A log of Charlottesville City Council Meetings 2008-2015. Transported from the City of Charlottesville website as a project of Smart Cville, http://www.smartcville.com.


HELD ON Monday, July 2, 2012, AT 6:00 p.m. IN THE Second Floor Conference
Closed session as provided by Section 2.2-3712 of the Virginia Code
Council met in special session on this date with the following members present:
Ms. Galvin, Mr. Huja, Ms. Szakos, Ms. Smith.
On motion by Ms. Smith, seconded by Ms. Szakos, Council voted, (Ayes: Mr.
Huja, Ms. Szakos, Ms. Galvin, Ms. Smith; Noes: None; Absent: Mr. Norris), to meet in
closed session for consultation with legal counsel regarding the negotiation of the terms
and conditions of a cost sharing agreement with the Albemarle County Service Authority
for the costs of a new Rivanna Water and Sewer Authority Sanitary Sewer Pump Station,
as authorized by Virginia Code sec. 2.2-3711 (A) (7.
On motion by Ms. Smith, seconded by Ms. Galvin, Council certified by the
following vote (Ayes: Mr. Huja, Ms. Szakos, Ms. Galvin, Ms. Smith; Noes: None;
Absent: Mr. Norris), that to the best of each Council Member's knowledge, only public
business matters lawfully exempted from the open meeting requirements of the Virginia
Freedom of Information Act and identified in the motion convening the closed session
were heard, discussed or considered in the closed session.
Council met in regular session on this date with the following members present:
Ms. Galvin, Mr. Huja, Ms. Smith and Ms. Szakos.
Ms. Smith read a proclamation in recognition of Parks & Recreation month. Mr.
Daly was present to accept.
Ms. Smith announced the 4th of July Fireworks at McIntire Park. She also
announced a blood drive on Monday, July 9 at the Doubletree Hotel. On Friday, July 13
from 5-8:00 p.m. at CitySpace, there will be a special exhibit featuring Ed Roseberry’s
Ms. Szakos announced Virginia Supportive Housing, who operates The
Crossings, was recognized by the Virginia Sustainable Network with the 2012 Innovation
Award. Also, City Hall and the Annex will be closed on July 4. CAT Route 7 and the
free trolley will offer the Sunday service schedule.
Ms. Galvin announced the free storm debris collection, starting Monday, July 9,
for tree debris from the June 29 storm only. Contact 970-3895 for more information and
to schedule an evaluation. Also, the Chloramines Four Boards meeting will be held July
25 at 7:00 p.m., in Lane Auditorium. There will be a Council Worksession Thursday at
5:00 p.m. in City Space regarding Economic Development and Workforce Readiness.
Mr. Huja announced the recruitment of election officers Monday, July 9 from
5:00 – 7:00 p.m. in CitySpace. He encouraged citizens to take part in the 4th of July
ceremony at Monticello.
Mr. Paul Long, 1410 Grady Ave., said very little of the VDOT funding will go to
public transportation. He is disappointed that CAT is not offering full service on July 4.
He suggested a resolution in support of a $5 million grant for expansion of CAT.
Ms. Carol Saliba, 802 Cynthianna Ave., said she is opposed to rezoning of the lots
at Rose Hill and Cynthianna Ave. because it will increase the amount of traffic and noise,
and she opposes the style of the apartment building.
Ms. Michelle Ba’th Bates, with The FeMale Perspective, announced an awareness
campaign called “Breaking the Chains of Silence: Racism / Internalized Racism”.
Ms. Lorrie Delehanty, 645 Evergreen Ave., said she attended the June 21 panel on
chloramines, and there were several broad areas of agreement on both sides. Carbon
filtration is preferable. She asked Council if there is any segment of the local government
willing to take on the legal responsibility of claims of damage of personal property and
health due to the addition of chloramines to the water supply.
Mr. Fabian Kuttner, PO Box 359, said Council must act now to rebalance the
needs of the downtown mall. The mall needs to be cleaned more often. Peaceful stewards
of cleanliness are needed to deter littering and to sweep. More walking patrols are
Mr. George Benford, 608 Rainier Rd., said he is concerned about the direction of
the downtown mall. At certain times of the day, there are more beggars and loiterers than
paying visitors.
Mr. Andrew Silver, 108 Harris Rd., expressed his gratitude to the City for taking
the first steps at fixing the problem of vagrancy on the downtown mall. He said the
solution is only a bandaid, and more permanent and effective solutions need to be
implemented. The issue is not homelessness, but lawlessness.
Ms. Mary Rekosh, 3347 Woodcreek Dr., said the climate has deteriorated on the
downtown mall in the last few years. As an employee at a kid-friendly business on the
downtown mall, she has witnessed many incidents that pose safety issues. Please work
diligently to manage this problem.
