Local Government Collaboration

"Collaboration helps to uncover weaknesses and creatively find ways to overcome those."
—Michael Sadler

Local Government Collaboration Project

Local government collaboration has been embedded in Central Iowa through the Governance Capital’s Local Government Collaboration (LGC) Project, which was established in partnership with fifteen cities and three counties. The goal is to better collaborate on public services to reduce costs, redundancies, complexity, and time commitments. This effort has improved local process dynamics and is testament to the region’s spirit of collaboration. Participants acknowledge occasional disagreements and stalemates within the teams but insist that their spirit of collegiality and commitment to identify and pursue coordination opportunities remains steadfast.

To date, the LGC, with facilitation assistance from DMACC Business Resources, has worked with public safety, fire, police, parks and recreation, library, human resources, planning, and finance teams to identify opportunities for collaboration. The LGC already has resulted in numerous advances, including common testing days for police recruits, limiting of human resource duplication and improved employer training, libraries sharing resources and circulation systems, and the development of uniform standards for Central Iowa trails.


The finance team focused on financial transparency and joint services.


Born out of the work of the LGC, the Central Iowa Code Consortium (CICC) is a collaborative effort to improve uniformity and consistency in the adoption and enforcement of local building codes in Central Iowa. Consortium volunteers have assessed building code elements to develop a model for a uniform building code for consideration and adoption by local governments.

Human Resources

The human resources team divided into two groups: Information sharing and shared training.


The library training team aimed to provide resources to the front-line staff to effectively and efficiently perform assigned duties and provide exceptional customer service.

Parks and Recreation

Parks and recreation officials worked to educate, reinforce, and emphasize the positive impacts parks and recreation have on our communities. The second parks and recreation team sought to research and develop standardized trail wayfinding and maintenance for the metro area.


The police shared training team worked to determine how to effectively and efficiently provide training for law enforcement personnel in the areas of mandatory training, re-certification training, and professional development training. The recruitment/pre-employment team aimed to reduce the cost and duplication in recruitment and candidate testing for the minimum standards.


Area planners currently are working to create model ordinances dealing with solar installations for residential and commercial use as well as utility scale. This group also will be working to create a model ordinance dealing with environmental sustainability.

Public Works

The public works team created a standardized right of way application.