Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

Legislative Priorities

The 2015-2016 priorities will be posted in mid-November. Attend a Regional Advocacy Meeting to provide input on priorities for the next session.
 
Cities and towns are focused on creating places and delivering services that support a healthy local economy and offer a positive quality of life.

The 2013-2014 legislative priorities identify four major challenges cities and towns of all sizes face and offer immediate legislative solutions to meet these challenges.

Dilapidated buildings
Challenge
Dilapidated buildings are unsafe and create a dangerous environment that thwarts economic development opportunities for surrounding areas. These properties diminish surrounding property values and create a financial and economic drain on community resources.
 
Cities have few options available to them to remove dilapidated buildings. When private property owners refuse to take responsibility for their property, it becomes a town’s burden to remove a dilapidated building by using scarce taxpayer money. Often, cities are unable to afford to remove dilapidated buildings, prolonging the suffering and decline of surrounding properties.

Solution
The Dilapidated Buildings Act provides an opportunity for private and nonprofit businesses to invest in the local economy and create jobs by returning derelict properties to productive use. The Dilapidated Buildings Act protects property rights and saves taxpayer money because the marketplace gets a chance to work in areas of cities that have been neglected.
Challenge
Residents and business owners in cities and towns expect services and infrastructure that support a healthy local economy, provide safe neighborhoods and business districts, and offer a positive quality of life. To meet these expectations, local leaders need dependable revenue sources to invest in police and fire protection, utility infrastructure, downtown and neighborhood revitalization, public spaces and recreation.
 
Solution
Ensure all revenue collected by the state on behalf of local governments is returned to cities and towns through the statutorily funded Local Government Fund. Cities and towns depend on the Local Government Fund as a stable revenue source to provide services, infrastructure, and programs that residents and business owners demand.

Challenge
Residents and business owners expect cities and towns to provide transportation systems that meet the demands of the community and ensure roads are safe and well maintained.
 
Solution
Bring together local and state leaders and experts to develop long-term and stable funding sources for roads, bridges and infrastructure maintenance, improvements and expansion.
Public safety and crime prevention
Challenge
Residents and visitors expect cities and towns to provide safe places to live, work, shop and visit.

Solution
Support legislation that enhances public safety and judicial efforts to prevent violent crime including gang activity.