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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Public Administration
 Degree Level: Doctoral
Assessing Local Governments’ Debt Financing Strategies

Assessing Local Governments’ Debt Financing Strategies

Date: December 2013
Creator: Lung, Wei-Liang
Description: This dissertation assesses the importance of a specific debt instrument, the Certifi- cate of Obligation in the state of Texas. It conceptualizes the Certificate of Obligation as a type of contractual debt that enables local governments to finance their capital projects. This dissertation is guided by three research questions: (1) What are the various types of debt instruments employed by local governments and what are their relative advantages? (2) How prevalent is the use of a specific debt instrument such as Certificates of Obligation? And why would some local governments prefer to issue them while others do not? (3) To what extent does the local institutional environment, e.g., the executive authority of city managers in the council-manager form of government, affect debt financing behaviors of local governments? To examine the first research question, we created a typology to represent four ideal types of borrowing methods: (1) Contractual Debt, (2) Voter Approval/Special Tax Debt, (3) Guaranteed, and (4) Non-Guaranteed Debts. The typology examines whether or not the state mandates the referendum requirement for the use of each of these debt instruments, and at the same time determines whether each debt instrument is secured by multiple or single revenue sources. Using data ...
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Citizen Involvement and Law Enforcement: Does Coproduction Affect Organizational Efficiency and Organizational Effectiveness?

Citizen Involvement and Law Enforcement: Does Coproduction Affect Organizational Efficiency and Organizational Effectiveness?

Date: August 2009
Creator: Gultekin, Sebahattin
Description: Citizen involvement in the production and delivery of public service has been a long time topic of interest and controversial debate among scholars. Essentially, the belief has been that if citizens are actively involved in the process, public organizations and communities benefit in numerous ways that will ultimately lead to increased citizen satisfaction. The purpose of this research is to explore the relationship between citizen involvement in the production of public safety and security and its effects on organizational efficiency and effectiveness of law enforcement agencies. To test the assumption that citizen involvement is positively correlated to organizational success and organizational efficiency of law enforcement agencies, a citizen involvement index was developed and used as the independent variable in ordinary least square regression (OLS) analysis. Three separate models are developed to measure the impact of citizen involvement on law enforcement. Findings obtained through bivariate and multivariate analyses indicate mixed results. Bivariate analysis revealed that citizen involvement was negatively correlated to organizational efficiency while no statistically significant correlation was found in multiple regressions. In addition, through bivariate analyses, citizen involvement was positively correlated with crime rates reported to city police departments, whereas multivariate regression analyses indicated that citizen involvement does not ...
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Discretion, Delegation, and Professionalism: A Study of Outcome Measures in Upward Bound Programs

Discretion, Delegation, and Professionalism: A Study of Outcome Measures in Upward Bound Programs

Date: August 2011
Creator: Holt, Amy C.
Description: In our society, American citizens expect public policies to result in programs that address social problems in ways that are both efficient and effective. In order to judge if these two values are being achieved, public programs are often scrutinized through program monitoring and evaluation. Evaluation of public programs often is a responsibility delegated to local-level managers. The resulting discretion has to be balanced with the need for accountability that is also inherent in public programs. Evaluation is often difficult because outcomes are not readily measurable due to the complexity of the problems faced in the public setting. The Upward Bound program provides an example of this. Upward Bound provides services to students from low-income families and those in which neither parent holds a bachelor’s degree in order to increase the rate at which participants complete secondary education and enroll in and graduate from postsecondary institutions. Upward Bound is implemented and evaluated based upon specifications decided upon at the local level. This discretion granted to local level managers has resulted in wide variations in the way the program is being evaluated. This presents a problem for evaluation and has resulted in inconclusive results as to the success of the program. ...
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Drilling Down Natural Gas Well Permitting Policy:  Examining the Effects of Institutional Arrangements on Citizen Participation and Policy Outcomes

Drilling Down Natural Gas Well Permitting Policy: Examining the Effects of Institutional Arrangements on Citizen Participation and Policy Outcomes

