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, March 07, 2011, 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:
Dr. Brown, Ms. Edwards, Mr. Norris, Ms. Szakos.
On motion by Ms. Szakos, seconded by Dr. Brown, Council voted (Ayes: Dr.
Brown, Ms. Edwards, Ms. Szakos; Noes: None; Absent at time of vote: Mr. Norris;
Absent: Mr. Huja) to meet in closed session pursuant to section 2.2-3712 of the Virginia
Code for consultation with legal counsel (1) regarding probable condemnation litigation
to acquire a private property interest near Hydraulic Road for the purpose of establishing
a public street, where such consultation in an open meeting would adversely affect the
City’s negotiating or litigating posture; and (2) for legal advice regarding the imposition
of an erroneous consumer utility tax on residents of the City and Albemarle County, as
authorized by Virginia Code sec. 2.2-3711 (A) (7).
On motion by Dr. Brown, seconded by Ms. Edwards, Council certified by the
following vote, (Ayes: Dr. Brown, Ms. Edwards, Mr. Norris; Noes: None; Absent at time
of vote: Ms. Szakos; Absent: Mr. Huja), 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 CHAMBERS – March 7, 2011
Council met in regular session on this date with the following members present:
Ms. Edwards, Mr. Norris, Dr. Brown, Ms. Szakos.
Mr. Norris said Mr. Huja is travelling in India with his family. He offered
condolences for the loss of Greene County resident Zachary Cuddeback in a terrorist
attack at the Frankfurt, Germany airport. A public memorial will be held this Wednesday
at the Main Street Arena. He asked for a moment of silence in Zachary’s memory.
Mr. Norris presented the Distinguished Budget Appreciation Award to the City of
Charlottesville for fiscal year July 1, 2010. Ms. Beauregard was there to accept the
award on behalf of the budget office.
Mr. Norris read a proclamation for MS Awareness. Mr. Ron Mittleman, Mr.
Delta Hanson, and Mr. Ron Tweel were there to accept the proclamation on behalf of the
MS Society.
Mr. Norris read a proclamation for the Virginia Festival of the Book, which is
March 16th -20th. Ms. Nancy Damon was there to accept the proclamation. They are
celebrating their seventeenth year.
Mr. Norris read a proclamation for THE BIG READ, which encouraged all
residents of Central Virginia to participate by reading The Maltese Falcon.
Mr. Norris read a proclamation for Story Fest. Ms. Anne Jolly from WVPT was
there to accept the proclamation. The event will take place March 19th on the Downtown
Mr. Norris announced the Charlottesville Winneba Sister City Committee’s trip to
Winneba to help plan and build their first library. The trip is fully funded by the
community. Proceeds from Wine for Winneba this Saturday, March 12th, at the Main
Street Arena, will go towards the trip.
Ms. Edwards said the CHS Theatre will present the musical Ragtime on March 17
and March 18 at 7 p.m. at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Performing Arts Center.
Ms. Szakos encouraged citizens to attend Voices of Adult Learners at BurnleyMoran
Elementary School, 6:00 p.m., March 17th.
Mr. Norris announced a blood drive on Tuesday, March 22nd from 12:00 p.m. –
5:00 p.m. at the Herman Key Center. Go to www.vadonor.com to make an appointment;
walk-ins are welcome.
The 250th Anniversary Committee has launched a competition to help design the
250th Anniversary of the City logo. Please call 970-3101 for more information.
Ms. Colette Hall, 101 Robertson Ln., asked Councilors to approve and allocate
City money wisely during the upcoming budget sessions. She said she was upset to hear
Ms. Edwards would not run for Council again.
Ms. Jeanne S. Chase, 223 Old Lynchburg Rd., complimented the design team lead
by Mr. Tony Edwards on their work on the Old Lynchburg Road project. She
complimented Council and Mr. Jones for focusing on this project and bringing it to the
construction phase.
