White House

As part of a program initiated by the Donald Trump administration, county commissioners from all over the country are being invited to Washington, D.C., to meet with representatives from multiple federal agencies.

Commissioners Dave Hinson and Tim Brinker will make the trip next week and will be joined by their counterparts from many of Missouri’s 114 counties.

“To my knowledge, this is the first time any invitations have been made to Missouri,” Brinker said. “It can only be beneficial for the county. I hope it’s a chance to make direct county to federal inroads.”

Brinker added he will also be contacting the staff of Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer and Sen. Roy Blunt to possibly meet with the pair while in the capital city.

“This is very refreshing to see the attitude this administration has toward county governments,” Brinker said. “This is government the way it’s supposed to be.”

Brinker and Hinson will travel to D.C. Monday, Oct. 16, tour the White House and attend the conference in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building next door Wednesday and return home on Thursday.

“This is an opportunity to get us (Franklin County) on the federal map,” Brinker said. “Priority one is transportation issues, especially the Highway 47 project. Getting some federal attention for that wouldn’t hurt.”

The visit is part of President Trump’s “open door policy.”

Since taking office, the president has encouraged both government and private sector leaders to meet with his intergovernmental affairs office.

This trip is being coordinated by the special assistant to the president and deputy director of the intergovernmental affairs office Billy Kirkland.

In August, county commissioners from Michigan were the first to attend the public policy conference linking the Trump administration directly to local governments.

Since that time, commissioners from battleground states Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida also have made the trip to Washington, D.C.