Date: August 2013
Creator: Long, Laurie C.
Description: Over the past decade the movement of natural gas drilling operations toward more suburban and urban communities has created unique policy challenges for municipalities. Municipal response is manifest in a variety of institutional arrangements, some more enabling than others regarding citizen access to public hearings. This observation lead to the main research question, “How are variations in citizen participation affecting policy outcomes?” The argument is made that institutions affecting citizen participation, in turn affect policy outcomes. If the general public is given access to public hearings, their preferences for longer setbacks will be taken into account and the approved gas wells will have greater distances from neighboring residences – effectively providing for greater safety. Given the paucity of research on the topic of natural gas drilling, the research first begins with the presentation of a theoretical framework to allow for analysis of the highly complex topic of gas well permitting, emphasizing the rule-ordered relationships between the various levels of decision making and provides a typology of collective action arenas currently used by Texas municipalities. The research uses paired case studies of most similar design and employs a mixed methods process for the collection, analysis and interpretation of the municipal level ...
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The Impact of Surveillance Technology on the Behaviors of Municipal Police Departments

The Impact of Surveillance Technology on the Behaviors of Municipal Police Departments

Date: December 2009
Creator: Ulkemen, Sinan
Description: Citizen complaints about inappropriate use of force indicate negative police-public relations, unresponsive police services, and the unresponsiveness of police management to citizens' concerns. However, the effective delivery of key policing services depends on the performance of individual police officers. Surveillance technology can monitor and control the behavior of officers, ensuring that police officers provide high quality policing services that meet the needs of citizens. Examples of surveillance technology such as in-car cameras and CCTV can be used as an administrative tool to respond to citizen complaints by police chief executives. This research examines the effect of surveillance technology on the behavior of municipal police departments that is operationalized as the number of citizen complaints that were filed against municipal police departments. This research also examines the impact of surveillance technology on dismissed and sustained complaints by using 511 large municipal police departments in the U.S. from Law Enforcement Management and Administrative Statistics (LEMAS) 2003 dataset. Three different models are developed to evaluate the impact of in-car cameras and CCTV on the citizen complaints and their dispositions. Two ordinary least square regression (OLS) models and a Heckman selection model are used to analyze the data. The Heckman selection model is utilized ...
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The Interactive Effect of Fund Balance and Revenue Diversification on Local Government Fiscal Sustainability

The Interactive Effect of Fund Balance and Revenue Diversification on Local Government Fiscal Sustainability

Date: August 2013
Creator: Wachira, David W.
Description: This dissertation explores how cities achieve fiscal sustainability—the financial capacity to consistently meet basic public service responsibilities regardless of economic conditions. Two research questions arise from the interplay between the local economy and fiscal sustainability. First, what management tools do cities use to achieve fiscal sustainability given that economic conditions are largely outside their control? Second, what explains the variation among cities in the financial management tools used to achieve fiscal sustainability? The financial management tools of interest in this study are revenue diversity and the size of the fund balance. It is conjectured that financial management tools interact with each other prompting the tools to function as policy substitutes for each other. Cities achieve fiscal sustainability by strategically choosing budget-balancing tools appropriate to their economic conditions. The study utilizes a cross-state comparison from 351 Massachusetts municipal governments using panel data from 2000 to 2009 and 993 New York municipal governments using panel data from 2001 to 2010. Using theories of fiscal sustainability and revenue diversification, several models are proposed that test the interactive effects of fund balance size and revenue diversity on fiscal sustainability. The results from the empirical analyses show that cities use various financial management tools to ...
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Morality and Mortality: the Role of Values in the Adoption of Laws Governing the Involuntary Removal of Life Sustaining Medical Treatment in Us States

Morality and Mortality: the Role of Values in the Adoption of Laws Governing the Involuntary Removal of Life Sustaining Medical Treatment in Us States

