Congressman Bill Johnson hosted the first "Ohio Sixth District Mayors Day" earlier this month.
Mayors from throughout eastern and southeastern Ohio traveled to Washington, D.C., to meet with Johnson in an effort to develop closer relationships and for him to hear the concerns and ideas of mayors in the district.
Johnson, R-Ohio, said many local mayors expressed concern about unfunded federal mandates with which cities and villages are forced to comply. He said this issue is extremely important in an economy where many local governments are struggling to make ends meet.
Attending mayors received a detailed briefing and legislative update from Johnson, as well as an update on his work as a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee.
Johnson made it clear that local governments know the needs of their constituents better than federal bureaucrats in Washington and outlined what he is doing to empower local governments. Johnson also laid out his energy vision for America and Ohio.
"Right now in eastern and southeastern Ohio, we are seeing the beginnings of an economic boom when it comes to the development of domestic energy - especially with the Marcellus and Utica shale," Johnson said. "What America needs is a true 'all of the above' energy plan that embraces coal, nuclear and natural gas and oil while finding room for renewable and alternative sources of energy like wind and solar. Eastern and southeastern Ohio are vital to this energy plan."
"It was a great meeting with local government leaders from eastern and southeastern Ohio. Their input is so important to me because they understand best the issues facing residents along the river. This meeting was a great first step in strengthening productive working relationships with local mayors," Johnson said. "In the coming weeks, I will be expanding this dialogue to include county commissioners, county engineers, port authorities and other elected officials so that through comprehensive collaboration I can better serve the residents of eastern and southeastern Ohio."