Mr. Scott Beyer, 2556 Summit Ridge Trail, proposed revision of the critical
slopes ordinance. He said his research shows successful cities build up their central core
through dense mixed-use neighborhoods. There is a discrepancy in growth between the
City and the County, and anti-growth sentiment in the City has widened this
disadvantage. He said the City has not allowed important development along
development corridors. A critical slopes program with broad language will perpetuate
this pattern.
Ms. Allison Ewing, 1900 Chesapeake St., asked anyone in the audience living in
Woolen Mills and in opposition to Option A for the RWSA Pumping Station at the
Riverview Park entrance to stand. She said something this large should not be
contemplated in a historic neighborhood.
Mr. Bill Emory, 1604 E. Market St., said he hopes Council received the report
from RWSA and will consider the impact of the pumping station on the quality of life for
residents to the City, both those who live nearby and the users at Rivanna Park.
Ms. Jaclynn Dunkle, 200 W. Market St., owner of Fellini’s, said the City’s sign
ordinance is difficult for businesses on side streets. The signage on the Second Street is
directly behind the map and is blocked from view for people walking from the Omni.
She said businesses on side streets deserve the same benefit as those on the mall because
they must abide by the same rules and pay for the same services as businesses on the
mall. She asked what she could do to figure out a way to include the side streets as part
of the historic area so people can see the signs for her business and others and offered to
participate in future planning.
Ms. Kate Barton, 108 7th St. N.W., owner of Skylight Studio and Art Gallery on
the downtown mall, said she appreciated the efforts of the City to make signs for
businesses on side streets, but they are too small to be seen or explain what the side street
businesses do.
Ms. Robin Hanes, 1709 E. Market St., distributed handouts regarding a petition
against the pumping station to Council and gave a record of signatures to the clerk. She
said she opposes the expansion of the Rivanna Pumping Station and supports Option D.
The total number of signatures gathered was 124. She said she has to call the hotline
often about the odor, especially during the summer.
Mr. L. Paul Koch, 101 Burnet St., said he is opposed to the sale of property at the
corner of Elliot Ave. and Burnet St. to Southern Development. He said adjacent property
owners were not properly notified of the public hearing. He thanked Mr. Tolbert for
coming to the Burnet Commons neighborhood meeting. He said sale of the property is
imprudent at this time and asked Council to reject the sale.
Ms. Joanna Salidis, 129 Goodman St., said dredging must be included in the cost
share agreement and should be the first step in meeting our water needs. She said the
county should help pay for it.
Mr. Stratton Salidis, 704 B. Graves St., said the Meadowcreek Parkway and the
water supply plan have both been made under false pretenses. He asked Council to
protect our assets.
Mr. Karl Ackerman, 1611 E. Market St., said the structure at the entrance of
Riverview Park is called a pumping station, but the language of RWSA is a euphemism
for an automated sewage treatment plant. He said Council should question why Option A
is even on the table. The proposed facility needs real estate to accommodate it that is not
available where the current pumping station exists.
Mr. Peter Markush, 1207 Grove St., said he came to remind Council of the
February 21st letter asking for clarification on the noise ordinance. He played his fiddle
to demonstrate and asked if it is illegal to play on the downtown mall, and if so, what is
the justification.
Mr. Fran Lawrence, 1729 Chesapeake St., said he is a cheerleader for the Rivanna
River and was part of the original founding group of the Rivanna Trails Foundation. The
river is only accessible at two points: the end of Chesapeake St. and at E. Market St. and
River Rd. He asked Council to save the river.
Dr. Brown asked for feedback from staff regarding signage on side streets.
Ms. Edwards offered her condolence to Ms. Hall on her journey with her mother’s
failing health and thanked her for consistently reminding Council of the importance of
budget. She thanked staff for the labor put towards bringing the Old Lynchburg Road
project to its current status. She thanked Ms. Ewing for her thoughtful and well put
together presentation. She suggested pulling the sale of property to Southern
Development from the consent agenda. She addressed the Salidis siblings and said she
hopes there will be a chance to have a conversation about opportunistic dredging.
Ms. Szakos offered her sympathy to Ms. Hall and thanked her for coming. She
said all citizens can keep a close eye on the budget proceedings by attending the budget
work sessions this Thursday and next Wednesday in the basement conference room.
