2018 Legislative Conference Brings Attention to City Issues

A total of 137 city officials from 78 cities attended the conference on March 21-22.
(Published Mar 26, 2018)

Cities of all sizes from across the state—from Moorhead (population 42,492) to Keister (population 501)—attended the League’s 2018 Legislative Conference last week to advocate for city issues and make connections with state legislators about city priorities.

Many city officials came early to participate in an advocacy 101 session on the afternoon of Wednesday, March 21, and several more joined this session online. A recording of the advocacy session is also available, along with advocacy resources.

Attendees also had the opportunity to tour the recently renovated Capitol and attend a reception with legislators in the Rathskeller Café on Wednesday. Events on Thursday, March 22, were held at a new location this year, Christ on Capitol Hill Lutheran Church. The proximity of this meeting location to the Capitol buildings made it easier for attendees and legislators to connect throughout the day, and the larger meeting space better accommodated the number of city officials participating in this event.

On Thursday morning, a series of educational sessions helped attendees prepare for legislative visits later in the day. The program included two legislative panels with Reps. Tim O’Driscoll and Mike Freiberg, and Sens. Patricia Torres Ray, Jerry Relph, and Dave Senjem; a panel discussion with Briana Bierschbach (MinnPost), Patrick Coolican (Star Tribune), and Brian Bakst (MPR) about their take on Minnesota government and politics; an update from the League’s intergovernmental relations staff on the status of city priorities; a briefing from Executive Director David Unmacht on federal relations work; and time for city officials to connect with one another. Members then went to meet with legislators to share their city stories and talk about the impact of various legislative proposals on cities.

Thanks to the 137 city officials from 78 cities who participated in the conference, and to other city officials who have traveled to the state Capitol this session to advocate for city priorities!

Check out Twitter to see photos from the day on the League of Minnesota Cities account and from attendees who used the hashtag #MnCities.

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