Pacific Southwest, Region 9
Serving: Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Pacific Islands, Tribal Nations
Federal Regional Council
When federal programs are carried out by a single agency, government may fail to address the needs of a community on a comprehensive basis.
The Federal Regional Council (FRC) of the Pacific Southwest grew out of the regional Federal Interagency Welfare Reform Task Force established by the Department of Health and Human Services in 1996 to meet the challenges of welfare reform. This experience demonstrated that different federal agencies working together achieved better results for the public.
In November 1998, the FRC was formally established to provide a framework for participating federal agencies to work together to define and solve a broader range of problems facing a community. The membership of the FRC includes regional representatives from the following federal departments and agencies: Agriculture, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Justice, Labor, Interior, Transportation, EPA, and the Social Security Administration. The Pacific Southwest Region is comprised of the states of Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, and the Outer Pacific jurisdictions with regional headquarters in San Francisco.
The work of the FRC, as structured in late 1998, is carried out through three committees and two task forces. The three committees focus on the U.S.-Mexico Border, the Outer Pacific, and Tribal areas, and develop recommendations around issues that arise in these broad geographic areas. In addition, the FRC formed two task forces to serve the communities of East Palo Alto and North Richmond, California to show that federal collaboration could have a positive impact in addressing poverty and historical problems with delivery of government services.
Improved working relationships, stronger partnerships, and more effective programs have resulted through the collaborative efforts of the FRC. These achievements have also persuaded skeptical neighborhood residents of the sincere federal interest in increasing self-sufficiency. For example, in the city of East Palo Alto, California, the FRC helped clean up the Ravenswood Industrial Area, 130 acres of abandoned and contaminated industrial land, and establish it as the city's main employment center. This space is being used for offices and light industry, primarily for the high tech industry, and will employ nearly 4,000 workers while providing a significant increase in local tax revenues. In addition, the FRC has been involved in an environmental job training program where nine of the seventeen students who graduated from the first class in 1999 have full time positions and most of the others are presently working through temporary agencies.
For further information, contact Emory Lee at the Department of Health and Human Services, (415) 437-8500, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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