Senate panel recommends former Youngstown mayor to head federal agency

By David Skolnick


In a quick voice vote, the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works voted to recommend to the full Senate the confirmation of former Youngstown Mayor Jay Williams as head of the Economic Development Administration.

Williams’ recommendation moves to the full Senate to confirm the appointment.

Williams gave brief statements to the Senate committee at a Dec. 17 hearing with committee members not asking him any questions and some saying he is highly qualified to run the EDA.

The EDA leads the federal economic-development agenda by promoting innovation and collaboration, and helping communities build the foundation for long-term growth, according to the White House.

President Barack Obama nominated Williams to the position Sept. 10, 2013.

Because the appointment wasn’t confirmed by the Senate by Dec. 31, Obama had to renominate Williams, which he did Jan. 6.

Williams spent 51/2 years as mayor of Youngstown. He resigned Aug. 1, 2011, to join Obama’s administration as executive director of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers, a position he still has.

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