Ms. Alissa Reeves, 413-B Moseley Dr., thanked Council for removing benches
and installing a police officer in front of the Paramount. She said this is not a permanent
solution. People have stopped dining on the downtown mall because they fear for their
safety. She said numbers on the Charlottesville Police Department’s website show an
increase in crime over the last year.
Mr. Brandon Collins, 536 Meade Ave., said the Transit Association Riders of
Charlottesville is a recent group formed to advocate for a better transit solution. He said
making a societal change to address the downtown mall situation is more important than
removing benches. He asked a representative to speak on behalf of the homeless on the
downtown mall. The first speaker said it is not just homeless that sit on the benches. Mr.
Andrew Ellis said he is also downtown, and said he understands the need to work against
profanity. He suggested coming together with Council and community leaders to come to
an agreement about behavior on the downtown mall.
Mr. Bob Stroh, 1412 Kenwood Ln., said the welcoming, family-friendly
atmosphere that used to characterize the downtown mall has deteriorated. He asked for
criminal activity to be addressed with immediate and firm response. All patrons and
visitors should be treated with respect and compassion and be allowed to conduct
business in a clean and safe environment.
Ms. Joan Fenton, 3705 Country Ln., said the business community has a great
concern, and they also support the right of people to be out on the mall and have a place
to sit. However, daily, there is criminal activity in front of her store. Business owners
have asked for increased police surveillance and cameras. We are at a tipping point;
something must be done before people start getting hurt. Immediate action is required.
Mr. Huja said the issues on the downtown mall need to be addressed, but it is not
so simple as to be able to address them overnight.
Ms. Smith said tonight’s discussion showed great evolution. She supported the
idea of people from all groups coming together to form a plan. We cannot tolerate illegal
activity, but we also do not want to become a police state. We need to find the right
balance, and this is an important issue to the City.
Ms. Szakos said we should add increased transit to our legislative agenda. We
need to figure out how to change formulas at the state level to incentivize localities to
increase spending on transit. She encouraged the City to discuss Rose Hill/Cynthianna
between now and the second reading. She said she wants more benches on the downtown
mall, and when we have too few, they do get monopolized by particular groups. She
supported removing them temporarily from the fountain because of the activity that was
concentrated in that area. She said police training and education may be in order if it is
true that officers feel they cannot enforce the rules of the City. She suggested a civilian
volunteer corps.
Ms. Galvin said she is glad a meeting will take place between the neighborhood
and the developer regarding the Rose Hill/Cynthianna rezoning. She also asked for a
schedule of events for Ms. Bates’ initiative. Ms. Galvin said there have been meetings
about how to solve the downtown mall issues, and many ideas have been brought
forward. Mr. Jones detailed actions that have been taken over the past few years to
address safety issues. The problems on the downtown mall originate with a small handful
of people. We are taking steps to encourage good behavior.
Ms. Smith asked why we would not pull the Rose Hill / Cynthianna item due to
concern. Councilors responded that there would be ample opportunity for input between
now and the second reading. She asked for more information about environmental
concerns. Ms. Galvin said it is important that staff explain the rental structure of the
proposed building to the public. Mr. Jones said we can put this on the regular agenda for
the second reading. Ms. Szakos encouraged neighbors to come to the next meeting if they
are concerned about this.
On motion by Ms. Szakos, seconded by Ms. Galvin, the following consent agenda
items were approved: (Ayes: Mr. Huja, Ms. Szakos, Ms. Galvin, Ms. Smith; Noes: None;
Absent: Mr. Norris)
a. Minutes for June 18
b. APPROPRIATION: Amendments to FY 2013 Adopted City Schools General
Fund & Other Governmental Funds Budget - $615,174
(2nd reading)
c. APPROPRIATION: Housing Rehabilitation Loan Repayment - $18,884.36 (2nd
d. APPROPRIATION: 2012 Charlottesville Police Department Foundation
Donation - $500
e. APPROPRIATION: Appropriation of Jordan Park Playground Equipment
Insurance Recovery Funds - $43,828 (carried)
f. APPROPRIATION: The Pavilion at North Grounds Affordable Housing
Contribution - $278,095 (carried)
g. APPROPRIATION: Historic Facade Settlement - $16,000 (carried)
h. RESOLUTION: Addition of MACAA to Housing Advisory Committee
i. ORDINANCE: Rose Hill/Cynthianna Rezoning (carried)
j. ORDINANCE: Zoning Waiver Provisions (carried)
Ms. Mueller presented to Council. Project Manager Geoff Slater of Nelson
Nygaard reviewed system assets and challenges, study goals and study focus. He
reviewed study steps and the plan for public outreach.
Ms. Szakos asked if there is a way to ask questions before the first public
outreach. Mr. Stewart said email him directly at stewartl@charlottesville.org. Mr. Slater
said there will also be a page on the City website allowing the public to give input. Ms.
