he sexually abused students when he was a local high school wrestling coach. (Hastert...

In Kentucky, Fight Between Governors Deepens; Irked Uber Looks to Exit Houston

April 27, 2016 FRANKFORT, KENTUCKY ACCUSATIONS | Former Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear on Wednesday accused current governor, Republican Matt Bevin, of declaring war on his family. He also suggested the Federal Bureau of Investigation might be looking into whether Bevin threatened to block certain transportation projects if Democratic state lawmakers did not jump...

Removing a Whale Carcass Can Be a Vexing Local Governmental Headache

April 27, 2016 If a truck carrying frozen, cooked crab tips over and spills its load down from busy elevated highway—just like in this incident in downtown Seattle from earlier this month—it’s a fairly straight-forward cleanup process. Scoop, dispose and repeat until the mess is cleared up and traffic can move again. Same...

Download Route Fifty’s New State and Local Government Workforce Ebook

April 26, 2016 For better or worse, it’s been a dynamic few years for public sector workforces at the state and local level. The budgetary response to the strained fiscal conditions that came with the Great Recession saw massive layoffs, restructurings and consolidations within state and local government workforces. And while the situation...

Okla. Lawmakers Want Federal Balanced Budget Amendment; Assessing Ohio’s Prison Food Contract

April 26, 2016 OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA STATE AND FEDERAL RELATIONS | Lawmakers in the Oklahoma Legislature have lended their support for a resolution that calls for a U.S. constitutional convention—something that has never been held since the Constitution was drafted in the late 18th century—to consider a federal balanced budget amendment and congressional...

As Denver Hits Transit High, D.C. Digests Its Metro ‘Death Spiral’

April 25, 2016 WASHINGTON — Amid a steady drumbeat of news headlines about many of the serious infrastructure challenges that face older public transit networks, including the ailing Metrorail system in the nation’s capital, this weekend offered up some more welcome news from Colorado. Officials gathered in Denver to initiate commuter rail service...