Pensacola Mayor Grover Robinson has been named to a task force charged with developing a platform, plan and partnership for the 2020 presidential election and beyond.
Set up by the National League of Cities and announced at its summit conference in San Antonio, the “Leading Together 2020 Cities Agenda” will focus on priorities important to cities and communities throughout the United States. Robinson discussed it at his weekly news conference at City Hall.
“They have asked all of us, then when we came home from the League of Cities meeting to, whenever we have the opportunity on the podium, to make people aware of what the League is looking for,” said the mayor.
Robinson joined the Task Force last month, joining 33 other local elected officials from across the country – Democrat and Republican.
“It’s a bipartisan effort working together to create initiatives that we would like all of the 2020 presidential candidates – and whoever – is the winner – that they will look to institute these things within the first 100 days,” said Robinson. “Or begin to put plans together for working together with cities.”
Cities, contends the mayor, are where the majority of Americans live, and often are the places where the most nonpartisan, logical way to “put things together.” The League, through the task force, is working on a four-point plan to be implemented in those first 100 days.
“One – building sustainable infrastructure;” said Robinson. “Two – creating a skilled workforce, when is dealing with workforce training and education. Three – ending housing instability and homelessness, and four – reduction of gun violence. There are things that I don’t believe are Democrat or Republican; they are simply things that cities want.”
And it’s not just the current or future occupant of the White House the League is calling out to help implement the plan. Robinson says they’re also reaching out to those who are running for the job.
“We hope every candidate will make a commitment to these things; and begin to work for with cities,” the mayor said. “This is our whole idea of what we’d like to do, and we want to come out to the press in our respective areas and ask them to look into these things. Because I think these are things that all of us would want. And I think they’ll make for a better community and a better United States.”
The Cities Agenda also highlights shared values such as respect, partnership, inclusion and accountability. The 2020 Presidential Election Task Force is calling for presidential candidates’ endorsements.
“United in belief that our country is strongest when levels of government work together to protect and advance the priorities of America’s communities and their residents,” said Robinson. “We think that’s the message we want to send from the cities – is how we work with federal agencies. And we hope that every candidate will sign on to that agenda.”
One example offered by the mayor is a news conference Wednesday morning, on “Protect Pensacola” – another task force charged with studying gun-related crime and involving representatives from local, state, and federal agencies.
“We’ll be there with all of the people that have been participating in this gun task force over the last 90 days, and they’ll be discussing what’s been happening with it,” said Robinson. “From that standpoint, we have talked about some things that we want to do going forward; that will be talked about in the press conference.”
To those looking at the League’s agenda and thinking “this will help Pensacola,” the mayor said it would help all cities, which are dealing with the same issues.
“Right now it’s amazing to me how many [cities] I talk to regardless of region – big or small,” said Robinson. “We’re one of the smallest cities on that task force, but there were some very large cities and some smaller cities like us. We all tend to be touched by the same things.”
More information is available at www.nlc.org/citiesagenda.