The California Mayors Coalition, an informal organization of mayors who have banded together to tackle the challenges brought about by COVID-19, is excited to welcome Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti as one of its newest members. While this diverse group of 60+ mayors from across California is mainly composed of smaller cities, Mayor Garcetti’s membership highlights the importance of all cities, no matter their size, supporting one another during these unprecedented times.
“COVID-19 doesn’t care if you live in a big city or a small town — this virus is impacting our workers’ health, our children’s well-being, and our families’ economic security no matter where we are,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Joining the California Mayors Coalition reflects a firm commitment: no matter our size or population, local governments stand on the frontlines of this pandemic, and we must keep working together on testing, contact tracing, financial relief, and everything we need to serve our communities.”
During a recent call with Mayor Garcetti, Coalition members had an opportunity to discuss equitable distribution of state and federal COVID-19 relief funds for smaller cities. Mayor Garcetti and his fellow Coalition members are advocating that state and federal leaders include direct flexible fiscal aid to localities and states in the next COVID-19 relief package. Cities cannot be expected to shoulder the burden of economic recovery alone and the state and federal government must be an economic partner in this endeavor.
“We are thrilled to have Mayor Garcetti join our Coalition,” said Jennifer Fitzgerald, California Mayors Coalition Founder and Mayor of Fullerton. “His support will help amplify the Coalition’s advocacy efforts in our fight to get front line cities the support needed to be able to continue serving our communities.”
Coalition meetings also provide the opportunity for mayors to share exciting developments, best practices, resources and ideas with their sister cities across the state. For example, Mayor Garcetti shared with the Coalition a unique approach the City of Los Angeles took to encourage the community to wear face coverings. The City teamed up with Studio Number One to develop the LA Mask Print Project, a campaign to use public art for the public good. Additionally, Mayor Garcetti shared exciting news on a task force he convened to pursue the development of more efficient and affordable paper strip tests for
COVID-19 testing. The lessons learned from this group and potential pilot tests in Los Angeles could then be rolled out to cities across California.
With the addition of Mayor Garcetti, the Coalition now has two of the “Big 13” cities as members. The first to join was Mayor Miguel Pulido of the City of Santa Ana. The Coalition has members from throughout California, including Big Bear Lake, Del Mar, Fontana, Glendora, Montclair, Novato, Orange, Sanger, Turlock, Yorba Linda and Yucaipa (see the full list here). The Coalition was formed so that California’s cities could work together and speak as one to voice concerns on the critical economic and local issues related to COVID-19 to both State and Federal elected officials and agencies.