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tv   Vice President Harris Transportation Secretary Buttigieg Dr. Fauci CDC...  CSPAN  March 9, 2021 12:07am-2:02am EST

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that the outside world -- they will say, on behalf of the people of syria, we need to come to an accommodation and resume diplomatic relations. allow students to re-enrich the country with brainpower. the near-term future is grim. >> find c-span's weekly, wherever you find your podcasts. >> the transportation secretary and anthony fauci speak at a conference. they talk about vaccine distribution, variance and infrastructure investment.
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♪ >> good afternoon. readings from the town of lexington south can -- lexington, south carolina. i have the honor of serving as the president of the national league of cities this year. i know that we always that we could be together in person. >> hello and welcome. >> hello from tacoma, washington. i have the pleasure of serving as the second vice president.
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>> welcome to our general session at the congressional city conference. this is a conference focused on your leadership and raising your voices on issues that are important to you, as a local leader. we are thrilled that you are joining us virtually this week and excited about the experience that you will have. >> are you ready? because while, db had a stellar lineup for you. the number of cabinet officials and embers of congress joining us is unprecedented. >> on behalf of of our board of directors, thank you. thank you for being here. now join us for the national anthem and pledge of allegiance.
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♪ oh say can you see by the dawn's early light what's a probably we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming whose broad stripes and bright stars through the peerless fight -- parentless -- perilous fight overview the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming the rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air
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gave proof through the night that our flag was still there the state does that star-spangled banner yet wave over the land of the free and home of the brave ♪ >> and pledge of allegiance to the flag of the united states of america >> and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under god -- >> indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. ♪ >> please welcome the president of the u.s. conference of mayors and mayor of louisville,
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kentucky greg fisher. >> hello, everybody. i am mayor greg fischer. i am honored to bring you greetings on behalf of the conference of the mayors of america. thank you for the work that you are doing on behalf of our city and country. thank you to everyone for their outstanding partnership at the conference for many years. i want to thank the noc for joining our conference to call for fiscal support for cities of all sizes. i believe that cities should be platforms. to fulfill that mission, it is absolutely critical that our city governments are able to continue providing critical service. local leadership and partnership has never been more important, as our communities look to overlooked challenges like
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covid-19, uncertain economy and the need to advance issue justice and inequity. we have plans to address these and other issues. the bottom line is that we can meet these challenges and any challenges, but only by working together. we are a bipartisan organization focused on getting results. thank you again for your partnership and the opportunity to say hello. it's continue to work together for the good of all the people that we serve. please reach out if we can be as we help. >> hello, again. thank you for being with us today.
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the relationship has never been stronger, and we appreciate the partnership that we have. before i introduce our next speaker, i want to recognize the leadership of the league of cities, our board of directors. they serve our communities, but they also give of their time and community come in service of cities, towns and villages across the country. you all know how i feel about you, but let me say it again. thank you for your commitment. speaking of someone deeply committed to the success of noc, you are in -- nlc, you are in for a treat. she has stepped entire presidency with ease. a fearless leader, a perfect mix of southern charm and a can-do
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attitude. we are lucky to have her as our president this year. please welcome our councilmember. >> that has been how long it has been since most of us have seen each other in person at our last conference in march 2020. it seems like a lifetime ago. so much has changed for us as local leaders and for our community. here we are this year. i am talking to you from a square on your computer in your office or living room. how things have changed. you know what has not changed? how local eateries lead -- leaders lead. you are the first to respond for
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our communities and our residents. that is why i am so proud that this year's theme is cities, strong together. you have done this together. the only way that we can make it out of this crisis is together. serving as your president has been a badge of honor and pride. i have heard from so many of you about the challenges that you have faced during this pandemic, and how you have reason to the occasion -- risen to the occasion. the support for local businesses, donations for your food bank, the education you are providing residents about vaccines, and i am particularly proud of how nlc was able to
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support you in this time. many of you know that i am familiar with the 3rs, reading, writing and -- -- and arithmetic. each of these steps are important to help our community build back stronger and better. it was critical to help you navigate this once in a generation pandemic. we move quickly to support your response, rallying resources and staff for the quickly changing needs of your community. nlc created a dedicated site to find resources, guides and best practices.
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we published our 10 covid response briefs that provided guidance and specific actions you can take, right now, to address key issues that you are facing. from maintaining fiscal health, to assuring stability for your residence. thanks to the funding announced at a conference last year, retract actions from cities of all sizes. more specifically, we captured every new executive order ordinance and covid related policy, acting. it is a powerful tool to showcase the work that we are doing every day on behalf of our
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residents. most missing -- recently, we have been giving you resources tell navigate vaccine distribution. we joined with five other meeting associations to launch in vaccine initiative, focused on providing black americans with accurate information about the covid-19 vaccine. this is all uncharted territory, and we want you to know that you are not alone. my second are is recovery and it focused on ensuring that as local leaders, we have a partner in the federal government. many of you told your stories
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directly to the administration and members of congress. our message was heard widely, from media articles to letters to the editor. it highlighted the critical role that municipal governments are playing to keep our residents safe in fighting the pandemic from the frontline. we have been working tirelessly on your behalf. clarence anthony will share more about the latest in our fight for covid relief, but let me promise you this.
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field to get direct money to every city, town and village. it has also been important to quickly develop meaningful relationships with the new administration and congress. as you can see from the lineup of officials, and partnership with the federal government is already strong and we intend to continue pushing for best interest of our members. our third r is about how we do to commit to come back from this pandemic, better than we were before. we are here to support you as you small businesses open backup. you residents get back to work
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and schools we have been. this provides an important opportunity to i ar16a, how is your community responding? tell the story about how your city, town and village stepped up to the plate and delivered critical support to your residence this past year. what do you need to help, to help you recover? consider your municipal budget and services needed for your residence? what do you need to have a strong economy again? finally, how do you plan to rebuild? what is your vision for your community's future and how can a partnership or other levels of government help bring this to light. if you can answer these questions clearly and with conviction, you will be a great advocate for your community. are you ready? i am. are you ready to tell your story and represent the 19,000 cities,
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towns and villages across the country? you are ready, and so am i. thank you for your tireless efforts on behalf of of your community. it is a privilege to serve as your president, and i cannot wait to see everything that we can accomplish together. before we move on, i wanted to take a moment to recognize two important advocates for cities, towns and vigil -- villages. each year, we present the award to federal leaders. it will support the priority of our membership. it is my honor to announce senator bill cassidy of louisiana and senator joe manson as the recipient of this year's
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award. thank, senators. i am honored to introduce senator cassidy for a few short moments. >> thank you for your advocacy for local communities. thanking you for all the work that you helped congress with. me and particular, in terms of helping with those communities. something that i worked with, tom reed, a congressman from new york. we are working on how to make the smart act work for communities. you coming your organization was a tremendous assistance. this is the story.
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if you do it this way, this will happen. all of those things that we need to know our necessary. we have the challenge before us. everybody who would be going to new orleans is staying at home, spending their dollars at local stories. others have not done as well because they are so dependent on tourism. congress sometimes cannot appreciate it. you understand it intuitively. i mentioned that because just as he helped at the beginning of the smart act, going through this process, your knowledge and advocacy will continue to be required. there are other things i am working on.
