The League is accepting proposals for 2018-19 Advocacy Goals through Aug. 1. Discuss ideas with your municipal elected officials and staff, and click here to submit your ideas for advocacy goals. Every two years, you -- the cities and towns of North Carolina -- develop legislative and regulatory goals for the upcoming legislative biennium. These goals serve as the guide to the League's advocacy efforts here in Raleigh. More than that, they are a collective statement of the priorities of North Carolina municipalities, big and small, urban, suburban and rural. The process of setting the Municipal Advocacy Goals is an opportunity for each municipality to have a voice in telling state legislators and other state policymakers what is important to them.The advocacy goals also propel us towards two of the Vision 2030 Operating Principles: (1) municipal governments exercise greater control of their revenues, structures and functions, and (2) municipal governments engage in productive partnerships with other levels of government and the private sector. Legislative and regulatory goals should include a clear ask, and should have an impact on municipal governments statewide. According to League bylaws, you must indicate on your goal proposal whether it was voted on and approved by your local council or board. Proposals will be considered by NCLM policy committees, the NCLM Board of Directors, and the entire membership during the Advocacy Goals Conference. The League may also request that you visit one of our policy committees to further explain your suggested goal, as a part of the goals selection process. This is your policy process, so please give this thoughtful consideration and participate. Don’t miss this opportunity to submit your proposals by Aug. 1.
Budget officers and analysts from across the state gathered in Atlantic Beach this week for the N.C. Local Government Budget Association's 2018 Summer Conference, featuring with it a legislative recap from League Director of Research and Strategic Initiatives Chris Nida and a live recording of the League's podcast, Municipal Equation. The three-day event covered topics such as innovation in the profession, downtown business growth, data visualization and budgeting for information technology. Nida, alongside N.C. Association of County Comissioners Associate General Counsel Paige Worsham, updated attendees in the grand ballroom on the conference's opening day about legislation of interest to local government from the recently concluded short-session of the General Assembly. Past editions of this Bulletin gave you week-by-week updates on the legislature's activity. Look for a comprehensive report in the League's forthcoming End of Session Bulletin.
Thursday afternoon, attendees gathered in one of the conference venue's session rooms to hear about the quirky-to-massive challenges for beach towns to prepare for and deliver services to the thousands upon thousands of additional residents and visitors who converge there in the summer months. The League's Ben Brown, host of Municipal Equation, led a panel featuring Pine Knoll Shores Town Manager Brian Kramer, Pine Knoll Shores Police Chief Ryan Thompson, and Carteret County Shore Protection Manager Greg "Rudi" Rudolph. From keeping Pine Knoll Shores safe and sound amid a 525 percent summer-population increase, to maintaining the beach strand like a piece of infrastructure, the panelists walked the audience through the complicated dynamics with surprising facts and figures that kept the talk fun and interesting. The League soon will release that discussion as part of a special live episode of Municipal Equation, which you can find at nclm.org/municipalequation. Our latest installment is a rebroadcast, with updates, of one of our most popular episodes, focusing on what cities around the country are doing to revitalize alleyways for public and business use.
By now, you may be aware that the N.C. Utilities Commission has issued an order in the rate case affecting customers of Duke Energy Carolinas (DEC), which includes many cities and towns in the western half of the state. The order should lead to substantial benefits for municipalities and follows the League intervening on a number of issues before the commission. We are very pleased with the outcome and that commission members carefully and thoroughly considered our arguments. At the same time, the order provides for more input from NCLM and its members going forward on a number fronts. Click here for highlights and details. RIght now, we need your help and your ideas. Within the next six months, DEC will be filing details regarding the proposed new time-of-use, critical peak pricing and other dynamic rate structures called for in the order. While many customers will be able to take advantage of these new rate structures, the League was the main intervenor to make the requests, so we want to ensure that what is proposed is of the most use and benefit to our members. NCLM will also continue to participate in the stakeholder process for grid modernization and continue to meet with DEC on lighting issues. Please provide any input you have regarding these issues to League Legislative and Regulatory Counsel Sarah Collins at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Institute for Emerging Issues (IEI) at N.C. State University wants to showcase your municipality's civic engagement efforts. If you think your city has done a good job and could help others by sharing the details statewide, let IEI know and apply to be one of only five groups that will be showcased at the Emerging Issues Forum on Sept. 17 in Asheville. A PDF provides details on how to apply by the July 22 deadline.
The forum is focused on making communities stronger through civic engagement. Many cities across the state, large and small, rural and urban, already have excellent civic engagement programs in place. Some have town hall forums or "youth solutions" chats. Others have sparked collaboration between entrepreneurs and local government. Many have used technology to engage citizens, like through apps and soliciting input via electronic voting. Let IEI know what's working in your town for the chance to be featured.