Category: Economic Development

Why Washington Should Invest in Community Development Block Grants

From large metropolitan centers to rural villages, investment matters. Even the tiniest of contributions in our communities can make all the difference. In low and moderate-income (LMI) areas, where private investment rarely flows without public incentives, federal investment can make all the difference. For many members of Congress, the question is not whether federal investment

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In Indianapolis, Reviving a Sleepy Neighborhood

Don’t sleep on Naptown. Indianapolis was once known for its quiet evenings and small-town aura in a big city, hence the city’s nickname—Naptown. While it was once considered an insult, today the nickname “Naptown” has reclaimed some of it’s original flare (the name originated from the 1920’s jazz “Naptown sound”), as the city has transformed from what

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What Mayors Can Do to Grow Young Businesses in Their Communities

Can a conference jumpstart a national movement of city officials supporting local entrepreneurs? It can if national support is connected to local commitments to action. Last month at the Mayor’s Conference for Entrepreneurship, 65 mayors committed to specific policies, programs, and practices that will provide support and resources to those in their communities starting a

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Growing Entrepreneurs, 1 Million Cups at a Time

In my twelve-year tenure as the mayor of Little Rock, Arkansas, only a handful of topics on mayors and cities captured the national attention in the same way as last year’s discussion on Amazon and their decision to open a competition among cities for a second headquarters. The best part of being mayor is the

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Why Legacy Cities Matter for America’s Future

The neighborhood where I grew up, and where I still live today, has seen it all. Settled by German and Irish immigrants in the early 1800s, the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood in Cleveland’s lower West side soon became a hub for people drawn to jobs created by the bustling factories sprouting along the Erie Canal. As canals

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Helping Cities Find Equitable Ways to Assess and Reform Fines and Fees

The National League of Cities (NLC) is assisting six member cities to assess and reform their use of local fines and fees and develop equitable collections strategies as part of the new Cities Addressing Fines and Fees Equitably (CAFFE) technical assistance and grant initiative. Cities chosen for the CAFFE cohort include: Aurora, Colorado; Baton Rouge,

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America’s Fastest Growing Cities Are Becoming More Diverse, But Face Rising Inequity

Ninety-eight percent of growth in the hundred largest cities since 2000 was from growth in minority populations. A Brookings Institution analysis of the 2011- 2015 American Community Survey found that despite this increased diversity in cities, racial segregation has only moderately declined. Dominantly white neighborhoods in cities were 79 percent white in 2000 and 72

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Reversing the Residual Effects of Redlining

A process beginning in the 1930s, redlining describes how banks and government agencies discriminated by race in determinations for federally-backed mortgages. At the March Congressional City Conference, local leaders used redlining maps of Baltimore and Muskegon, Mich. to examine the intersection between racial equity and affordable housing. “Housing is a key priority for NLC and

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The Future of Work Begins with a City’s Youngest Residents

As city leaders across the country develop strategies to prepare residents for changing job trends, here is one strategy you might not have considered: early childhood education. While young children may seem a far cry from our workforce, there are several reasons why any city leader preparing for the future of work in their communities

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