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one would be, how to ensure that everyone has access to broadband internet? it will be different for the smaller towns compared to the inner-city, but it will be important for all. as we go forward, i look forward to cooperating once more, as we come to a right decision to benefit those who live in your city, towns and villages. >> hello, my name is joe manson. thank you for allowing me to speak to you today. i want to extend my sincere thank you. may -- i am pleased to be able to discuss our local governments during the covid-19 pandemic.
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they provide essential service to our communities, to our first responders, teachers and public health officials, who have been on the front lines of the pandemic for almost a year. we know that local governments have struggled to provide services that many me during these difficult times. we saw local governments face drastic cuts as a result have been stretched thin and have been forced to make difficult decisions between providing essential services and retaining their employees to balance the budget. it is simply unacceptable. since march, i have advocated for funding to support state and local governments to keep essential services up and running, and keep workers on the payroll during the pandemic. in mid-november, when it seemed
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unlikely congress could come together to pass a second covid-19 relief bill, i led a group of bipartisan members and finding common ground on covert relief that would work for all americans, not just some. it started as a socially distant enter where we our commitment to bring together emergency relief and traded ideas in how to break the stalemate. over the next four weeks, there were many long days. late nights and zoom calls where we continued talking and begin crafting the emergency relief bill. we grew into a larger bipartisan group of lawmakers determined to find a compromise to give relief to the american people struggling because of the cover 19 pandemic, which included state, local bait. we knew it was possible and necessary to find areas of common interest and to compromise in good faith without violating our principles.
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our emergency relief framework introduced in december allocated $160 billion to state governments on a need-based formula. written into the bill was the concession that the governor of each state must distribute 40% of the funding directly to local governments to ensure that the funds are reaching local governments directly. the bipartisan group also came together and found compromise to pass another 748 billion to hypo take care of our americans. this larger bill included life-saving provision such as extended unemployment assistance, food assistance, shelter assistance, small business debt relief, and the extension of the a victim -- eviction moratorium to support americans in their time of need. the bill included funds for testing, development, as well as
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additional funding for health care providers. education and childcare providers, broadband, transportation, aid for low income communities and substance privilege. this framework was used to jumpstart the relief negotiations and provide a strong starting point for congress to delete past much-needed relief. none of this would have been possible without the efforts of my colleagues from both sides of the aisle in both chambers who were willing to compromise for the good of our nation. we proved that bipartisanship is possible and necessary for want to defeat this pandemic and begin to heal our nation. as congress works on the next covid relief package, i will continue to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to call for compromise to pre-help to the american people. to every person in america. thank you and god bless you. he ♪
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>> i'm from san antonio texas. during this year's conference, it is so important that we address the challenges of homelessness and housing instability in our communities. before the pandemic, homelessness was a top concern for cities of all sizes. during its annual count in january, the department of urban development found more than 567,000 people were experiencing homelessness in a single night. as we work to ensure our residents are safe and sheltered, we must also work to address housing instability in all of our communities. today, we have 40 million
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tenants who are at risk of eviction when the current moratorium expires. cities are on the cusp of a housing instability crisis that can only be addressed through strong partnerships across all levels of government. we are encouraged by the biden administration's recent executive actions to address long-standing inequities in housing development. but, we know there is more work to be done. our hope is to work closely with our federal partners to expand housing first programs that offer rigell services to keep residents stable and sheltered. secure sufficient funding to deliver emergency assistance and wraparound services to residents experiencing housing instability and develop additional affordable housing. havoc forward to hearing from you you are implementing
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innovative, fair and put up a housing programs in your community. thank you and have an incredible conference. ♪ >> we are now pleased to welcome senator todd juncker of indiana. -- senator todd young of indiana. sen. young: i'm senator todd young. thank you for inviting me to speak today at your annual conference. fort wayne, indianapolis, south
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bend and many other future communities face unique housing challenges. in each of these locations, housing affordability places strains in our education health and safety. millions of americans in every income range are struggling to find affordable housing. for many people, this pandemic has put them out of work. while while many spend 50% of their income on rent and utilities. this leaves little left over for other life necessities. america is the land of opportunity. but the individuals and families , cannot thrive without access to economical housing. this problem will require a robust response from federal and state and local governments. this means optimizing the existing policies and programs,
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and working to understand and implement new policies. most of all, it means listening to leaders like you how we can work to together to solve housing affordability challenges. solving this problem is going to require a multifaceted approach which recognizes that housing affordability spans across all income levels, affects families in urban suburban and rural , areas of our country. that means eliminating burdensome local zoning to drive up housing costs in communities across america. mike yes in my backyard act does that. my task force works to assemble a group of experts to better understand the housing affordability crisis so we can take legislative action and end the cycle of poverty for millions of struggling americans .
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in 2019, congress passed my housing choice voucher mobility demonstration act. this authorizes them -- authorizes an evidence-based program for those receiving housing vouchers moved to areas of high opportunity. charlie after, -- shortly after, it was signed into law. my family stability in opportunity voucher act built on the new policy to put a significant down payment on housing mobility vouchers for the nation's most vulnerable families with young children. the low income housing tax credit is an existing program the beverages significant private investments in affordable housing. it's vital we continue to fine-tune and expand the credit. that's why i am proud to lead on legislation with my colleague , senator cantwell that does just that. in fact, recently we secured a
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major provision from the bill , and estimates show it would produce 130,000 housing units over the next ten years and generate 162,500 jobs. the fight to ensure access to safe and affordable homes for all americans is far from over and there are no quick fixes. , but working with organizations like the national league of cities, i am confident we can come together to solve the housing affordability crisis. thank you. ♪ >> hello, i am from phoenix arizona.
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i'm happy to join you at this year's congressional city conference, where we will discuss ways to partner with the federal government to help rebuild the nation's crumbling infrastructure and continue to connect our region and create new, sustainable technology solutions. before covid-19 we knew much of , the nation's infrastructure was in dire need of repair, improvement and modernization. the pandemic has forced local governments budgets to delay or cancel critical infrastructure investment. this is why, now more than ever the federal government must , prioritize infrastructure development. not only to repair our nation's deteriorating railways and ports, but to spur job creation and local activity to move the nation's economic recovery also -- ahead, and ensure broadband access to remain connected and not isolated. we need america to get back to
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mark, and urged our federal partners to support our communities with rents, tools and resources for infrastructure projects. and i look forward to working with all of you in keeping america moving, now and for generations to come. in the words of one of our nations greatest labor leaders, a civil rights activist. ♪ narrator: please welcome representative peter defazio from the house transportation infrastructure committee. peter: it's a new era. we went for seven fake infrastructure weeks with trump. they would say hey, it is a
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responsibility of the states and localities. that doesn't work. i have a poster many of you have , seen it. a visual shot from life magazine 1956. it shows a brand-new written of this ribbon -- ribbon of concrete of the turnpike and ends in the lines that the farm field. oklahoma promised to build it but they got in financial difficulty and they couldn't until we had the eisenhower plan. the eisenhower plan was great for the time but it's time to move beyond the eisenhower plan. i'm not doing eisenhower plan 7.0. this is the 21st century we have incredibly new challenges including climate change. we can deal with economic recovery, climate change and rebuilding infrastructure all in one bill with your help. my bill would invest $500 billion over five years.
