Classic school lunch. Yum.

It’s the end of another week, which also means the latest installment of Federalism in Action’s Top 3 Local blog series is here. If this is your first time visiting, each Friday we find 3 stories that exemplify local people making local decisions across the country. We provide you with the best examples of “Federalism in Action,” so you won’t ever miss a thing.

You can read this week’s Top 3 Local stories below, and you can click here to read last week’s post. Do you have a story to include in the next edition? E-mail us at

FOR INSPIRATION: Kentucky Schools Opts Out of Federal Program

A school in Northern Kentucky has opted out of the federal lunch assistance program simply because the cost of complying with federal restrictions was outweighing the benefits of receiving federal subsidies for free and reduced lunches. Federal standards to create “healthier lunches” had left many kids going hungry or resorting to even less nutritious snack foods. Fewer kids were purchasing lunch, causing food to go to waste. The independent school district has decided that the $260,000 it will lose in federal assistance is worth it because of what they will gain from having more local control of their lunch program.

FOR MOTIVATION: The Impact of Public Policy on Illinois

Federalism matters, and we’re seeing this play out in Illinois. According to a new study written by State Budget Solutions’ J. Scott Moody and published by the Illinois Policy Institute, Illinois loses a resident to out-migration every 10 minutes. The flight of state residents also means significant decline in annual income—as much as $2 billion in 2010. What’s even more troubling for Illinois is that its residents are migrating to border states with better economic and tax policies. This study should come as a stark warning to Illinois: as their neighbors continue to pursue pro-growth policies, Illinois will continue to experience this devastating trend.

FOR FUN: Utah Goes Mobile

The rise of mobile technology is changing the face of business and the global marketplace. Yet, state and local governments have remained slow to utilize and implement this new technology fully. However, Utah is changing that trend and leading the way as an early adopter state. The state developed a mobile app in 2009 and is improving user experiences with better location services through mobile platforms. The state’s chief technology officer believes that Utah’s use of mobile technology is providing better user experiences for state residents.

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