Association Addresses County Issues In Washington – Transylvania County, NC


January 6, 2020

Last month, Transylvania County Commissioner Page Lemel traveled to Washington, D.C., to attend the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners (NCACC) Board of Directors meeting and to discuss pressing county issues with North Carolina’s Congressional delegation and White House officials.

During the visit, Lemel also participated in a wreath-laying ceremony, presented by NCACC’s Executive Officers, at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington Cemetery.

“I am so grateful for the opportunity to work with the NCACC, as well as the National Association of County Commissioners, on issues that are important to our citizens,” said Lemel. “Additionally, having time to network with county commissioners from across the state during this time helped to educate me on ways I can do my job better.”

NCACC Board of Directors convened for regular business and received leadership reports, a financial report, a risk management update, and state and federal legislative updates.

Staff from the National Association of Counties (NACo) briefed the group on the latest developments on Capitol Hill on broadband issues, inmate medical care, workforce development and other county issues. The board also heard from NCACC President Kevin Austin about recent progress on his Pathways Initiative to help North Carolina youth navigate pathways toward meaningful careers.

After the Board meeting, the group attended a panel discussion hosted by the White House to discuss federal efforts to expand broadband access, and support for community revitalization and disaster recovery.

Anthony Foti, U.S. Department of Commerce; Chap Rupe, U.S. Department of Agriculture; Loren Smith, U.S. Department of Transportation; and Alfonso Costa, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development led a discussion about federal programs to improve access to high-speed internet and rural development.

Chris Pilkerton, acting administrator, U.S. Small Business Administration, and Mark Harvey, special assistant to the president and senior director for resilience, National Security Council, addressed community resilience and disaster recovery.

NCACC also hosted an event with North Carolina’s Congressional delegation, including U.S. Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis and U.S. Rep. Mark Meadows.

Commissioners discussed with the Congressional delegation the need to expand access to high-speed internet, support for veterans, and challenges related to community and workforce development and disaster recovery.

In addition, NCACC Board Members visited Arlington Cemetery to participate in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to honor the sacrifices of America’s veterans and that of their families.


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