January 26-28, 2000 Capital Hilton Hotel
T H U R S D A Y , J A N U A R Y 2 7
|Wall of Victims of Gun Violence in Cities Unveiled|
Labor Secretary Alexis Herman Supports More Funds for Quality Youth Programs
Technology the Focus of the Mayors and Business Council Plenary Breakfast
The Mayors and Business Council Plenary Breakfast focused on the fast developing topic of E-Commerce, digital technology, and local government. Mayors Cianci and Webb introduced the insightful comments of Mayors Williams, Brown, and Kirk. The Mayors particularly focused on tax issues so central to the future of our cities. To make progress on the tax issue, Mayor Kirk stressed, requires the attention and concerted action of all Mayors. Mayor Brown stressed that the digital age poses new challenges to America's cities but its greater efficiency also promises a brighter future.
Boise Mayor H. Brent Coles led a special session January 27 on Regional and Smart Growth where the Conference's Vice President joined with key mayors to examine strategies to combat outward urban development by renewing and revitalizing existing communities and developed areas within regions. Coles noted his efforts in the Boise region to bring city and county leaders together on these issues through the "Treasure Valley Partnership." The panelists identified numerous opportunities for reforms in housing, transportation and tax policy and expanded efforts to cleanup and redevelop brownfields as key areas which would help mayors and other local officials grow smarter and consume less open space and farmland. Mayors Kenneth L. Barr of Fort Worth, Jon Kinsey of Chattanooga, William A. Johnson, Jr. of Rochester (NY), and M. Susan Savage of Tulsa are leading a new Task Force on Regionalism and Smart Growth, which was created by Conference President and Denver Mayor Wellington E. Webb. These mayors, along with representatives of the American Institute of Architects, American Farmland Trust and the Brookings Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, offered a range of perspectives on these issues, emphasizing the need for policy reforms at the federal level to support local and regional growth strategies.
|Hastert Pledges to Work With Mayors to Revitalize Cities|
Speaking before the opening plenary session, House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bud Shuster (PA) told the nation's mayors that Congressional action on a multi-year aviation was needed to combat increasing air congestion, aviation system failures and critical airport investment needs. Shuster thanked the mayors for their strong support of his legislation, "AIR-21", urging them to work with Congressional delegations to get this legislation enacted this year. As Chairman of the lead committee on infrastructure investment, Shuster has made enactment of this legislation, including provisions to ensure that funds collected from air travelers are invested in airport and aviation system improvements, his top priority for 2000.