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Hymer, Natalie and Maya Tellman. (2014). "Innovations in Shared Services: The Need for an Administrative Backbone." The Creative Responses to Fiscal Stress Project, Dept. of City and Regional Planning, Cornell University.

Intermunicipal sharing is one important way that local governments respond to recent state fiscal measures, such as the Tax Cap of 2011 and the subsequent Tax Freeze of 2014.

However, New York’s local governments are no stranger to sharing, with over half a century of experience with service sharing. A 2013 survey of NYS local governments found that they share on average 27 of the 29 services measured and the average length of the sharing agreement was 18 years (Homsy et al 2013). One of the challenges in shared services however, is the need for administrative structures to facilitate sharing (Qian and Warner 2014).

Among school districts, where sharing is also longstanding, BOCES, the Boards of Cooperative Educational Services, provides the administrative structure to create and design sharing agreements (Hayes 2013a). BOCES offers combined planning which can assist both school districts and local government to share back-office services (Hayes 2013 b). State aid incentivizes sharing among school districts with differences in wealth, something that is needed to promote more service sharing across municipalities (Qian and Warner 2014, Yang and Warner 2014). BOCES represents the institutionalization of sharing.

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