Friday, April 6, 2012

White House Intergovernmental Affairs Update

White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs Local Update

Welcome to the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs local update. In this week's issue the Obama Administration hosts a National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention, Vice President Biden calls for more investment in education, and the White House releases a taxpayer receipt calculator.

Keep an eye on your inbox and check out the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs Website for more information.

Cities Join Obama Administration for Forum on Youth Violence Prevention

White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett speaks at the National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention, April 2, 2012. (Photo credit: Department of Justice)

On Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder recognized six cities for their progress in preventing youth violence at the second annual summit of the National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention held in Washington, D.C. Holder was joined by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun Donovan, White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett and Office of National Drug Control Policy Director R. Gil Kerlikowske at the two-day summit.

Launched in 2010 at the direction of President Obama, the forum is a network of communities and federal agencies working together to share information and build local capacity to prevent and reduce youth violence. Participating cities include Boston, Massachusetts; Chicago, Illinois; Detroit, Michigan; Memphis, Tennessee; Salinas, California, and San Jose, California.

White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett spoke at the event, sharing:

Already, we see evidence that you are changing your communities, and improving people’s lives. Just a few days ago, researchers from John Jay College and Temple University released an interim report on their assessment of this national forum on youth violence and prevention. Interviews with you, and others in your cities, found that perceptions of public safety and violence have improved, that organizations are cooperating more effectively, and that local officials are more actively engaged in preventing violence.

This week the National Forum released an online toolkit to help communities develop their own comprehensive plans to tackle youth violence. There you can find the plans of action from the current participating cities, information to locate federally supported youth programs in your community, a strategic planning toolkit and much more.

Vice President Biden Urges Investment in Education

Vice President Joe Biden holds an event on college affordability with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan at Maury High School in Norfolk, Virginia, April 3, 2012. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

On Tuesday, Vice President Joe Biden visited Maury High School in Norfolk, Virginia to talk about the Administration's commitment to education and our shared obligation to invest in the potential of the next generation.

Vice President Biden noted the number of investments the Obama Administration has made in higher education including:

Increasing the maximum Pell award from $4,731 in 2008 to $5,550 today. Nearly 10 million students go to college with the help of a Pell grant each year.
Creating a tax credit that provides up to $2,500 per year – that’s $10,000 over four years – to help students and their families pay for tuition, fees and books. An estimated 9.4 million families are expected to claim this tax credit for 2011.
Making our education spending go further by ending subsidies for banks that act as middlemen for federal student loans.
The Vice President also warned against cuts to education like those included in the House Republican Budget. Vice President Biden noted the House Republican Budget proposal would reduce the value of Pell Grants for nearly 10 million students nationwide. Nearly 129,000 work-study positions would be eliminated nationwide, and by 2014, 310,000 children would lose access to Head Start, and lose with it the opportunity to start kindergarten ready to succeed.

You can see the state-by-state impacts of the proposed House Republican Budget and find more online about the Obama Administration's education plan.

Calculate How Your Federal Tax Dollars Are Spent With Taxpayer Receipt

On Wednesday, the White House launched the federal taxpayer receipt to allow American taxpayers to go online and see exactly how their federal tax dollars are spent. Check out our calculator and share with your constituents.

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