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Townships seen as state's 'bright spot'

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013 1:15 a.m. CST

This is in regard to “Need for townships questioned" in the Jan. 30 Telegraph. The characterization of my research attributed to Professor David Hamilton of Texas Tech University is incorrect.

My comparisons of government expenditures by size (population) have included only local governments, not state governments and not the federal government. The strong conclusion of the research is that smaller governments are associated with lower expenditures per capita. 

In Illinois, the evidence is that townships are efficient, based upon their substantially lower labor costs (wages and benefits) and other factors.

Labor is far and away the largest element of local government expenditure. The bottom line is that government efficiency can be measured only at one level, that of expenditures per capita.

In this regard, the smaller local governments of Illinois and its townships do very well. They are a bright spot in a Illinois, which, according to some analysts, faces the most serious fiscal challenges in the nation.

Note to readers – Wendell Cox drafted the Demographia study.

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