Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Hi-Lights from the March 23, 2009 Meeting -- My comments

I spoke to the City Council on various topics that were discussed on the evening of March 23, 2009. First I spoke in opposition to the appointment of Thomas A. Silvestri, Publisher and President of The Richmond Times-Dispatch, to the Richmond Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau on the grounds that it would pose a conflict between objective reporting and supporting the goals of the Visitors Bureau, it represents a continuation of the "good ol' boy network," and the Bureau needs a more gender-balanced board -- currently only 5 of 21 members are women -- and Mr. Silvestri was appointed to replace a woman who had resigned, Nicole G. Hood.

I also spoke against the naming of an alley "Herbert Hamlet Alley" because the current process gives developers too much power to assign alley names rather than having a process where the public has a role in determining the naming of a public right of way. I also included the comments from the applicant for the alley name, Jane Allman from Monument Construction.

And finally I pointed out the Fiscal Year 2009 Budget which they were adopting (finally, after former Mayor Wilder declared the Council's adopted budget invalid) did not include $5750 for the Virginia Cooperative Extension, which the City previously had to restore to a recent annual budget.

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