Smith also asked about the structure of public input and was concerned the timeline
would not permit enough public input ahead of developing the plan. Mr. Slater said they
have structured it in a way that will best serve the process. Ms. Smith suggested meeting
with a focus group of folks who have given us a lot of input in the past.
Ms. Galvin said she thinks a good breadth of knowledge exists on the project
team, and some scenarios reflect different placements because of land use patterns. Ms.
Szakos said she is encouraged that this is a process that allows for dynamic change, and
we are able to examine how we produce public transportation in ways that are sustainable
by a public population.
Ms. Smith asked how much they will take into account areas where the University
Transit Service already serves. Mr. Slater said the City and the University has a great
existing relationship, and we may be able to reduce overlap where it does exist.
Mr. Huja thanked the consultants for a good meeting. Radical change is needed.
Public transportation should be like a public utility, accessible to all residents in the City.
Mr. Tolbert and Ms. Mueller presented to Council. Mr. Tolbert gave a history of
the City’s evaluation of strategies to meet a range of water resource goals and challenges.
The stormwater utility fee should now be revisited due to limited funding available to
maintain the aging stormwater infrastructure, increasing environmental requirements, the
need for an updated master plan, and the need for additional staff to keep up with
increased maintenance and inspection requirements. Alternatives include maintaining the
current level of services and funding, establish a more comprehensive program to address
increasing needs, and funding additional activities through a reliable, dedicated, equitable
fee that directly relates demand for services to fees paid, or increasing taxes to raise the
revenue needed to address increasing stormwater needs.
Ms. Mueller reviewed a proposed water resources protection program timeline for
an FY2014 adoption. She introduced Ms. Jean Haggerty from AMEC, an engineering
consulting firm. Ms. Haggerty discussed public outreach. She said there is a $500 million
asset with existing stormwater infrastructure. A detailed conditions assessment is needed.
Being proactive instead of reactive is important when considering capital projects.
Ms. Smith asked if we know where our pipes are. Ms. Haggerty said we do. Ms.
Smith confirmed that if we were to install a new system, we would not put in the same
thing we currently have. She asked if we should be retrofitting our system because of
how strenuous our current system is on our streams. Ms. Haggerty said there has been a
paradigm shift, and people have to be incentivized to use water in a smarter way. We do
not have the assessment right now on the condition of our entire system. Ms. Smith
asked if there are things that could be done at the exact point of problems. Ms. Haggerty
said there are not, but there are some creative engineering firms that can help solve those
problems. We can manage some problems by addressing them upstream. Ms. Smith
asked how the quality of water we are putting into streams is monitored. Ms. Haggerty
said we use the Chesapeake model, which establishes targets for releasing water into
streams. This monitoring piece will be a big part of a new set of regulations coming
soon. Ms. Smith asked if we can charge user fees to properties that are nontaxable
according to the Code of Virginia. Ms. Haggerty said we can. Mr. Brown said state
legislation outlines the type of users that are eligible for full or partial waivers for certain
fees. Ms. Smith asked how our proposed fees compare to other areas. Charlottesville is
in the mid-to-low range.
Ms. Szakos asked why the current CIP projects a reduction. Ms. Mueller said that
was when we thought this option could come in. Ms. Szakos confirmed that this is not a
crisis, just planning. Ms. Szakos said all other utility authorities we have are with other
localities. She asked if a collaborative effort had been considered. Ms. Haggerty said it
is a good idea to examine this regionally, and it would be a great long-term plan, but
jurisdictionally, it is very difficult to do. You could share certain resources.
Ms. Galvin asked Ms. Haggerty if they could work with us on not just simply
rehabbing our system but thinking about this in a different way, such as creating green
spaces out of stormwater facilities. Ms. Haggerty said you can work with redevelopment
areas to do this, although being built out presents certain challenges.
Ms. Smith said we have several pieces of property where the system surrounding
them could be retrofitted to use natural features and become amenities. Ms. Galvin said
we need to know where our density could go, and that information is what our TMDL
plan is missing. Ms. Haggerty said we have a good start on good information and just
need to push a little further.
Ms. Smith said currently we spend $900,000, and funding is coming from the
general fund. Ms. Riddervold said some environmental programs are funded outside of
this. Ms. Smith asked if the $265,000 from the gas fund is part of the $900,000. Ms.
Riddervold said it is. This could supplement general funds, but then the stormwater
dollar amount would no longer be in the CIP budget, which is what is currently projected
to be eliminated from FY14 if this process were implemented. Ms. Smith said she
appreciates that this program sounds to be very equitable.
Mr. Huja said he is concerned with people who are lower on the scale and cannot
afford the fees. Staff is examining hardship programs, and typically a fund is set aside for
people who are not able to pay.
Ms. Szakos said we have to find a balance. If we do want density, we do not want
to disincentive that, so we need to keep a balance to provide for developments. However
many of them will have to do this to comply with federal regulations either way.
