Charlottesville City Council Meeting
COUNCIL CHAMBERS – October 1, 2012
Council met in regular session on this date with the following members present:
Ms. Galvin, Mr. Huja, Ms. Smith, and Ms. Szakos. Mr. Norris joined the meeting in
Mr. Huja announced that today is Ms. Smith’s birthday.
Mr. Huja announced the Tree Commission’s first annual Tree Hunt. Go to
www.charlottesville.org/trees for instructions and an entry form.
Ms. Galvin announced an event, “Recognizing the History of Free and Freed
Blacks in Charlottesville”, on October 4 in Council Chambers. She also announced an
opportunity for conversations with the sculptor of the Vinegar Hill sculpture on October
2 and 3 in various locations.
Ms. Szakos announced the National Citizen’s Survey. Questionnaires will be
mailed to a random sample of households and will be used to guide future vision, goal
setting processes, and budget revisions. She also announced voter registration is open for
absentee voting. For more information, call the voter registrar’s office at 970-3250.
Ms. Smith announced the Charlottesville Community Career Conference on
October 3 at the John Paul Jones Arena. Go to www.charlottesville.org to register. She
also read a proclamation for Domestic Violence Awareness Month, which was submitted
by the Shelter for Help in Emergency (SHE).
Ms. Szakos read a proclamation for National Hispanic Heritage Month. Ms. Olga
Morse from Forward Magazine was present to accept.
Ms. Becky Clay Christensen and Mr. Steven Meeks presented an update on
Celebrate 250! activities to Council There will be a Legacy Project meeting on October
10 at City Space. The 18th Annual Spirit Walk will be on October 19. The year will end
with a gala on November 11. Go to John Paul Jones Arena or ticketmaster.com to buy
tickets. Mr. George Benford gave Council an update on the activities planned for the gala
weekend. Ms. Phyllis Popkin shared a poem entitled A Charlottesville Treasure!
Mr. Huja announced that the Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Department
received the Best New Environmental Sustainability Award at the recent annual
conference of the Virginia Recreation and Park Society. The award was granted for the
innovative use of goats to control invasive plants in Pen Park. Mr. Gensic was present to
accept the award.
Mr. Norris said comments should not be allowed on the Moto Saloon SUP during
Matters by the Public because a public hearing has already been held.
MATTERS BY THE PUBLIC
Ms. Donna Blessing, 209 16th St. NE, read a letter from JABA regarding the Moto
Mr. Tom Millner, 107 1st St. S, said he was here to pledge his support for the
Green Dot Project, which will be presented later this evening.
Ms. Bethany Hurley, 414 Oak St., said she is here as a Virginia Organizing (VOP)
member, to speak about Medicaid expansion in Virginia. VOP is asking Municipal
governments across the state to support Medicaid expansion.
Mr. Bill Lankford, 1400 E. Market St., presented a petition to Council regarding
the Woolen Mills SUP.
Ms. Bailee Hampton, 505 Elliot Ave., said she recently attended the CRHA
meeting last Monday. She was disappointed at the treatment of residents by Housing
Authority staff. Council should pay attention to the conditions of the public housing
community. She said there is no place for people who are not spending money on the
Downtown Mall, and this is not a good use of public space.
Ms. Nancy Carpenter, 727 Denali Way, said she appreciated the new Jefferson
Park Avenue bridge. She said she agreed with Ms. Hampton regarding the Downtown
COUNCIL RESPONSES TO MATTERS BY THE PUBLIC
Mr. Huja thanked Mr. Norris for his advice on not allowing comments once a
public hearing has been held. Ms. Smith said she did not agree with not allowing
Ms. Smith thanked Ms. Hurley for bringing up the Medicaid issue, but we should
work closely with Social Services and be aware of the impacts of the resolution on
resources. She said our goal is to improve the atmosphere on the Downtown Mall so that
everyone feels welcome.
Ms. Galvin said she would like to investigate a resolution regarding Medicaid.
