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Working Effectively with Public Engagement Consultants: Tips for Local Officials (ILG Report)

ILG-LOGOIn planning and implementing public engagement activities, local officials often contract with external consultants for services. These may be consultants who design and lead activities devoted solely to public engagement, such as a series of community conversations contributing to the development of a local agency budget. Or they may be consultants who carry out tasks well beyond public engagement alone, such as assisting in the overall development of a general plan update. This tip sheet from the Institute For Local Government offers several recommendations to help guide local officials in the best use of public engagement consultants.

from the guide’s Introduction…

Few resources exist to help guide local officials in the best use of public engagement consultants. Therefore, the Institute for Local Government, drawing on the experiences of both local officials and consultants, has compiled the following set of recommendations.

Of course before hiring any individual or firm, it is important to ask for references and to check with your colleagues in other counties or cities about their experiences with the consultant. Requested competencies and deliverables should be spelled out clearly in an RFQ or RFP. Check with your local agency attorney about questions relating to any specific hiring process.

About the Institute for Local Government
The Institute for Local Government  is the nonprofit research and education affiliate of the California State Association of Counties and the League of California Cities. The Institute’s Public Engagement Program promotes and supports effective and inclusive public engagement in California’s cities and counties and helps local officials make good decisions about involving the public in local decision making. The program offerings include: how-to guides and tip sheets (available for downloading), local stories from throughout the state, best practices, video presentations and more.

Resource Link: www.ca-ilg.org/public-engagement-tips-local-officials

This resource was submitted by Anna Hamilton, a Fellow at the Institute For Local Government, via the Add-a-Resource form.

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