County Leaders Call for Action on Housing Affordability, Mental Health


Intergovernmental partnerships key to achieving solutions  

WASHINGTON – Today during a visit to Washington, D.C., representatives from the National Association of Counties (NACo) Large Urban Counties Caucus and Commission on Mental Health and Wellbeing urged action on housing affordability and mental health, advocating for county priorities and sharing best practice recommendations on Capitol Hill and with federal agencies.

“As frontline leaders, we see firsthand the impacts of federal policies on our communities and residents. Counties are addressing national crises – like housing affordability and mental health – at the local level, and we are uniquely positioned to strengthen our intergovernmental partnerships to achieve our shared goals,” said NACo President Mary Jo McGuire.  

The Large Urban County Caucus, chaired by Milwaukee County, Wis. Executive David Crowley, is comprised of counties with a population greater than 500,000. The group is focused on “pencil to shovel” partnerships in enhancing housing affordability, identifying effective strategies to foster public-private partnerships, overcoming common barriers to implementation, and exploring financing options and funding mechanisms. The group will tour Terwilliger Place, a housing development in Arlington County, Va.  

The Commission on Mental Health and Wellbeing, co-chaired by King County, Wash. Executive Dow Constantine and Los Angeles County, Calif. Supervisor Kathryn Barger, is advocating for policy priorities, including reauthorization of the SUPPORT Act. Prior to its expiration in September 2023, the SUPPORT Act was the largest congressional investment in overdose prevention. The group will also engage in a roundtable discussion with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on modernizing the National Guidelines for Behavioral Health Crisis Care to integrate county-driven approaches.  

For more information about NACo’s Large Urban Counties Caucus, click here. For more information about NACo’s Commission on Mental Health and Wellbeing, click here.  

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