A course for potential candidates for local office
What is it like to serve in local office?
Contemplating Governing is an introduction to serving in local government. These sessions will help individuals decide if local government service is right form 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 duites 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
Dates & Locations
Wednesdays, January 30, February 6 and February 20, 2013
6 PM - 9 PM
Green Tree Borough Municipal Building
10 W. Manilla Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15220
Wednesdays, February 27, March 6, & March 13, 2013
6 PM - 9 PM
Latrobe Municipal Building, Westmoreland County
901 Jefferson Street, P.O. Box 829
Latrobe, PA 15650
Contemplating Governing Brochure
Cost: $45; Upon a successful election, the $45 registration fee for Contemplating Governing will be applied to the registration fee for the Newly Elected Officials Course.
Contemplating Governing is offered with promotional support from the following organizations:
3 Rivers Wet Weather, Inc.
LGA is proud to have bi-partisan support for Contemplating Governing, including the endorsements of:
10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania
Allegheny County Library Association
Allegheny League of Municipalities
Association for Pennsylvania Municipal Management, Western PA Chapter
Bayer Center for Non-Profit Management
Beaver County Regional Council of Governments
Butler County Council of Governments
Center for Metropolitan Studies, University of Pittsburgh
Community Technical Assistance Center
CORO - Center for Civic Leadership
Executive Women's Council of Greater Pittsburgh
Greater Pittsburgh Non-Profit Partnership
Leadership Pittsburgh, Inc.
League of Women Voters of Greater Pittsburgh
Mon Valley Initiative
North Area Environmental Council
Pennsylvania Center for Women & Politics
Pennsylvania Economy League
Steel Valley Council of Governments
The Penn State Center
- Nancy Patton Mills, Chair, Democratic Committee of Allegheny County
- James Roddey, Chair, Republican Committee of Allegheny County
Your support at the Benefactor Level will make this important program possible
Current Advocates for Good Government at the Benefactor level are recognized as a Contemplating Governing sponsor as part of their level of benefits.
For more information about the Local Government Academy's Advocates for Good Government Program and all related benefits, contact Susan Hockenberry, Executive Director, at (412) 586-5659.
Cultivating leadership - Both elected officials and "average citizens" should be on the look-out for future community leaders. Succession planning is an ongoing consideration for all organizations, both public and private. Municipal officials, are you encouraging citizens to step up and get involved in their communities? By encouraging them to consider elected office, you are performing a valuable service to your constituents.
Certificate of Achievement - Participants' time and effort will be recognized at the end of the course. Those completing the entire course will receive a certificate of achievement.
Pledge to Excellence - Candidates for local office are encouraged to sign the Academy's "Pledge to Excellence," demonstrating their committment to good government and their pursuit of excellence while in office. Click here for more information about the "Pledge to Excellence" and to download a copy of the Pledge.
After the Election - LGA will be here to support candidates transition to office after the general election through the Newly Elected Officials Course. This one-of-a kind course, unique in Pennsylvania for its scope and content, is held following every local election. The Newly Elected Officials Course provides a comprehensive review of the basic duties of municipal officials, taught by experts in their fields.
Politics - As mentioned above, consistent with LGA's focus on governance, Contemplating Governing is not political training. However, in deciding to run, individuals need political advice too. As such, the Pennsylvania Center for Women, Politics, and Public Policy at Chatham University offers Winning Edge Campaign Training which is available as a resource for candidates and campaigns.
Read the Post-Gazette article about Contemplating Governing (2009)
2009 Contemplating Governing Information
Held in January 2009. Local Government Academy's first-ever program for potential candidates for local office was a success, thanks to the support of the program's donors, partners and instructors.
Contemplating Governing fulfills an important community need by empowering citizens to become more involved in local government and improving the campaign process by increasing the knowledge of candidates. Some numbers tell the story of Contemplating Governing:
- Two 3-part programs offered in locations in Pittsburgh and Greensburg.
- 43 individuals from Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Fayette and Westmoreland.
- 29 jurisdictions- 55% urban boroughs or cities; 45% suburban townships or home rule municipalities.
- Bi-partisan: 46% Democratic, 48% Republican and 6% Independent or Other.
- Diversity: 34% female, 8% African American.
- Education/Profession: 75% with Bachelors degrees or higher; 70% Management or Professional as occupation
- Results: increase in knowledge of participants
Filing Requirements for Candidates
Who's Who in Local Government
Powers and Duties of PA Municipalities
Measuring Board Effectiveness