Federal and County Relations

Cities and Counties Join Lawsuit Challenging Shortened Census Timeline

The Trump administration earlier this month walked back plans to extend the count due to the coronavirus.

How Trump Closed Down the Schools

The president is demanding that classes resume this fall—but his own failures are forcing districts to shut their doors.

The Postal Service Is Steadily Getting Worse—Can It Handle a National Mail-In Election?

Postal delays and mistakes have marred primary voting, and after years of budget cuts and plant closures, mail delivery has slowed so much that ballot deadlines in many states are no longer realistic.

Pandemic Aid: What Can We Learn From the 2009 Stimulus?

COMMENTARY | As state and local leaders wait to see if they will get more federal aid to deal with their growing revenue shortfalls, fiscal stability will be more attainable by paying heed to experts who helped the country out of the Great Recession.

Small Businesses Failed by Federal Bailout Program Turn to Cash-Strapped Local Governments for Help

Thousands of small businesses, especially those owned by people of color, have been left behind by the stipulations of the Paycheck Protection Program. In Texas, local governments are lending millions of dollars and it’s not enough.

Fed Again Expands State and Municipal Lending Program

The latest move will ensure that at least two local governments in each state have access to the program, which is designed to help states and localities weather the coronavirus crisis.

House Democrats Offer Coronavirus Package with $1 Trillion for State and Local Governments

The $3 trillion proposal would also allow states and localities to use prior funding to offset tax revenue lost due to the pandemic.

Pelosi Raises Possibility of Local Funding On Top of $500 Billion for States

The House speaker’s comments come amid partisan sparring over how far the federal government should go to help states and localities facing big revenue shortfalls due to the coronavirus.

In a Hawaii Sewage Case, Supreme Court Bolsters Protections Under Clean Water Act

Environmental activists expect the ruling will force a Maui County wastewater treatment plant to obtain a permit regulating its sewage discharge into groundwater.

Counties Say Virus Relief Fund is Shorting Them by Billions

The National Association of Counties is pushing to change federal guidelines for how the money will be distributed to states and larger-sized local governments.

Unions Pushing for Billions in State and Local Coronavirus Aid

Labor groups representing hundreds of thousands of public employees want to see Congress funnel at least another $300 billion to state and local governments.

Small, Mid-Sized Cities Currently Cut Out of Direct Coronavirus Funding

With tax revenues down sharply, all local governments are hurting. But leaders of small and mid-sized jurisdictions in particular are arguing that they need more support.

Trump Promises Close Working Partnership with County Governments

President Trump spoke at the National Association of Counties legislative meeting in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, pledging to deliver help to public health departments working on the coronavirus.

Hundreds of County Jails Detained Immigrants for ICE

COMMENTARY | Between 1983 and 2013, the number of immigrants detained in rural county jails increased. Being sent to remote jails can be detrimental to detainees.

Recycling Labels Don’t Reflect Reality for Local Governments

A local government official says the federal government could help by setting standards that make clear what plastics are recyclable.

Feds Should Take Steps to Help Coordinate Rural Transit Service, Watchdog says

The Government Accountability Office says U.S. DOT lacks an adequate strategy for communicating and sharing information about rural transit coordination opportunities and best practices.

Local Election Officials Can Get Free Election Auditing Software from the Feds

The open-source software is already being piloted in at least six states and officials say it can help authenticate results in 2020.

Federal Lawmakers Push '.Gov' Web Addresses For Local Governments

A new U.S. Senate bill comes amid concerns that online criminals can “spoof” the public with fake government websites.

County Leaders Lobby for Federal Lands Money

Local governments received $514 million last year through a program meant to compensate them for the property taxes they are unable to collect from federal lands.

Teaching Caregivers to Also Care for Themselves

A stress-busting course for caregivers offered by a New Jersey county aims to counteract the negative physical and emotional effects that come with providing support for a loved one.