2023 Cities United Summit

GMA's Cities United Summit will take place at the Hilton Atlanta from January 20-23, 2023.

Cities United Summit highlights include:

  • Invited special guests including Georgia’s top leaders.
  • More than six opportunities to engage directly with Georgia legislators.
  • The Capitol Connection Breakfast followed by a “Cities United” trip to the Gold Dome.
  • Unmatched training opportunities offered by the Harold F. Holtz Municipal Training Institute.

Contact Rodline Africo-Prado for questions regarding Cities United Summit at [email protected]

Venue: The 2023 GMA Cities United Summit will take place at the Atlanta Hilton and Towers.

The Capitol Connection Breakfast will take place at the hotel on Monday morning.

The Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the House will be invited to address attendees and, as usual, all members of the Georgia General Assembly will be invited to attend, providing a great opportunity for networking with state leaders. After breakfast, City officials will be encouraged to visit the Capitol to celebrate GMA Cities United Day at the Capitol. Shuttle service from the Atlanta Hilton to the Capitol will be provided available through the lunch hour.


All changes and cancellations must be submitted in writing to [email protected] Cancellations after December 31st will be assessed a $100 administrative fee. Cancellations after January 5th will not be eligible for refund.

When
1/20/2023 9:00 AM - 1/23/2023 12:00 PM
Eastern Standard Time
Where
Hilton Atlanta 255 Courtland St NE Atlanta, GA 30303 UNITED STATES
Sign in or create an account to register Last day to register is 1/19/2023
Event Contact
Rodline Africo-Prado - Phone: (678) 686-6302

