NACo President Glen Whitley issued the following statement to counties on Veterans Day regarding the April 2011 celebration of National County Government Month:
"I am pleased to announce on this Veterans Day that the April 2011 theme for National County Government Month (NCGM) is Serving Our Veterans, Armed Forces and Their Families.
"Since 1991, NACo has encouraged counties to actively promote county government services and programs. Formerly National County Government Week, the designation was expanded to a full month to offer counties more opportunities to participate. Counties aren’t expected to hold public awareness activities throughout the month, but can schedule activities any time during the month.
"As county officials, we know that America’s counties provide essential programs and services to communities, but unfortunately many Americans do not. National County Government Month in conjunction with my County Government Works presidential initiative are terrific opportunities to educate the public and our partners in state and federal government about the responsibilities counties have and the programs and services counties provide.
"Counties are encouraged to link this year’s theme — Serving Our Veterans, Armed Forces and Their Families — to as many National County Government Month activities as possible. Popular events include holding public tours of county facilities; talking to students, community organizations and business leaders about county programs and services; holding essay and art contests; and sponsoring County Family Day events on the Courthouse grounds. You can hold media events, write newspaper columns, or be a guest on local radio and TV shows to discuss new county programs or highlight existing ones.
"This year’s National County Government Month theme is important and timely as more veterans, military service members and their families are turning to their county government for services. In addition to my County Government Works initiative, I created the "Veterans and Military Service Task Force" to engage NACo members to develop and highlight best practices and policies to promote innovative programs, services and benefits.
"To assist counties, a booklet will be available from NACo in early 2011 will provide ideas for the variety of ways counties can celebrate National County Government Month. Many of these ideas and more are already available in the County Government Works section of the NACo website.
"I know you are proud of your county’s programs and services and the men and women who deliver them. Start planning today to celebrate National County Government Month and participate in my County Government Works initiative."
For more information about NCGM, County Government Works, or the Veterans and Military Service Task Force, visit www.naco.org.