June 3, 2024


Dear friends of ILG,


I had intended to produce another video message for this newsletter, but if your schedule has been anything like mine, you’ll appreciate how the month slipped away from me. This year is passing too quickly to be honest – and I’m not the only person to mention that. As I traverse the state engaging with local leaders, one pervasive theme is how busy everyone is and how difficult it has become to keep up in the post-COVID and hybrid environment.


ILG has spent a lot of time on workforce development this year and the research shows that local governments are busier than ever, doing important work for our communities. And yet, vacancy rates remain high, which means an unprecedented amount of work is being done by a smaller number of people. Notwithstanding the potential for burnout among existing staff, we also risk diminishing service levels if this continues.


A number of important efforts are underway to address workforce shortages in the public sector, and we reference a few of them in this newsletter. We always welcome additional insights about how you’re managing your agency’s workload and the steps you’re taking to capitalize on important program, partnership and funding opportunities when capacity is low. Share your story with us anytime.


In this newsletter we touch on a few key things, including some new board leadership at ILG, a new sustainability resource, and lots of unique opportunities for training provided by ILG and our partners. Topics range from mental health to meeting facilitation to conflict resolution, grant writing and more.


We hope you enjoy!


Erica Manuel


CEO of Santa Barbara County Joins ILG’s Leadership Team

ILG is excited to welcome a new board member to our leadership team. Mona Miyasato is the CEO of Santa Barbara County and will be representing the California Association of County Executives (CACE) on the ILG Board. Mona brings more than 25 years of experience working for local government agencies, including five years with the County of Marin, 10 years with the City of Santa Monica and more than a decade with the County of Santa Barbara. She earned her undergraduate degree at UC Berkeley and holds a master’s degree in public policy from Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government. We are excited to welcome Mona to our board.


ILG's Sustainability Best Practices Framework has been updated, enhanced, and transformed into a new searchable database called the Local Climate Action Library (LoCAL). This new tool allows agencies to search the latest policies, practices, and programs being implemented by local governments in California in ten areas of sustainability including energy efficiency, waste reduction, green building, land use, transportation, and more! This resource also highlights programs that enhance resilience, climate equity, environmental stewardship, and economic stability. Check it out!


TRAINING: Meeting Mastery Meeting Facilitation & Design

Wednesday, July 24 & Thursday, July 25

10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Our Meeting Mastery training is back by popular demand. In this comprehensive training, we will teach you the art of designing and facilitating productive public meetings and provide you with the tools to engage with your community authentically and effectively. This session is specially designed for local government staff and practitioners. Don't miss this opportunity. Register now to secure your spot! We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday and Thursday, July 24 and 25!  Register today!

WEBINAR: Behavioral Health Past, Present, and Future

Friday, June 21, 1:30 - 2:30 pm

We are excited to announce a special virtual training in collaboration with the California Association of Local Behavioral Health Boards & Commissions (CALBHB/C). During this training, we will explore the Behavioral Health Services Act (BHSA) as enacted by CA Proposition 1 (March 2024) and its impact on California's behavioral health landscape and local governments.


Register now and join us on Friday, June 21 for this insightful and informative virtual event to examine the evolution and future of behavioral health services in California. Free to register.

WEBINAR: Grant Readiness 101: Preparing to Submit Competitive State & Federal Applications

Wednesday, July 24, 10:30 am

Grant writing takes a lot of staff time and resources, but the available grant funding offers an unprecedented opportunity for local agencies to get the funding they need for key community projects. In this grant writing workshop, participants will learn how to assess the competitive viability and readiness of planning, infrastructure, and programmatic projects. You will also gain strategies for evaluating your agency’s readiness to apply for grants, conducting effective community engagement for grant applications, collaborating across departments, and more. Register today!