Program

Friday, 20 January 2023

Description
(6-hour class) Is that a fact? How do I know? Data are critical to helping local leaders make wise and strategic decisions. Local governments have gigabytes of data but often don’t know how to use their data effectively or how to visualize and interpret the data they do have. This course focuses on the importance of teaching a basic understanding of data literacy geared towards the needs of local government officials. This course will expose officials to data literacy, storytelling, and performance management topics. Participants will receive tips, tools, and other resources for interacting, interpreting, and presenting data.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
0
9:30 AM
(3-hour class) This class provides a basic overview of the economic development process, with a focus on the strategies, resources and programs employed by the state of Georgia to assist communities in achieving success in today’s global economy. Topics such as community development building blocks, business development strategies, regional cooperation, and the role of local leadership in economic development are covered.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Spots available
34
9:30 AM
(6-hour class) Completion of the Certificate of Achievement is a pre-requisite. Making decisions within a single jurisdiction is complicated enough, but relatively simple compared to the complexity of decisions multiple jurisdictions must often make among themselves. In this class, participants explore first-hand some of the critical leadership challenges involved in collective decision making, such as: How should such decisions be made? What form should they take? How should they be governed, monitored and enforced? How should costs and benefits be allocated?
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
1
9:30 AM
(3-hour class) Annexation is an important and unique power of city governments. It often can be a difficult and complex undertaking. This class will describe the different methods of annexation permitted by Georgia law, the steps for zoning annexed territory, and handling county objections to annexation. Participants will discuss why cities annex property and the potential impacts of annexation to the cities, newly-annexed stakeholders, and the county government.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Spots available
12
9:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class is intended to serve as a follow-up to Municipal Finance I. Topics will address long-term budget requirements for capital asset renewal and replacement, capital improvements, pension and other employment benefit costs and compensated absences.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
12
9:30 AM
(3-hour class) The class gives municipal officials an overview of the fundamentals of local government taxation with an in-depth look at the two primary funding sources for local government in Georgia: property tax and sales tax. This class is designed to give participants an understanding of tax language and appropriate usage of revenues, preparing them to communicate tax issues to constituents and make prudent decisions related to expenditures.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Spots available
6
9:30 AM
(3-hour class) Public works services are fundamental to the operation of a city. This session introduces participants to the types of services provided through public works departments and the important role those services play in community health, quality of life and economic development.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Spots available
0
9:30 AM
(3-hour class) Recreation and park programs and facilities play an important role in creating a high quality of life for communities. They create public value by offering recreational activities, greenspace for relaxation and opportunities for improving the health of residents. However, recreation and park programs are sometimes seen as amenities that cities cannot afford. This session explores the role of recreation and parks in building community and economic development, and options for funding.
Time
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Spots available
8
9:30 AM
(6-hour class) The Georgia Service Delivery Act requires each county and its municipalities to develop and periodically update a service delivery strategy (SDS) that describes how services are provided and funded. SDS agreements must outline how local governments will minimize duplication of services and ensure tax equity in the provision and funding of services. Failure to maintain an updated SDS agreement results in sanctions including the loss of state grants, loans, and permits. This class reviews the components of an SDS agreement, examines tools for negotiation, provides opportunities to explore examples of existing SDS agreements, and provides strategies for establishing successful city/county partnerships. Participants work on a case study identifying services and calculating the financial impact of each service to determine tax equity.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
18
9:30 AM
(6-hour class) During times of natural or man-made disasters and pandemics, cities are often faced with the challenge of steering through the “storm,” continuing City business operations, and communicating effectively, to meet the basic needs of their community as well as managing the needs and demands of the on-going recovery operation.  While the initial focus following a major disaster is to respond to the life safety aspects of the emergency, multiple tasks will quickly emerge to face the local leadership team.  Is your City prepared for the organizational resiliency necessary to sustain regular services as well as emergency operations during the four distinct phases of a disaster?  What is the role of elected leaders in these scenarios? This course will define the various types of disasters, review the four phases of a disaster, and the planning and preparedness required for community resilience in responding to disasters, exploring methods for prioritizing crucial essential services, and recognizing the multiple impacts on the local economy, city services, and city staff.
Category
Training
Time
9:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
0
9:30 AM
Both three and six hour classes receive lunch on Friday.
Category
Training - Friday 3 and 6 Lunch
Time
11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Spots available
166
11:30 AM
(3-hour class) Funding local transportation projects is a complex process with many federal, state, regional and local stakeholders. Changing project requirements and shifting political priorities can further complicate the process. This class will help participants understand the full array of transportation funding options for road, bridge, transit, sidewalk, trail and bike lane projects that are available in Georgia. Information will be provided on the advantages/disadvantages of each funding option, limitations (if there are any), key partners and time frames for application and/or expenditure. Class discussion will include key components of project management, including public engagement, project design, right-of-way acquisition, public utility relocation, and construction start and conclusion. Additionally, a panel of transportation funding experts will help participants understand the importance of developing a comprehensive transportation funding plan based on sound process and best practices.
Category
Training
Time
1:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
25
1:30 PM
(3-hour class) There are approximately 79 million millennials in the U.S. today, according to Pew Research, and they are currently transforming American life, including the workforce, schools, housing, transportation and technology. This class is designed to help participants understand the economic, cultural and civic benefits and challenges to a city that is attractive to young professionals. The class includes discussion on the different generations who are currently in the workforce and what sets them apart. In small group sessions, participants will be asked to: express various traits they believe each generation possesses and identify their community’s existing assets that could attract young professionals. A panel discussion will provide participants with successful examples of public policy, engagement, promotion, lifestyle enhancement, and community design cities have used to attract and retain young professionals.
Category
Training
Time
1:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
1
1:30 PM
(3-hour class) Human Trafficking is a crime that can affect anyone. As a result, the role of local governments is crucial in providing an appropriate response to this multifaceted issue and protecting local communities. This course will introduce participants to the concept of human trafficking, Georgia’s response, and what role local governments play in this fight.
Category
Training
Time
1:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
31
1:30 PM
(3-hour class) Elected officials and city management are the “face” of a city’s commitment to information privacy and security. This class covers what municipal officials “need to know” about information privacy and security policies including: risk assessment, access controls, security provisions in contracts, disaster recovery/business continuity, workforce training and incident/breach readiness. Class attendees review actual municipal and county information privacy and security breaches. Participants also hear how to champion for the resources to secure city information and how to designate the city as a HIPAA “hybrid entity.”
Category
Training
Time
1:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
3
1:30 PM
(3-hour class) This class familiarizes municipal officials with Georgia’s open records law and the potential consequences for failing to adhere to it. Hypothetical scenarios are used to give participants a better understanding of their responsibilities and obligations for complying with these statutes. Records management and the requirements of the Georgia Records Act are reviewed as well as legal obligations for preserving records for litigation.
Category
Training
Time
1:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
4
1:30 PM

