County Leaders Share Innovative Solutions, Set National Priorities at NACo Annual Conference

The National Association of Counties (NACo), based in Washington, D.C., is the only national organization that represents county governments in the United States. Founded in 1935, NACo assists America’s 3,069 counties in pursuing excellence in public service to produce healthy, vibrant, safe and resilient counties. NACo promotes sound public policies, fosters county solutions and innovation, promotes intergovernmental and public-private collaboration and provides value-added services to save counties and taxpayers money.

Maryland’s delegation of county officials and MACo staff was among 2,600 elected and appointed officials to participate in the 79th National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference. The conference focused on key issues important to counties like transportation, resiliency, healthcare, criminal justice and economic development and was held in Orleans Parish (New Orleans), La. July 11–14.

The purpose of the conference, held in a different county each July, is to provide opportunities for county leaders and staff to learn, network and guide the direction of the association’s national advocacy efforts. Speaking at the opening general session, U.S. Senator David Vitter (R-La.) underscored the critical link between economic growth and the country’s transportation network, calling it “the backbone of the economy.”

Workshop topics included workforce and economic development; healthcare; criminal justice; county administration; and cybersecurity and technology. MACo and Maryland County officials participated in several workshops including Identifying Multiple forms of Wealth for Lasting Growth and Prosperity, The Link Between Saving for Retirement and Healthcare Costs, Employee Wellness Programs: Return on Investments, and Enrolling Pre-Adjudicated Individuals into Health Coverage, among others.

Conference delegates adopted official policy resolutions that will guide the association’s federal legislative and regulatory efforts over the next year. They address issues such as budgets and revenues; rural and urban development; transportation; public safety; emergency preparedness and response; environmental protection and energy efficiency; housing and community development and more. Resolutions will be available online in the coming weeks. For a more detailed, daily account of conference highlights along with photos, visit:

To learn more about how federal policies affect Maryland counties, join MACo for our Summer Conference, where United States Senator Ben Cardin will hold a Town Hall meeting with local elected officials on Thursday, August 14 from 1:00 pm – 1:45 pm.

Learn more about MACo’s 2014 Summer Conference:

Contact Meetings & Events Director Virginia White with questions about Summer Conference.