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44% increase. $49 billion dedicated to local areas. i know you struggle with your states to get the funding you need. we are going to direct more money down to your level. over 5 years for transit and $105 billion transportation programs. we are going to have locally driven discretionary grant programs for communities of all sizes. and a new metropolitan performance program that provides federal funding directly to regions. truly micro model. all of those things are in this bill. we have a secretary of transportation who was a mayor, he knows about complete streets, we are dealing with appropriate design in this bill. we have got to help people get out of their cars, and more people will get out of their cars if it is safer and more convenient to use active transportation other than an
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automobile. more people will get out of their cars if we have to penned double, more accessible and frequent transit. with a hundred dollar backlog, people want take it because they have to be a work -- at work on time. repair and extended transit options, while at the same time as we default allows. we are going to move beyond the fossil feel economy. -- fossil fuels economy. this billable deal meeting -- we are going to partner with the energy and commerce committee. we want to have electric buses and cities. electric semi's are coming. there under charging stations anywhere in america for an electric semi right now. their only 5000 high-capacity chargers for individual vehicles like small trucks.
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the president talked about 500,000. i don't know if that is enough , but we are going to do this and do it with renewable power. you don't gain a lot when you change your car from the coal plant. you gain something but not what , we want. ♪ >> i look forward to talking to the city conference to discuss getting america back to work. to do this we need to see , policies from the federal government to ensure our communities play a central role the nation's economic recovery. both before and throughout the pandemic, we have seen the
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nature of work rapidly evolve that has completely transformed our economy. in response, cities need enhanced workforce training program to ensure that we are prepared to take on the jobs of the future. as more americans prepared to reenter the workforce after a historic level of unemployment, we want to see a federal government that provides apprenticeship programs, expense financial aid that expands financial aid, and creates new pathways for underemployed americans. here in federal, our latest library expansion includes a new innovation center where access to job skill training opportunities is easy as checking out a book. the center includes a teaching kitchen, maker space, robotics lab, audio and video editing suites, all at no cost to our
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residents. by investing in skills training and wraparound support for working families, the federal government can help city leaders build upon successful workforce development programs that strengthen our communities at the local level. cities are counting on congress and the biden administration to empower local workforce solutions, so that all of our residents have an opportunity to achieve meaningful employment at a living wage. thank you all. ♪ rich: i'm rich davis. >> i'm the mayor of the village of rectal center. >> mayor of the city of albany new york. >> we have been on the front lines of the pandemic.
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>> providing essential services. >> all of america's villages are struggling, not because of anything we have done. >> but due to the pandemic and the economic shutdown. >> we need help. we have done our jobs. we have continue to provide all of the vital services. >> on top of our financial struggles, it is projected over the next three years. >> when of hobbies like ours across the nation. >> receive over $360 billion. >> of lost revenues. >> leading to both revenues. >> these are not just numbers. >> our friends. >> our communities and frontline workers. >> providing aid to medicine valleys is the most effective and immediate way to help families. >> the eight will allow us to maintain our significant contribution to our local economy. >> by preserving critical public sector jobs. >> unemployment prevention must
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be a key part of the package. >> is leaving local aid out balmy to greater unemployment. >> [indiscernible] >> feeling the pain that has been caused by this pandemic. >> every state in the nation. the fact is, our community has been left out. >> it is way past time for congress to step up and provide direct aid to us. >> america can build back better. >> to cover local governments are given the support to be the way. ♪ ♪
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>> i'm randall, and i serve as the mayor of birmingham, alabama. tomorrow would have been a turbulent year. city leaders have been working around the clock to keep our residents safe during the covid-19 pandemic. this last year has shown the importance of efforts at the local, and federal level to reimagine public safety. endangering our communities. it is part of this effort that we recognize another public health crisis in our neighborhoods. the epidemic of gun violence that claims many lives each year. since the beginning of the pandemic, we have seen a rise in gun violence. that violence threatens to tear apart the very fabric of our society. that is why it is important for local leaders to have the tools to take on this pandemic of gun violence.
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we want to work with our leaders in washington to advance commonsense solutions to protect our communities. the national league of cities is encouraging the biden administration to convene a national commission on gun violence that brings together stakeholders from across the spectrum, to offer recommendations on ways to reduce gun violence in our hometowns. make no mistake, the violence we are seeing in our communities is a public health crisis that the man's axis -- commands action. we're looking forward to collaborating on ways to enhance look safe in all of our communities. . thank you. ♪ ♪ >> please welcome back, and i'll see president, -- the mlc president. >> it's always special.
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one reason is because it takes place in march. women's history month. every year, i look forward to meeting my sisters in service, my fellow women and elected leadership. our experiences are unique. and nlc'women in medicines look government gives us a place to come together and share those experiences. learning and growing with each other has been so empowering. this is a landmark year for women in government. we have a record number of women serving in congress, and in january, our country welcomes the first woman swarmed into the white house for the first time in united states history. i don't know about you, but it still gives me chills thinking about it, and what it meant for
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our nation. now today, on national women's history day, it is my distinct honor to welcome to mlc in the ccc stage, the vice president of the united states,, harris -- kamala harris. >> thank you for that kind introduction. to the board and staff members, local leaders, it is truly an honor to join with you today. and of course, as she said, we gather at the start of an important week. yes, we are honoring the women of our country, but this is also a week for our country that could mark a real turning point in our fight against covid-19. last weekend, as you know, the
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house of representatives passed our american rescue plan. it is a plan that will provide immediate relief to america's cities, towns and villages, and directly to the american people. this past weekend, the senate advance this landmark legislation, and very soon, the president of the united states joe biden will sign the american rescue plan into law. so for a year now, we have faced this crisis of almost immeasurable proportions. impacting the health of our communities, the likelihood of our businesses, and the education of our children. through it all, local leaders, you have been in the thick of it. you are the ones who get called when there aren't enough vaccine doses to go around. you are the ones fighting to make sure first responders can keep their jobs. you are working with teachers and parents to get schools reopened safely.
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you are working with small businesses to keep their doors open. and barking at food distribution sites and what remains of your own spare time. being a local leader has always been a 24/7 job, and this year i know has tested the limits. and still, you keep getting up every morning and working to make things better. on behalf of myself and president biden, why think you on the both of us served as local leaders, we thank you. we thank you. we thank you. when the president and i were preparing to take office, we knew what you are up against. we knew we needed to be ready to go on day one. so we started working with you, to put a plan in place to rescue our nation from this pandemic. i am proud to report that we have made incredible progress.
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more than 80 million vaccines have now been administered. last week, 18 million doses percent the states, to pharmacies and community health centers. merck and johnson & johnson, competitors before now are teaming up to speed up manufacturing, which means we should have a full vaccine supply for adult by the end of may. and to get shopping arms more quickly, we have open new vaccination centers and a number of places, and the place of my both, open, california, los angeles, tampa, orlando, jacksonville, brooklyn, queens, and upstate new york. one opened in philadelphia last week. others will open in chicago and greensboro this week, and another two are coming to atlanta and cleveland soon. as you know, we have all been busy, and we are doing this as i mentioned as we advance our american rescue plan.
