The National Association of Counties (NACo) today applauded President Trump and Congress for enacting an omnibus bill that invests in communities across the country.
The legislation includes historic levels of funding for public lands counties, augments efforts to revitalize America’s infrastructure, boosts support for public health and the fight against the opioid epidemic, increases justice and mental health grants, strengthens counties’ ability to prepare for and respond to disasters and increases investments in elections security.
“We thank President Trump and the bipartisan group of our allies on Capitol Hill who worked with us to invest in counties and our residents,” said NACo Executive Director Matthew Chase. “We are pleased to see legislation that recognizes the important federal-state-local partnership. These federal investments represent a major step forward for counties working to build stronger communities. Whether it’s infrastructure or the opioid epidemic, public health and safety, community development or elections administration, counties are on the front lines of delivering services to residents.”
Here are some highlights important to counties from the 2018 omnibus legislation:
- Secure Rural Schools program reauthorized for FY 2017 and FY 2018
- Payments in Lieu of Taxes program fully funded at $530 million, an historic level, for FY 2018
- $10 billion in new funding for infrastructure programs
- $2 billion increase in overall support to fight the opioid epidemic
- Billions in new funding to support disaster preparedness and recovery
- $380 million for election equipment upgrades and other related election assistance that will strengthen election security
County governments build and maintain 46 percent of public road miles, 38 percent of America’s bridges and 78 percent of all public transportation systems. Counties operate more than 1,900 public health departments and 900 hospitals. Counties also employ more than 870,000 justice and public safety personnel and run 91 percent of America’s jails. Every two years, counties oversee more than 104,000 polling places and coordinate more than 648,000 poll workers for elections for local, state and federal offices.
“Every day, counties provide the services that keep local economies humming and hundreds of millions of residents happy, healthy and safe,” said Chase. “Today, we applaud leaders in Congress and President Trump for stepping up to the plate, and we look forward to continuing to work with them as we pursue a better future for counties across the country.”
To view a video of NACo Executive Director Matthew Chase outlining omnibus highlights for counties, click here.
To view the NACo full analysis of the omnibus, click here.
The National Association of Counties (NACo) unites America’s 3,069 county governments. Founded in 1935, NACo brings county officials together to advocate with a collective voice on national policy, exchange ideas and build new leadership skills, pursue transformational county solutions, enrich the public’s understanding of county government and exercise exemplary leadership in public service.
Contact: Fred Wong, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202.942.4271