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Hi there!

This week we're explaining why this newsletter is focused on local government and action.

The Role of Local Government 

State and city governments administer essential services, from education to housing to law enforcement. They collect over $2 trillion in taxes annually and employ more than 16 million people. In short, they decide what to teach, what’s a crime, and what to build.


National News and Local Government 

So if local government is important, why don’t you hear about it?  

The last few decades has seen the rise of national news organizations (like CNN & Fox News) and the subsequent decline of local news. Because these national organizations have a national (and sometimes global) audience, they focus on federal government to attract a wide array of viewers.

So while the laws and policies most likely to impact your life come from Beacon Hill, you won’t hear about it unless you seek it out. 

MAstatecapitolboston"One reason citizens know so little is lack of media coverage of state affairs...The media focus on Washington, even though essential services like law enforcement and education are handled by the states. A lack of attention could lead not just to an uninformed public, but to an environment where special interest politics and corruption flourish." - Ben Ginsberg, Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University (link)


Your Impact Increases in Local Government 

Here’s the good news — You have a higher impact on the elections, policies, and debates at the local level than at the national. Over 155 million people voted in the 2020 US presidential election. In the 2017 Mayoral election Marty Walsh won with 70,125 votes out of 107,265 total. 

This means voters in the Mayoral election had the equivalent impact of 1,445 voters in the presidential election. This is what you can impact with your ballot. Imagine what you could do by campaigning, volunteering, or fundraising. 

“The elected officials who matter most in reforming police departments and the criminal justice system work at the state and local levels” - President Obama


How You Can Help

The very first thing you can do is to learn who represents you. Every elected official in your city, state, or country works for you and is employed with your tax money. Start by learning their names, their backgrounds, their voting behavior. Below are two helpful links for Massachusetts and Boston but other cities and states have similar search functions.

That's all for today! As always we greatly appreciate you helping us grow by sharing us with your friends, family, and on social media.



A Better Boston team


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