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Cities and Towns Need Relief


To Drive Economic Recovery Tomorrow, Cities and Towns Need Help Today

The COVID-19 crisis has meant job losses, a slowdown in retail business and a decline in overall economic activity. For local governments, one result has been a corresponding drop in sales taxes and other revenue that help pay for city services and investments. Cities and towns need assistance from the state and federal government to fill those revenue holes so that they can keep making the investments that will push the state beyond this crisis.

Cities and towns across North Carolina serve as economic engines of our state. Eighty percent of all jobs are found within municipal borders, and 75 percent of all retail sales take place within those borders. But right now, along with residents and businesses, cities and towns are hurting. 

Help us help your city or town, and urge Congress and state legislators to provide assistance to help make up for these revenue losses so that local communities and our entire state can emerge in a better, brighter place tomorrow.​ Below you will find a hub of the League's work on this issue, including news articles, videos, statements, and resources and information that highlight the importance of supporting our cities and towns. 

Learn More, and How to Make the Case for Cities and Towns

"Cities and towns did not cause the situation that they now find themselves in and the resulting budgeting shortfalls; a global pandemic did."


League Statements, Interviews and Videos

Cities are the Foundation


NCLM Executive Director Paul Meyer's Radio Interview with N.C. Policy Watch

​​NCLM Executive Director Paul Meyer ​Addresses COVID 19 Revenue Effort


NCLM, NCACC, Mayors Groups Issue Statement on CARES dollars


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NCLM Member Advocacy in the News

Charlotte Observer: Will GOP Leaders in Congress Help With Municipal Money Crisis?

"What’s needed is a second wave of federal aid, this time sent directly to local governments regardless of their size. It’s not simply a matter of protecting full municipal services. It’s also important for the recovery of the economy. Government spending in a recession sustains and creates jobs."

Coastal Mayors Cite Needs to Members of Congress​

“We know that these are difficult times for all levels of government and those who work to provide services to our citizens,” the mayors said in the letter to the senator. “We need your support for federal legislation to address this need so that our communities can move forward and so that an economic downturn is not prolonged.”​

Atkins: Economic Help Not a Partisan Issue

"The leaders of these communities shouldn’t have to choose between eliminating “essential” jobs — the jobs that have been the most important during COVID-19 — and balancing their budgets. This pandemic was not created by us, which is why we all need as much assistance as we can get to help us transition and ensure that all of our essential and much-needed services do not suffer further.​"

Hardy: Towns and Cities Need Resources to Lead​

"Make no mistake, if cities and towns are not made financially strong over the next several months, and are not able to make the same types of investments in personnel and infrastructure, the effects will ripple into the private-sector economy. Any recession will be extended. That’s what happened during the 2008 Great Recession.​"

Mountain Mayors Write Tillis, Burr for Revenue Help

“Cities and towns did not cause the situation that they now find themselves in; a global pandemic did. Their needs are neither Republican nor Democratic. Their needs are the needs of the citizens of our state, in small towns and in larger cities."

Scott: Municipal Services are Vital

"We can emerge from this time in a better place if cities and towns can be put in the best position possible to serve in their traditional role - as a provider of practical, everyday services and as a partner with our businesses in driving the economy forward."

NC Cities and the Pandemic, Southern City Magazine​

Across North Carolina towns, the water still flows, even while the rest of the world is stopped. Here’s how cities are operating through the coronavirus, from one moment to the next.​

Brown: Cities and Towns Can Lead the Economic Recovery

"As much as we worry about our municipal employees, this is about more than just potential layoffs. Local governments and their financial health are crucial to economic recovery. That is not just the opinion of locally elected officials. It is the opinion of economists who study these issues. Study after study looking at the aftermath of the 2008 Great Recession showed how struggling state and local governments, required to balance their budgets, slowed a national recovery because of their budget cuts.​"

​​Rockingham County Mayors: Help Cities, Do Not Prolong Economic Damage

"There is a lot that we do not know, but what we do know is that the buck stops with local government when it comes to providing services like public safety and public health that people depend on daily. To avoid prolonging the economic damage created by this crisis, local governments need help."

Read More​

The National Discussion​

National League of Cities: Cities are Essential​

NLC's homepage for the push for COVID-19 replacement revenues, including toolkits, guides and resources. 

Editorial: New Round of Federal Relief Needed

"The policy case for federal support is strong: in the pandemic, we are looking at an emergency that is the equivalent of 50 states worth of hurricanes fires and floods, lasting more than two years, with a very slow economic rebound on the “other side,” that leaves states, local governments, public employees and taxpayers all badly damaged.​"

Federal Reserve Chair says Municipal Relief Crucial to Economic Recovery​

“It will hold back the economic recovery if they continue to lay people off and if they continue to cut essential services,” (Fed Chair) Powell warned.

Guide to Federal Funding for Local Governments


US Treasury Guidance on CARES Act