In 1898, the five counties of Richmond, New York, Bronx, Queens, and Kings came together in a consolidation which created the five boroughs of New York City. Staten Island went from being an independent county in the State of New York to a interdependent borough of the new City of New York, as did the other counties. The consolidation offered a lot of promises, and a lot of promises were made to get it to happen. Which raises a basic question: has this merger resulted in more efficient provision of public services and greater economic returns than would have been the case had the five counties remained independent entities? From an equity perspective, what have the residents of the outer boroughs gained and what have they lost, especially in relation to Manhattan? This paper reviews some very preliminary data assessing the efficiency and equity gains and losses of the largest municipal consolidation in American history. The existing literature on public choice, optimal public scale and fiscal federalism is examined to provide a framework for the initial findings.
|Title of host publication||The Future of Economics: Research, Policy and Relevance : Proceedings of the 41st Australian Conference of Economists|
|Editors||Jamie Doughney, Tran Van Hoa|
|Place of Publication||Melbourne|
|Publisher||Australian Conference of Economists|
|Number of pages||19|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|
|Event||ACE 2012, The 41st Annual Conference of Economists - Melbourne, Australia|
Duration: 8 Jul 2012 → 12 Jul 2012
|Conference||ACE 2012, The 41st Annual Conference of Economists|
|Period||8/07/12 → 12/07/12|
Gordon, C. (2012). Scale, Scope, Efficiency and Equity in Public Service Provision: How might we analyse the 1898 Consolidation of New York City? In J. Doughney, & T. V. Hoa (Eds.), The Future of Economics: Research, Policy and Relevance : Proceedings of the 41st Australian Conference of Economists (pp. 1-19). Melbourne: Australian Conference of Economists.