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Local government agencies and officials play a crucial role in the success or failure of virtually every development project. Whether the project involves office, warehouse or retail development, local approval must be obtained on such matters as zoning, plan review, utilities, and street and parking improvements. In addition, government officials at all levels often are called upon to provide financial assistance—grants, low-interest loans or the construction of public improvements—to developers. Close cooperation between local authorities and the developer, therefore, is crucial to the success of the project. And depending on the specific nature of the project and the size and sophistication of the local government, developers may work with many different departments and individuals. It is therefore crucial that