Political Science

Oakland University professor tapped for group to provide local government guidance

icon of a calendarJune 9, 2020

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Oakland University professor tapped for group to provide local government guidance
Douglas Carr
Dr. Douglas Carr, associate professor of political science at Oakland University

Dr. Douglas Carr, an associate professor of political science at Oakland University, has joined a group of experts from across the state of Michigan to publish a series of memos for local governments to use as guides as they experience fiscal stress relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The group is coordinated by the University of Michigan’s Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy (CLOSUP) and includes experts from Michigan State University, Eastern Michigan University, the Citizens Research Council of Michigan, Guidehouse, the University of Michigan-Dearborn, Municipal Analytics, Oakland University, and the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG).

The Michigan Department of Treasury, the Michigan Association of Counties, the Michigan Municipal League, and the Michigan Townships Association are serving an advising role.

“Many local governments in Michigan are experiencing significant fiscal stress due to sudden and significant reductions in revenue relating to COVID-19,” Carr said. “This group is providing guidance from experts in the field for fiscal strategies local governments can use during this challenging time.”

According to Carr, the Local Government COVID-19 Fiscal Strategy and Resource Guide covers a variety of topics, including capital assets and projects, federal aid, financial management strategies, revenue sources, and information technology.

In May, Carr contributed his own memo, entitled “IT Security for Mitigating Fiscal Risk of Remote Work,” which highlights an often overlooked yet significant fiscal risk: IT security failure resulting from increased remote work that strains existing security practices.

“A security breach can cost a local government millions of dollars,” Carr said. “The sudden transition to remote work can leave employees unprepared for the additional security threats they will likely face. At the same time, municipal resources are already stretched, limiting time and resources available to address cybersecurity. This memo provides guidance and resources for local governments to address these cybersecurity issues in a way that is appropriate given current resource constraints.”

To read the full memo, visit closup.umich.edu/COVID-19/memos/IT-security-mitigating-fiscal-risk-remote-work.php.

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