Wow, what a series of busy days for Michigan Municipal League members and staff in Washington D.C. during the 2019 National League of Cities Congressional City Conference. Below are some words and photos to explain it all: Here is a blog promoting League involved in this year’s Conference, which concludes Wednesday, March 13.
View more photos from the event here.
So far this week members of the Michigan delegation spoke at education sessions during the Conference and talked and met with numerous Michigan members of Congress, including U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, U.S. Senator Gary Peters; and U.S. Representatives Dan Kildee, John Moolenaar, Paul Mitchell, Andy Levin, and Bill Huizenga. They also me with William Crozer, special assistant to the President and deputy diirector of White House Intergovernmental Affairs.
Those from Michigan attending include League President Melanie Piana, Ferndale City councilwoman; Brenda Moore, Saginaw Mayor Pro Tem; John Schrier, president of the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys; Pauline Repp, Port Huron Mayor and vice president of the Michigan Association of Mayors. Piana also spoke at an event in D.C.
Congressman Kildee of Flint also was one of the speakers at the NLC event and talked about the value of communities, how the Flint Water Crisis is a symptom of a much larger financial crisis facing communities throughout the nation.
Other ways League staff and members were fighting for Michigan communities in D.C. this week:
On Monday: Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the Michigan Municipal League, spoke on a panel at the Conference. The panel was exploring the topic of how to fund infrastructure projects. Gilmartin stressed the importance of having the federal government as a partner when it comes to infrastructure funding. “Our role as local officials is to continue to press the message. The more we press that here in D.C. and back in our states, the more space we create for [Congress] to vote the right way. Learn more about the conference.
On Tuesday: League President Melanie Piana participated in an “Infrastructure Financing Panel” during a briefing for Congressional staff in Washington, D.C. The panel covered the importance of preservation of the tax-exemption, reinstatements of advanced refundings, and the expansion of private activity bonds in order for local government to drive capital infrastructure projects in their communities. .
Specifically, Piana, Ferndale city councilmember, spoke on the value of municipal bonding and public-private partnerships in Ferndale’s downtown Development on Troy project – a mixed-use (office, retail and resident) endeavor, and a parking deck. Read more.
Here are some selected Tweets from League staff and members in D.C.:
National League of Cities @leagueofcities
“I don’t know why it is that when it comes to
#infrastructure, Congress wants to act like we’re the poorest country in the world, instead of the richest country in the world.” – @DPGilmartin at #NLCCCC #RebuildWithUs
“Our role as local officials is to continue to press the message. The more we press that here in DC and back in our states, the more space we create for [Congress] to vote the right way.”
Had fun today with my colleagues at
@MMLeague @VermontLeague @massmunicipal talking state needs for infrastructure. #NLCCCC
Melanie Piana @melpiana “Cities, villages and townships are not special interest groups”-
@IrmaDiggs in response to @DPGilmartin stating local communities need a strong federal partner supporting infrastructure investment. @leagueofcities @MMLeague #Rebuildwithus #infrastructure