Executive Director's Column
Webb-National Press Club
Webb-National Press Club
Conference President Denver Mayor Wellington E. Webb stood before the national press at the National Press Club on November 23 and said "Al, Bill, George W., John and even Steve - the mayors have a plan also - and I encourage you to embrace this plan as part of your campaign agendas and I encourage the public and the media to recognize that the 21st Century is a century of cities."
Mayor Webb than announced a ten-point agenda for the next President and the new Congress.
Mayor Webb's plan will be widely distributed nationally. It is being forwarded to the different camps of Al, Bill, George W., John and even Steve. At the WTO meeting in Seattle just concluded it was discussed. This week in Los Angeles at The National League of Cities annual meeting he addresses thousands. How well is it being received? At a National League of Cities function, Omaha Mayor Hal Daub, Chair of the Republican Mayors group said, before I could mention it, "Hey, I like Webb's ten point plan. It got good play in the Omaha papers."
Mayor Webb's vision is simple: get as many groups as you can muster around this agenda and go for it. From day one, even before he was sworn in as our President in June, he announced that good policy makes good politics. As he moves our agenda forward with our allies along side of him, he will make the difference as to whether or not we, and our nation come together to finally reverse the anti city and anti urban trends that began as early as the Thomas Jefferson Administration. His vision, his political effort, is to change the way Washington - and the public - view local elected officials and our metro areas. He continues to hammer home the point "that candidates for President must understand that the American economy is not being driven by the federal government or the 50 states for that matter." He drives the point home that metro economies often exceed state economies. He quotes our recent USCM/NACo/Standard & Poors/DRI Study which shows the economic output of the 10 largest city/county metro areas exceeds the combined output of 31 states. Mayor Webb further says, "And it is the mayors that are the CEOs of their cities - they are the ones promoting economic development, building arenas, enticing business and creating jobs."
He's making his point, he's on top of his game and it's catching on.
First Meeting Of Locals In The Millennium
As we approach the millennium in a few days, we look at a century in front of us that Mayor Webb says will be the century of cities. Cities have come a long way over the past few years. Recently at Harvard University at the JFK School of Politics the Mayors Leadership Institute for new mayors took place. I told all the new mayors present, that they are lucky and fortunate to be mayors today. We are back - big time - and we're going for even bigger and better opportunities as we come together for the first national meeting of local officials of the new millennium at our January Winter Meeting. As mayors of the USA, we urge all of you to join Mayor Webb in Washington, January 26-28, 2000 at The Capital Hilton. As we move forward, onward and upward, we need you here with us. So celebrate the New Year, the New Millennium and come to Washington, D.C. where you should be - with the nation's mayors working with our President, Denver Mayor Wellington E. Webb to help him place our agenda before the Presidential candidates, the new Congress, the business community, the media and the American public in general.