Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Connect with Your Members of Congress during the Recess

Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Connect with Your Members of Congress during the Recess

Article excerpt

In the weeks ahead, members of Congress return home for a recess, which provides a great opportunity to connect with members of your delegation on your home turf and to remind them to support NLC's top advocacy priorities for cities and towns.

The House will be in recess from April 5 to April 16 for its Spring district work period and the Senate will be in recess from April 12 through April 16. Both reconvene on April 19. Most members of Congress return to their home states/districts during recesses specifically to connect with their constituents.

Remember, as a city official, you are an important constituent. You represent the same people your member of Congress does, and that gives you significant respect and clout. Of the thousands of messages that come into the office of a member of Congress each week, yours will be among the most relevant.

Home district meetings provide a very special opportunity to build or strengthen your relationships with your members of Congress. The environment is usually less frenetic than Capitol Hill with vote calls, committee meetings, and constant interruptions. In addition, every member of Congress specifically uses recesses to reconnect with the people and the issues that he or she represents. So, seize the opportunity!

Among the issues Congress will be considering in the near term are reauthorization of the transportation bill, important funding decisions about the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Internet tax legislation. Specifically, the National League of Cities is pressing for a six-year reauthorization bill at no less that $318 billion in funding. NLC also supports the provisions of the Hagel-Harkin amendment for the upcoming IDEA reauthorization bill. That amendment provides for annual funds for special education aimed at reaching funding at the authorized level for IDEA.

With respect to Internet legislation, NLC supports the Internet Access Tax Ban Extension and Improvement Act (S. …

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