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Montrose City Manager Bill Bell has been appointed to the International City/County Management Association’s Governmental Affairs & Policy Committee, the city announced in a press release Tuesday.

The International City/County Management Association (ICMA) is a worldwide organization that includes city and county managers and other employees who serve local governments. The association’s Governmental Affairs & Policy Committee (GAPC) is comprised of ICMA members tasked with deciphering current and proposed federal and state legislation for impacts on local governments.

In October, Bell attended his first committee meeting while attending the ICMA Annual Conference in Nashville. Bell was appointed by ICMA President Jane Brautigam, who serves as the city manager of Boulde. Brautigam is the association’s president for the 2019-2020 term.

“I am very proud of this opportunity to represent Montrose and other Colorado communities as a member of the GAPC to discuss the future of local government worldwide,” Bell said. “Studying the impact of past practices within local government is the only way to ensure that we are ready to face the ever-growing complexities of governance as we move into the future.”

Bruatigam appointed Bell for a term of three years; the committee provides advice on federal and state policies and regulatory issues and serves as a “sounding board” for questions affecting local governments, she said.

ICMA identifies long-term trends and policy issues’ affecting local government in areas like infrastructure, cyber security, and intergovernmental relations and then prepares written analysis for city and county governments to consider.

ICMA participates in coalitions with state and local government organizations to support policy initiatives that directly impact communities around the country.

“We had over 5,000 attendees at the ICMA Annual Conference, with local government managers and assistant managers from all over the world participating in educational sessions to learn more about the emerging challenges facing local governments and to study the best practices being implemented in cities across the globe,” Bell said.

Working with state and national organizations that represent cities and counties, ICMA brings its professional management voice into national policy debates, regulatory matters, and problem-solving discussions with federal government leaders.

By studying policies in tax-exempt financing, revenue diversification (due to shrinking federal and state resources), pension funding, managing health care costs, climate change and energy conservation, regionalism and shared services, immigration reform, and reintegrating veterans, Bell said solutions can be created to improve services on a local level.

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