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Allentown launches new initiative "City Hall at the table"

Allentown, PA – The City of Allentown is launching a new initiative from the Mayor’s Office of Civic Innovation called City Hall at the Table (CHATT). The program aims to cultivate trust and create connections between residents, city employees, and other Allentown stakeholders by recognizing traditionally unheard voices around topical conversations.

It was first announced during Mayor Matt Tuerk’s 2023 State of the City address as “City Hall at Large”. The name of the program was changed to better reflect the intention of the initiative: establishing neighborhood-centric spaces where the City is a problem-solving partner, and not solely a moderator.

“CHATT is my administration’s way of opening the door to Allentonians to participate and share in governance,” said Mayor Tuerk. “Governance is all about making decisions and allocating resources, and government has a lot of those things to do. City Hall is welcoming all Allentonians to the table so that we can work together to make Allentown the place we want it to be - and know it can be.”

CHATT is structured so that each meeting begins with light refreshments and mingling amongst attendees. Children are welcome to sit at smaller resource tables with kids’ activities and crafts.

After the networking session, there is an icebreaker activity which then leads into “Table Talk” conversations initiated by any attendee. The group will work to determine the outcome of the discussion.

The City soft launched the program in February at Ritter Elementary School with parents and teachers. There were three Table Talks around youth mentorship, traffic safety, and litter reduction. The group determined that the discussion of these topics should continue at the next meeting.

CHATT is held every fourth Thursday of the month at varying locations throughout the City, but primarily focused on the East Side at first. The next meeting will be held at Ritter Elementary School at 790 N Plymouth St. from 6 to 8 p.m. on March 23. Residents who have questions about the program can contact Laura Ballek-Cole, Civic Innovation Manager, at

Feedback and suggestions about the program can be submitted anonymously to

#wgolv #CityofAllentown #Cityhallatthetable

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