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Viewpoints

A Recipe for Success: How the Hotel/Motel Tax Sweetens Local Tourism
September 3, 2015   |  Jim Sprouse, Executive Director, Georgia Hotel & Lodging Association
Georgia’s hotels are partners in the economic health of Georgia’s cities. The hotel/motel tax provides a foundation for a partnership between Georgia’s lo­cal governments and Georgia’s lodging industry. 

Tourism Elevates Georgia’s Communities Tourism Elevates Georgia’s Communities
September 3, 2015   |  Kevin Langston, Deputy Commissioner of Tourism, Georgia Department of Economic Development
Think of an industry that when cul­tivated and sustained, automatically creates jobs, improves quality of life, generates economic development and can completely revitalize a com­munity. That industry exists, and it is tourism. 

Collaborative Leadership Can Drive Success Collaborative Leadership Can Drive Success
September 3, 2015   |  Mike Bodker, GMA President
The key for us to continue to move forward in our respective cities, even with the uncertainty that comes with the election of new city of­ficials, is to understand that rather than a top-down approach to govern­ing, a collaborative environment is essential. 

Support Main Street with Updated Tax Policy Support Main Street with Updated Tax Policy
August 26, 2015   |  Mike Bodker, GMA President
Support of the Remote Transactions Parity Act is not about favoring our local businesses over those that sell their products online. Instead, it’s about ending an unequal and unfair tax treatment for online retailers which 1) distorts market forces, and 2) places an unfair tax burden on consumers who shop locally.

Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites Positioned to Thrive Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites Positioned to Thrive
August 5, 2015   |  Becky Kelley, Director, Parks, Recreation and Historic Sites Division, DNR
They are also great economic engines, bringing tourist dollars to local businesses. Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites have an annual economic impact of $562 million and create more than 8,000 jobs.

Innovation and Economics of Parks and Recreation in Your Local Community Innovation and Economics of Parks and Recreation in Your Local Community
August 5, 2015   |  Steve Card, Director, Dalton Parks and Recreation Department
Loyalty and passion are what we all want for the communities we serve. Loyalty is best described as residents’ general satisfaction with a place, the likelihood to recommend it to others and their outlook on the community’s future. Passion, in this sense, is best described as a connection to a place and the pride taken living there. Local Parks and Recreation play a key role in achieving these outcomes.

Membership Energy, Commitment Impresses During Annual Convention Membership Energy, Commitment Impresses During Annual Convention
August 5, 2015   |  Lamar Norton, GMA Executive Director
The energy is still around us and the meet­ing of leadership to guide your association continues to amaze me. The 2015 Annual Convention featured a new format, a new approach to our educational classes and en­ergized sessions throughout. The immediate feedback has been very positive from the membership.

Collaboration Can Bring About Lasting and Powerful Impacts Collaboration Can Bring About Lasting and Powerful Impacts
June 28, 2015
Those initiatives and endeavors that make the most lasting and powerful impact on the life of our communities are those that are based in a spirit of collaboration.

Public Art Helps Cities Be Memorable, Vibrant Places Public Art Helps Cities Be Memorable, Vibrant Places
June 5, 2015   |  Denise Brinson, Assistant City Manager, Economic & Community Development, City of Suwanee
Great  places  have  great  art. Art can establish a community’s identity. Can you image New Orleans without jazz? Chicago without the “Bean?” Or Paris without just about everything that makes it so great? These places—and so many more—are inextricably linked to their arts.

The Arts Mean Business The Arts Mean Business
June 5, 2015   |  Jay H. Dick, Senior Director of State and Local Government Affairs, Americans for the Arts
If your city had a new construction company move to town, this would be good news—more jobs, more economic activity and more tax revenues to be collected. How about if your city received funding from your state to widen a road? Again, you would probably welcome this news with open arms. Now, think about a new arts organization moving to town. Would you look at this group with the same economic lens that you used to look at the construction or transportation business?

Leadership Should be About Getting to Solutions Leadership Should be About Getting to Solutions
June 2, 2015   |  Keith Brady, GMA President
After more than 20 years in office, I’ve learned that being a leader isn’t about power or the attention that comes with being elected to political office. It’s much more pragmatic than that. As civic leadership expert Otis White recently wrote, “A leader is someone who helps people get where they want to go ... by seeing the opportunity for getting there.” If we look through that lens, I believe GMA exemplifies that type of leadership.

Town-Gown Partnerships Add Value to Communities Town-Gown Partnerships Add Value to Communities
May 5, 2015   |  Dr. Susanna L. Baxter
Georgia’s private, not-for-profit col­leges are valuable partners with communities across this great state. Not only do these colleges and uni­versities educate more than 76,000 diverse students, many come from other states and nations. The import­ing of students to Georgia brings welcome dollars to local businesses. But, that’s not the only way private colleges boost local economies. 

The United Voice of Georgia’s Cities Still Matters The United Voice of Georgia’s Cities Still Matters
May 4, 2015   |  Lamar Norton, GMA Executive Director
​We live in an ever-changing world, with tech­nology advancing and shaping society and our place within it. It’s not unusual these days to “discover” some new technology only to have it become obsolete as soon as you figure out how to use it! So within that framework, it is good to know that some things don’t change. 

The Georgia Cities Foundation: Helping to Create Vibrant Downtowns The Georgia Cities Foundation: Helping to Create Vibrant Downtowns
April 8, 2015   |  Mike Starr, President & CEO, The Georgia Cities Foundation
Since its inception in 1999, the Geor­gia Cities Foundation (GCF) has strived to serve as a catalyst for down­town revitalization. Our goal has been to promote economically sustainable projects and to build public-private partnerships that will help ensure the long-term health and economic vitality of Georgia’s downtown areas.

Wanted: Local Solutions and Leadership Wanted: Local Solutions and Leadership
April 8, 2015   |  Keith Brady, GMA President
People, regardless of their demographic or socioeconomic standing, or whether they live in large cities, suburbs, or small rural towns, are looking locally for those ideas and solutions that “improves quality-of-life for themselves and their communities.”

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