Coconino County supervisors receive appointments to National Association of Counties

Archuleta, Ryan, Fowler and Metzger to shape national agenda

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Four Coconino County Supervisors are poised to have input on key issues facing the nation's counties after being appointed to board and subcommittee positions with the National Association of Counties (NACo).

District 2 Supervisor Liz Archuleta was given an at-large appointment by incoming NACo President Chris Rodgers to the board of directors during the organization's 77th Annual Conference and Exposition in Pittsburg last month. District 3 Supervisor Matt Ryan was named as vice chairman of NACo's Mass Transit and Railroad Subcommittee; District 4 Supervisor Mandy Metzger was named to the group's Rural Action Caucus Steering Committee; and District 5 Supervisor Lena Fowler was named as chairwoman of the County and Tribal Relations Subcommittee.

"I am honored to have been entrusted with the opportunity to work with my fellow county officials from around the country as an at-large member to the NACo Board of Directors," said Archuleta, who also serves as vice chairwoman on the Board of Supervisors. "In addition to helping tackle issues facing our nation's counties, Coconino County is guaranteed a voice on the national stage."

In addition to an at-large appointment to the NACo Board of Directors, Archuleta was also appointed to the Public Lands Steering Committee.

NACo is an organization comprised of county officials from around the United States. Founded in 1935, the group provides services to the nation's 3,068 counties, acts as a unified voice before the federal government and assists counties in finding innovative solutions to help save taxpayer money. The task is aided through the formation of multiple subcommittees, which offer policy recommendations to the NACo Board.

Fowler will return as chairwoman of the County and Tribal Government Relationships Subcommittee, which is part of the Finance and Intergovernmental Affairs Steering Committee. While the group is responsible for all matters pertaining to various financial resources issues affecting counties, the subcommittee is charged with offering policy recommendations to address issues impacting the country's Native American tribes.

"With nearly 40 percent of Coconino County being comprised of Native American land, our county and its tribes are greatly impacted by decisions made on the national level," Fowler said. "I am grateful to continue to work toward resolving potential conflicts between our nation's tribes and counties."

In 2009, Supervisor Fowler led the charge for the Department of Interior to assign a liaison from the Bureau of Indian Affairs assigned to NACo to assist with deliberations between federal, tribal and county governments.

As the vice chair of NACo's Mass Transit and Railroad Subcommittee to the Transportation Steering Committee, Ryan will help develop policies that will lead the discussion on not only public transportation, but on national transportation issues, including planning; rights of way, highway finance and safety and the research and development of new modes of transportation.

"Being invited to partake in these important discussions is an honor," Ryan said. "The county is partner to a successful public transit endeavor and is responsible for maintaining 552 miles of county-owned roads and 464 miles of federal roadways. Having a local voice on a national agenda pertaining to these issues will be a benefit for our residents."

Given that many County residents face unique rural issues, Supervisor Metzger said her inclusion on NACo's Rural Action Caucus places her in a position to gain federal support for unique county initiatives. Metzger was also appointed to continue serving the Public Lands Steering Committee.

"I am dedicated to helping solve critical issues that impact rural life and development,"

Supervisor Metzger said. "Our rural communities are the keepers of landscapes and harbors of opportunity. My placement on the Rural Action Caucus will allow me to work with other county officials to ensure the strength of our rural residents."

The Caucus serves as a voice for the nation's rural counties on the federal level. The committee's 2012 priorities include, providing relief from unfunded mandates; Farm Bill Reauthorization/Rural Development Appropriations; transportation reauthorization; Secure Rural Schools (SRS) and Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT).

For more information on NACo, visit

www.naco.org.

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