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this plan is big, and it is bold, and it will help us beat the spires, and build back our economy. with this plan, we will scale up our vaccination program, get the lead to the small businesses that fill your main streets, and get your schools safely reopened. the bill provides targeted support for as many as 19,000 cities, towns and villages. we know many of you are dealing with budget shortfalls as revenues are down, and of course expenses are up. as a result, vital services have been cut. i know you did not want to. mb have lost more than 1.3 million state and local government jobs in just the past year. in the aftermath of the great recession, these kinds of cuts but a significant drag on our economic recovery. guys, we can't let that happen again. the american rescue plan will also get $1400 checks in the
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pockets of people who need the most, and a $3000 tax credit per child. think about it. this plan will actually list one in three black -- left one in three black and latino americans out of poverty. we will also left -- lift half of america's children who are living in poverty out of poverty. just think about that. half of the children in our country who are living in poverty won't be. the american rescue plan, for that and some any other reasons, we are happy to say, incredibly popular. support for it is broad and bipartisan. three in four americans support the bill. democratic and republican mayors and local leaders have endorsed it, and of course, so has the national league of cities, and
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thank you for that. think about it. two mayors, just most recently a republican from miami and a democrat from st. petersburg wrote an op-ed about why they support the plan, and they said in the op-ed, quote, our people need help. and at the president would say, help is on the way. today, the american rescue plan is very close to becoming the law of the land. and now we need to help ensure that relief is distributed equitably. equitably. and that means, we need to acknowledge, as so many of us to, we need to acknowledge the pandemic has made worse, the fishers and the flaws and failures that already exist that in our system, and our structures. we have seen that race in place matter a lot and how well protected a person is from the virus, or not. and, race and place have played
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a role in access to services. one way we are addressing this as with our covid-19 help equity task force. this test for systems from one way we are addressing this is with covid-19 health equity task force this stems from a bill i introduced in the united states senate to have a dedicated group of experts who report on the disparities that exist and allocations of resources required to make recommendations on how to solve those problems and local leaders are vital. you are vital to the solution. today, we have a big announcement making it right here with you. because it will have a direct impact on the communities that you serve. our administration will offer $250 million in grants to -- for localities to partner with community organizations on health literacy.
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our goal is to provide underserved communities with the information they need to stay safe and get vaccinated. remember, information and education saves lives when folks have the information and education they have the tools that equip them to take care of themselves and their family. we expect to fund 30 projects in urban communities and 43 projects in rural communities for two years, and i'm going to give you some information on how you can apply and get more apply -- more and that is to apply through april 20 at but i ask our friends, please do work with us to put equity at the center of our collective respons, to identify those individuals and communities who have been overlooked, and to connect them with the resources available and to connect with
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them in a way to establish trust -- that we renew and in some cases establish trust between community and those who are elected to serve those communities, and also we've got a child tax credit coming that they can take advantage of, so please tell them about it and tell them about the paycheck protection program and the loans there for small businesses. please tell these folks how to get vaccinated at pharmacies and community health centers and mobile units and please continue to tell everyone you know to wear a mask. this brings me to my final point. the american people will continue to look to you as much as they look to me or the president because of your tireless efforts. because they know they can rely on you. they will continue to look to you for answers and action and
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for comfort and for hope. i know it's not an easy job that -- but what you do, especially at this moment of crisis, could not be more important. thank you again for all you do. i know it takes personal sacrifice and sleepless nights. but know the president and i are working right alongside you. so may god bless you and may god bless america. thank you all. ♪ >> join us in welcoming the mayor of huntington, west virginia steve williams in conversation with u.s. secretary of transportation pete buttigieg. >> mr. secretary, welcome home.
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glad to have you with us today and welcome you to the conference, and we have individuals here who are doing -- viewing this from hawaii, maine, florida and everywhere in between and they recognize a familiar face because we know that prior to becoming the 19th secretary of transportation in january, just 33 days ago, you served two terms as mayor of your hometown of south bend, indiana and you worked across the aisle to transform the city's future and improve the everyday lives of residents. we know you will continue to do that in washington. so mr. secretary, 33 days into it, how are you rolling up your sleeves and getting to work at the u.s. department of transportation?
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secretary buttigieg: mayor, first it's great to see you and thank you for your leadership and for the chance to address everyone gathered at the national league of cities. you truly represent the people who are doing the work and the work you are doing is phenomenal especially at a challenging time like this. for me, as you might expect, it has been a lively few weeks. we got to work straight away and there has not been a moment to lose. we've been focused on engagement internally and externally. internally because there are about 55,000 employees here at the department, phenomenal public servants and people who have such remarkable experience and remarkable commitment to our mission. i have been taking a lot of time, as a new leader would, to get to know the employees here to make sure we are the best possible workplace and aligned as best we can to meet the mission, and there has been a lot of outside engagement participating in events like this one and of course a huge focus to make sure these first
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weeks, we deliver this rescue package the vice president was talking about. the senate vote brings us one big step closer. i want to thank all of you for the work you have done to communicate to the public and perhaps educate many members of congress about what this means in our communities. and of course, now, we need to get this back to the president's desk through the house and then we have an opportunity to work on an economic recovery package that i am so enthused about the potential love. we are talking about a chance to build back better across the country and to my way of thinking, there are moments that come along that you just cannot dare miss, and we are in one. both in terms of the scope of the challenge from the nation's reckoning over equity of racial and economic justice, the climate crisis in front of us, to what covid-19 has done to our communities, but also the opportunities side, the national
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inpatients to get something done and the fact the economic conditions and political conditions i think have us very well aligned to come together to do big things when it comes to infrastructure. i know this is not the first administration to arrive with high hopes on what we could deliver in terms of infrastructure, but we are determined to take advantage of this unique moment, this maybe once every century with your help to deliver. so when i am not around this building getting to know my new colleagues or engaging with elected leaders like you, i am working to frame the right possibilities for that and we are turning to you to inform and we hope to communicate the importance of the legislation that may be materialized later this year. >> mr. secretary, we are coming upon one year into a crisis that has laid bare our equity
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issues related to the health structure and economic structure even the fabric of the social structure and you just indicated it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us to be able to get things right the first time. so in that regard, how is it the department of transportation might be able to identify that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform our nation? sec. buttigieg: well, as every local leader knows justice and equity is at stake in the choices we make about transportation and infrastructure. we know the very same americans disproportionately americans of color who have been excluded by design through american history through economic opportunity have also been the most likely to live in neighborhoods with inadequate transportation resources or most likely to live
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in neighborhoods where highway projects and other investments often with federal money made things worse by isolating people from one part of the community to another. we have a chance to do something about that. we have a chance right now to take history into account and even more importantly to take our future on board. as we make choices to ensure that access to transportation is a leveler and equalizer making this country a more fair and just place to be. by the way, this is something that can't be separated from questions of climate and environmental justice. a very simple example is we know that some americans are disproportionately likely to live close to highway thoroughfares and have worse air quality and more likely to suffer from asthma and other conditions related to particulate matter in the air which in turn explains one of the reasons why we see disparities through covid-19
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and it is all connected. the problems are connected and so are the solutions. i am energized by the president's call for us to deliver 40% of the overall investment to disadvantaged communities. we are calling it justice and the dot has a huge role to play. this is something we can do just -- cannot just do out of washington. it has to be in partnership with local communities, but the bottom line this is a top priority here at the department and priority of the president and mine and as you work to make sure your communities empower everyone, everyone to thrive, we will do everything we can to support you in that work. >> so just how is the biden-harris organization administration will build back better so how are you working with local governments? sec. buttigieg: let me make clear we are working out even before we get some of those big
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pieces of legislation through. for example, the build grant formally known as tiger or fast, we will be working to make sure those priorities are reflected even in the discretionary grants. you may have noticed in the notice that went out in the communities applying for that program, but the build back better package represents a whole new level of opportunity, at least it can and that is what we are trying to build right now. the way i describe it is a one-two punch. a two-step plan. step one is what we're in the middle of right now. a numeric and -- an american rescue plan to be a shock in the arm checks to families helping with transit and support for transit agencies and local government. it is going to be what we really need to get through the tough moment we've been in with our communities and our economy. hopefully, that's just days away from signature then we can talk about part two of the two-step
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process and that is where we have a chance to put together a vision to build back better that goes beyond what i work on here at the department of transportation. it's really a nationwide whole of government opportunity, but you can't talk about build back better without build which is infrastructure. so what does that actually mean? part of it is modernizing. introducing the things we really need to get the infrastructure to a world leading level. i cannot accept americans citizens are told to settle for less than people in other countries when it comes to the resources they have whether it is right around the neighborhood in transit options, or traveling long haul with some of the things we've been asked to settle for for the funding that goes into rail in this country, but as every local leader knows, this will not get the job done if we just look at things to add or introduce. we have to take care of what we already have. we have so many roads that are written tough condition.
