Article City Forum Eva Spiegel

Redesigned League Website Offers New Tools and Features

Eva Spiegel is communications director for the League and can be reached at

If you haven’t visited the League online recently, log on to and check out the new functionality designed to make it easier to find news, information and resources for cities. Launched in late April, the website features enhanced tools to help League members advocate for their cities, become involved in our policy-making process and learn about important upcoming educational opportunities for city officials.

On the Home Page

Just below the main navigation, a horizontal box highlights key League news stories and other items of interest. This section features a rotating slideshow to allow visitors to see numerous headlines, many of which come from the League’s electronic newsletter, CA Cities Advocate. More headlines linked to news stories appear to the left in the vertical column. Real-time updates, provided through the League’s @CaCities Twitter feed, are located below the slideshow.

The Member Toolbox

Because advocacy is the cornerstone of the League’s work, the Member Toolbox — located in the center of the new home page — directs visitors to important bills, the hottest issues and an expedited way to take action. This toolbox also appears on the left side of every page so wherever you go on the website it’s there for you to use on behalf of your city.

The first tab in the toolbox is Bill Search. Select the “Bill Search” link and you’ll be able to plug in any bill number and find not only the League position but also the name of the lobbyist working the bill as well as correspondence to legislators and sample letters.

The Hot Issues tab provides quick links to background information, white papers and other resources on critical issues for cities.

The third tab, Take Action, provides a one-stop shop that facilitates contacting your lawmakers to take action on issues affecting your city. This new, easy-to-use feature allows you to customize letters and send the communication.

Other New Features

The new website also includes a gallery featuring a wide variety of videos of interest to cities. We’ll be posting interviews with our leaders, staff, city officials, conference speakers and others to keep you apprised of critically important topics.

The Upcoming Events box is prominently placed to ensure that city officials can quickly find information about League conferences and events related to their profession. Each conference has its own page where visitors can access the event announcement, online registration, program materials, handouts, speaker profiles, accommodations and more.

On the home page and throughout the entire website, a convenient “jump to” box directly routes visitors to key sections connected to member involvement. In the “jump to” box, you can select a professional department, League region or policy committee and access CA Cities Advocate and the League’s public listservs.

City attorneys are enthused about the new, improved Amicus Program interface. The request for amicus support process is streamlined and efficient. The new website still contains the extensive City Attorney Library of papers and filings.

League members won’t want to miss the Financial Solutions for California Cities box in the left column. This is where you’ll find links to League-sponsored financial services that provide savings in pooled investments and joint purchasing opportunities. And check out the League Partner Spotlight on the bottom left side to learn about the companies and organizations working with cities throughout California.

Tell Us What You Think

This is just a sample of what you will find at We encourage you to spend some time exploring the website and everything it offers city officials. Please share your feedback via e-mail to We are eager to know how you’re using these valuable tools.

This article appears in the June 2012 issue of Western City
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