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URBAN ECONOMIC POLICY COMMITTEE
West Palm Beach (FL) Mayor Lois J. Frankel, Chair

June 16, 2008


Resolution #112: Funding The 2010 Census urges the President and Congress to: immediately address serious concerns raised regarding the operational, programmatic, and budgetary planning of the decennial census to ensure that an accurate count takes place in the 2010 Census; support adequate funding of the 2010 Census so that the necessary revamping and long-term strategic planning can commence immediately; ensure that the 2010 Census is designed to more accurately identify and count all segments of a city’s population, including low-income individuals, the homeless, and immigrants; and ensure that federal funds supporting low-income populations will be more accurately allocated among states and local communities.

Resolution #113: 2010 Census Partnership provides that The U.S. Conference of Mayors: supports the goals and ideals for the 2010 Census and will disseminate 2010 Census information to encourage participation; asks its affiliates and membership to partner with the U.S. Census Bureau and other stakeholders to achieve an accurate and complete count of all people in every community in the 2010 Census; and encourages all Mayors, particularly those who are members of The U.S. Conference of Mayors to participate in events and initiatives that will raise overall awareness of the 2010 Census and increase participation among all populations.

Resolution #114: Mobile Workforce State Income Tax Fairness and Simplification Act expresses opposition to any legislation that would preempt state and local governments’ authority to levy earnings and income taxes on mobile workers and urges all members of Congress to oppose any efforts to pass such legislation.

Resolution #115: Reform the Credit Card Industry calls upon Congress to pass legislation to reform and more closely regulate the credit card industry to protect consumers from deceptive and unjust terms, interest rates and fees, by banning retroactive rate increases, ending unilateral adverse changes in terms for no reason, banning universal default in all forms, stopping late fees for payments mailed on time, and ending roll-over or repeat late and over-limit fees, among other reforms that protect the consumer.

Resolution #116: Addressing the Consumer Credit Crisis urges Congress to pass legislation that: provides further regulation and supervision of the credit card industry to ensure compliance with existing and new regulations; prevents the credit card industry from changing terms of the contract and the interest rate in an inequitable manor; encourages payments to be made to the balance with the higher interest rates and prohibits unreasonable deadlines; requires credit card companies to provide a more reasonable means for a consumer to pay on time and not incur late fees; ends duplicate and exorbitant fees charged by credit card companies; increases the level of disclosure of terms that are entered into under the credit agreement; and provides greater protection for those under the age of 21 when entering into a credit card agreement.

Resolution #58: Tax Reform to Promote Renewable Energy Production, Energy Efficiency and Green Federal Tax Code expresses The U.S. Conference of Mayors support for the “greening” of our tax code by passing tax reform that provides preferences to technologies and investments that reduce the emission of dangerous greenhouse gases, while eliminating or reducing those tax preferences that result in such emissions; and calls on Congress to adopt legislation that would increase production of renewable electricity, promote the production of renewable fuels, reduce our dependence on foreign oil while increasing fringe benefits for public transit users, create a new category of tax credit bonds for green community programs and initiatives allocated to states and cities, extend and expand tax credits for energy-efficiency improvement for existing homes, extend and expand the deduction for existing building energy-efficiency improvements, and for smart metering.

building energy-efficiency improvements, and for smart metering.

Resolution #59: Supporting the Development of a “Green” Economy calls on Congress to extend the Wind Production Tax Credit, Solar Investment Tax Credit, and the Energy Efficiency Tax Credit as soon as possible so that 117,000 jobs in that sector can be secured in 2009; fund the programs passed in the Green Jobs Act to their full authorization level for FY 2009; allocate additional funding for the development of new green businesses and workforce development programs for the new energy economy; and urges members of the USCM to take steps to better implement and increase the opportunities for green jobs development in their cities such as: 1) competing for the Pathways Out of Poverty Demonstration Grant to fund green jobs for the economically disadvantaged; 2) instituting solar alternative power initiatives that increase the number of solar cells attached to our power grids, implement energy efficiency capital improvements, and make use of other energy forms such as wind power or geothermal; and 3) working with the business community to form green job councils in our cities that can best direct human resources to growing green industries.

gy efficiency capital improvements, and make use of other energy forms such as wind power or geothermal; and 3) working with the business community to form green job councils in our cities that can best direct human resources to growing green industries.

Resolution #60: Support of Renewable Energy Tax Incentives urges Congress to approve legislation that offers a five-year extension of renewable energy tax credits, currently set to expire on December 31, 2008, to enable expedited activities that advance renewable energy projects, help fight climate change, and promote domestic jobs; and to work with local leaders to ensure that Clean Renewable Energy Bond program modifications are made to benefit public sector applicants on a more equitable basis.