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the american society of civil engineers just came out with the famous report card they do every year. once again, we are seeing that our roads and our bridges and other elements of our critical infrastructure are in rough rough shape. that's why we are thinking about the fix first strategy around here, to make sure communities have the resources to take care of what you've already got. some areas where the road needs to go on a diet and we ought to help with that too, especially if it saves you maintenance cost in the long run. these are the things were thinking about. i will not be sitting in a room here in the department thinking it up on my own nor does the president envision a strictly top-down enterprise. it has to happen with dialogue and that's why the listening session i had earlier the leadership was so helpful and we will continue to be listening as well as speaking how best to
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frame this opportunity, which again, i convinced to come along am just once-in-a-lifetime to make the most of that opportunity to provide the investments american communities need and we've got to make the case. we've got to sell it because as we learned with this rescue plan just because something has a commanding majority among the american people, democrats and republicans, and perhaps among american mayors and city leaders doesn't always mean it gets a rousing majority on capitol hill. that is where the work of all of us, doing that persuading and engaging is so important to get something through. mayor williams: as you know from your history the communication from the local level to the members of congress is the way to be able to get things done. earlier today with the board of directors, you heard a full laundry list of what we are attempting to do with them for structure. we are prioritizing sustainable
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infrastructure investment with safety and technology focus. how do we partner together with the u.s. dot in these areas? sec. buttigieg: local leaders are already thinking about and acting on the opportunities of things like safety and use of technology. what dot can do provide -- is provide resources, insights, technology sometimes, and integrate it where i department like mine talking to a place like housing and urban development, how we can support transit development. just to take one example of the kinds of interdepartmental collaboration not always the way people are used to doing things in the federal government but as every local leader knows, you can't get anything done without it. some of the things we are working on sound very technical. the notorious the manual uniform
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traffic control device, but you may know it as something that almost has the force of law because it lays out the standards for roadways of signage and a seemingly dry, technical thing how the manual is written and what it calls for could have consequences in terms of how people get around with safety and equity. we will be working on those technical dimensions as well as things like the big legislation we might be able to get done. none of it happens without a rich conversation with local communities, to hear what you are already doing on the ground to find ways to support and share what we are learning cross pollinating from one community to another, something that an lc already does so well to provide support in that department. you have the ear of the members of congress. they pick up the phone when a mayor calls, a local leader calls and that will be very
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important to make sure we have the right kind of dialogue. so much is made of the relationship between the federal government and the states but to me, it is the relationship with the local communities is the most dynamic and interesting and important in our federal system and i will bear that in mind on anything we might be working on, whether it is grand visions for upgrading the rail network in this country or trying to use our research capabilities to give you cheaper ways to fill potholes that last longer that is the enemy of every local official. all of these things will serve the fundamental shared goals of safety, climate resilience, equity and justice and of course job growth and economic strength. all of those are possible if we are working together on the opportunities that infrastructure and transportation represents. that's part of why i am enthused to be in this job. mayor williams: we have just one minutes left, mr. secretary. you are among just a few
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thousand of your closest friends here at nlc. what can what can nlc do to help you build a more equitable future to get more done for our residents more quickly? mayor williams: you are doing the work right now. the first thing we need you to do is succeed and keep at it. let us know what you need. i don't mean just the projects although of course you are in that robust process going back -- going to bat with what we can help with the federal dollars but process wise in the same way you work with your stakeholders to make things simpler dealing with the cities you run. i want to do the same thing in this department. if there is a process or form that is 10 pages that could have been five and meet the same goals, a process that takes a couple years and could of been six months with the same results
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and needs, let us know what that is like because i want this to be a user-friendly department for intergovernmental partners and we will be all ears. then we shape up we will turn -- that common vision, i will turn to you to build public and congressional support for big investments without big -- because without those big investments, we are not going to get where we need to be is a country when it comes to our infrastructure. sec. buttigieg: mr. secretary -- mayor williams: mr. secretary, we are awfully proud of you. you have a friend in the nlc. we look forward to working with you. thank you for being with us today. sec. buttigieg: right back at you. you have a friend here in the department and a lot of friends here in washington who admire the extraordinary work you are doing. keep it up and let us know how we can help. mayor williams: godspeed. ♪
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we are now pleased to welcome clarence anthony, ceo and executive director of national league of cities. >> good afternoon, national league of cities. it's an honor to be here today to welcome two of our nation's leading physicians to the virtual stage today for an important conversation regarding the national strategy on covid-19. exactly one year ago, local leaders were gathered in washington, d.c. for this very conference. we were likely one of the last in-person conferences as the realities of the covid-19 pandemic gripped our nation in days, weeks, and months to come. as local leaders, you have been at the forefront of the response to this deadly virus, and this conversation could not be more critical to you as local leaders .
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it is important for us to understand the biden administration's view on the current trajectory of the virus. the strategy for vaccine deployment as well as how we can continue to address the issues of health equity and vaccine hesitancy. our guests are the familiar faces of the administration's response and i am so pleased to have them join me here today in this important conversation. nlc, please welcome doctor fauci , who is director of the national institute of allergy and infectious diseases at the u.s. national institute of health, where he oversees and extensive research portfolio focused on infectious and immune mediated diseases.
