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League Executive Board Members Advocate for California City Priorities During 2014 NLC City Congressional Conference

March 19, 2014
More than 1,500 city officials from across the nation met in Washington, D.C. last week for the 2014 National League of Cities (NLC) Congressional City Conference.
During the conference, League representatives met with several members of the California congressional delegation and advocated in support of League and NLC federal priorities. In addition, the conference provided the opportunity for California League members to meet and learn about federal, state and local issues facing their counterparts from other states. 

The League’s congressional advocacy efforts were led by League President and San Francisco Treasurer José Cisneros and Executive Director Chris McKenzie. They were joined by:
  • Tony Ferrara, first vice president, mayor, Arroyo Grande;
  • Bill Bogaard, immediate past president, mayor, Pasadena;
  • Mike Kasperzak, NLC board member, League past president and council member, Mountain View;
  • Jennifer Whiting, legislative representative; and
  • Lauren Kimzey, policy analyst. 
The League’s advocacy team discussed the unique challenges currently facing California cities in the context of pending legislation before Congress McKenzie said that the week’s meetings were very productive and useful. “It was great to interact on these important priorities with so many members of the California delegation. We deeply appreciated the time and attention of the following members and their respective staff members.”
The League’s officers met with the following:
The League’s team advocated for California city priorities as outlined in the League’s federal guiding policies during last week’s congressional meetings.
The following top priorities were the focus of the League’s advocacy efforts:
  • Support for the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013 (S. 743, H.R. 684);
  • Support for reauthorization of the federal transportation act;
  • Support for continuing the municipal bond income tax exemption;
  • Support for legislation expanding funding for water infrastructure and needs;
  • Support for Restarting Local Economies Act of 2013 (H.R. 3518); and
  • Support for immigration reform. 
Additional Conference News
Western Municipal Association Meeting
The Western Municipal Association (WMA) comprises of 14 state members and focuses on issues specifically affecting the cities in the states located in the western region of the country. More information about the WMA mission and key issues is available online.
WMA held a meeting at the NLC conference that provided the opportunity for members to hear from Washington State and Colorado League staff representatives about their respective state medical and recreational marijuana laws and regulations.
The discussion focused on:
  1. Core differences between their state regulatory models; and
  2. Intergovernmental challenges cities face as state regulations are implemented.

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