This book offers an overview of the legal, political, and broad intergovernmental environment in which relations between local and state units of government take place, the historical roots of the conflict among them, and an analysis of contemporary problems concerning local authority, local revenues, state interventions and takeovers, and the restructuring of local governments. The author pays special attention to local governmental autonomy and the goals and activities of local officials as they seek to secure resources, fend off regulations and interventions, and fight for survival as independent units.

Now, in a thoroughly revised second edition, this book examines marijuana use, minimum wages, the establishment of sanctuary cities, and the regulation of ride-sharing companies. Looking at the intergovernmental struggle from the bottom up, and in the process examining a variety of political activities and policies at the state level, Berman finds considerable reason to be concerned about the viability and future of meaningful local government. This book improves our understanding of the relationship between state and local governments. It provides a thoughtful look at the past, present, and possibly the future of local home rule.

chapter 1|21 pages


chapter 2|21 pages

Federal, State, and Local Relations

chapter 3|20 pages

States, Cities, Home Rule

The Historical Perspective

chapter 4|22 pages

Localities in State Politics

chapter 5|23 pages

The Authority Problem

chapter 6|23 pages

The Revenue Problem

chapter 7|21 pages

The Takeover Problem

chapter 8|21 pages

The Restructuring Problem

chapter 9|8 pages

Concluding Note