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he also serves as president biden's chief medical advisor and has served under six presidents starting with president ronald reagan. we also want to welcome dr. rochelle walensky, who is the 19th director from the center for disease control and prevention and the ninth administrator of the agency for toxic substances and disease registry. provider -- prior to leading the cdc, dr. walensky served as the chief of the division of infectious diseases at massachusetts general hospital and professor of medicine at harvard medical school. good afternoon, doctors. how are you guys doing? dr. fauci: very well thank you, mr. anthony. thank you for having me. dr. walensky: thank you.
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clarence: let me start with you, dr. fauci. nearly 50 days into the biden administration, where are we today with the rate of infections with this disease in your perspective whether the worst is behind us? dr. fauci: well, right now, even though we have seen over the past weeks and months a sharp decline in the number of infections per day, which were as high as 300,000 to 400,000 per day, the sharp decline is good news but the sobering news about this is we reached what is somewhat of a plateau in the diminution of daily cases at the seven day average being somewhere around 60,000 to 70,000. the good news was it was coming down. the sobering news is it is
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starting to plateau a bit and the history of this virus has told us when you start to plateau at a level as high as this, which is about 60,000 to 70,000 cases a day, that you are by no means out of the woods and you have got to continue to do the type of public health measures we talk about all the time, the masking, the physical distancing, and the avoidance of congregant settings, particularly indoors. when you talk about the worst behind us, that could be possible because we have vaccines that are now available that are highly efficacious and safe, so the more people we get vaccinated and the more quickly we do it, the better off we are, but now is no time to declare victory because we still have a considerable amount of viral dynamics we are dealing with. clarence: yeah, let me follow-up
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on that because i do think one of the things our delegates are asking us is about the variants. how do the variants set us back in cities, towns, and villages all over america? dr. fauci: i wouldn't say they set us back. i would say they provide a new challenge for us. the new challenges that we have a situation whereby we have viruses circulating that are not the original type of virus. they have mutations called which then make them be called variants from the original, which you call wild type and what the variants do is they sometimes elude the protection you can get from monoclonal antibodies, which is a form of therapy and potentially, not every variant, but some could potentially evade some of the protection that is given to you
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by the antibodies that are induced by the vaccines that we are using. also, some of the variants can spread more rapidly than the wild type and some of them can be more serious in the sense of making you more sick, so we take them very seriously. we monitor them, and if necessary, we will modify our vaccines to address them. dr. fauci: you know -- clarence: you know, one of the things the president has done is taken significant measures to increase the vaccine supply to communities across the country, including launching a retail pharmacy program and fema reimbursement program to states, so given these measures, how quickly do you think we can vaccinate most of the residents in america? dr. fauci: well, the president has said by the end of may, we
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will have enough vaccine to vaccinate everyone in the country who is available to get vaccinated in the sense of adults and certain of the younger population in which the fda has allowed vaccination. how long it will take to get everyone vaccinated is dependent on a number of factors. one, our logistical capability getting the vaccine into people's arms. i would imagine we could probably do that within a couple of months following the total availability of vaccines, somewhere this summer, i would believe. that is really very important. and i think this will change a lot of what we can and can't do, which i'm sure you'll hear a bit more from from dr. walensky. clarence: so our municipal officials from all over america are trying to figure out what is the best role for them as it
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relates to these efforts and measures? what can they do to help this issue related to the covid-19 response? dr. fauci: well, local officials are the people closest to the ground in your communities. you are elected officials, many of you, therefore the community trusts you. best thing you could do to help me, to help dr. walensky, to help all the people who are trying to get our arms around this pandemic as well as everyone in the country is to get your citizens to get vaccinated when the vaccine becomes available and encourage them not to pull back on public health measures prematurely. in other words, listen to the recommendations of the cdc regarding mitigation methods, wearing of masks, physical distancing.
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they analyzed this, they have the best epidemiologists in the world, listen to what their recommendations are. clarence: thank you, dr. fauci and now, i would like to talk to dr. walensky. thank you so much for being with us today. our municipal leaders are grateful to have this kind of information from you today. dr. walensky: thank you so much to having me, mr. anthony and to the national league of cities, you do extraordinary amounts of work and education over the past year. clarence: thank you. according to cdc statistics, 52% of the u.s. population older than six months received the flu vaccine, including myself, during the 2019, 2020 influenza season. if we vaccinated 52% of u.s. residents with the covid vaccine, would that be enough and what is cdc's target for
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vaccination? dr. walensky: it is such a great question and everyone is looking at targets for herd immunity. how many people do we need vaccinated? how many people do we need protected so that if someone were to interact with somebody else, that person would be protected. the bottom line is no, 52% is not likely to be enough. we don't exactly know what the level is and with the virus, we believe the level to be even higher than we saw over the summer so people over the summer were saying somewhere in the 60% to 70% range. people are now talking somewhere in the 70% to 85% range. the bottom line is everyone who is willing and wanting should roll up their sleeves and get vaccinated and everyone who is healthy enough to encourage others to do so should set the
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role model to bring others into vaccination and i say that for elderly people, for people at the highest risk of the disease, we really do need everyone rolling to -- willing to roll up their sleeves if we are going to get to get the herd immunity. clarence: that's very helpful to be able to get the public officials that kind of information. i wanted to focus on this issue related to the people of color, particularly black americans who are experiencing more serious illness and death due to the covid-19 than white residents in our communities and 16 states that have been releasing data by race, white residents are being vaccinated at a higher rate. in many cases, two or three times higher than people of color. how should local leaders be messaging about the vaccine to
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ensure residents have access and take this vaccination, particularly in the black, indigenous, latino, hispanic, and other communities of color? any advice to our municipal officials? dr. walensky: yeah, this is such an important question and what i will say is we at the cdc would like to emphasize how critical this is. i know the administration is deeply concerned about these inequities. let me give you a few statistics. we know that in this pandemic, latinos and hispanics are 2.3 times more likely to die and african-americans, two times more likely to die of covid-19. we know the first six months of this pandemic, the life expectancy dropped one year for all americans, but was expected to drop 2.7 years for
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african-americans and 1.9 years for hispanic americans. we know, as you point out, that while 65% of all vaccinated are white, only 9% are hispanic and 7% african-american. these inequities have been deep, they have been long-standing. they are resulting in disparate health outcomes and we have to fix this. we have to fix this because this is where the virus is, this is the communities they are hitting. what i do know is we need to use all capacity in order to do so. the federal government is working with fema and the cdc to ensure our community vaccination sites are high-volume success -- 6000 persons a day. strategically placed in high census areas with high social vulnerability indexes. we are putting the federal
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pharmacy program in pharmacies where we believe they are working to reach the hardest hit communities. we are putting vaccine in federally qualified health centers for exactly that reason, to serve marginalized health and publicly housed. we are working really hard to make sure vaccine is getting to these people but what we also need to make sure is that you, community members, members, localities, people who know your district, people who mobilize your networks because they don't necessarily want to hear from me. they want to hear from you, trusted people in their communities, community-based organizations, faith-based organizations, and more people in local organizations that get vaccinated, the more people will want to be vaccinated. clarence: i can say on behalf of the national league of cities, our members are so committed to making sure everyone has access
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to the vaccine and that there is education to build for that level of trust that is needed in the communities of color so we are with you 100%. i want to ask both of you this question. how is the administration thinking about issues of access a little more granular and why i say that, in many smaller and more rural communities and also in urban areas, access to broadband sign-up for the vaccination is very limited and a streamlined system to find out where to get the vaccine can be complicated. are there ways that local leaders can help to best address this issue for residents? dr. walensky: you know, i will say that we know we've had numerous challenges with the
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access. one is we simply have had not enough supply of vaccine so as dr. fauci noted, we know more supply is coming. we think that is going to improve dramatically in the weeks of head -- ahead. there is a remarkable amount of vaccine hesitancy. we really need to reach people where they are with regard to why they are hesitant. some it may be that it is they have not been able to access it digitally, to refresh and sign up for appointments. some of it is because they might not have understood how it was possible the science moved incredibly fast, and it did with over 100,000 people over three vaccine trials. some are worried about the side effects and we need to hear from others who have been vaccinated that they did not have severe side effects like they were concerned about and some of it