There will also be a Community Budget Forum on Wednesday, March 23rd at CitySpace.
She was touched by Mr. Lawrence’s plea for the river and said staff is looking at ways to
make the river an integral part of the community. In regards to the sale of property at
Burnet Commons, she said it was initially delayed in the past because of the lack of
notice, and there has been adequate notice since then.
Mr. Norris welcomed back Ms. Hall and echoed the comments other Councilors
made. He said he appreciates Old Lynchburg Road and pumping station issues. He also
asked staff to look into side street signage on the downtown mall. He said Ms. Salidis
always very articulate and on-point and agreed dredging must be part of cost sharing. He
thanked Mr. Markush for his performance and asked staff to revisit the 125 foot noise
ordinance; the violin music should be allowed.
Ms. Edwards said the CHRA/City Council MOU meeting was very positive and
productive and included an apology for urban renewal. She asked for the John West
renaming to be part of the redevelopment plan.
She asked for a report from staff regarding outreach on the sale of land to
Southern Development. Mr. Tolbert said he and Mr. Armstrong attended the Burnet
Commons meeting and had a productive discussion with the neighborhood. Ms. Edwards
asked if it is possible to have continued conversations with the neighborhood as the
development unfolds. Mr. Tolbert said yes.
Ms. Edwards said she remains opposed to item r.
Ms. Szakos asked about item k, sidewalk prioritization. She asked if completed
projects would also be posted to the web. Mr. Tolbert said staff is going to post the
current status of every sidewalk and maintain with updates.
On motion by Dr. Brown, seconded by Ms. Szakos, the following consent agenda
items were approved: (Ayes: Ms. Edwards, Mr. Norris, Dr. Brown, Ms. Szakos; Noes:
None; Absent: Mr. Huja.)
a. Minutes of February 22
b. APPROPRIATION: $3,177 – 2010 State Homeland Security Program Grant
(2nd reading)
c. APPROPRIATION: $18,362 – 2011 Juvenile Accountability Block Grant
(2nd reading)
d. APPROPRIATION: $2,500 – Charlottesville Newsplex Scholarship Program
(2nd reading)
e. APPROPRIATION: $382,090 – Highway Safety Improvement Program
(2nd reading)
f. APPROPRIATION: $102,576 – Aid & Localities Fire Disbursement Fund
(2nd reading)
g. APPROPRIATION: $122,398 – U.S. Department of Housing and Urban
Development Sustainable Communities Grant Funds
h. APPROPRIATION: $250,000 – Charlottesville City Schools - Appropriation
of Capital Improvement Program Large Cap
Supplemental Contribution (carried)
i. APPROPRIATION: $980.45 – State Assistance for Spay and Neuter
Program at SPCA
j. APPROPRIATION: $44,336 – Domestic Violence Services Coordinator
Grant (carried)
k. RESOLUTION: New Sidewalk Prioritization Process
l. RESOLUTION: Entrance Corridor Design Guidelines
m. RESOLUTION: Amend SUP for 207 14th
n. RESOLUTION: License Agreement with Qwest Communications
p. ORDINANCE: Changes to Café Ordinances (2nd
q. ORDINANCE: FiberLight Agreement (2nd
r. ORDINANCE: Longwood Park PUD – Exchange of Land (2nd
s. ORDINANCE: Sale of Land to Southern Development (2nd
Dr. Rosa Atkins, Superintendent, and Mr. Ed Gillespie, Director of Finance,
presented to Council. Several other members of staff were present. Dr. Atkins outlined
the past year’s programs and initiatives, reviewed statistics and graduation rates and
awards. She reviewed budget priorities and goals. Mr. Gillespie presented 2011-12
budget summary highlights, reviewed revenues and expenditures, compared city funding
with state funding, and reviewed short term items and general assembly amendments.
Ms. Szakos said the quality of education the City schools provide is reflective of
the City’s support. She said there has been consistent progress every year in the schools,
and it is good to see what they have been able to accomplish in a short amount of time.
