We have brought you many articles and columns about how cities are stepping up to the plate and making tough choices.

Some cities were faced with severe budget shortfalls, and had to rethink their pension plans. Others have implemented new technologies to track use of city services. Many cities are focusing their efforts on local job creation, even during these tough economic times. In many ways, cities are leaving the proverbial nest of Washington and state government to focus on what they can do now for their citizens.

Below is an article in the New York Times about this hierarchical shift for municipal governments.

I Want To Be A Mayor
New York Times

As Americans, we’ve been raised on the notion that any child could dream of becoming president. But when you see how much “fun” Barack Obama and his immediate predecessors have had in that job — and when you look at where the most exciting innovations in governance are happening — how long will it be before our kids, when asked what they want to be when they grow up, answer: “I want to be a mayor.” Except in Detroit, mayors today have more fun.

In fact, if you want to be an optimist about America today, stand on your head. The country looks so much better from the bottom up — from its major metropolitan areas — than from the top down. Washington is tied in knots by Republican-led hyperpartisanship, lobbyists and budget constraints. Ditto most state legislatures. So the great laboratories and engines of our economy are now our cities. This is the conclusion of an important new book by the Brookings Institution scholars Bruce Katz and Jennifer Bradley, entitled: “The Metropolitan Revolution: How Cities and Metros Are Fixing Our Broken Politics and Fragile Economy.”