(Friday, March 3, 2023) – Fabiola Stuyvesant, Commissioner for the City of Sunny Isles Beach, traveled to Washington, D.C., last month to meet with members of Florida’s congressional delegation and advocate for key federal issues that affect municipalities, including Sunny Isles Beach.
“I want to express my deepest gratitude to all the lawmakers, and their staff, that took the time to meet with our delegation. Especially to our Senators Rick Scott and Marco Rubio, who took the time not only to brief us but also to answer all of our questions”.
Commissioner Stuyvesant was joined by over 50 other city leaders from throughout the state in the FLC federal advocacy trip knows as the Federal Action Strike Team (FAST) Fly-In. FAST is responsible for advocating the League’s federal priorities to the Florida Congressional delegation.
“The League’s FAST Fly-In trip allows us to have in-person conversations with members of Florida’s congressional delegation and build relationships that will strengthen Florida,” said FLC President Jolien Caraballo, Vice Mayor for the City of Port St. Lucie. “When local, state and federal officials work together, our residents benefit and our communities thrive. We really appreciate the members of Congress meeting with us to discuss important issues impacting our local communities.”
During their time in the nation’s capital, local leaders advocated for reauthorizing the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and simplifying the federal infrastructure grants process. The group also focused its advocacy efforts on discussing key priority issues including cybersecurity funding, community development block grants (CDBGs), tax exemption for municipal bonds and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) loan interest relief.
“Our Federal Action Strike Team had a successful trip to Washington, with the largest group of attendees to date,” said FAST Chair Anne Gerwig, Mayor of the Village of Wellington. “Each participant brought a unique perspective to our meetings, which helped our congressional delegation better understand how the issues we discussed impact Florida’s cities. The direct communications with federal agencies, including the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Office of the National Cyber Director and FEMA will help our local communities access federal resources and their processes.”
Before heading to Capitol Hill, representatives from the FLC and National League of Cities (NLC) federal advocacy team provided a federal briefing. The group met with most members of Florida’s congressional delegation, including Senators Marco Rubio and Rick Scott.
FAST members also met with the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, where they heard directly from federal agency representatives on housing resources, infrastructure funding opportunities, cybersecurity and FEMA disaster recovery. Attendees were in Washington during the President’s State of the Union address.
Founded in 1922, the Florida League of Cities is the united voice for Florida’s municipal governments. Its goals are to promote local self-government and serve the needs of Florida’s cities, which are formed and governed by their citizens. The League believes in “Local Voices Making Local Choices,” which focuses on the impact citizens and city leaders have in improving Florida’s communities. For more information, visit flcities.com.