Dr. Brown agreed. He asked about the 2.4% pay increase to staff and questioned how it
compared to other school divisions’ proposals for their staff. Dr. Atkins said about 50%
of the area schools will make recommendations for an increase ranging from 1-3%. We
are closest to Albemarle, who is proposing a 2.3% increase. Overall, that equates to just
over $1 million. Dr. Brown asked if the City is recommending a 2% increase this year.
Mr. Jones said yes.
Mr. Norris said the proposed budget for next year is actually less than this year
and asked where the cuts were. Dr. Atkins said they are cutting one position from the
central office, decreasing the number of instructional assistants at the second grade level
and decreasing some instructional media positions. They are also decreasing some
positions at the elementary level because of enrollment numbers. Mr. Norris asked where
they are in the planning process for the reconfiguration of the middle school. Dr. Atkins
said the School Board recently voted that Buford would be the location for the new
middle school, and they are now getting cost estimations. They will have more
information to Council by September and will have involved input from the community
at that time. Implementation is scheduled for 2014.
Mr. Jones presented to Council. He reviewed goals for this year and said all
information may be found on the City website at www.charlottesville.org/budget. The
City has not had to make some of the cuts others around the country have had to make as
a result of a downturned economy. He reviewed the citizen budget survey and the impact
of budget on residents. The proposed budget is a 1.55% increase over last year. He
reviewed FY 2012 general fund expenditures; schools are the largest portion of
expenditures at 32%. He reviewed major capital needs for the future and reported that
the City has maintained a AAA bond rating. The City is below the state-wide average for
real estate tax rates. He reviewed the budget season calendar and reminded Council that
April 12th is the anticipated date for adoption of the final budget. He encouraged citizen
input between now and then.
Mr. Norris thanked Mr. Jones and staff for a good start to the budget season.
Mr. Tom Frederick from RWSA presented to Council. There is a need for
additional pumping capacity, although the method for this is flexible. There have been
two meetings open to the public. Preliminary information has been gathered on four
concepts, and they are getting more detailed information to make a decision. There is no
leaning currently. He thanked members of the Woolen Mills neighborhood for their
positive comments so far. He said RWSA is always working to solve any outstanding
issues, and he does not believe promises have been broken. He reviewed the money
RWSA has spent on improving services over the last few years. The Moore’s Creek
pump station is also being upgraded.
Mr. Frederick gave a power point presentation to Council. Inadequate capacity at
current peak flows is driving this project. The station needs sufficient capacity for
normal and wet weather flows. He reviewed project constraints and technical constraints,
project concepts and cost comparisons, an overview of preliminary environmental
findings, and suggested next steps for public discussion.
Mr. Norris asked if they have a commitment to provide protection from odor
control and noise reduction. Mr. Frederick said they are committed to it. A welldesigned
odor control system is very reliable.
Dr. Brown asked if there are strategies in a new station that are not currently
being employed. Mr. Franklin said new technologies are similar to what is currently in
Mr. Norris said the neighborhood reports that there are continued odor challenges;
however, RWSA says the odor situation has been addressed and resolved. Mr. Frederick
said historically there have been problems at this site, but RWSA has spent money to
address those problems, and within the last few months, especially since a scrubber has
gone online, complaints have decreased dramatically.
Mr. Norris asked about the rationale behind the “impact on park experience”
rankings from the presentation. Mr. Frederick said the rankings were done by the City
Parks Department.
Ms. Szakos asked which plans required land acquisition. Mr. Frederick said they
would all require land acquisition.
Dr. Brown referenced Ms. Ewing’s drawings and asked Mr. Frederick what the
facility would look like. He said we do not have architectural renderings at this time, but
it could be about the size of two houses sitting side by side.
Mr. Norris asked if it was considered best practice to avoid placing these in or
adjacent to residential neighborhoods. Mr. Frederick said it is an important
consideration, and these stations should be located out of residential neighborhoods when
reasonable alternatives are available.
Ms. Edwards said she was interested in reviewing examples of other localities that
have done similar structures as option D.
