Advocacy

Independent Cities Association Legislative Education

Of the many benefits of being an active member in the Independent Cities Association, obtaining “real time” information on the most important and relevant matters coming out of Sacramento is critical to the job that you do with your City. The ICA employs a full-time, professional legislative consultant based in Sacramento to provide us the most pressing and important issues affecting local government. Our consultant makes himself available to all members, with any questions they might have, as well as transmits our concerns directly to the key decision makers and their staff at the most appropriate times. As an active member of the Association you will be entitled to directly receive the consultant’s regular email updates, that during the course of some of the busier times in Sacramento, could be on almost daily basis. The Board and the ICA take great pride in knowing that our consultant is “on the ground” and provides us with the most important information, unique to the ICA, unfiltered and unfettered.

Sacramento Education Day

As you know, nothing can quite compare to actual face time with a decision maker. The ICA as an organization believes very strongly in this belief as well which is why the Board will schedule a day in Sacramento to educate the governor, legislators and their staff on key items of import to the Association. While there is no regularly scheduled day or time like there is with the Summer and Winter conferences, the ICA is committed to taking the time to meet and confer with decision makers as appropriate.

Budget and Legislation

The ICA Board, in conjunction and in coordination with its legislative consultant, review every single bill and budget proposal that might have impact to the Association. Once items of import have been identified the Board will take action on a limited number of proposals to engage and educate policy makers on the cost/benefit of a proposed item. Because the ICA chooses to actively engage on a select amount of items per year, the Association’s track record for success is quite exceptional. Instead of diluting our voice by engaging hundreds of bills, the ICA will target specific items and work hard to achieve an outcome in the best interest of its members.

Examples of 2016 Legislative Priorities

The following are examples of the types of legislation the Association seeks to educate decision makers.

The Independent Cities Association has updated its legislative platform for 2016 to address the highest priorities defined by our member cities. As a general platform this document serves as the lens through which all legislative and budgetary items will be viewed as the year unfolds. It was important to the Board that this document be made available to all member cities now that the Legislature begins to earnestly deliberate the 1,500 newly introduced legislative proposals.

Public Safety
The ICA is committed to supporting efforts that assist our member cities in providing a safe and secure community. As such, the organization will support legislation that enhances local assistance to police and fire and any measures that will help contribute to local public safety, emergency response and emergency preparedness. The ICA will support legislation that strengthens law enforcements efforts to prevent crime and prosecute those committing a crime. The Board will oppose legislation that will negatively impact our ability to carry out our commitment to this adopted core strategy.

Infrastructure
Infrastructure impacts both businesses and residents and reflects on a community’s desirability. Improving member cities infrastructure has many benefits including the growth of the economy and improving quality of life, not just in any one city but throughout the entire region. The ICA will support legislation that increases funding opportunities for new local infrastructure projects including roads, highways, bridges and public transportation as well as maintenance of existing infrastructure. Also, the ICA will support legislation that provides additional funding for water delivery, water storage, and water quality projects. The organization will oppose legislation that seeks to remove or reduce any current source of funding that would impact infrastructure projects or public transportation. Also, the ICA will oppose anything that preempts local zoning control or requires development of a particular type as well as oppose any legislation that creates new mandates without complete funding.

Finance
Developing a sound and sustainable financial strategy is paramount for the future of any City. The ICA will support legislation that secures local government funding sources such as property taxes, sales tax, transient occupancy taxes and Community Development Block Grants. Additionally, the Association will support legislation that produces new funding for cities to use for infrastructure projects, parks, and delivery of core services. The organization will oppose legislation that impacts our member cities ability to collect on current funding sources, legislation that creates unfunded mandates and legislation that attempts to eliminate or divert local revenues for state and or federal purposes or to another entity.

Economy
The ICA is committed to helping member cities providing a strong and diverse local economy. The ICA will support legislation that provides cities additional tools for business development, business retention, workforce development, and job creation. The Association will support legislative actions that create new tools to encourage redevelopment and fill the void left with the dissolution of Redevelopment Agencies. The organization will oppose any measures viewed as restricting a member city’s ability to fulfill its goal for economic development.

Quality of Life
Creating and maintaining a high of quality of life for residents is a top priority. In these efforts, the ICA will support legislation that creates additional funding opportunities for parks and recreation programming, library and literacy services, senior services, and human and social services programming. Additionally, the Association will support legislation that increases funding for capitol projects related to parks, library and senior services. Furthermore, the board will support legislation that helps our community partners in funding for arts and culture including supporting community theatre activities. The Board will oppose legislation that removes or reduces existing funding opportunities for the above services as well as oppose legislation that creates new mandates for services without providing full funding.

Helping Our Partners

The Association prides itself on working well with a broad cross section of interests. The Board recognizes the importance of strong local government coalitions working together.

For a full list of all the bills the Association is actively monitoring please feel free to contact the Association’s Legislative Consultant.

Sacramento Update

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