Lack of local control is at the root of recent efforts by Los Angeles residents to redraw the city’s boundaries, revise subcity governments or boroughs, and establish neighborhood councils. If city governments are to meet the needs of local communities, procedures must be established so that the scale of municipal authority can be adjusted to match the desired performance.

Ronald Oakerson is professor of political science, academic vice president, and dean at Houghton College.
Shirley V. Svorny is Professor Emerita of Economics and Chairwoman of the Department of Economics at California State University, Northridge.
Bureaucracy and GovernmentContemporary PoliticsGovernment and Politics