Welcome back to Kittelson’s Corner my (now) weekly musings on things I think are interesting or important, especially in local government nerd-dom.
What I Read
This article made my jaw drop. The reporting on the immigration raids that are taking place in NC, VA, TX, CA and more states was shocking. I think this is the paragraph that got to me:
Some activists in Austin and Los Angeles suggested that the raids might be retaliation for those cities’ “sanctuary city” policies. A government aide familiar with the raids said it is possible that the predominantly daytime operations — a departure from the Obama administration’s night raids — meant to “send a message to the community that the Trump deportation force is in effect.”
I think becoming a “Sanctuary City” is such a powerful way to show support and welcoming to all people in your community. So to see it attacked is pretty crazy.
As an aside, I would love to do a GovLove episode on the administrative side of being a sanctuary city, so if there’s anyone out there that knows someone who’d want to talk about that, hit me up!
How does a state where the Governor race was decided by less than 50,000 votes have a State Legislature that’s got a veto proof majority of one party? How can North Carolina have mostly republican members of Congress but be an evenly divided state between the two parties? The answer to both of those questions is Gerrymandering (and also voter suppression but we can leave that for another time).
This was a really interesting article on “wasted votes” – essentially the author analyzed voter data going back to 2002 and called votes for a losing candidate or for a candidate in excess of 51% “wasted votes.” His analysis showed that after 2010 the amount of wasted votes by the democratic party jumped dramatically. It’s another way to look at what we know in NC, gerrymandering has kept one party in power.
Don’t read this article, it’s stupid. I only put it here to let everyone know that your millennial hate only makes me stronger.
Music: Process by Sampha. This album is so beautiful. I have been listening to it almost non-stop this week and it’s powered me through some serious PowerPoint editing and budget request reviewing. Sampha has an R&B/Soul voice but the instrumentation is more electronic or piano driven. It’s a great combination. Take a listen to this song if you need a sample:
Podcast: This week’s Tuesday GovLove episode with Kelly McAdoo, the City Manager of Hayward, CA is awesome. She talked about using some techniques from the startup business culture to improve local government, specifically using customer empathy and disrupting processes. Definitely worth the listen.
Guys, I’m pretty much a TV star. I told you about making my TV debut when I presented to the Planning Commission in January, but this week I got to go on “City Life” the monthly public access show from Durham’s public affairs department.
— CityofDurhamNC (@CityofDurhamNC) February 8, 2017
I went with the budget director, Bertha Johnson, and we (mostly her while I smiled and tried not to ruin the shot) talked about how residents could give input into the city budget. I talked about this priority survey we’re doing that’s had over 1,374 responses! It was pretty fun, but I don’t think I’ll be trying to make the jump to Hollywood just yet, I need some more practice probably. I’m sure I’ll post clips of the video when it comes out in early March.
Tweet of the Week
Now this is an issue that truly divides America. This Tweet came across my timeline along with a lot of strong opinions on both sides. I am firmly in Team 1 Space after a period. I think I was originally taught 2 but then realized how dumb it was.
The issues that divide us (FWIW this is a generational thing. Millenials hate 2 spaces because they don’t know any better). pic.twitter.com/sEwgveB7s8
— Mike Masnick (@mmasnick) February 9, 2017
Wait! One more thing…
This is from one of my favorite follows on Twitter (and podcast stars). I have to say that I completely agree with the sentiment and lesson.
If you are really upset about the Besty DeVos confirmation consider running for your local school board. It’s the best way to fight back.
— Dan Pfeiffer (@danpfeiffer) February 7, 2017
Sr. Budget & Management Analyst at the City of Durham, North Carolina. ELGL Board of Directors. Producer & Co-Host of the GovLove Podcast. Would rather be walking his dog Franklin.