NLC’s federal advocacy efforts are central to its mission to protect municipal interests, seek federal funding to support local investments, and ensure national attention is focused on the needs of cities and towns. Leadership—with input from members, Policy & Advocacy Committees, and Federal Relations staff—sets the organization’s annual legislative agenda, which helps to guide advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill.
As the Administration and Congress look for revenue to reduce the deficit and fund programs, the federal income tax exemption provided to interest paid on state and municipal bonds (debt) is under threat. In addition to increasing taxes, the federal government can raise revenue by expanding what is subject to being taxed (broadening the base); as an alternative to raising taxes, interest paid on bonds issued by local governments currently not taxed could lose their exemption from taxation. NLC opposes any attempt to eliminate or limit the traditional tax exemption for municipal bonds whether as a part of a deficit reduction plan, a push for comprehensive tax reform, or as an offset for new spending.
America's immigration system is failing our cities and our economic future. It is time for Congress to acknowledge the economic vitality that immigration brings to this nation and adopt a reform policy that supports secure borders and a path to citizenship for the millions of immigrants currently contributing to our local and national economies. Comprehensive immigration reform will provide cities and towns with the support needed to integrate immigrants into their communities and allow them to make both cultural and economic contributions to the nation.
For information on immigrant integration efforts in local communities across the country, please visit NLC’s Immigrant Integration page.
At a time when cities have closed budget deficits but still face gaps for fiscal years 2012 and 2013, collecting owed sales taxes means more money for basic services, such as roads and police officers, without increasing the overall federal deficit. NLC urges support for legislation to simply allow state and local governments the flexibility to collect the taxes already owed to them on remote online purchases-not raising existing taxes or imposing new ones-thereby placing brick and mortar corner stores on a level playing field with online retailers and affording consumers more choice through fair competition.