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Advocacy

Welcome to AWC’s online library of Legislative Bulletin and CityVoice news articles and other updates.

Published on Friday, September 19, 2014

Take Action – Operation Strong Cities

Read about the specifics of what you and your city can do to participate and make a difference.

Strong Cities Pocket Guide

NEW! This guide describes practical ways that cities, towns, and individual elected or appointed officials can do to help legislators and community members better understand the needs of cities and towns. The pocket guide is available now on the AWC website, and the hard copy will be available by late next week. If you would like a hard copy version, please call AWC, let us know how many copies you need, and we will mail them to you.

CML Credit

Earn credits towards your Certificate of Municipal Leadership (CML) by taking actions that support Operation: Strong Cities. If you want to get started immediately, these two activities will help you earn CMLs:

TAKE ACTION – Watch this 12-minute video of Tim Ceis’ presentation at AWC’s 2014 Annual Conference in Spokane. Tim’s informative and entertaining talk describes how local officials can better leverage their community leadership for legislative success.

TAKE ACTION – Compile and adopt a legislative agenda for your city or town. It does not have to be long or complicated, it just has to be communicated to your legislators and community. For those of you who are unsure how to format one, we have a couple examples. The City of Sequim introduced and passed a council resolution, while other cities frequently adopt less formal agendas like this document).

Once completed, submit your CML credit request here.

Crucial Questions for Legislators

TAKE ACTION

  • Even though liquor revenues are less now than they were in the past, they still constitute the single largest state revenue shared with all cities and towns. Can my city count on continuing to receive liquor revenues as we build our budget?
  • If my town allows, or is going to allow, a recreational marijuana business, will any of the revenue from the 75% state excise tax be shared with my town?
  • My city has been selected for a Public Works Trust Fund loan. Should we count on getting this critical infrastructure investment? Should my city spend the precious resources to continue to apply for these loans, or will legislators sweep the loan repayments again?
  • With the Legislature's failure to pass a transportation package, gaps are developing in the state transportation budget. Will the state cut the highly successful Transportation Improvement Board (TIB) program to fill those gaps?

Infrastructure Funds at Risk, Again

TAKE ACTION

  • Even if your project has been selected for a grant or loan, do not rest on your laurels. You still need to ensure that legislators and the Governor understand how important it is to fund these infrastructure programs – or funding for your project may disappear.
  • Reach out to Governor Inslee about the importance of these projects (360-902-4111). He will be the first out of the gate to release a budget proposal as required by law and if he doesn’t fund these programs it will be very difficult to get them back. It’s also helpful to contact the Governor’s External Affairs Director from your region in your correspondence.
  • Contact your legislators about the importance of the projects in your community – share specifics about why your project is critical.
  • Include Governor Inslee in your correspondence. He will be the first out of the gate to release a budget proposal as required by law.
  • Describe what jobs will be created or retained both in the short and long term as a result of these projects.
  • Emphasize that these state funds leverage city funds too. If these projects do not get funded, local money is likely to be left on the table.

Push for Local Control and Revenue Sharing Options from Recreational Marijuana Sales

TAKE ACTION

  • List the impacts of marijuana businesses and legal marijuana on your community.
  • Provide data about the criminal justice impacts of legalized marijuana such as police responses, impaired driving arrests, and especially juvenile marijuana related cases.
  • Calculate the costs related to code enforcement responses, neighborhood complaints, and costs related to enforcing local regulations regarding marijuana.
  • Share any other impacts your community has experienced including anecdotal examples.

Transportation Improvement Board – Protect What We Have

TAKE ACTION

  • Explain to your legislators how important TIB has been to your community, and how it figures into your long-term financing plans.
  • Take legislators on tours and explain the consequences to your community if a reliable funding program suddenly becomes unreliable.
  • Explain how transportation is funded in your city, and how TIB is an integral part of addressing transportation needs
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