Sac Rag contributors and commenters certainly have a variety of opinions, and it seems most have fairly strong feelings regarding how local government should be run. My stance has always been to encourage people to learn as much as they can, to get in touch with their decision-makers to voice their opinions, write letters to the editor of newspapers, or possibly run for office themselves.
There are also courses offered through local jurisdictions and organizations that give citizens an up-close look at how things are run, why they’re run that way, and what it would take to make improvements. Here are three such programs for which you may consider applying:
The City Management Academy is offered through the City of Sacramento and is a three month program that meets in the evenings and offers participants interactive experiences with all things City-related — municipal finance, public safety, education, special districts, public works, etc. The application deadline for this next class is approaching. Apply online by August 11th.
Are you interested in Law Enforcement? If so, check out the Citizen’s Academy from the Sacramento County District Attorney’s office. The application period for this year is also currently open.
The Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Sacramento year-long program brings representatives of the public & private sectors and of non-profits together to discuss the common goal of economic development. Specific topics each month cover issues such as education, health and human services, infrastructure, the role of non-profits in the community, arts and culture, government, and others. The application period for the 2007 class will open up within the next couple months.
While the ‘rag readers seemed to be more educated than most, it never hurts to learn more — especially from a perspective that can be vastly different than your own.
UPDATE: The DA’s weblink won’t “take” on the above link, so here’s what you can copy and paste into your browser: http://www.da.saccounty.net/pr/060705ÂÂ_Citizens%20Academy%20Fall%202006.htm
UPDATE (from CoolDMZ): That link just will not work. I don’t know where those symbols are coming from. Your best bet is http://www.da.saccounty.net/pr/ and click on “Citizen’s Academy Fall 2006”