2014 National Conference of Regions


Thank you for joining the National Association of Regional Councils for the 2014 National Conference of Regions.

Conference materials and presentations are available below.

A copy of the agenda can be accessed by clicking HERE.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Keynote Speaker: Understanding  Current Economic and Fiscal Scenarios

Positioning Your Region for Success, Part 1: NARC 2014 Policy Discussion

Positioning Your Region for Success, Part 2: A Sharing of Policy Processes

Environment Committee Open Session and Committee Meeting

Economic and Community Development Open Session and Committee Meeting

Autumn’s Recap: The Community and Economic Development open session at the NCR was an opportunity for attendees to connect with peers, hear from local partner organizations and identify major challenges and successes in various issue areas. Daria Daniel, Associate Legislative Director from the National Association of Counties (NACO), spoke about NACo’s work on the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development and Block Grant Program and on Workforce Investment Act Reauthorization. Mike Wallace, Program Director for Housing and Community Development at the National League of Cities (NLC) discussed other critical NLC 2014 legislative priorities including marketplace fairness and preserving the municipal bonds tax exemption.

Attendees were also seated according to priority issue area including Economic and Workforce Development, Aging and Disability Services, Community Development and Housing, Energy, and Rural Development. After small-group discussions with peers focused on major challenges, initiatives, and strategies for effective engagement of the NARC peer community, attendees identified specific strategies for community and economic development as well as a focus on regional alignment of the local talent pool and employer needs as major priority areas. Also highlighted were the challenges that many regional Aging and Disability Service programs face, due to budget cuts and organizational structure changes.

Keynote Address: The Honorable Robert Nadeau of FEMA

Keynote Address: The Honorable Matthew Erskine of EDA

Transportation Open Session and Committee Meeting

Erich’s Recap: This was the first transportation open session at the NCR. Bryna Helfer, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Engagement at U.S. DOT, joined us to talk about the long-awaited performance measurement and management rules, and indicated that safety measures should be released in the Spring, followed shortly by planning measures. Helfer talked about the importance of ladders of opportunity as they relate to transportation; access to transportation; and transportation as a connector – not a divider – for communities. She stressed the importance of producing and accessing better data since metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) are data driven. The importance of connected freight was also discussed. Freight needs to be a connected, comprehensive intermodal system utilizing highways, shipping, and rail.

Following the Federal perspective was an update from our local partners, NLC and NACo. Leslie Wollack from NLC stressed the need to keep the MPO threshold at 50,000 in the next authorization. Other issues she discussed included the importance of tax exempt municipal bonds, the importance of flexibility, and local control of transportation funds.

Jessica Monahan, Associate Legislative Director from NACo, highlighted the problems of short-term authorizations, indicating their preference for a bill of at least five years in duration. Other issues she discussed included lack of bridge funding – including the “doughnut hole” created by changes to the nation’s bridge program; high risk rural roads; and obstacles facing rural local agencies.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Keynote Presentation: A Discussion with FHWA and FTA

Plenary: Local Government Partner Discussion

Panel Discussion: The Path Toward Consensus on Workforce Investment Act Reauthorization

Training: Advocacy 201 and Seeking Grant Opportunities

Keynote Address: The Honorable Bob Perciasepe

Keynote Presentation: The Developing Budget Trends

Panel Discussion: Transportation Policy Roundtable – The Next Transportation Reauthorization

Panel Discussion: Health Impact Assessments Go to Washington

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