Special Community Academy Aims to Strengthen Engagement and Conflict Resolution Skills


ILG Partner the National Civic League is collaborating on a project to help local government leaders strengthen their conflict resolution skills with a special program hosted at the Gould Center for Conflict Resolution at Stanford Law School. The Community Academy: Strengthening Engagement is accepting applications from local government leaders interested in representing their agencies.

  • Academy Date & Location: September 15-17, 2024 @ Stanford Law School, Stanford, CA
  • Application deadline: Friday, June 14, 2024
  • Cost: Free

Space is incredibly limited. For more information about this special opportunity click here.

Roundtable Discussion for County HR and Personnel Leaders

Wednesday, June 12

1:00 - 2:30pm

To meet the workforce challenges of today and into the future, counties must find new and innovative ways to reach qualified applicants. Workforce shortages are already impacting the essential services local governments need to provide.

That’s why ILG is seeking input from county HR directors, hiring managers, and other personnel experts to help identify barriers to employment for promising candidates and develop solutions that improve talent pipeline development opportunities in the public sector.

We are hosting a special VIRTUAL Roundtable Discussion to ensure the focus of our workforce initiatives and pilot programming align with the specific needs of our county partners. Topics will include talent acquisition strategies/methods, strategies to actively recruit, innovative ways to update policies, and more.

Please join us! Register here.

Local Governance Summer Institute Accepting Applications

ILG is once again partnering with Stanford University and will be presenting at the Local Governance Summer Institute (LGSI@Stanford) this July. LGSI@Stanford provides city managers, county executives, regional directors, and other senior local government officials with the opportunity to exchange tools and strategies for improving local government performance and anticipating societal change. Registration is still open—don't miss this amazing experience! 

Braver Angels Convention Accepting Delegates for Annual Convention

Civility in public discourse is once again top of mind as we head into another election season. ILG partner Braver Angels is hosting its annual convention on bridging political divides and building stronger communities and local government voices are needed to broaden the discussion across all levels of government and policy. The 2024 Braver Angels Convention will take place June 27-29 in Kenosha, WI. Applications to attend are now being accepted. Learn more about registration here.


ILG's CEO Honored with Prestigious Award

We are thrilled to announce that our CEO and Executive Director, Erica L. Manuel, has been honored with the 2024 Elizabeth Hill Public Official of the Year Award by the American Society for Public Administration’s Sacramento Chapter. This esteemed award recognizes Erica's outstanding contributions and unwavering commitment to promoting excellence in public service. 


Erica's leadership and dedication have significantly advanced the mission of ILG, driving innovation, and fostering a culture of excellence across local government agencies.

The award ceremony was attended by numerous ILG staff and partners, both past and present, who gathered to celebrate this remarkable achievement. This prestigious recognition is a testament to Erica's tireless efforts and the profound impact she has had on the public administration landscape. Her 25-year career in the public sector has impacted key policies and programs related to sustainability, community development, public engagement, equity and workforce. 


Please join us in congratulating Erica Manuel on this well-deserved honor and in acknowledging her extraordinary contributions to public service.  

Leadership Sacramento Local Government Day

ILG was honored to collaborate with the Sacramento Metro Chamber to enhance regional leaders' understanding of local government and its role in climate sustainability. Leaders from various organizations, including the City of West Sacramento, Sacramento Air Quality Management District, Yolo County Climate Commission, Sacramento Regional Water Authority, Sacramento Groundwater Authority, and Citrus Heights Water District, generously volunteered their time and insights, and shared how their organizations are addressing the climate crisis in a day-long discussion with the 2024 Leadership Sacramento cohort.

Special thanks to Andrea Ouse from the City of West Sacramento for her invaluable help and support in making the day fun and providing an excellent host venue for learning

CAPIO Conference 

ILG’s public engagement and equity team of Hanna Stelmakhovych and Roberto Carlos Torres joined hundreds of public agency communications professionals at the 2024 CAPIO Conference in Indian Wells. Amidst the desert heat, they learned and networked with new and familiar faces. The team is always strategizing innovative ways to leverage communication to advance excellence and equity in local government engagement.

