White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs Update

White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs Update

Welcome to the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs local update. In this week’s update, President Obama nominates San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro to be Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary and current HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan to be Office of Management and Budget Director. He also discusses the positive economic impact that America’s public lands have on local communities, and the Administration launches the National Resource Network.

Keep an eye on your inbox, check out the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs website, and follow us on Twitter at @DavidAgnew44 for more information.

President Obama Nominates Mayor Julián Castro for HUD Secretary

President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, delivers remarks announcing his intent to nominate Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan as Office of Management and Budget Director and San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro to replace him, in the State Dining Room of the White House, May 23, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

On Friday, in the White House State Dining Room, President Obama nominated San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro as the next Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and current HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan to serve as the Director of the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

At the nomination, President Obama spoke about how Mayor Castro’s story exemplifies the American dream:

Julián’s grandmother came to this country from Mexico. She worked as a maid, worked as a cook, worked as a babysitter — whatever she had to do to keep a roof over her family’s head. And that’s because for her, and generations of Americans like her, a home is more than just a house. A home is a source of pride and security. It’s a place to raise a family and put down roots and build up savings for college or a business or retirement, or write a lifetime of memories. And maybe one day the kid grows up in that home and is able to go on to get a great education and become the Mayor of San Antonio, and become a member of the President’s Cabinet.

At the announcement, Mayor Castro shared his passion for cities and commitment to work with local officials:

After five years as mayor of my hometown, I know this much. We are in a century of cities. America’s cities are growing again, and housing is at the top of the agenda. I look forward to being part of a department that will help ensure that millions of Americans all across the country have the chance to get good, safe, affordable housing and to reach their American dreams. And if confirmed, I stand ready to assist you, Mr. President, your administration, and local officials across the country to ensure that we do housing right and that because of it more Americans achieve their dreams.

Watch video of the event and read full remarks from the President, Secretary Donovan, and Mayor Castro.

How Public Lands Help Local Economies

President Barack Obama signs a proclamation establishing the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in south-central New Mexico, at the Department of Interior in Washington, D.C., May 21, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Last Wednesday, President Obama designated the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks a National Monument. In the President’s remarks, he illustrated not only the importance of preserving the beauty of this region, but the history as well.

The President also stressed the positive economic impact that America’s public lands have on local communities:

It’s impossible to put a price on towering peaks and pristine forests and America’s cultural history, but we know that our national parks have an economic impact that extends beyond their boundaries. In 2012, hundreds of millions of recreational visits to public lands and waters generated over $50 billion for local communities, and supported nearly 900,000 jobs.

So whether they’re hiking or camping or fishing, visitors to our parks and public lands are not only enjoying the bounty of our natural resources, but also they’re promoting jobs and they’re promoting growth. And continuing to set aside federal land for outdoor recreation will drive critical revenue for those local communities, and preserve our pristine lands for generations to come.

Check out video from the event and read the President’s full remarks for more information on the Organ Mountain National Monument.

Launching the National Resource Network — 311 for Cities

Last Thursday, the Obama Administration announced the launch of the National Resource Network (the Network), a pilot program designed to serve as a “311 for Cities.” The program will allow communities nationwide to connect to a network of private and public sector experts that will provide local governments with strategic help on key economic issues and aid the turnaround of local economies.

The Network demonstrates the Obama Administration’s continued commitment to partnering with mayors, city managers, and other local government leaders to provide them with resources to help build ladders of opportunity and promote economic growth and prosperity for residents.

Starting this week, over 50 cities will have direct access to this “311 for Cities” resource, with the ability to receive expert assistance via the Network website. City officials will be able to log on and get best practices and advice from national experts on community development, economic development, operations, budget, and other key issues.

For more information on the National Resource Network, check out the blog from Secretary Donovan and David Agnew and visit nationalresourcenetwork.org.

Get Updates

For more information, visit the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs website, and sign up for additional updates.

If you know other local elected officials who would like to receive our updates, please encourage them to sign up on our contact page.

We welcome your thoughts and feedback at localgovernment@who.eop.gov.

Stay Connected