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Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Another Turn at Bat - Administration Continues to Push Football & Bon Secours Deal
Meeting Start Time: 3:04 PM Meeting End Time: 6:38 PM.
The fourth official Council discussion within 8 days pertaining to the Redskins/Bon Secours Hospital deal was called as a Special Meeting at Tuesday's Land Use, Housing, and Transportation Committee meeting. The special meeting was posted today on the Times-Dispatch website and the City Council Calendar as scheduled to be held 4 PM - 5:30 PM, and 4 - 5 PM, respectively. However the meeting actually began at 3 PM and the Redskins discussion took up an hour and half and ended at 4:36 PM.
Council members present included: Chair Doug Conner [9th District], Land Use committee members Charles Samuels [2nd District] and Ellen Robertson [6th District], as well as Council President Kathy Graziano [4th District, unknown arrival time], Bruce Tyler [1st District, 3:07 PM], Reva Trammell [8th District, 3:09 PM], Running a little later were Marty Jewell [5th District, 3:33 PM] and Cynthia Newbille [7th District, 3:34 PM].
Introductory comments from the Mayor's Chief of Staff, Suzette Denslow on the Bon Secours land deal for the Washington, D.C. Redskins' training field sponsorship back-room deal.
Ms. Denslow goes through the numbers and projected revenues pretty quickly.
At the request of CAO Byron Marshall, Deputy Director of Economic & Community Development, Jane Ferrara ran through some potential sale values under different scenarios for the land and building associated with the Westhampton School site.
The first hour and a half had been set aside to discuss the proposed Redskins & Bon Secours Hospital deal.
After a twenty minute break, the meeting reconvened and opened with Public Comment Period. There were three speakers. Valerie West spoke in support of urban hens and encouraged the committee to support adopting urban hen legislation [0:40]. Chris Dorsey [1:50] and Silver Persinger [4:16] spoke in opposition to the Redskins/ Bon Secours deal.
Council members have a conversation and asked questions of Mark Olinger, Director of the Department of Planning & Development Review for the City of Richmond, Virginia.
The amendments to the Riverfront Plan were continued from Council's last meeting to accomodate the owner/s of Mayo Island who feels the proposed amendment would affect the use and value of their land. The City has a long standing expressed interest in acquiring the island for park land. I believe Mr. Olinger said it had been a stated goal of the city since 1984.
[0:33] Andy Condlin, Lawyer from Williams Mullen representing owners of Mayo Island
[5:35] Jan Bryan, Project Development Manager, representing USP (Echo Harbor)
[9:17] Alan Shia, co-owner of Mayo Island.
[12:29] Silver Persinger, Citizen
[14:53] Leighton Powell, Executive Director, Scenic Virginia and member of Falls of the James Scenic River Advisory Committee.
[18:55] Comments from Al Bowers who identified himself as a citizen. Yes, the same Al Bowers who a few years back attempted to sue the City of Richmond for $205 million.
Mr. Bowers spoke in support of "this amendment for USP" to the Riverfront Plan. He stated his reasons: 1200 new jobs will be created, it will generate $4.5 million in tax revenue, public access will be provided.
Opening comments from Doug Conner [0:16]
Presentation on Housing and Urban Development [HUD] Requirements for Section 3 by Earl Bradley [1:33] and Otis Brown [5:37] from Bradley Development.
Closing comments from Doug Conner [8:48].
The last order of business for Councilman Doug Conner's [9th District] last committee meeting of his term was a presentation pertaining to green alleyways. He said in his opening comments that he did not do this to embarrass Councilman Bruce Tyler [1st District], who happens to live near a recently installed green alley. Mr. Tyler's challenger in the November election, Jon Baliles, called the alley the "Taj Mahal of alleys." Mr. Conner and Charles Samuels [2nd District] received a presentation from Michele Virts, Deputy Director from the Dept. of Public Utilities [1:06]. Mr. Conner had many questions after the presentation concluded [7:19].
At the end of the meeting, Bob Steidel, Director of Dept. of Public Utilities, responded to Mr. Conner's statement that his constituents were not able to get flood insurance. Mr. Steidel said that no one may be denied flood insurance. He stated that the Federal Flood Insurance Program is open to all and no one can be denied [16:59]. The meeting ended at 6:38 PM.