Mr. Tolbert said staff is seeking a consensus to move forward, and then we will
come back with the schedule Ms. Mueller suggested. Council said they are satisfied with
the plan. Ms. Smith said she wants to explore this coupled with other fees and charges we
are putting on our residents.
Mr. Tolbert presented to Council. The Promise Grant program needs a place in
the community to meet for community gatherings and other events. The $20,000 is for
architectural services, which the City would have allocated from the Charlottesville
Housing Fund for the purpose of engaging the services of an architect to design a house
at 204 8th Street, N.W. suitable for use as office space, but which ultimately will be
converted to a single family home and sold as affordable housing, Staff also requested
that Council support using funds from the Economic Development Strategic Investment
Fund for construction of the house at 204 8th Street, N.W.
Ms. Smith asked how long the grant is. Ms. Szakos said four years. She asked
how long it will take for this building to be constructed. Mr. Tolbert said about a year.
Ms. Smith said she does not see how having events is part of the City of Promise
program. Ms. Szakos said one of the key ongoing components of the program is
community engagement. This could serve as an extension of sorts for the Westhaven
Community Center. Mr. Huja said we did something similar for the LEAP program a few
years ago. Ms. Smith said she objected that this is being built for Westhaven, which is
being redeveloped, and that this is not part of a bigger comprehensive plan. Ms. Galvin
said a rebuilding project on this block is in keeping with the scale of the neighborhood
and seems like a good use of housing funds.
Mr. Huja said he would support the resolution if there is a time limit on the lease.
Ms. Galvin said this would be more appropriate for the resolution pertaining to
construction. Mr. Brown suggested adding language saying “for a four year period,
renewable at the discretion of City Council”. Mr. Huja agreed. Ms. Smith asked where
the money to build the house would come from. Mr. Tolbert said it would come from the
Strategic Investment Fund, which is where the money would return once the house is
sold. On motion by Ms. Galvin, seconded by Ms. Szakos, the resolution passed as
modified. (Ayes: Ms. Galvin, Ms. Szakos, Mr. Huja; Noes: Ms. Smith; Absent: Mr.
Mr. Burkhart presented to Council. He outlined the benefits of tourism and
explained the CACVB organization. He described accomplishments from the past year.
The primary goal is to extend visitors’ stay by one more day. Their website,
www.visitcharlottesville.org, has been a key component to improved marketing,
engaging potential visitors and program development. He shared photos from the
community photo contest.
Ms. Smith asked if they have other partnerships. Mr. Burkhart said they have
reached out to specific groups and identified key activities in their twelve month plan.
Ms. Szakos asked how much is in the surplus. Mr. Burkhart said there is $500,000
in FY11 already earmarked for spending, including some exciting initiatives for our area.
Ms. Szakos said there has been talk about spending some of this money on initiatives
such as helping with the downtown mall safety situation. She said she is taken aback that
the whole amount is being spent for marketing. She suggested funds be used to nurturing
visitors while they are here. Mr. Burkhart said we can collaborate as a partner, and there
are excellent opportunities for public/private partnerships. He has had experience with
visitor assist programs, which can be very effective with proper management, oversight
and training.
Ms. Galvin asked if the CACVB has been in communication with the Piedmont
Council of the Arts and their cultural planning process. Mr. Burkhart said the CACVB
participated in the announcement panel, which was well-attended. Ms. Galvin said
programming open public space on the mall can contribute to the vibrancy and counteract
the feeling that the center has become an abandoned space.
Mr. Jones updated Council on the aftermath of the June 29 storm, including
services that were offered after the storm, shelter openings, cooling centers, and
collaboration with the county.
Mr. Huja commended staff for being quick and responsive to the needs of
citizens, especially with the shelters and cooling centers. Ms. Galvin seconded his thanks.
Ms. Smith asked how we might envision a future with underground utilities. Ms. Szakos
said she has been asking those questions for a long time, and we should keep trying to
figure out how to do it. She said she has appreciated the upgrades to existing
Mr. Anthony Ward said trees should be nowhere near power lines. He said
panhandling is not a crime, but the aggressive behavior is. Some localities use local
ordinances to violate constitutional rights.
Ms. Nancy Carpenter, 727 Denali Way, said she is very interested in the transit
study. One big transit issue is getting from U-Hall / JPJ to the Medical Center. Bringing
everyone to the table about the downtown mall issue is a good idea.
Mr. Scott Bandy cited a recent Cville Tomorrow article about the Rivanna pump
station and said he was disappointed that compromise could not be reached on this
Mr. Jones wanted to correct an earlier claim made by a speaker and said that
under no circumstance has the City Attorney’s office directed the City Police Department
to be soft on crime on the downtown mall.
The meeting was adjourned.
Clerk of Council

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