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is convenience. they need a mechanism that is after hours, after work, on the weekends so all of these things together, once we have more vaccine, i think we will be more instrumental in getting vaccine to people. i am heartened by some of the things i have heard in the communities, the ways that communities are reaching out to their community members. the city of chicago, vaccine clinics, many members of community colleges. in loveland, texas, there were vaccination centers at a new public transportation center and at a metropolitan church in tennessee, faith-based efforts reached communities of color so these are just three examples of how it will be person by person, community like community that will get people vaccinated. dr. fauci: the president has also made it clear that equity is always on the front burner of everything we do and if you look
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at some of the things that have already been put out with the community vaccines centers, about close to 500 of them. and they're going to be placed in areas where demographically, you have high representation of minority individuals. also, pharmacies are going to get stocked, including pharmacies in particular areas and regions, locations, neighborhoods that have a high minority and finally, there will be mobile units that will go out directly to not easy to access areas as well as increasing the number of vaccinators. people who put vaccines into people's arms. he has also established an equity task force. there are people in the white house, cameron webb and others, and you have dr. nunez smith, who is the chair of the equity task force so equity is very
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much on the front burner of everything we are trying to do with vaccines. clarence: thank you both are answering that because that is very important and i think mayors and councilmembers all over america get this question about access, distribution in my neighborhood or on other neighborhood and why is that area being selected over another? they are trying to come up with answers and you guys are really helping them to address the resident's. let me ask this question to dr. walensky. once residents are vaccinated, we still need to continue with safe practices that i've heard many times that you guys have said the same thing. distancing, wearing masks, avoiding crowds, washing hands. today, the cdc released guidelines on what activities vaccinated individuals can do.
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for many people, they see this as a return to normal. can you help us understand the best way we should be messaging this to our residents? because i do think that can send a mixed message if we are not clear. dr. walensky: yeah, such an important point. i'm really proud of the data released today but i want to convey this is a first initial step. we today have less than 10% of the american population vaccinated so far. we are getting there and moving really fast, but we still have 90% of people who we still have to protect and as dr. fauci earlier said, we still have 60,000 new cases a day, so we are really trying to strike the balance of what vaccinated people can do while protecting all of those people who remain on vaccinated. as more people get vaccinated, we will have further guidance.
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as we follow the disease course in the country, follow the variants and amounts of disease, we will update the guidance and as we have new data that continually emerges as to how the vaccine is working on populations that are vaccinated, we will update the guidance. for now, what we say is in private settings, and private settings, vaccinated people can meet with him vaccinated people in their own home without masking or distancing, which is a nice way for people to start to be able to do the things with the people they love. in private settings, we also say that vaccinated people can meet with members of one other household who might be on vaccinated as long as members of that household are not at risk of severe disease from covid-19. this does mean a grandparent who is vaccinated might be able -- can visit her healthy daughter
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and grandchildren as long as they are not at risk of severe disease. this is with one other household. this is, i believe, a really important first step to getting people back to being able to see those they love and get them back toward doing some of those things we were doing and enjoying pre-pandemic. clarence: thank you, dr. walensky and we will make sure we get that information out to our municipal officials because it is important that, again, the national league of cities and our members are able to share that. i want to move to both of you on this issue related to public health professionals because this has been a virus, a pandemic that has impacted so many lives and so many professions and we have seen
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public health take a significant hit, with estimates of more than 180 state and local health officials having left their jobs in less than a year, depleting and even stymieing our public health system, just when we need it most. with this mounting pressure and threats our public health officials are facing, how is the administration working to improve public health and the role of local public health officials? what can cities do to support these efforts? dr. fauci: that's a very important and troubling issue that you bring up, mr. anthony. of all the pandemic outbreaks i have had to deal with over the 36 years i've been directing the infectious disease institute, i have never seen a situation that even came close to this with regard to divisive nests over
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ideology -- divisiveness ideologically that swept over into the issue of public health where people, as you mentioned correctly in your statement and your question, that health officials who push for common sense, well accepted public health measures of wear a mask, physical distancing, avoiding congregants settings including indoor are actually looked upon as the enemy, the enemy of getting the economy open, the enemy of getting people jobs back when in fact, the common enemy is the virus. not the health officials who are trying to do as best they can to get this country out of this pandemic grip that we are in and the way we do that is by adherence to public health
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measures and you are right, public health officials have been threatened and many of them have left their positions. the president is very well aware of that and he's encouraging everyone to look at this as a common fight. also i might mention, the recently passed $1.9 trillion relief bill includes in it and a lot of resources that will be helping the local public health officials to do their jobs better. as city leaders, what you can do is please get behind your public health officials. they are totally dedicated to the health of the nation and particularly for you locally to the health of their community so please, continue to give them your strong, uninhibited support. dr. walensky: maybe a few things
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i will add. first of all, i completely agree with dr. fauci's comment. this virus does not know boundaries of demographics. this affects us all so we need a unified approach to fight it. there is a 2020 report recorded that in the last decade, the public health workforce in this country has lost 56,000 jobs. 25% of our current public health workforce is actually expected to retire in the next year. we have a crisis of the volume of people who are even engaged in public health in this country and that is why i really do believe, given that in the last 10 years we have seen ebola, zika, h1n1 and now covid-19. we do need a massive bolstering of our public health
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infrastructure, our public health workforce, our state epidemiologists who help understand where these outbreaks occur and labs who do the diagnostics and the surveillance to ensure that we know about outbreaks when they happen. that public health workforce has been frail for years and we saw manifestations in what happened with covid-19. the public health workforce, state epidemiologists, health labs, they need support. they need workforce, they need infrastructure, and so what you can all do is to facilitate the support, go to those places. public health works really well when you don't hear from us because that means all things have been averted. what you saw with covid-19 is we did not have the capacity to avert. clarence: those points are very
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helpful and we are seeing that same trend in public office and public service. we are seeing mayors, council members out there trying to get the food and housing and they are contracting the pandemic and we are seeing quite a few having terminated their lives because they are out there serving. we will lift up those public health employees and officials and we will be there to encourage them. i have one final question before we go to the audience questions. how can local leaders help you both and your teams to take this fight to the finish line, because we know that in order for us to return to what many say is a new normal, we have to be partners with both of you. dr. fauci: you use the word local leaders, so i would say
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show leadership and get out there and endorse the kinds of things the cdc says. endorse the kinds of things you hear dr. walensky and i say three times a week in our press conferences. we are doing it because we want to get this country out of this pandemic and back to normal. we are not doing it because we want to slow down getting back to normal. we are doing it because we know that is the way, the quickest way to get to normal so we need you. we really do need local leadership to endorse the kinds of things that are based on science and evidence. dr. walensky: there is so much that is critical that is riding on the next few months. how quickly we vaccinate versus whether or not we have another surge relies on what happens in
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march and april so what i would ask is that local leaders demonstrate through their own example and through their own communities mask wearing, distancing, all the public health measures. demonstrate the willingness to get vaccinated. spread the word to local community leaders and to be part of the actions that gets us out of this. clarence: now we have some questions from a few of our members. the first question comes from mayor chassidy from illinois, a population of 26,000. the mayor says given the newness of the vaccines, how can local leaders help the public become more comfortable without having longitudinal research to study the potential of side effects.