Saturday, 21 January 2023

Description
(6-hour class) ) This class will focus on how laws are created; what happens in the rulemaking process; what is “home rule”; how can city charters be amended; and what information cities need to be successful in the legislative session.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
21
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) It is important to learn about tourism’s benefit to our economy in creating jobs, attracting businesses, developing new attractions, bolstering new market segments, enhancing quality of life and inspiring creativity. This course will feature class discussions about what local officials can do to create a cohesive community tourism based economy through working with partners; policies that support tourism; navigating through crises, funding sources available for tourism projects; and best practices from around the state. Presentations of real-life success stories will enhance your learning experience and help you think about ways to build community capacity through tourism!
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
2
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class examines the importance of building effective working relationships with the media and the role the media plays in informing the public and shaping their opinion of municipal governments. Advice for repairing poor relationships is provided, along with insights on when and how to speak with reporters, especially during times of crisis. This class is limited to 40 participants.
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
0
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class is primarily directed at those who serve on Downtown Development Authorities, but it is open to all city officials. Topics include: management of downtown as a valuable resource; the role of the authority, board members and staff; DDA laws; and the day-to-day operations of a Downtown Development Authority. This class is limited to 50 participants.
Time
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Spots available
26
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) City officials are faced with myriad environmental challenges that affect quality of life, public health and economic vitality. This class explores some of the most pressing environmental issues Georgia’s cities currently face – such as water quality, water quantity, energy conservation and hazardous waste – and ways municipal officials are finding to solve them. The class focuses on projects such as green infrastructure, energy efficiency measures and brownfields redevelopment that promote both environmental sustainability as well as community revitalization. Additional topics include principles of “sustainability leadership,” how to get citizens engaged and how to communicate and promote a sustainability message. Excellence in Customer Service (3-HOUR CLASS) This class provides valuable information for elected officials and staff relating to the proper role that customer service plays in local government. Participants will explore ways to move from average customer service to excellent customer service. Participants examine internal policies and procedures that hamper and support customer service at its best. The class instructor guides officials in defining and communicating the customer service organizational culture of their respective cities.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
34
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) Completion of the Certificate of Achievement is a pre-requisite. Ethics is often seen as something that is lacking in public officials, and therefore must be imposed on them through laws and training. Ethics training may promote awareness and compliance, but it does not promote ethical excellence. In this class, participants explore the advantages and limitations of codified ethics; how values, morality, virtue, character, and obligations play out in everyday decision making; why ethical dilemmas arise and how we resolve them; virtues and temptations of leadership; and how public service constitutes a moral and ethical enterprise for public leaders. This class is limited to 35 participants.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
0
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class familiarizes municipal officials with the basic concepts of law enforcement. In addition to reviewing applicable laws, funding mechanisms and staffing models, the class addresses emerging public safety issues, trends and innovations.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
14
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class shows city leaders how they can exert meaningful control over how their community grows. Topics include economic and ecological considerations, protecting water quality, regulatory initiatives and regionalization. Promoting infill development and redevelopment, preserving land and capturing private investment are also covered.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
27
8:30 AM
(6 hour class) This class is intended to serve as a basic primer on municipal finance issues that all mayors, councilmembers and managers should understand. A discussion of the budget process, the revenue sources available to cities, purchasing policies and financing capital improvements is included in this general overview.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
0
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class provides an overview of the major sources of municipal authority and the limitations on that authority, including constitutional and statutory law. Municipal charters and ordinances are discussed and participants are encouraged to read their city’s charter before attending this class. How to enter into legal contracts is reviewed. This class also provides a basic foundation for understanding the liability and immunity of cities, elected officials and municipal employees. If time permits, this course may also address working with the city attorney.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
