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

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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File URL: http://web.williams.edu/Economics/wp/kotchenospace.pdf
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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
Contact details of provider: Postal: Williamstown, MA 01267
Phone: 413 597 2476
Fax: 413 597 4045
Web page: http://econ.williams.edu
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  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. Khan, M. & Matsusaka, J.G., 1995. "Demand for Environment Goods: Evidence from Voting Patterns on California Initiatives," Discussion Papers 1995_08, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  9. 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.
  10. 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.
  11. Dubin, Jeffrey A. & Kiewiet, Roderick D. & Noussair, Charles N., 1991. "Voting on Growth Control Measures: Preferences and Strategies," Working Papers 777, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  12. 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.
  13. Kline, Jeffrey & Wichelns, Dennis, 1998. "Measuring heterogeneous preferences for preserving farmland and open space," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 211-224, August.
  14. 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.
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