Resolution #61: Metro Economies Green Initiative: Supporting Emerging Models of Excellence encourages Congress, through consideration of legislation addressing global climate change, to authorize programs within the Department of Housing and Urban Development to target designated funding resources to metro communities meeting certain criteria to enable these communities to undertake model green industry economic and workforce development programs of excellence; and among such programs, The U.S. Conference of Mayors will support federal efforts to authorize and fund: Metro Area Green Zones – to support exemplary low-carbon workforce and economic development efforts; Metro Area Green Institute – to serve as a clearinghouse for low-carbon economic development efforts nationally; Mini-Metro Green Grants – to expand and enhance the reach and relevance of activities undertaken by Metro Area Green Zones and the Metro Area Green; and Alternative Green Academies – to enable local municipalities to partner with not-for-profit organizations, local education agencies and local businesses to provide low-carbon job training, employment opportunities, and other life skills to high school dropouts.

een Zones and the Metro Area Green; and Alternative Green Academies – to enable local municipalities to partner with not-for-profit organizations, local education agencies and local businesses to provide low-carbon job training, employment opportunities, and other life skills to high school dropouts.

Resolution #117: Insurance Rates on Municipal Bonds applauds the efforts of the Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee for hold hearings on this issue and exploring legislative remedies to assist municipal bond issuers in this area; and makes a commitment to work with legislative leaders in the House and Senate, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the bond rating agencies to develop workable solutions to this problem.

Resolution #118: Municipal Auction Rates Securities makes a commitment to work with House and Senate legislative leaders, the Securities and Exchange Commission , other regulatory agencies as appropriate and the private sector to develop workable solutions to the auction-rate securities problem; and calls on The U.S. Conference of Mayors to establish a Municipal Bond Task Force to monitor ongoing developments in the bond field (including auction rates instruments), develop solutions, help organize mayoral action in Washington to bring about needed reforms and work with the Congress, regulatory agencies and other national organizations towards stability in the auction rate market and well as in other related areas.

Resolution #99: Opposing Restrictions on Local Use of Tax-Exempt Bonds for Publicly-Owned Professional Sports Facilities urges Congress to oppose legislation that would impose limitations on state and local governments’ use of tax-exempt bond financing for publicly-owned professional sports facilities.

Resolution #119: Supporting Sustainable Investment Initiatives expresses The U.S. Conference of Mayors support for efforts of the Capital Markets Partnership’s Sustainable Investment Initiative to generate market investment in high performance green buildings through Sustainable Mortgage Backed Securities that will stimulate the economy and combat climate change; and encourages additional public-private partnerships to increase market investment in environmental innovation and climate protection.

Resolution #27: Protecting Main Street Small Business Owners from Predatory Lenders expresses strong support for small businesses and the independent business owners located in our cities and urges mayors to take the necessary steps to protect them from predatory lenders offering exploitive merchant cash advances; and urges the mayor in each of our cities to educate Main Street business owners and the small business community of the dangers of merchant cash advances; and promote alternative lending sources that are more affordable.

Resolution #120: National Save for Retirement Week expresses The U.S. Conference of Mayors supports for National Save for Retirement Week, designated by Congress from October 19 to October 25, 2008; and expresses support for the goals and ideals of National Save for Retirement Week, including raising municipal employee awareness about the importance of adequate retirement savings and the availability of 457 deferred compensation programs; and calls upon all mayors to actively promote retirement savings among municipal employees, open their cities to workshops by qualified deferred compensation companies to help employees understand the importance of saving for retirement and the tools and options available to them, and actively promote National Save for Retirement Week in conjunction with The U.S. Conference of Mayors in the months leading up to and during the week.

Resolution #121: Mayors National Dollar Wi$e Campaign calls on federal, state, and local governments to work with their nongovernmental partners in a coordinated effort to raise America’s standard of financial literacy; and urges the federal government to provide greater support for financial education by using at least a portion of the federally-imposed fees, fines, penalties, and other revenue from financial institutions to provide funding for locally-based, financial education programs.

Resolution #83: Federal Home Loan Banks urges the Congress to pass an amendment to Section 149(b) of the Internal Revenue Code adding “any letter of credit issued by a FHLBank” to the list of permissible letters of credit enhancing tax exempt bonds; and expresses support for legislation, regulatory changes and other initiatives designed to expand the ability of FHLBanks to serve the housing, community and economic development and public finance needs of cities through their investment authority, introduction of new business activities, and development of new initiatives.

Resolution #74: Reauthorization of the Brownfields Law urges Congress to reauthorize and amend the Brownfields Law by increasing EPA’s overall funding for brownfields grants, beginning with $350 million in FY08 and increasing by $50 million annually to a total of $600 million in 2013 and beyond.