Local Governments & Energy Efficiency
How can you save money, invest more resources in your community, fight climate change, and offset rising energy prices?
Sounds like a trick question, but it’s not! Energy efficiency is the answer to achieving all those goals.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, government agencies spend more than $10 billion a year on energy to provide public services and meet constituent needs. While local governments struggle with tightening budgets, 30% of the energy used to run a typical building – including government buildings – is wasted by inefficiency.
A number of cities across the country, including St. Louis and Kansas City, have participated in the City Energy Project, taking advantage of EPA’s ENERGY STAR program to save energy, lower utility bills, free up additional funds for public services, and demonstrate their environmental leadership.
If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader. — John Quincy Adams
Let me start out by saying that I’m a very big fan of local government.
Serving as an alderman and then as my community’s first woman mayor, I came to appreciate how local government touches our lives every single day. Local government is about our quality of life, our safety, and the education and future of our children. And, whether you’re a politician, government employee or grassroots organizer, local government is where you can actually get things done.
Although I valued my role as an elected official, I wasn’t a career politician. I juggled public service with running a multi-million dollar business in the commercial construction industry. My schedule was crazy as I tried to balance work, politics, and my personal life, but I loved every minute of it!
I’m grateful for my experience in both the government and corporate sectors because it made me a better leader in each of those worlds.
Here are the top five leadership lessons I learned from the intersection of business and politics…
“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”
John F. Kennedy
Change is inevitable and that’s especially true when it comes to local government. Public policy revisions are necessary for growth, staff members retire or leave for other opportunities, and elected officials rotate off the board and new members are sworn into office. Leading change is necessary for successful growth and progress.