Date: August 2012
Creator: Harvey, Jacqueline Christine
Description: Disputes between patients and providers regarding life-sustaining medical treatment (LSMT) are universal across all U.S. states, yet policies regarding these disputes differ significantly. This dissertation determines that all 50 states have advance directive laws that protect a patient’s right to refuse LSMT even when a healthcare provider objects, yet only some states have policies that protect the patient’s right to choose to continue LSMT when a healthcare provider objects (a dispute known as medical futility). Some states have pro-patient laws that protect the patient’s right to make the final decision, while other states have enacted pro-provider medical futility policies that explicitly grant the provider authority to remove LSMT against the patient’s wishes. Finally, in one state, the law delegates the final decision to a third-party: institutional healthcare ethics committees. This dissertation studies the innovation and adoption of these 17 state medical futility policies, examining the theory that values determine both whether the state adopts a medical futility policy as well as what type of medical futility policy a state will adopt- as the policy actors that represent these values: policy entrepreneurs and interest groups. A comparative case study of successful third-party policy adoption in Texas contrasted against a failed effort ...
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Needs and Membership in Terrorist Organizations

Needs and Membership in Terrorist Organizations

Date: December 2009
Creator: Ekici, Siddik
Description: One key to reducing terrorism may be to understand why individuals join terror groups, and to find ways to meet their needs through alternatives to discourage membership in terrorist organizations. The study introduces the hierarchy of needs framework to capture all previous pieces of explanations on why individuals join terror groups under one big umbrella, in order to see the big picture. It does not do a meta-analysis, but rather tests the framework. This study is designed to find out what perceived needs commonly motivate individuals to join terror groups in general and specific terror groups in particular. The research uses Turkey's terrorism experience as a case study which is supported with data from real terrorist in Turkey. Findings of the descriptive analyses show that majority joined a terror group due to social and affiliative needs. The remaining analyses (bivariate, cross-tabulation and binary logistic regression) show that confitents who perceived esteem and recognition were more likely to become members of other/leftist terror groups, and that rightist terror group members in Turkey tend to have higher education. Education mainly affects a confitent's perception of two needs: social and affiliation and self-actualization. Other demographic variables (age group, region of birth, marital status) ...
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Organizational Citizenship Behaviors Among Public Employees In Guadalajara Metropolitan Area, Mexico

Organizational Citizenship Behaviors Among Public Employees In Guadalajara Metropolitan Area, Mexico

Date: December 2011
Creator: León Cázares, Filadelfo
Description: This study develops a theoretical framework to examine the major dimensions of transformational leadership style (TLS), public service motivation (PSM), organizational citizenship behavior (OCB), and public organization performance (POP). It is hypothesized that when employees perceived a public organization is practicing a transformational leadership style, they are likely to have a favorable view on the performance of their organization, but the effect is indirect and mediated by OCB. At the same time, if employees have a strong desire to serve and improve the welfare of others, they are likely to perform beyond their job requirements and thus, likely to express a positive view on the organizational performance. A structural equation modeling was used to examine 1,016 public employees (67.7% response rate) in the Guadalajara metropolitan area, Mexico i.e., concerning their perceptions about leadership style, motivation to serve in the public sector, citizenship behaviors, and public organizational performance. The results suggest that if Mexican public employees perceived their leaders to adopt a transformational leadership style, they were likely to have a favorable view on the performance of their organization (direct effect); and that, the effect is mediated by their tendency to engage in activities that would contribute to the functioning of ...
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Perceptions of Disaster Professionalism in Mexico: Adding a New Public Management Perspective to Emergency Management

Perceptions of Disaster Professionalism in Mexico: Adding a New Public Management Perspective to Emergency Management

Date: August 2010
Creator: Urby, Heriberto, Jr.
Description: This study investigated the perceptions of emergency managers regarding the degree of emergency management professionalism in Mexico and how it can be improved. The disaster of the Mexico City earthquake of 1985 was used as the starting point for this case study, as the prospects for more-frequent and more-intense disasters lend credence to the need for improved professionalism and, thus, effectiveness among emergency managers in the future. An expansive framework of emergency management professionalism mechanisms (or characteristics) and an additional compilation of new public management components (or values) were devised from the extant literatures found within the respective emergency management and public administration fields. The theory advanced by this study is that by integrating new public management components with emergency management mechanisms, professionalism in Mexico will improve and, thus, emergency managers will become more effective. ualitative field research was the methodology employed and it included interviews with 35 emergency managers in Mexico in corroboration with documentary evidence, to ascertain emergency managers' perceptions of professionalism in Mexico. The findings of this study determined that emergency managers in Mexico are implementing many of the mechanisms of professionalism but fewer new public management components. This study posits that by integrating new public management ...
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