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League Bulletin

February 28, 2020

​WHAT HAPPENED: The League has opened registration for this year's CityVision, the biggest and best annual conference for municipal professionals and local elected officials from all corners of the Tar Heel state. This year, we're going to beautiful, riverside Wilmington. 

WHAT IT MEANS:  We'll spend two days together learning from engaging speakers, educational sessions and one-on-one time that will give you the tools you need to face challenges in your town or city. A more in-depth article with details follows in this bulletin. 

ON TAP: Mark your planners for May 6-7​ at the Wilmington Convention Center. Registration is live!​ Register before April 10 to enjoy the earlybird rate. 

THE SKINNY: CityVision is the best expression of League-member advantages and fellowship, showing the diversity of our 540-plus municipalities while also circling the commonalities and pride that make us the cities and towns we are. Connect. Engage. Learn. Network.

Registration is open for CityVision 2020, the League's annual conference that always brings future-readying educational opportunities and classic cameraderie among municipal officials from the staff and elected levels across North Carolina. And in a first for CityVision, we're going to beautiful downtown Wilmington! Mark your calendars for May 6-7 at the Wilmington Convention Center overlooking the Cape Fear River. Register early to avoid late registration fees. Pre-registration ends Friday, April 10.

Expect two days of engaging speakers, educational sessions and one-on-one time that will give you the tools you need to face challenges in your town or city. This year, CityVision will include ethics training for elected officials. This training meets the criteria for ethics training as state law requires. Other educational sessions will focus on employment law, water & wastewater, cyber security, economic development and so much more. 

CityVision's newest addition will be a Speed Networking session inside the Riverside Expo exhibit hall. We invite you to take advantage of this one-on-one time with sponsors and exhibitors on May 6. The League’s Shield Services risk control staff will host Law Enforcement Firearm Training preview sessions. These 30-minute sessions will use state-of-the-art technology that trains police officers how to appropriately respond and de-escalate when confronted with an active shooter, combative member of the community, or other, similar scenarios.

Don't wait on registration. Head to our event page for all the info you need to prepare for CityVision 2020 in Wilmington. 

Interviewed by WRAL News as the coronavirus threatens to spread into U.S. communities, the League's Scott Mooneyham said​ the need for adequate internet access in people's homes becomes even more important. Employers, for instance, may plan work-from-home periods for their employees to reduce risks of potential person-to-person spread of the virus, under which internet access may be necessary. Telehealth -- accessing legitimate medical help over the internet -- would also require reliable, high-speed internet access. "If public health measures are necessary, we know online access would be more important than ever," Mooneyham told the news outlet, which noted the League's push for broadband expansion over areas currently without it, many of them rural and in need of modern connectivity for a host of reasons. "It really does highlight what we’ve been saying – this is not a luxury," Mooneyham said. "Broadband access is critical infrastructure, and everyone needs access."
Officials at all levels of government are studying up on this newsmaking virus to manage community risk. Public health officials say it may spread from person to person or through contact with infected surfaces or objects. "The federal government has been working closely with state, local, tribal, and territorial partners, as well as public health partners, to respond to this public health threat. Unprecedented, aggressive efforts have been taken to contain the spread and mitigate the impact of this virus," the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a Feb. 26 statement. The CDC has set up an educational webpage​ about the coronavirus and how communities can prepare.

More than $5.5 million in grant money has gone out to local governments toward job creation and private investment. According to a press release this week from the governor's office, the N.C. Rural Infrastructure Authority approved 17 grant requests that came with commitments to create 436 jobs and attract more than $82 million in private investments. “Rural North Carolina needs investments in water and sewer systems and buildings to attract better paying jobs,” Gov. Roy Cooper said in the release. The funding will go to those and other improvements, like the reuse of vacant buildings and expansions of existing businesses. The press release has the full list​ of award amounts and recipients along with information about the funding program.

The U.S. Census Bureau said this week​ that its 2020 Census Community Partnership and Engagement Program has reached, ahead of schedule, its goal of 300,000 partnering organizations across the U.S. These include local governments, community organizations, local businesses and more who have pledged support for the most complete and accurate counts as possible in the 2020 Census. “The 2020 Census is a national asset and belongs to everyone across the country," said Dr. Steven Dillingham, director of the U.S. Census Bureau. "We engage partners and supporters across the country to remind everyone that participating in the census is safe, easy and important." 

North Carolina is heavily into the effort, spreading word at of the importance of participation from the state's population. Census results figure into myriad programs and decisions that affect localities, including access to grants and other finances. State-level census officials are asking every community for support with its N.C. Census Partnership Guide.

The National Weather Service believes we're headed into another flood-heavy year across the country, and with so many communities still dealing with the effects of previous years' floods, a new poll shows a massive percentage of Americans favoring more resilient infrastructure. From the Pew Charitable Trusts, the newly released poll results highlight bipartisan support for it. Eighty-five percent of Americans "favor a requirement that federally funded structures are designed to better withstand flooding," a Pew release said, with Democrats, Republicans and independents agreeing. Eighty-three percent of Americans "support providing communities and states with pre-disaster grants to upgrade roadways so they can better withstand harsh weather," it continued, again with bipartisan agreement. "Doing so would help improve the resiliency of vulnerable and repeatedly damaged assets before the next storm.​"