The practice of contracting municipal services is discussed from the public-employee union standpoint. It is noted that early in the century cities and towns turned to private companies to run their streetcars, collect their garbage and perform other basic public services. Gross abuses led to the reform movement of the 1920s when many such services were made part of municipal government. Under state and local financial pressures and with federal government urging, the pendulum is now swinging back to the private sector for provision of service and will until, some warn, "there is another round of abuses and scandals." While state and local government could realize short-term benefits through lowered personnel costs, the quality of services may be diminished and costs may begin to escalate after an initial decrease. It may be difficult to have contracts assure that government gets what it wants at the agreed price. Contractors can also refuse to do anything that is not in the contract. True competition for contracts may be the exception. The union position is that responsible government requires improving the quality of public management and public service, not the selling off of government.

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Buttenheim Publishing Corporation

    Berkshire Common
    Pittsfield, MA  United States  01201
  • Authors:
    • Lampkin, L
  • Publication Date: 1984-2

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 49-50
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00382590
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 30 1984 12:00AM