Mr. Jones said the request for Rivanna staff was to move forward with a design
process. He asked Council for direction on how to pursue this at the next Rivanna
Ms. Szakos said this is not where we would locate a pumping station if we were
building a new one and does not support option A. She asked about creating a
combination of options that included bi-location.
Dr. Brown said he agrees with Ms. Szakos. He said he is also concerned about
the view shed from the park. It is not right to locate it adjacent to Riverview Park.
Ms. Edwards said she agrees with Ms. Szakos and Dr. Brown. We need a new
facility, but we should be careful about where and how it is designed.
Mr. Norris said he agrees with the other Councilors. We should examine
alternatives to Option A. He said there is affirmation for Option D and no Council
support for Option A, B or C. Mr. Jones thanked Council and said he will carry their
decision to the next Rivanna meeting.
Ms. Stephanie Cangin, Chair of the Social Services Advisory Board, presented to
Council. Ms. Diane Kuknyo was also present. Ms. Cangin reviewed expenditures within
the City, which include tighter funding and increased caseloads, and decreased funding
for Adult Protective Services and Adult Services Program. She reviewed family planning
programs and systems of care, foster care services and Child Protective Services, and
workforce development. She discussed continuing and emerging challenges including
living wage, challenges for community newcomers, particularly those with language
barriers, and family engagement. She reviewed the activities of the Advisory Board and
new ways they are working to support the Social Services agency. She said the
Department of Social Services (DSS) in the City of Charlottesville has a very good
reputation state-wide.
Mr. Norris thanked the board and staff for their leadership and for serving needs
in our community. Ms. Szakos said she serves on the board, and the Social Services
department and staff works very hard, which is heartening. Dr. Brown seconded Ms.
Szakos’ comments and said the DSS is an example of why we cannot do budget cuts
across the board. Ms. Edwards asked about working on common goals with counterparts
in the county and suggested the advisory boards meet jointly and collaborate. The two
entities should give local officials ideas for legislation to take back to Richmond in time
to add them to the legislative packet. Mr. Norris asked Mr. Jones for staff to work to
address concerns about maintenance.
Ms. Scala reported to Council regarding possible demolition of an Individually
Protected Property (IPP) called Riverdale, located off E. High St. The BAR denied the
original request in 2009. City Council upheld the BAR’s decision and denied the appeal.
Mr. Norris asked what the effect of delisting the property would be. Ms. Scala
said it would provide for immediate demolition because it would remove constraints on
the property. Mr. Norris asked whether the owners automatically get to demolish the
property if Council determines they have met the appropriate conditions without Council
having any discretion. Ms. Scala said that is correct.
Ms. Scala said staff determined the condition of the owner offering the property at
a reasonable market price has not been met. Council is not being asked to agree with the
assessed value but is being asked to determine whether or not the owner has met the
Ms. Carol Cronin, past board president for SHE, asked Council to grant the
demolition request. The building no longer meets the needs of the Shelter’s operations.
SHE has been actively working to sell this property for over six years. The property has
stood empty for nearly three years. SHE and their REALTORS have made every interest
to engage prospective buyers. SHE has had to continue to pay to maintain the property,
and it has been a cash drain on their non-profit agency.
Ms. Cheri Lewis, an attorney for SHE, said they agree with the staff report that
the applicant has satisfied all other criteria, but does not agree that they have not
complied with listing it at fair market value. There is an ongoing debate that properties in
the City are not assessed at fair market value.
Mr. Cass Kawecki, VP with CB Richard Ellis, was engaged by SHE in March
2009 along with colleague Carolyn Shears to contract a sale on the property. He
described the process they used to Council in efforts to sell the property.
Mr. Norris asked if anyone from the SHE asked him to set an artificially high
price for the property. Mr. Kawecki said no. They were motivated to sell the property at
the price it was listed.
Dr. Brown said the key question is whether or not the price at which it was listed
was reasonably connected to its value. He said it was clearly not connected to its
assessment, but he understood Ms. Lewis’ argument that the assessment was unfairly
low. Dr. Brown asked why the list of comparables pre-dated the real estate market crash
or have not yet been sold. Mr. Kawecki said they are having trouble finding
comparables. Dr. Brown asked if there was ever a discussion of lowering the price. Mr.