She said Mr. Jones will present Council with a more comprehensive report on the
Downtown Mall Ambassador’s Program. She appreciated Ms. Carpenter’s remarks.
Ms. Szakos asked Ms. Hurley for a sample resolution on Medicaid.
On motion by Ms. Szakos, seconded by Ms. Smith, the following consent agenda
items were approved: (Ayes: Mr. Huja, Ms. Szakos, Mr. Norris, Ms. Galvin, Ms. Smith;
a. Minutes for September 17
b. APPROPRIATION: Albemarle County Reimbursement for the Central Library
Mechanical/Air Handler Replacement Project - $5,493.61
c. APPROPRIATION: Albemarle County Reimbursement for the Central Library
Elevator Project - $25,746.33 (2nd reading)
d. APPROPRIATION: Revenue Sharing – Appropriate $100,000 and Transfer
$100,000 for Sidewalk Construction (2nd reading)
e. APPROPRIATION: Skate Park Relocation – Appropriation of $255,850
f. APPROPRIATION: FY2013 Blue Ridge Commons Corporation Sponsorship
Agreement with Charlottesville Police Department -
g. APPROPRIATION: Victim Witness Assistance Program Grant--$157,143
h. APPROPRIATION: Moore’s Creek Trail Proffer - $20,000 (carried)
i. APPROPRIATION: Personal Emergency Response System (PERS) for Public
Housing Residents - $3,120 (carried)
Crisis Intervention Team Coordinator – Appropriation of
Grant and Other Funds ($161,195) (carried)
Authority to Execute Memorandum of Understanding
k. APPROPRIATION: 2013 Child Care Quality Initiative Grant - $25,127 ($21,232
state funds and required local match of $3,895) (carried)
l. RESOLUTION: Charlottesville-Albemarle Health Department Carry Over
Request - $29,549
REPORT/RESOLUTION: GREEN DOT CHARLOTTESVILLE PROJECT
Ms. Frances Lengowski and Ms. Jennifer Rhoades from Emerging Leaders in
Architecture (ELA) Class of 2012 presented to Council. Their research shows that 2,069
Charlottesville families do not earn enough money to be self-sufficient. Mr. Toan Nguyen
and Mr. Bernard Whitsett are the community leaders in charge of this initiative. The
Green Dot Project’s goals are to support small local businesses and help move families
out of poverty. The website is www.greendotcharlottesville.com and provides more
information on this initiative. ELA chose the IX Building as a pilot location to start work
on their project.
Mr. Huja thanked Ms. Lengowski and Ms. Rhoades for their presentation. Mr.
Norris asked the group to be sure they are linking with others in the community working
on similar endeavors.
Ms. Szakos said she appreciated their enthusiasm, and the ability to implement
and maintain momentum is going to be the key to success.
Ms. Galvin thanked those involved with the project. The data and detailed
information the folks have collected is key to understanding what it means to have an
operation like this. Developing business and outreach plans is important.
Ms. Smith said there is a lot of focus on a commercial kitchen and asked if there
has been research to show we can support more caterers. Mr. Norris said a lot of the
research has been done. Ms. Smith said the Jefferson School plans to have a kitchen, but
CATEC already has these facilities. Be sure not to overbuild in one sector. Pay attention
to market analysis that identify where job growth is available in our community.
Mr. Huja asked how long they will be working on the project. They said they are
staying on until November. Mr. Huja said he hopes someone will follow up on these
great ideas. Mr. Nguyen, Mr. Whitsett and Chef Ralph Brown spoke to Council about
their plans to follow through on these ideas.
REPORT/RESOLUTION: APPROVAL OF SPECIAL USE PERMIT (SUP) FOR A
MUSIC HALL AT 1304 EAST MARKET STREET
Mr. Brian Haluska presented to Council on the SUP for a music hall at 1304 East
Market Street. Mr. Norris asked Mr. Haluska to describe the standard of review.
