Hopkins and other League of Cities members were in Washington, D.C., last week for the Congressional City Conference. As part of the conference, a group of NLC members got to meet with members of President Barack Obama’s staff and cabinet, including Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Intergovernmental Affairs David Agnew.
Hopkins said the president’s staff gave the group an overview of some of the policy initiatives it was working on that could have implications for county and city governments, including a healthy foods initiative and the work of the Small Businesses Administration. The open dialogue between the president’s administration and local leaders has a number of benefits for the municipalities, Hopkins said.
“Now you have a group of elected officials who all have relationships with people in the administration, who know actual names and faces,” she said. “We get an email from them every week with updates about things that could impact the local governments. I’m really impressed with the administration and how it’s handled this. They take it very seriously.”