Oregon was well-represented at the recent National Association of Counties (NACo) Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. It was a great opportunity for our commissioners and judges, their staff and AOC staff to learn and network.

NACo has been promoting the message “Counties Matter,” and there’s growing evidence that word is getting through to the right people on Capitol Hill. In addition to the several days of conference programming, we had the opportunity to meet with six of the seven members of Oregon’s delegation. We were able to deliver strong, consistent messages about the importance of repairing and rebuilding the Affordable Care Act, a solution for the O & C counties, a more balanced approach to public lands management, the continued need for solutions to the housing crisis and other issues that are vital to the people we jointly serve.

I was proud that when the Veterans Committee met, Oregon was the best-represented state by far, with eight commissioners and judges and a member of AOC’s staff. I was proud that one of our own, First Vice-President Craig Pope, had the opportunity to attend President Trump’s address to Congress.

A conference like this also provides the opportunity for informal networking, both within and across state lines, and I saw plenty of that happening over meals and around the city. <