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Four Online Courses Offered

LGA is now offering four online courses that cover a range of important local government issues, from how to run a purchasing program to thinking about running for elected office.

Contemplating Governing

What is it like to serve in local office?

Contemplating Governing is an introduction to serving in local government. These sessions, starting July 27 and ending Nov 4, will help individuals decide if local government service is right for them and encourage responsible campaigning. Contemplating Governing is not political training. Instead, it focuses on the tasks and issues facing local government in the 21st century. This program provides citizens the chance to consider the opportunities, challenges, requirements and reasons to serve in local elected office. Topics include:

  • Understanding the Pennsylvania local government environment, including powers and duties of various boards and commissions, such as city and borough councils, township commissioners or supervisors and school boards.
  • Overcoming obstacles to running and meeting legal requirements.
  • Determining what is a responsible campaign pledge.
  • Understanding local government taxation and services.
  • Measuring board effectiveness.
  • Local government’s important role in community sustainability.

To learn more and to register for Contemplating Governing, go to LGAonline. Scroll down the course catalog to Contemplating Governing. Click the down arrow for more information or the shopping cart to register.

Fight Blight Brightly and Fight Blight Brightly – LITE

Fight Blight Brightly is being offered online from Sept. 7 to Nov. 16., while the LITE version of the course is being offered online from Sept. 7 to Nov. 16.

First launched in July 2014, “From Blight to Bright,” is a comprehensive toolkit for Pennsylvania communities seeking to prevent and mitigate blight. Published by the Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania, it is part of a library of resources available to help communities fight blight. Additional materials can be found at www.housingalliancepa.org. Many thanks to the Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania for their contribution to the important work municipalities do addressing blight.

The goal of this course is to give you an understanding of the tools at your disposal for dealing with blight and abandonment. By the end of this course you should have solid understanding of:

  • Systems to set up within your municipality to prevent blight and abandonment
  • Act 90 and how it can and should be used in you municipality
  • Tools, both legal and otherwise, that can be used to deal with vacant property
  • Examples of blight remediation programs around Pennsylvania and the US
  • The four key components to fighting blight:
    • Create an enforceable legal framework
    • Targeting the limited resources available and collaborating with all involved parties
    • Changing culture to improve compliance
    • Transfer the worst properties to responsible owners

For more information, go to LGAonline. Scroll down the course catalog to Fight Blight Brightly or Fight Bligh Brightly – LITE. Click the left down arrow to learn or the shopping cart to register.

Introduction to Municipal Purchasing

This course will be available from July 27 to Nov. 4.

LGA Online’s Introduction to Municipal Purchasing course is taught by Paul Lauer. Paul is Assistant Township Manager for Peters Township and serves as the Township’s finance director. Paul is the reviewer for the Government Finance Officer’s Association’s Distinguished Budget Presentation Award Program. Peters Township is the only municipality in Pennsylvania to be recognized by the GFOA’s with a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting, the Distinguished Budget Presentation Award and the Award for Popular Annual Financial Reporting.

The resident’s and taxpayer’s perception of your local government is largely formed by how well you administer the basic business processes of your community. Nowhere is this more evident as in how your municipality chooses to acquire, account, and pay for goods and services. Good government begins with uniform, fair, and transparent procedures that are designed to first and foremost serve the best interests of the local government, the residents, and taxpayers.

To learn more, go to LGAonline. Scroll down the course catalog to Fight Blight Brightly or Fight Bligh Brightly – LITE. Click the left down arrow to learn or the shopping cart to register.