January 17-19, 2001 Capital Hilton Hotel
Washington, DC

January 8, 2001


Outlining a Vision for Passenger Rail Investment in America Takes Center Stage

WASHINGTON, DC – As Washington engages in a variety of Presidential inaugural festivities, more than 300 Mayors from across the nation, led by Conference President and Boise Mayor H. Brent Coles, will converge on the nation's capital. Their goal: to unveil Transition Priorities for the New American City and to call on the Administration and Congress to work with Mayors on shared priorities such as rail investment, drug control and brownfields development.

The Mayors will be in Washington for the 69th Winter Meeting of The United States Conference of Mayors. The meeting kicks off on January 16th at the White House, as the Mayors bid farewell to outgoing President William Jefferson Clinton, and concludes on January 19th. During the Winter Meeting the Mayors also plan to meet with nominees for various Cabinet positions. Press can access the full agenda, media advisories, and pre-register on the Internet at /69thWinterMeeting.

Highlights of the meeting include:

  • The Conference’s first ever National Summit on "A National Rail Policy for the 21st Century." The Summit will take place at Washington’s historic Union Station. Led by Conference Vice President and New Orleans Mayor Marc H. Morial, the Mayors will participate in an open dialogue on a new vision for passenger rail investment over the next ten years. After the roundtable the Mayors will hold a press conference where they will release a national survey on American’s attitudes toward rail investment, as well as a survey of Mayors’ top priorities for the New Administration. Mayors will then board the Acela, America's first high-speed train. Mayors will have lunch aboard the Acela, which will make the trip from Washington, DC to Baltimore and back.
  • A presentation to President Clinton of the Conference's highest award, The United States Conference of Mayors Award for Distinguished Public Service, established by the Conference to honor individuals for "outstanding and meritorious public service" to the nation's cities. The award was first presented to General George C. Marshall at the White House by President Harry Truman and Conference President Mayor W. Cooper Green of Birmingham on November 25, 1949. Since that time, in more than fifty years, the Conference has presented this presented this award only fifteen times. Read more...
  • A luncheon honoring the first popularly elected Mayor of London, England - Ken Livingstone, in his first official visit to the United States. Mayor Livingstone, who has been involved in local and national politics in England since 1971, was elected Mayor of London last May from a crowded field of eleven candidates from the Labour, Conservative, Green, and other parties, garnering an impressive 38 percent of the vote. At the time Livingstone astounded Londoners by running as an independent when his party, Labour, certified another candidate as their choice for Mayor. Livingstone has written two books, If Voting Changed Anything They'd Abolish It (1987) and Livingstone's Labour (1989). Mayor Livingstone will also speak at the Rail Summit—he has established the revitalization of London’s underground rail system, the ‘Tube," as his top priority as Mayor.
  • A salute to legends and leaders in the arts world and in public office, at the Fourth Annual "Mayors Arts Gala" to be held Wednesday, January 17. The honorees at this black-tie event, co-sponsored with Americans for the Arts, are:

Lifetime Achievement Award for Leadership in the Arts
President William Jefferson

Local Arts Leadership Award
Denver Mayor Wellington E. Webb

State Arts Leadership Award
Connecticut Governor John Rowland

Congressional Arts Leadership Award
U. S. Representative Norm Dicks (WA)

All press must register to gain access to Winter Meeting events. Advance registration is recommended. This can be done by phone by calling the USCM press office or completing the press registration form on the web site, /69thWinterMeeting. On-site registrations will also be accepted. Credentials may be picked up at the following locations and times:

Wednesday, January 17th - East Hall, Union Station, 8:00am – 3:00pm
Thursday, January 18th
– Pan American Room, Capital Hilton Hotel, 8:00am – 5:00pm
Friday, January 19th
– Pan American Room, Capital Hilton Hotel, 8:00am - 11:00am

Contact: Jubi Headley, (202) 861-6766