APA 2021 Policy and Advocacy Conference


September 29–30, 2021 | 10 a.m.– 6 p.m. EDT | Virtual

Policy and Advocacy Conference Program Now Available

The APA Policy and Advocacy Conference schedule has arrived!

Check out the full schedule of sessions and speakers now to see why you can’t miss these two days packed with insights on policies and pending legislation that will impact your work, brought to you by experts, legislators, and leaders of change.

Once you register for the conference, you’ll have access to a full-featured digital conference experience with your own personalized schedule, access to live sessions and keynotes, and virtual networking events.

View the Program


Wednesday, September 29
Day 1
Day 1

The New Direction of Federal Infrastructure Policy
As Congress nears passage of landmark infrastructure legislation, find out how the U.S. Department of Transportation is changing programs, supporting recovery, and preparing for reauthorization. Hear where the federal infrastructure agenda is headed and plans to address priorities such as equity, resilience, and safety.

Recovery, Reauthorization, and Reconciliation
The Senate has passed sweeping infrastructure legislation, and a budget bill with critical planning implications is pending in Congress. The Administration continues with implementation of recovery legislation. Get the latest insights on where things stand, what's next, and what it means for your work and your community.

Congressional Keynote
Hear leading members of Congress discuss critical pending planning legislation related to infrastructure, housing, resiliency, and climate change.

Planners' Day Congressional Meetings
Be a part of building the momentum in Congress for the planning agenda. Participate in virtual meetings with your congressional representatives to discuss critical planning issues and the latest policy developments on Capitol Hill that will affect your community.

Policies for the Future of Mobility
Rapid changes in mobility technology – from micromobility to advanced air mobility to EVs – have the potential to transform planning and fundamentally change transportation and communities. Policymakers are crafting regulations and approaches to adapt. Discover how states are tackling this challenge, lessons from new pilot initiatives, and how federal programs can help local planners lead the way.

Reconnecting Communities
The Reconnecting Communities program is a new initiative in the infrastructure bill that funds planning that addresses past transportation decisions that fractured, displaced, and segregated communities. Find out the latest on this major new transportation equity initiative and related state and federal policy shifts.

New Fronts in Tackling the Climate Crisis
Later this fall, world leaders will gather for the next global meeting on climate change. As new international standards evolve, local planners are working to meet climate and resiliency targets, and Congress and the Administration aim to advance critical new programs. Find out the latest on new policies and plans and how to navigate the politics of climate change.

Climate, Equity, and Environmental Justice in the Biden Administration
During the presidential transition, the new Administration made equity and climate two of their four priority areas, and over the last nine months the administration has released Executive Orders, new regulations, and guidance aimed at climate, equity, and environmental justice. Experts discuss what has changed in critical planning programs and what planners can expect as officials move to implementation of new policies.

Planners' Day on Capitol Hill Virtual Celebration

Thursday, September 30
Day 2
Day 2

Land Use Law Update
The legal landscape for planning is always changing. Leading land use attorneys will highlight the amicus curiae work of APA and detail the court cases shaping your work, including a new sign regulation case headed to the U.S. Supreme Court and an array of cases touching on key planning issues.

Promoting City Innovation
As cities focus on recovery, new opportunities are present for reinvention. Public and private sector experts will take stock of the smart cities movement and policy options for connected infrastructure, new planning technologies, and charging stations. Find out how federal policy can support local implementation and how local leaders are ensuring new technologies meet the needs of communities.

The Future of Zoning: Burnham Forum
The nation confronts an ongoing housing crisis and a major reckoning about the regulations that shape housing markets and communities. Conversations about the impact of zoning on housing affordability and equitable access to opportunity are happening at all levels of government. The Burnham Forum will examine the forces driving housing and zoning reform, the impact of recent innovations, and ideas for how policymakers can craft new ways of planning and regulating housing.

Winning Strategies for State Zoning Reform
States are on the frontlines of zoning reform. Parking minimums, ADUs, and zoning are major issues in state legislatures. New legislation has been passed in Oregon, Massachusetts, and Connecticut and debated across the country. Find out what's being done, the implications for planning, and successful legislative and communication approaches for planners.

Planners Leading Local Housing Reform
Cities and counties are innovating in housing planning and local code reform. Hear directly from city leaders and planners how new plans are meeting new needs and how planners are leading reform. These leaders detail how critical changes to codes and zoning are being implemented and how to navigate the challenging politics of reform.

Promoting Accessory Dwelling Unit Reform
States and communities across the nation have been engaged in major reform related to accessory dwelling units (ADUs). Changes for ADUs are an important part of addressing the housing crisis and advancing zoning reform. AARP, in consultation with APA and other groups, has released new model state and local ADU codes. Discover what's being tried and how planners are leading ADU reform efforts.

Outlook for Housing and Our Economic Future
Housing and recovery remain critical challenges facing communities. The Biden Administration has made housing a significant priority for recovery, reinvention, and opportunity for all. Hear about critical new policies and programs, including efforts to support state and local zoning reform. Inform your planning with essential intelligence and insights from leading Washington policymakers.

Are You Ready?

Register now for access to all live conference activities.