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Explaining The Appearance and Success of Voter Referenda For Open-Space Conservation

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Abstract

This paper provides an empirical investigation of the factors that in?uence the appearance and success of voter referenda for policies designed to promote open-space conservation. We take advantage of a data set that includes detailed information on all such referenda that occurred in the United States between 1998 and 2003. Combining these data with information from the U.S. Census, we conduct a nationwide analysis along with focused analyses of referenda that occurred in New Jersey and Massachusetts. Among the questions that we consider are the following: What factors contribute to the appearance of an open- space referendum in a jurisdiction? How does an initiative's funding mechanism, such as a bond, property tax, sales tax, or income tax, affect the way citizens vote? How responsive are favorable votes to the costs of an open-space initiative? And how do socioeconomic characteristics affect demand for public provision of open space?

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Williams College in its series Department of Economics Working Papers with number 2004-06.

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Date of creation: Oct 2004
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Publication status: published in Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, July 2006, v. 52, iss. 1, pp. 373-90.
Handle: RePEc:wil:wileco:2004-06

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  1. Michael Howell-Moroney, 2004. "What Are the Determinants of Open-Space Ballot Measures? An Extension of the Research," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 85(1), pages 169-179.
  2. Bates, Laurie J. & Santerre, Rexford E., 2001. "The Public Demand for Open Space: The Case of Connecticut Communities," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 97-111, July.
  3. Jeffrey A. Dubin & D. Roderick Kiewiet & Charles Noussair, 1992. "Voting On Growth Control Measures: Preferences And Strategies," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 4(2), pages 191-213, 07.
  4. Kline, Jeffrey & Wichelns, Dennis, 1998. "Measuring heterogeneous preferences for preserving farmland and open space," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 211-224, August.
  5. Halvorsen, Robert & Palmquist, Raymond, 1980. "The Interpretation of Dummy Variables in Semilogarithmic Equations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 474-75, June.
  6. Patricia A. Champ & Nicholas E. Flores & Thomas C. Brown & PJames Chivers, 2002. "Contingent Valuation and Incentives," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 78(4), pages 591-604.
  7. Kahn, Matthew E & Matsusaka, John G, 1997. "Demand for Environmental Goods: Evidence from Voting Patterns on California Initiatives," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 40(1), pages 137-73, April.
  8. Rubinfeld, Daniel L, 1977. "Voting in a Local School Election: A Micro Analysis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 59(1), pages 30-42, February.
  9. Vossler, Christian A. & Kerkvliet, Joe & Polasky, Stephen & Gainutdinova, Olesya, 2003. "Externally validating contingent valuation: an open-space survey and referendum in Corvallis, Oregon," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 261-277, June.
  10. Jeffrey Kline & Dennis Wichelns, 1994. "Using Referendum Data to Characterize Public Support for Purchasing Development Rights to Farmland," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 70(2), pages 223-233.
  11. Deacon, Robert T & Shapiro, Perry, 1975. "Private Preference for Collective Goods Revealed Through Voting on Referenda," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(5), pages 943-55, December.
  12. Fischel, William A., 1979. "Determinants of voting on environmental quality: A study of a New Hampshire pulp mill referendum," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 107-118, June.
  13. Elena G. Irwin, 2002. "The Effects of Open Space on Residential Property Values," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 78(4), pages 465-480.
  14. Smith, V. Kerry & Poulos, Christine & Kim, Hyun, 2002. "Treating open space as an urban amenity," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1-2), pages 107-129, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Heintzelman, Martin D. & Walsh, Patrick J. & Grzeskowiak, Dustin J., 2013. "Explaining the appearance and success of open space referenda," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 108-117.
  2. Uwasu, Michinori & Nelson, Erik & Polasky, Stephen, 2005. "Voting on Open Space: An Analysis of the Decision to Hold a Referendum and of Referendum Results," Staff Papers 13837, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
  3. Adanu, Kwami & Hoehn, John P. & Norris, Patricia & Iglesias, Emma, 2012. "Voter decisions on eminent domain and police power reforms," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 187-194.
  4. Banzhaf, H. Spencer & Lavery, Nathan, 2010. "Can the land tax help curb urban sprawl? Evidence from growth patterns in Pennsylvania," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 169-179, March.
  5. Ando, Amy Whritenour & Shah, Payal, 2009. "Demand-Side Factors in Optimal Land Conservation Choice," 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 49209, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  6. Nelson, Erik & Uwasu, Michinori & Polasky, Stephen, 2007. "Voting on open space: What explains the appearance and support of municipal-level open space conservation referenda in the United States?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(3-4), pages 580-593, May.
  7. Deacon, Robert T & Schläpfer, Felix, 2007. "The spatial range of public goods revealed through referendum voting," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt1pf1369j, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  8. Adelaja, Adesoji O. & Gottlieb, Paul D., 2009. "The Political Economy of Downzoning," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Northeastern Agricultural and Resource Economics Association, vol. 38(2), October.
  9. Ed Balsdon, 2007. "Property Value Capitalization And Municipal Open Space Referenda," Working Papers 0019, San Diego State University, Department of Economics.
  10. Messer, Kent D. & Poe, Gregory L. & Rondeau, Daniel & Schulze, William D. & Vossler, Christian A., 2008. "Social Preferences and Voting: An Exploration Using a Novel Preference Revealing Mechanism," Working Papers 51132, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
  11. Waltert, Fabian & Schläpfer, Felix, 2010. "Landscape amenities and local development: A review of migration, regional economic and hedonic pricing studies," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 141-152, December.
  12. Warziniack, Travis, 2010. "Efficiency of public goods provision in space," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(8), pages 1723-1730, June.
  13. H. Spencer Banzhaf & Wallace E. Oates, 2012. "On Fiscal Illusion and Ricardian Equivalence in Local Public Finance," NBER Working Papers 18040, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Kahn, Matthew E., 2011. "Do liberal cities limit new housing development? Evidence from California," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 223-228, March.
  15. Jason Bell & Joel Huber & W. Kip Viscusi, 2009. "Voter-weighted environmental preferences," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 28(4), pages 655-671.
  16. Dostie, Benoit & Dupré, Ruth, 2012. "“The people's will”: Canadians and the 1898 referendum on alcohol prohibition," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 49(4), pages 498-515.
  17. Wu, Xiaoyu & Cutter, Bowman, 2011. "Who votes for public environmental goods in California?: Evidence from a spatial analysis of voting for environmental ballot measures," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 554-563, January.

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