Substate regionalism: a study of coordination at the substate level



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In the late 1960s, there was an increase in federal, state, and local interest in the concept of substate regionalism. This interest has led to the creation of substate district systems in at least thirty-eight states. Substate district systems generally provide for multi-county districts within which there are some sorts of voluntary councils of governments responsible for planning and coordination of activities on an area-, wide basis. Interest in substate regionalism was a product of several factors. Perhaps the major ones were: 1) local governments often found themselves without sufficient jurisdictional authority or financial resources, or both, with which to deal with areawide problems affecting them; 2) state governments found that the increasing complexity and expense in administering state programs required a uniform system through which all state activities could be planned and services delivered; and 3) the federal government began to emphasize much more strongly coordination of federal programs on an areawide basis with the passage of the Demonstration Cities and Metropolitan Development Act of 1966 and the Intergovernmental Cooperation Act of 1968. Significant power in the form of review authority over most federal grant-in-aid-applications (OMB Circular A-95) is granted to district councils of governments. The purpose of this study is to examine substate district systems in twelve states to determine their modes of establishment, their activities, their intergovernmental relations, and their likely futuie roles.



Substate regionalism