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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Unpacking Municipal Home Rule: Can California Regionalists and Locals Talk to One Another?

  • Author(s): Silva, Enrique R.
  • et al.

This article focuses on the contemporary home rule discourse in California and how it relates to state-level efforts to promote regional governance and regional planning initiatives. The purpose here is to unpack the contemporary home rule discourse, as represented by a series of articles on home rule that appeared between 1997 and 2001 in the League of California Cities’ journal Western City. By unpacking the discourse, the major strains of the argument for home rule are identified. Once identified, the article argues that the foundations of the home rule discourse provide opportunities to evaluate and strengthen the discourse on regionalism and regional governance, perhaps to the benefit of both regional and home rule advocates. Via discourse analysis and the lessons which it uncovers, the article provides a useful lens through which other State-home rule and regional planning debates can be considered critically.

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