Mr. Haluska said the Planning Commission focuses on the planning aspects of
this permit, particularly whether or not it is in compliance with certain regulations,
whether it fits into the comprehensive plan, and zoning ordinance. However, the City
Council has a more broad focus and can consider other matters, such as whether the
proposed use will be harmonious with existing patterns of use and development within
the neighborhood and whether the proposed use will conform to the City’s
Mr. Haluska reviewed the conditions of the Planning Commission’s approval of
Ms. Smith asked if there is a precedent for SUPs for music halls. Mr. Haluska
gave the Jefferson Theatre and the Southern, both of which are in the Downtown Mall
corridor, as examples. Ms. Smith asked where music halls can exist in the city by right.
Mr. Haluska said they can exist downtown. They are issued as provisional use permits.
Mr. Huja asked where music halls are permitted in the city. Mr. Tolbert said
West Main North, West Main South, the Corner District, Preston Avenue area, Barracks
Road Shopping Center area, South Street, and Downtown. They are by-right in almost
every zoning classification we have, but Council chose to make them special use permits
in manufacturing districts.
Ms. Galvin said she understood that the reason they do not allow music halls is
because those areas are adjacent to residential areas. Mr. Tolbert said they have different
characters than the others with much smaller lots and other differentiating factors.
Mr. Norris asked the applicant, Mr. Frankovich, if he had any information he had
not had a chance to share with Council previously. Mr. Frankovich appealed to Council
on behalf of his business. Ms. Szakos asked about parking. Mr. Frankovich said he has
65 total parking spaces, with a 150 occupancy limit.
Mr. Norris asked Mr. Tolbert what mechanisms are in place for measuring and
regulating the impact of bass sounds. Mr. Tolbert said we have none.
Ms. Smith confirmed that the SUP goes with the space, not with the applicant.
Mr. Tolbert said the SUP would apply to this space regardless of whether or not it
changes hands. Ms. Smith said a lot of what we have heard is how much people like the
Moto Saloon business, but Council should consider what is appropriate for that location,
not whether the business is well-liked.
Mr. Norris asked if you should consider cumulative impacts of surrounding
businesses. Mr. Tolbert said this would be difficult to do. Mr. Norris asked what
updates there are in the Comprehensive Plan process, in light of the frustration of the
Woolen Mills neighborhood with the way their neighborhood is zoned. He would like to
see if there is a way to get this issue reflected in the Comprehensive Plan.
Ms. Galvin said we need to explore the right process on this. She thanked the
Planning Commission for their work and said she believes they met the standards of
review, but she disagrees with some of the determinations they made. She said a
comprehensive plan is foundational and visionary, whereas zoning is an implementation
tool. Granting an SUP for this location is not harmonious with the neighborhood and
moves the community further away from their aspirations as outlined in the
comprehensive plan. Because the applicant violated his certificate of occupancy, the
greatest test of this occurred between February and July of this year. The underlying
zoning that allows for an SUP is fundamentally inappropriate.
Ms. Szakos said she is opposed to granting an SUP, namely because it does not
conform to the requirement for harmonious use.
Ms. Smith said this business obviously fills a niche. However, there are thriving
restaurant/bar establishments, and she cannot support putting a music hall at the corner of
a building where the zoning does not allow it.
Mr. Norris said it is not fair to say that there was a true testing period, because a
lot of the complaints were not attributed to this venue. There were also very few calls for
service during the February to July time period. The Planning Commission took a close
look at this application and believed a music hall could operate under certain conditions.
He asked if the applicant were to seek deferral, if there are conditions under which other
Councilors would see this as an appropriate place for a music hall.
Ms. Szakos said she would encourage music halls at by-right locations, but not at
this location. Ms. Galvin said we need to get our Comprehensive Plan updated as soon as
possible and adjust our zoning to match. The community needs to be a part of the
process. Ms. Smith said she does not believe there would be new information to inform
Mr. Huja said he agreed with Ms. Galvin’s analysis in terms of criteria. He could
see special use circumstances change for the future, but not right now.
