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Pennsylvania Projects - Pennsylvania County Government Project

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is divided into 67 counties. Each county government plays a vital role in the lives of its residents. Learning about your county and its officials will help you make better use of county government services. Knowing about county government empowers you to have input into your community and the decisions that impact your life and home.

Citizen's Guide to Pennsylvania Local Government (2007 edition)

Here is an online version of a booklet about County Government. This information is generalized for all counties. The information is about 10 years old. Use it as a template to "update the facts" and customize it for your county.

What class is your county? Why is this important?

Make a new county spending chart showing how much money is spent in each service and what portion of the total budget it represents.

Make a new county revenues chart showing how much money is collected from each source and what portion of the total revenue it represents.

Add your county's name and the names of all the officials mentioned.

Add the contact information for each department/official.

What is the governing body of your county called?

When is the next meeting of this group? Where will they be meeting?

Write a brief history of your county. In what region of Pennsylvania is it located?

List the communities in your school district. Is your school district's area entirely in one county or does it involve more than one county?

Include some demographics.

What is the county's population? How many people your age reside in your county?

How does a citizen register to vote?


Pennsylvania faces many challenges.

Identify one important local issue. What government agencies are involved? What input do residents have in the decisions? What do you believe should happen?

You have decided to speak out at the county government meeting regarding the issue. What are the guidelines for speaking to your county officials at a meeting?


Resources: - Business, community, or a concerned citizen can find resources to help grow your enterprise or revitalize your neighborhood.

Governor's Center for Local Government Services | Manual for County Commissioners

Local Government Information from the office of Community Development

U. S. Census Bureau

Check out your county government's website. Find it using your favorite search engine. | Evaluate your government's web site

Note: You can order print copies of An Introduction to County Government from Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences
or the Penn State Cooperative Extension office in your county.


"Democracy is the only system that persists in asking the powers that be
whether they are the powers that ought to be." Sydney J. Harris

Pennsylvania Projects Citizen Rights Who Represents You? Pennsylvania Charters PA County Government
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Honor a Suffragist Look into your Community's History Evaluate government website Consumer Protection Project Reforming Gov. Persuasive Essay
Life Expectancy in PA State of the Union Fact Check Exploring Population Density Who gets fines? PA Founding Fathers

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Posted 8/6/2006 by Cynthia J. O'Hora released to public domain

Aligned with the following Pa Academic Standards - Reading, Writing Speaking, History, Civics and Government, Science and Technology
Aligned with the National Standards for Civics and Government

tree icon Save a tree - use a Digital Answer Sheet: Open a text document or word processing document. Paste the questions into the blank document. Answer the questions in the word processing document. Save frequently as you work. I do not like losing my work. You will not like it either. Put your name and the date in a header. Bad things happen. Retain a copy of your work on your computer. Submit your assignment via a class electronic drop box or email attachment. You may be working on this project at home, the public library and at school.

Proof your responses. It is funny how speling errors and typeos sneak in to the bets work. smiling icon Make Your Own Printed answer sheet

Tech Tip: Working in a group or in two different places like the library & home? You do not have to be physically together to work together. gold starWatch Google Docs video TAI - How could you use free, Google Docs to do a project? How would this facilitate group projects?