Why HUD’s Sustainable Communities Initiative Means Local Jobs and Economic Development

Posted on: March 23rd, 2012 by Kathy Nothstine

On March 21, NADO hosted a briefing, “Why HUD’s Sustainable Communities Initiative Means Local Jobs and Economic Development,” co-sponsored by Senator Robert Menendez’s (D-NJ) office.

In an effort to foster the creation and implementation of regional development strategies, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) established a new Office of Sustainable Housing and Communities (http://portal NULL.hud NULL.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/program_offices/sustainable_housing_communities) to provide seed capital and technical assistance for local governments, nonprofits, and private sector leaders to join forces to pursue new community and economic development opportunities.  The initiative is driven and controlled by local elected officials, in partnership with other local private sector, educational, and nonprofit partners.  It is about using public sector resources more effectively, fostering interagency and intergovernmental collaboration, and improving local conditions for long-term economic growth.

During this congressional briefing, HUD grantees from northern Maine, south Florida and the multi-state region of Memphis discussed how their coalitions are working to improve local conditions for job creation and economic development.

Joe C. McKinney, Executive Director of the Land-of-Sky Regional Council (http://www NULL.landofsky NULL.org/) (Asheville, NC) and NADO Board Member, facilitated the briefing.  Land-of-Sky Regional Council is coordinating GroWNC (http://www NULL.gro-wnc NULL.org/), Western North Carolina’s regional planning process. Guest presenters included: 

  • Shelley Poticha, Director for the Office of Sustainable Housing and Communities
    • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (Washington, DC)
  • Northern Maine Development Commission (http://www NULL.nmdc NULL.org/) (Caribou, ME)
    • Michael Eisensmith, Director of Regional Planning
    • Ryan Pelletier, Director of Economic and Workforce Development
  • South Florida Regional Planning Council (http://www NULL.sfrpc NULL.com/) (Hollywood, FL)
    • James F. Murley, Executive Director
  • Greater Memphis Chamber of Commerce (http://www NULL.memphischamber NULL.com/) (Memphis, TN)
    • Dexter Muller, Senior Vice President

To view a copy of the presentation, click here.

written by Jennifer Walsh, NADO Associate Legislative Director

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