Kawecki said they did not determine that a price reduction was necessary. Ms. Lewis
said they were concerned if they lowered the price, the City would require them to
maintain the property for sale for another year at the lowered price.
Ms. Szakos said Council should not evaluate whether the best possible strategy
was used, but rather whether it was offered at a reasonable cost. She said she wanted to
save the building and is sad SHE had to put money into maintaining it all these years, but
she is satisfied that it was a reasonable process.
Ms. Edwards asked if it was too late to have a conversation about delisting the
property, because it seems as though the historic designation is one of the things that has
become a burden. Ms. Lewis said if delisting could be done, that would be preferable.
Mr. Norris asked what the practical difference would be between delisting it and
approving it for demolition. Ms. Lewis said there would be a finite period of time for
SHE to use the demolition permit once approved. If it were delisted, they could advertise
it with flexibility. Mr. Norris asked what the delisting process entailed. Mr. Brown said
the property would have to be rezoned, because it is currently listed in the City’s zoning
ordinance as an IPP.
Ms. Szakos asked if the property would automatically be delisted if Council voted
to pass this. Mr. Brown said yes, but if Council upholds the request, they would have the
right to demolish the house or sell it as a house that is not historically designated. It is
still an IPP, and remodeling is subject to design control.
Mr. Norris said he agrees with Ms. Szakos, and he is convinced that the work Mr.
Kawecki and Ms. Shears did was based on a factual analysis of the market. Ms. Edwards
said she supports the Board of SHE, but the house has meant so much for so long that it is
a shame it has become an albatross, and she hopes someone will save it.
On motion by Ms. Szakos, seconded by Ms. Edwards, Council concluded that the
owner of the property has met statutory requirements to award a certificate of
appropriateness for demolition of the structure at 1328 Riverdale Dr. (Ayes: Ms.
Edwards, Mr. Norris, Ms. Szakos; Noes: Dr. Brown; Absent: Mr. Huja.)
Mr. Tony Edwards updated Council on the Old Lynchburg Road project. He
reviewed citizen participation in the process, project history and scope, and impact on the
south city limits, Middleton Lane, Fry’s Spring Beach Club, and Jefferson Park areas. He
reviewed proposed improvements to Azalea Park and planned next steps, particularly
right of way acquisition.
Ms. Szakos asked what the ultimate timeline of construction is. Mr. Edwards said
it depends on when staff can start, but anticipated completion is about four months.
Dr. Brown asked if right of way discussions have been finalized. Mr. Edwards
said they have not. Dr. Brown asked about pedestrian implementations and whether or
not Mr. Edwards has met with the Bike/Pedestrian committee. Mr. Edwards said they
have met with the committee three times since the first of the year, and they are generally
in favor of this change.
Mr. Norris commended Mr. Edwards on engaging citizens and getting feedback
during the course of this project. Mr. Jones confirmed that Council is comfortable with
staff moving forward with the project.
Ms. Jeanne Chase said she and her husband will grant right of way access to the
City, and she appreciated Council giving this stretch of road a sense of security and
Mr. Peter Kleeman, 407 Hedge St., said we have many historic properties in the
City, and we are losing historic fabric. He does not disagree with tonight’s decision, but
there are a number of historic properties that are under threat. He recommended that
Council take their responsibility as stewards of historic properties seriously in reviewing
the memorandum of agreement for the Meadowcreek Parkway.
Mr. Stratton Salidis, 704 B. Graves St., said he agrees with Mr. Kleeman, and
asked Council to revisit the MOA and un-sign it. He said Ms. Szakos' comments last
meeting made him think she may believe a majority of citizens do support a big dam, but
that is not true.
Mr. Ridge Schuyler, 112 Robinson Woods, thanked Council for their vote to
proceed with the water supply plan. He said it is good that resources can now go towards
other more pressing issues.
A citizen thanked Council for their vote on the fifty year water plan and said
Council should hold a referendum on the water supply issue.
The meeting was adjourned.

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