Ms. Szakos moved to recommended denial of the application on the basis that it
does not promote harmonious co-existence adjacent to the neighborhood. Mr. Huja asked
for a more detailed motion.
On motion by Ms. Galvin, seconded by Mr. Huja, Council recommended denial
based on the following reasons:
1) The proposed SUP is not harmonious with existing patterns of
use and development within the neighborhood;
2) The proposed SUP will not substantially confirm with City’s comprehensive plan;
3) The proposed SUP will have adverse impacts on surrounding neighborhoods, and
there are no circumstances that will substantially mitigate these impacts.
(Ayes: Ms. Galvin, Mr. Huja, Ms. Smith, Ms. Szakos; Noes: Mr. Norris.)
Mr. Norris said he is concerned about the dynamic in the neighborhood and the
discord that was created because of the circumstances. This is why community
engagement is so important. He said he is voting against the motion because there were
many people, including our Planning Commission, who felt there would be an advantage
to having this location rezoned.
Ms. Smith encouraged Mr. Frankovich to continue making his business work as a
REPORT/RESOLUTION: DAVIS FIELD RFP
Mr. Daly presented to Council. Earlier this year, the City purchased Davis Field
for the purpose of expanding the park system and adding a rectangular athletic field to the
City’s inventory. Additionally, as part of that purchase, the City intends to offset a
portion of the expense of acquisition through a land lease of a portion of the property to a
local youth athletic organization.
On motion by Mr. Norris, seconded by Ms. Smith, the resolution passed
unanimously. (Ayes: Ms. Galvin, Mr. Huja, Ms. Smith, Ms. Szakos, Mr. Norris; Noes:
REPORT/RESOLUTION: STRATEGIC INVESTMENT AREA STEERING
Mr. Tolbert presented to Council. Several months ago Council allocated funding
for a study, which has been named the Strategic Investment Area Study, to take a look at
Urban Design and Economic Development issues for a large area south of Downtown.
The area includes the Belmont and Ridge Street Neighborhoods, the Friendship Court
Development, and three public housing properties: 6th Street, South 1st Street, and
Crescent Halls. In addition, the project area includes new and established businesses and
mixed use development. Cunningham/Quill has been selected as the contractor to provide
the planning services for this study. They are ready to move forward with a committee
created to provide input and advise Council. Mr. Tolbert reviewed the composition of the
proposed committee as outlined in the resolution.
Ms. Szakos asked what the envisioned process is regarding the Belmont
representative and the Ridge Street representative. Mr. Tolbert said they would be
selected by the neighborhood association. Ms. Szakos asked if he would change the
language to indicate that. Ms. Galvin said this may be too limiting.
Mr. Huja agreed with the composition, but most task forces are appointed by City
Council. This appointment schematic is too complicated. Ms. Szakos said HAC is
structured this way. Mr. Huja said the composition is excellent, but the selection process
should be conducted by Council.
Ms. Smith asked for more information on what the hired firm will be doing. Mr.
Tolbert explained their role. Ms. Smith said neighborhood representation is not strong
enough. Ms. Smith said she would like representation from the schools. Mr. Huja said he
is excited this takes a holistic approach to community improvement. Ms. Smith said she
wants to make sure there is enough representation from the south side.
Council agreed to the following changes:
1) Add Parks and Recreation staff representative.
2) Add a representative from Clark and Jackson Via.
3) Council will approve the appointments of the committee as a whole.
On motion by Ms. Smith, seconded by Ms. Szakos, Council approved the
resolution with the above mentioned additions. (Ayes: Ms. Galvin, Mr. Huja, Ms. Smith,
Ms. Szakos, Mr. Norris; Noes: None.)
MATTERS BY THE PUBLIC
Ms. Bailee Hampton, 505 Elliot Ave., said she is upset with the Council’s
decision on the Moto Saloon SUP. She said Council is effectively killing Mr.
The meeting was adjourned.