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A Tale of Two Cities: An Exploratory Study of Consolidation and Annexation Policies in the Cities of Memphis and Nashville

Author: ERIC S. RAYMOND and CHARLES E. MENIFIELD
Published in PAQ, Vol. 35 No. 3

America‟s metropolitan areas have dramatically changed in the past half-century due to the out-migration of residents to the suburbs. In an effort to deal with the effects of suburbanization, supporters of New Regionalism have identified several local-government measures which, it is argued, may significantly contain urban sprawl and reduce economic disparities. This research uses a spatial comparison case-study model to test a city‟s viability indicators and total fiscal capability. The authors found that, compared with annexation, city-county consolidation has the potential to reduce the erosion of a city‟s tax base thereby increasing its long-term economic stability and its overall viability.

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