APA Testifies at Congressional Hearing on Building Resilient Communities

WASHINGTON, DC (March 13, 2019) — APA Legislative and Policy Committee member Jennifer Raitt testified before the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation and Housing and Urban Development (T-HUD) this morning.

Raitt, the director of planning and community development for the Town of Arlington, Massachusetts, spoke about the need for good planning, strategic investments, and strong federal-local partnerships can create safer and more resilient communities.

Jennifer Raitt Testifies before Congress on climate change and resilient communities.

APA Legislative and Policy Committee member Jennifer Raitt testifing before the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation and Housing and Urban Development.

During her testimony, Raitt called upon Congress to reject the administration’s budget proposal and to boost funding for federal programs, such as CDBG, HOME, Choice Neighborhoods, BUILD (formerly TIGER), transit capital grants, and the range of surface transportation programs. Increasing funding to these key federal programs will continue to advance resiliency and expand opportunity in the nation’s communities. She also urged Congress to make proven Department of Transportation (DOT) and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) programs even more impactful by improving evaluation and planning program mandates to better integrate resilience.

Improving the coordination of federal investments with local comprehrensive plans will heighten the impact of these efforts while avoiding waste, inefficiency, and compounding future losses from natural disasters. 

“APA and planners around the country are committed to creating just, healthy and prosperous communities that expand opportunity for all.” Jennifer Raitt.

Raitt concluded her remarks stating that planners have a significant and direct role in planning for community resilience. While resiliency strategies and plans will be crafted and implemented locally, there is an essential partnership between local communities and the federal government.

APA’s participation in today’s congressional hearing reflects the long-standing advocacy efforts the association has undertaken on behalf of its members and the profession.

Watch the full hearing:

Read Raitt’s written remarks.

Additional resources:

APA’s 2019 Legislative Priorities

APA Policy Guides

APA’s Hazards Planning Research Center

APA Foundation’s Disaster Recovery Grants

APA’s Resilience Roundtable Podcast

The American Planning Association is an independent, not-for-profit educational organization that provides vital leadership in creating great communities for all. APA and its professional institute, the American Institute of Certified Planners, are dedicated to advancing the profession of planning, offering better choices for where and how people work and live. The 42,000 APA members work in concert with community residents, civic leaders and business interests to create communities that enrich people's lives. Through its philanthropic work, APA’s Foundation helps to reduce economic and social barriers to good planning. APA has offices in Washington, D.C., and Chicago. Learn more at www.planning.org.

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Roberta Rewers, APA Communications Manager, 312-786-6395; rrewers@planning.org

March 13, 2019