Oro Valley Town Council members Barry Gillaspie and Salette Latas met with federal officials March 12-18 in Washington, D.C., to discuss resources and funding for Oro Valley, according to a town release.

They talked about retaining jobs in public safety, federal investments in Oro Valley’s water infrastructure and historic preservation with Sens. John McCain and Jon Kyl, as well as Reps. Gabrielle Giffords, Raul Grijalva, Harry Mitchell and Ann Kirkpatrick.

Gillaspie and Latas also met with key staff members from the office of Rep. Ed Pastor, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Department of Justice. Gillaspie and Latas attended briefings from key officials, including U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Energy Secretary Steven Chu, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson.

“There are so many moving parts under the new administration, and there is potential for much-needed revenue for projects in Oro Valley,” Gillaspie said. “A lot of what we heard from these folks will help us identify what projects make the most sense and how we can better position ourselves for consideration as we move forward in applying for funding.”

Latas said the meeting with the Department of Justice regarding the COPS Hiring Recovery Program was very helpful in understanding the specific timeline for awarding these funds, as the Oro Valley Police Department is currently working on a list of action items for their application.

“One of the things we were able to determine is that letters from stakeholders can be included in the application package, so anyone who wants to write a support letter could submit it to the mayor and council and we can make sure those messages are included,” Latas said.

Any letters should include COPS Hiring Recovery Program in the subject line. Deadline for submission is Friday, April 10.

The trip coincided with the Congressional City Conference, the annual legislative meeting of the National League of Cities.

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