July 13, 2021 – Today, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, Chair of Climate Mayors, led 146 Mayors from the Climate Mayors network in sending a letter to Congressional leadership calling for the passage of an infrastructure and economic recovery package that supports the critical work of America’s towns and cities to address climate change, create economic opportunity, and confront environmental injustice.
In the letter to Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Schumer, Minority Leader McCarthy, and Minority Leader McConnell, the Climate Mayors lay out their priorities for federal legislation, including:
- Prioritize and expand programs where funds flow directly to cities from the federal government.
- Prioritize local government-led processes for federal funds that flow to the states to improve inclusivity and accountability.
- Ensure that federal programs and funding prioritize disadvantaged communities and allow sufficient administrative and implementation flexibility to meet local needs.
- Ensure that federal spending is accompanied by workforce standards that prioritize job quality and equitable access to well-paying high road careers.
“Climate Mayors are committed to rebuilding stronger communities that address structural inequities, create opportunity for hard-working Americans, and tackle an increasingly destabilizing climate. But we cannot create sustainable and resilient cities on our own. We need federal action that includes targeted investments in American cities and towns to build out our nation’s critical infrastructure create a clean energy future that benefits all our communities,” said Mayor Turner.
“In Madison and in cities across the U.S., communities are facing the effects of our changing climate head-on, but we need support from Congress now to overcome barriers, build capacity, and scale solutions,” said Mayor Rhodes Conway, Climate Mayors Co-Chair. “Every town and city must invest in infrastructure and programs that help build resilience to a shifting climate and act immediately to mitigate against further harm. There is no time to waste; we need Congress to prioritize funding that gives local governments the ability to identify and act on the most effective ways to deploy resources to support resilience in our communities.”
“In Phoenix, we are focused on innovating solutions that protect all of our communities from the serious impacts a changing climate is having on our city,” said Mayor Kate Gallego, Climate Mayors Co-Chair. “Yet as severe as the heat is here in Phoenix, my colleagues are dealing with equally challenging problems like flooding in the Midwest or the increasingly damaging hurricanes on the East Coast. Cities face specific challenges unique to their socio-geographical areas, which means we need flexible funding from Congress to solve them. With adequate resources, Mayors and local governments across the U.S. are ready to implement the essential climate solutions that best fit our needs.”
In April, Climate Mayors released a forward-looking report summarizing the key takeaways from the National Dialogue On Green And Equitable Recovery Series and highlighting tangible solutions for a green and just economic recovery in cities across the United States. The report also makes the case for –and lays out how the federal government can be partners in –moving local climate priorities forward.
Climate Mayors and its work to accelerate local climate progress across the country is made possible with support by Bloomberg Philanthropies.
The full letter sent to Congressional leadership can be found HERE.
About Climate Mayors
Representing over 74 million Americans from 48 states, Climate Mayors is a peer-to-peer network of 476 U.S. city mayors who have committed to fighting climate change. Originally founded in 2014, the network’s ranks swelled to almost 400 mayors in response to the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement. Climate Mayors commit to taking ambitious action to meet each of their cities’ current climate goals, while working together towards achieving our national Paris targets. For more information, please visit WWW.CLIMATEMAYORS.ORG.
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