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FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — In recent meetings with county leaders from across the nation, Coconino County District 4 Supervisor Mandy Metzger helped set the agenda for the National Association of Counties (NACo), to improve the lives of those living in rural communities.
Supervisor Metzger, a member of NACo’s Rural Action Caucus, recently met with other county elected leaders in St. Landry Parish, La. to discuss the needs and concerns of rural America. The caucus meets every fall to strategize how best to influence federal legislation, regulations and funding for county programs and services important to our rural communities and businesses.
“It’s imperative that leaders representing the nation’s rural counties work closely with our partners in state and federal government to tackle common challenges,” Supervisor Metzger said. “Working through NACo’s Rural Action Caucus is an important part of our efforts in Coconino County to improve the lives of families living in rural communities.”
Legislative issues discussed included the farm bill reauthorization, rural health care, rural development funding, federal payments to counties with public lands and a push to continue funding through Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act (SRS). Also discussed were the potential effects of looming automatic, across-the-board federal spending reductions should lawmakers fail to agree on how to reduce the federal deficit.
“While multiple highly important issues were discussed, gaining national support for Secure Rural Schools and Payments In Lieu of Taxes (PILT) is critical to securing millions in funding needed by Coconino County,” Metzger said. “Cutting SRS would place a strain on the County’s ability to maintain school bus routes used by our children and lifesaving Search and Rescue efforts.”
NACo’s Rural Action Caucus serves as the voice for America’s rural counties in Washington. It is a bipartisan coalition of rural elected officials, who strive to enhance the quality of life in rural counties through effective federal legislation. The caucus is not only the advocacy arm of the organization, but also serves as the conduit for technical and programmatic assistance through the NACo County Solutions & Innovations Department.
Each year, the caucus identifies the most pressing issues facing rural America and brings them to the attention of Congressional leaders and key members of the administration. More information is available at www.naco.org. ###Contact: Public Information Officer Nathan GonzalezPhone: 928-679-7172Cell: 928-699-1726E-mail: email@example.com