Total quality management (TQM) has become increasingly important in government in recent years. TQM is a set of principles, tools, and processes for managing and improving the quality of government services (Keehley 1992). The many applications of TQM in local government include efforts in police departments, fire services, waste management, personnel management, transportation, public works, parks, and utilities (Galloway 1992; Osborne and Gaebler 1992). Local governments may find TQM attractive because it helps departments better understand the needs of their communities. Public agencies can thereby avoid designing their services exclusively around the customers who are most vocal in their complaints. TQM also allows administrators to contain costs and improve services. This is important to local governments that face increased responsibilities, decreased revenues, and public cynicism about their capabilities (Sensenbrenner 1991).