CSDA Legislative Conference

ILG’s Melissa Kuehne and Christy Jewell attended the California Special Districts Legislative Conference, where special district leaders advocated for local legislative priorities. A key priority on the agenda was securing $500 million in any potential Climate Resilience Bond to fund the infrastructure needed for local governments to comply with the CARB mandate to transition medium- and heavy-duty vehicles to zero emissions.

California Workforce Association Conference 

ILG’s CEO Erica Manuel led a conference session at the WORKCON 2024 Conference, a dynamic event featuring over 50 workshops, insightful keynote presentations, and thought-provoking panels targeted at California’s Workforce Development Boards. ILG’s session was entitled “Local Governments: The Forgotten Employer,” which highlighted the high vacancy rates in California local governments and the high demand and hard to fill occupations in our sector. The panel featured two experts: Kris Hopping, HR Manager for Desert Water and Anita Maldonado, the new Executive Director of the Sacramento Employment and Training Agency. The discussion centered around opportunities for workforce practitioners to collaborate with local governments on hiring programs, grant applications and other strategies, as well as highlighting ILG’s new registered apprenticeship initiative.

Cinco de Mayo in Stockton 

Nikita Sinha and Hanna Stelmakhovych joined staff from the San Joaquin County Council of Governments at Stockton's Cinco de Mayo celebration to educate the community about clean transportation opportunities, including Miocar. This effort is part of the ILG's role as the Community Engagement Lead for the Stockton Mobility Collective Project, aimed at improving transportation options for residents seeking clean, affordable ways to travel to jobs.


So, you have a climate action plan and a budget deficit. What now?

Check out the new article written by Karalee Browne in June edition of Western City Magazine, featuring the cities of Paramount, East Palo Alto and Bakersfield. The article discusses their climate action journey and demonstrates how each of the cities keeps climate action alive during challenging times

Read more.

Long Beach has a hiring problem — and the city may ask for voter approval to fix it

Long Beach voters may soon decide whether the municipal government should change its hiring processes, with the City Council potentially placing a charter amendment to do so on the November 2024 ballot.

Read more.


RGS Webinar Series on Culture, Conflict, and Change

Leadership is the act of influencing others. As such, leadership can come from any level in the organization. Leaders in your agency play a critical role in establishing/maintaining organizational culture, acting as champions for change, and facilitating the resolution of differences. During this webinar series RGS will explore all three of these topics and provide you with tips to successfully navigate challenges in the current environment.

More information here.

California JPIA to Offer HR Professional Training Series

In the dynamic landscape of municipal administration, human resources (HR) professionals play a vital role in agency functionality, encompassing strategic leadership, talent management, and organizational development. This summer, the California JPIA will offer a blended HR Professional Training Series to help members grow as HR practitioners by expanding their knowledge, improving their professional skills, and strengthening their networks.

Read more.

What is a Custom Dashboard? Empowering Communities through Enhanced Media Intelligence

Navigating community sentiment and media dynamics with finesse is crucial to effective leadership in local government today. Enter the “Custom Dashboard” — a powerful media intelligence tool that gives local governments the real-time insights they need to flourish in our modern media landscape. 

Read more.

A Win-Win for Customers & the Power Grid

As the summer temperatures start to sizzle, Southern California Edison wants to remind customers about its Demand Response Program, a smart answer that helps customers reduce energy costs and contribute to a more reliable statewide power grid.

Check out the Win-Win for Customers and the Power Grid.


CSDA General Manager Leadership Summit

June 23-25, 2024

Anaheim, CA

Don’t forget to register for the California Special District’s General Manager Leadership Summit. The Summit provides the best networking and professional development opportunities for special district general managers and other management staff from districts of all types and sizes throughout California. The event takes place in Anaheim on June 23-25. We hope to see you there. 

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