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Cisneros chosen as HUD Secretary.

Declaring that it is "time to bring the lessons from city hall" to the federal government, President-elect Bill Clinton last Thursday selected NLC past President Henry Cisneros to serve as his Secretary for Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Cisneros, who twice flew to the New Orleans Congress of Cities earlier this month, would be the first mayor in the Clinton administration and the first former NLC President ever to serve as a Cabinet leader.

In announcing his selection of Cisneros, Clinton said:

"Less than a year after the civil disturbances in Los Angeles, the ranks of homelessness continue to swell. Housing is out of reach for working families, and there simply aren't enough jobs and opportunities. The answer to these problems can't simply be to spend more money on the same programs.

"Innovative policy makers at the grass roots level, many of whom came to our economic policy conference, have learned the hard way to rebuild America without busting the budget. It's time to bring these lessons from city halls to Washington. That's why I have chosen one of America's most successful mayors over the last decade, Henry Cisneros. Henry is a visionary leader who will bring fresh energy to an agency that badly needs reform and revitalization.

"He served four terms as Mayor of San Antonio. With Henry Cisneros at HUD, America's cities will have the voice and vision they need and deserve."

Cisneros, who met with the NLC Board of Directors as a senior representative of the Clinton transition team and to moderate a special plenary session on developing cities' potential in New Orleans, thanked the President-elect for the honor and said:

"I Sense we have limited time for America. We cannot talk about the economy and not talk about our cities and towns, about the poor of all races."

At the plenary session during the Congress of Cities, Cisneros had asked each of the panelists how they would respond if they were cabinet secretaries asked to design new programs in infrastructure and housing by the new President. Each replied they would insist upon direct funding to cities.

NLC President Don Fraser praised the appointment of Cisneros:

"President Clinton's appointment marks a clear commitment to ensuring the nation's cities and towns will be ably represented at the White House. It means HUD will be the center for urban and municipal development in federal policy making.

"Our former colleague will bring experience, vision, and sensitivity from our cities to a new administration. He has already demonstrated he cares; now we are confident he will demonstrate he can make a difference for the nation."
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Title Annotation:Henry Cisneros; Secretary for Housing and Urban Development
Author:Shafroth, Frank
Publication:Nation's Cities Weekly
Date:Dec 21, 1992
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