CLARK COUNTY, Nev. — Julie Ehemann, Shelby County Commissioner, joined more than 3,000 county leaders July 12-15 in Clark County, Nev. at the 84th National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference and Exposition. Attendees adopted positions on pressing federal policies affecting counties and exchanged innovative solutions to challenges facing American communities.
“I truly appreciate the support counties receive by being engaged with NACo,” Ehemann said. “With the launch of the TestIt app that will bolster data for broadband expansion, to supporting the counties interests on the “Waters of the US” regulations, to addressing the mental health crisis in our jails through their Stepping Up Campaign, NACo is continually advocating on behalf of our communities. By being engaged I am able to help implement these programs in Shelby County.”
NACo 2018-2019 President Greg Cox unveiled NACo’s annual report recapping the year’s accomplishments, including several significant federal policy victories. Douglas County, Nebraska, Commissioner Mary Ann Borgeson was sworn in as NACo President. NACo membership elected Boone County, Kentucky, Judge/Executive Gary Moore as first vice president and DeKalb County, Georgia, Commissioner Larry Johnson as second vice president.
More than three dozen workshops and meetings explored topics including affordable housing, technology, reducing the number of mentally ill individuals in jails, the opioid epidemic, disaster preparedness and recovery and other topics important to counties across the country.
Ehemann serves on several committees within NACo including the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee, the Rural Action Caucus, and the NACo Board of Directors. During these sessions, there were discussions regarding support of local producers, assistance available to rural areas through USDA Rural Development, and current legislation including the proposed trade agreement USMCA, and a merit based immigration system.
“I was particularly interested in discussions held with other Commissioners to the pressures our farmers are seeing everywhere. Between the flooding, tariffs, and loss of milk contracts for our dairy producers, our farmers have been hit hard. The Commissioners were interested in solving these issues and showing support to our agricultural community in any way possible,” said Ehemann.
Notable speakers included Acting Administrator and General Counsel of the U.S. Small Business Administration Chris Pilkerton, Senior Vice President of U.S. Social Impact at Sesame Workshop Dr. Jeanette Betancourt and CEO of the Purpose Institute Roy Spence.
Conference delegates discussed federal policy and legislation on a wide range of key topics like transportation and infrastructure; rural and urban development; energy; federal public lands and active forest management; public safety; emergency preparedness and response; housing and community development; health and other topics.
At the conference’s conclusion, county leaders adopted the American County Platform, which sets NACo’s federal policy agenda for the coming year.