This article appears in the January 2018 issue of the Georgia's Cities newspaper.
The 2018 Mayors’ Day conference will again take place at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis from Jan. 19-22. Participants will have opportunities to network, complete training classes and engage in legislative policy discussion and meetings. Mayors’ Day participants will have access to an exclusive gubernatorial debate on Monday, Jan. 22 during the 7:30 a.m. Capitol Connection: Legislative Networking Breakfast. On Sunday, Jan. 21, GMA will also host lieutenant governor candidate debates. The Democratic debate will be from 3:00-3:45 p.m. and the Republican debate will be from 4-5 p.m. with a reception to follow from 5-6 p.m.
“The informative debates serve GMA’s larger 2018 Connect campaign, which is an interactive online platform that keeps Georgia’s cities connected to the Gold Dome,” said GMA’s Executive Director Larry Hanson. “The discussion topics and questions we’ve prepared for the candidates will address issues our member cities face on a daily basis.”
For the third year, youth leadership groups from across the state are invited to attend Mayors’ Day. These youth representatives will hear from a panel of municipal, state and non-profit professionals on Saturday afternoon. The students will also hear from Youth Advocate Al Duncan, who will share his “Duncan’s Nuggets” with the group on Sunday morning. Cities interested in their youth group attending Mayors’ Day should contact Janice Eidson
In addition, GMA will offer expanded training opportunities, with five 3-hour training classes on Friday, Jan. 19, including Entrepreneur Friendly Cities and Economics of Education. Governing the Commons: Collective Decision Making in Complex Systems class will also be available on Friday to those holding a Certificate of Achievement.
On Saturday, Jan. 20, 13 six-hour courses will be offered along with a six-hour Clerks Certification Course. Training classes on Saturday are from 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. New courses offered include Service Delivery Strategy—Efficiency & Tax Equity, Capital Improvement Program, and Current Issues Class: Workforce Development.
GMA is also offering five 3-hour classes on Monday from 11 a.m. -2:30 p.m., following the Legislative Networking Breakfast. Monday training courses include new courses, Current Issues Class: Understanding, Funding and Fighting the New Face of Homelessness in Georgia and Capital Improvement Programs.
The GMA Board of Directors will hold an open meeting on Saturday, from 3:30-5 p.m. Policy committees will be offered during two time slots this year, allowing attendees to participate in at least two committee meetings.
Events on Sunday, Jan. 22, include a 7 a.m. worship service, a Federal Policy Council meeting, orientation for new attendees and the policy committee meetings. The Legislative Policy Council will meet from 1:45-2:30 p.m.
The final day of Mayors’ Day, Monday, Jan. 22 will include the much-anticipated Capitol Connection: Legislative Networking Breakfast from 7:30-10:30 a.m. GMA urges city officials to invite their House and Senate members to sit with them.
City officials are also encouraged to keep the conversations going after the breakfast by visiting the Georgia Capitol and/or treating their legislators to lunch.