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we have a similar question from councilmember rebecca in san antonio, texas, population 1.5 million as well as councilmember alan smith from oak ridge, tennessee. dr. fauci: who would you like to answer that? [laughter] clarence: i will ask both of you guys. jump in, because these officials are excited to hear from you guys. dr. fauci: go ahead, rochelle. go ahead. dr. walensky: i know these are new vaccines and they are new to us, but the reason this is possible is because so much finance was happening around these vaccines before covid-19. these were not started around covid-19. there was an extra ordinary amount of research on mrna vaccines that preceded 2020 that made it possible to jumpstart everything with the arrival of
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the mrna vaccine. as i mentioned, 100,000 people rolled up their sleeves to enroll in these clinical trials. 100,000 people, about 70,000 people in the mrna vaccine specifically. it shows extraordinary safety in that period of time. the reason it was possible is because so many volunteered so quickly and because there was so much disease out there we could achieve outcomes quite quickly. we have seen the anaphylaxis, the severe allergic reaction with these vaccines is happening at a rate of about four -- four in one million. that is low and consistent with what we are seeing in all of the vaccines and that reaction is reversible, so what i would say is we know a lot about these already. we have an extraordinary amount of research.
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we have been following this in our program at the cdc and tens of thousands of people have signed up. it is the largest vaccine program in american history and we are following the data carefully. dr. fauci: you use the word longitudinal research. people keep asking dr. walensky and i, what about these long-term effects you might be missing since this vaccine has only been administered for a year? well, when you look at the history of vax analogy -- vaccineology and you talk about long-term effects, not the immediate ones dr. walensky mentioned such as the anaphylactic reaction, but some unknown bizarre thing that might happen some time afterwards that you could miss. in the history of vaccinology, when you look at what the fda
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and cdc have looked at historically, almost all of the vaccine effects that occur beyond just the vaccination date occur between anywhere between 15 and 45 days after the administration of the dose. it is for that reason that the fda requires that before you allow a vaccine to be given to the american public, you must wait 60 days from the time that 50% of the people in the trial receive their last dose. so you are well beyond, historically, when essentially all of the long-term side effects occur. that's the reason for the 60 day wait, so in addition to the long-term follow-up that dr. walensky mentioned to you, you don't even get a chance to get the vaccine until you have that
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60 day waiting period. clarence: this next question is an important question. cities need help getting vaccine straight to their communities to set up mass vaccination hubs that are equitable and not political. how is the federal government rollout for the fema community vaccination centers working to ensure that max vaccine sites are in areas most impacted by covid-19? dr. walensky: so, the cdc sits down with fema and looks at both census and social vulnerability index and the places where these mass vaccination sites could be placed to really hit a large number of people as well as where those people would maximally wear them on the vulnerability index. from there, they send mobile units.
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they take from the mass vaccination centers, trying to do outreach and we really do map where the highest census is, the highest social vulnerability and try to do the mobile units from there. clarence: anything to add, dr. fauci? dr. fauci: no, actually. exactly what dr. walensky said and i said in the previous comment about community vaccine centers, mobile units, pharmacies with the thought that equity must be addressed at every single point. dr. walensky: and maybe one other thing to add, this past week, past week and a half, we are rolling out and ramping up our federally qualified health sectors and over 250 across the country, we believe that with more vaccine on board getting two more will reach more hard to hit populations. clarence: well, let me say thank
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you to both of you. dr. fauci as well as dr. walensky. for joining us this afternoon and sharing your optimism, but also sharing your knowledge with municipal officials all over america. i have to tell you that you are so valued in america. without your knowledge, without your advice on a daily basis, i don't think we would be where we are in america and i can tell you that the optimism america feels right now is because of the information, the science, the data, and the advice you are giving our communities and mayors and councilmembers all over america value your advice, so thank you all so much for your time. i appreciate it, and one thing i will say.
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any person that has the name anthony in their name, they are really blessed and i do appreciate you guys every day. as well as you, dr. walensky. so thank you all. dr. fauci: thank you for having us. ♪ >> welcome back. mayor vince williams. >> thank you, clarence, dr. fauci, and dr. walensky for such an important discussion on where we are in combating this pandemic. this is a critically important issue. this is a good time to mention that the cdc is hosting a special vaccine boot camp for us
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this afternoon. i hope to see you there. all right, my friends. we are officially finished with our first general session. enjoy the fantastic workshops and evening events, and we will see you back here tomorrow for two more general sessions. have a wonderful afternoon. >> c-span's washington journal. every day, we are taking your calls live on the air on the news of the day and discussing policy issues that impact you. tuesday morning, new york democratic congressman joins us to talk about the coronavirus relief bill and congressional news of the day. then, ohio republican congressman warren davidson on recent stock nip elation -- stock manipulation and a discussion on whether volatility is the new normal with the cook political report national editor amy walter. watch c-span's washington journal tuesday morning at 7:00
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eastern and join the discussion with your phone calls, facebook comments, text messages command tweets. >> here's a look at what is live tuesday on c-span, the house is back at 10:00 eastern for general speeches followed by legislative business at noon. members are working on an organized labor bill that makes it easier for workers to unionize. it is also possible the senate passed 1.9 trillion dollar covid-19 relief bill could be brought to the floor for a vote. at 9:30 a.m. on c-span2, the senate judiciary committee holds a confirmation hearing for deputy attorney general nominee lisa monaco and associate attorney general nominee bonita group to. at 3:00, the senate returns to consider the nominations of marcia fudge as housing secretary and merrick garland as attorney general. in the evening, gavin newsom delivers his annual state of the state address.
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on c-span3, the health committee meets at 10:00 for a hearing on the federal response to the coronavirus. in the afternoon, nancy pelosi and others speak at a conference hosted by the national league of cities. there is more live coverage on our website with the house appropriations subcommittee hearing on the fda for drug inspection program. that gets underway at 10:00 a.m. eastern. you'll find it at


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