4
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) All organizations, institutions, associations, and jurisdictions must respond to change, either because they happen to change or change happens to them. This is why virtually every city and town engages in some form of what is commonly referred to as strategic planning. But having a strategic plan and thinking strategically are not the same. If they were, so many so-called strategic plans wouldn’t sit on the shelf. Municipal leaders must be able to engage colleagues, constituents, citizens, and their community in strategic thinking if they are to address not only the challenges facing them today, but also those of tomorrow. This class uses a strategic simulation that incorporates strategic thinking, visioning, and navigating to address the what, why, and how of strategic planning. Class participants work together in small groups to simulate a strategic process that includes an environmental scan, building scenarios of most likely and most preferred futures, identifying driving and restraining forces, conducting a gap analysis, identifying key themes, framing goals and strategies, and developing an action plan to guide how to navigate from today to tomorrow. This class is limited to 35 participants.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
0
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class examines the difficult choices municipal officials encounter in stimulating economic well-being, protecting public infrastructure investment and maintaining environmental integrity. It examines legal considerations for planning and zoning, the role of the mayor and council and practical steps for maintaining a comprehensive plan and effective zoning procedures. In addition, the class highlights issues, barriers and policy solutions associated with efforts to achieve desirable patterns of development.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
2
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) Municipal governments face many challenges today in delivering services to their citizens with resources that continue to diminish. These challenges have provided new opportunities for cities to work across jurisdictional boundaries to effectively support community and economic development efforts, as well as many other local projects and programs. This cooperation can be accomplished through informal and formal agreements, and partnerships may extend to public, non-profit and private sector entities. This class examines the concept of regional cooperation, tools for implementation, opportunities to explore best practices around the state and strategies for establishing successful regional partnerships.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
26
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) This class provides an overview of the tools and resources available to cities interested in effectively responding to neighborhood problems such as dilapidated and unsafe structures, unsightly property, junk automobiles, weeds, trash and other nuisances. Topics include Georgia’s Urban Redevelopment law, code enforcement and land bank authorities.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
5
8:30 AM
(6-hour class) Water quality and water quantity are of vital importance and can provide some of the most challenging issues facing all levels of government in Georgia. Planning to meet water needs on the local level while also considering the needs of those who share the resource can be difficult. In 2011, in response to the Georgia State-wide Water Management Plan, Regional Water Plans were adopted throughout the State that provided recommendations to help address water quality and quantity issues at myriad levels, across myriad sectors. This class provides background on that process, presents issues highlighted in the plans and discusses ways in which local governments can secure their water future. It also includes an overview of the regulatory processes related to water management and water planning.
Category
Training
Time
8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Spots available
33
8:30 AM
All training participants on Saturday should receive this lunch.
Category
Training - Saturday Meals
Time
11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Spots available
954
11:30 AM
The registration fee for each youth is $150 to cover three meal events, breaks, meeting materials and transportation to the Sunday night event and the Monday morning breakfast. Lunch and dinner on Sunday and breakfast on Monday morning are included in the registration fee.
Category
Youth
When
1/21/2023 2:00 PM - 1/23/2023 9:00 AM
Spots available
39
2:00 PM
The registration fee for each chaperone is $150 to cover three meal events, breaks, meeting materials and transportation to the Sunday night event and the Monday morning breakfast. Lunch and dinner on Sunday and breakfast on Monday morning are included in the registration fee.
Category
Youth
When
1/21/2023 2:00 PM - 1/23/2023 9:00 AM
Spots available
13
2:00 PM

Sunday, 22 January 2023

Description
Time
8:00 AM - 9:00 AM
Spots available
789
8:00 AM
Category
Conference
Time
12:15 PM - 2:15 PM
Spots available
191
12:15 PM
Category
Conference
Time
12:15 PM - 2:15 PM
Spots available
495
12:15 PM
Time
5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
5:30 PM

Monday, 23 January 2023

Description
Category
Conference
Time
7:00 AM - 9:00 AM
Spots available
495
7:00 AM
Category
Conference
Time
7:00 AM - 9:00 AM
Spots available
66
7:00 AM

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