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    Mayor Ken Shetter and council members attended the National League of Cities conference last week. They met with Congressman Roger Williams in his office March 12. Shown are, from left, Todd K. Hulsey, Ken Shetter, Stuart Gillespie, Roger Williams, Katherine Reading, Whitney Gillespie, Alex Philips and Amanda Campos. COURTESY PHOTO/CITY OF BURLESON

Burleson well represented at city conference

Burleson city officials were in Washington D.C. last week for the National League of Cities’ (NLC) Congressional City Conference.

Burleson Mayor Ken Shetter, along with council members Stuart Gillespie, Todd K. Hulsey and Katherine Reading attended the annual conference held at the nation's capital from March 10-13.

National League of Cities provides the framework for cities around the country to handle and manage federal issues that impact cities. The conference gathers federal and local policymakers and creates a platform to hold discussions and provide resources to the nation's cities and their leaders.

The Burleson delegates joined over 2,000 other cities, towns and villages officials who convened at the conference.

NLC boasts a membership of about 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million Americans.

"It's not just Burleson," council member Gillespie said. "Many cities and communities around the country are having issues with folks being able to afford housing."

This year's central theme was centered around NLC's Rebuild With Us campaign. The campaign focuses on the federal government to develop and pass comprehensive legislation to bolster infrastructure and local economies.

Ben Carson, U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, was one of the keynote speakers of the event.

"Mr. Gillespie and I attended the small cities council meeting in Washington," Hulsey said. "And a very fruitful discussion was had on the housing issue facing small cities."

The Burleson team held meetings with Senator Ted Cruz and Congressman Roger Williams during the course of the event.

Mayor Shetter spoke in a round table discussion amongst other Texas city representatives.

He addressed the need to intensify domestic violence laws and asked support for Texas Senate Bill 993, which seeks to increase criminal penalties for violent offenses committed in the presence of a child.

In Burleson, an ordinance resembling SB-993 was passed in 2018 that made it illegal to commit an act of violence in the presence of a child.

"I enjoyed the opportunity to attend," Shetter said. "I appreciate being given that opportunity."

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