76th Annual  Meeting
The U.S. Conference of Mayors
76th Annual Meeting
June 20-24, 2008



WHEREAS, The United States Conference of Mayors and its member mayors, led by our Council for the New American City, have been engaged in increasing Americans’ financial literacy since 2004 through the Mayors’ National Dollar Wi$e Campaign; and

WHEREAS, Dollar Wi$e invites all cities and mayors in the United States and its territories to register in the Campaign; to adopt increasing their residents’ financial literacy as local government policy; and to organize local coalitions with government agencies, nonprofit organizations, financial institutions, faith-based groups, the private sector, and others that are involved in building financial capability; and

WHEREAS, the Mayors’ National Dollar Wi$e Campaign and cities across America will celebrate the fifth annual Dollar Wi$e Week September 20-27, 2008, with community events, activities, and workshops focusing on encouraging Americans to reverse the trend of living beyond their means and setting aside minimal money in savings; and

WHEREAS, financial literacy and savings enable individuals and families to prosper in times of economic growth and to weather the storm during an economic downturn; and

WHEREAS, financial education is essential to helping the American consumer not to fall prey to deceptive lending practices or complicated financial instruments, mortgage products offered by the industry that led to the current mortgage crisis and subsequent economic difficulty; and

WHEREAS, local governments have the ability to lead the way on financial education because it is at the local level where the real groundwork of educating the public takes place; and

WHEREAS, improved policy, funding, and participation by government at all levels—local, state, and federal—is the greatest deliberate institutional change the United States and its leaders can make in our efforts to increase Americans’ financial capability; and

WHEREAS, so doing will help them become full partakers of the American Dream; bolster our citizens’ financial independence;build up prosperous, contributing members of our communities and society; and ensure financial security for themselves and their children, thereby increasing opportunities for homeownership, education, and overall economic inclusion, NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The United States Conference of Mayors calls on federal, state, and local governments to work together and with their nongovernmental partners in a coordinated effort to raise America’s standard of financial literacy; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we urge the federal government to provide greater support for financial education by using at least a portion of the federally-imposed fees, fines, penalties, and other revenue from financial institutions to provide funding for locally-based, financial education programs; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we advocate that all state governments require personal economic and financial education asa prerequisite for high-school graduation; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we invite all our fellow cities, mayors, and other municipal governments and local officials to give priority to increasing the financial literacy of their citizens and bolstering and promoting local initiatives to that end.