Yes, you increase income and reputation when passing backwards over it, and decrease them when passing forwards.
The rules are pretty simple:
When a player's Population crosses a Red Line, then that player's Income and Reputation are both reduced by 1 (moved to the left one space) for every Red Line the player moves past. If a player's Population dips ...
The rules seem pretty clear about this:
In addition, at the end of the game when goals are being scored, the player with a Law Office scores points if he is tied with another player for achieving one goal (public or his own private goal, which he picks from any of his tied goals) as if he had won it. If two players have the Law Office, they may each score ...
Reputation = number of people that added to the total, at the end of the turn.
The relevant part in the rules:
ADJUST POPULATION (BASED ON REPUTATION)
Increase or decrease your Population on the Population Board by the amount where your Reputation Cube is located. If Population gets to 0, any additional movements backwards cost $1 per Population. If the ...
Generally, score handicaps are the way to go. You don't have to worry about playing games and experimenting in order to find a balance, you can just use the knowledge you already have of how much you tend to win by.
Money handicap could possibly work, but I think it'd be pretty tough - you only have so much room to adjust before it basically becomes a "you ...
An alternative is to handicap the premium costs for early development
This could be implemented for stronger players as:
+$1 or +$2 for every spot
+$1 or +$2 for every spot except the last free spot
+$1 or +$2 for every spot except both free spots
Or for weaker players as
$1 or $2 less for every spot
$1 or $2 less for every spot except the last free spot