Showing posts from 2009

Handicap Parking Violation Increase to Take Effect

Beginning January 4, 2010, parking fines will increase to $200 for illegal parking in handicap zones within the city of Richmond. Richmond City Council approved the violation increase and the ordinance was formally adopted on November 23, 2009. Violators will be ticketed and fined for illegally parking in a handicap parking space or in front of a handicap ramp. Fines were previously $100 for parking illegally in a handicap zone. For more information, citizens are encouraged to call the city’s Customer Care Center at (804) 646-7000 or visit the city’s website at . Contact: Jemila Woodson, (804) 646-4642

New Procurement Director Named - Information Technology Acting Director Made Permanent

Cheryl Wright has been named Director of the city’s Department of Procurement Service. Wright possesses more than 18 years experience in leading procurement and diversity programs with numerous governmental entities throughout Chicago, Illinois. Most recently, she worked as a Business Development Procurement Consultant for the U.S. Department of Commerce in Charlotte, NC, providing business development for the Minority Business Development Agency. Wright had previously served as Chief Procurement Officer for the Chicago Housing Authority, Chicago, IL; Director of Purchasing for the Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL; Manager of Contract Administration for Chicago Public Schools, Chicago, IL; and Senior Contract Compliance Officer for the city of Chicago, IL. She obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree from Purdue University’s School of Technology and a Masters in Project Management from Keller Graduate School in Chicago, Illinois. Annette Flowers has been named Director of the city’s

City to Provide Update to Winter Storm

WHO: Byron C. Marshall, Chief Administrative Officer Anthony McLean, Acting Director of Emergency Management WHAT: Update of city's progress in responding to the winter storm WHEN: 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, December 19, 2009 WHERE: City’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Richmond Ambulance Authority 2400 Hermitage Road BACKGROUND: City officials will provide an update on the city's efforts in response to the winter storm. The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is a central command and control facility where city officials are coordinating the city’s response to the storm. Contact: Tammy Hawley, (804) 646-3110

Mayor to Provide Update of Winter Storm

WHO: Mayor Dwight C. Jones WHAT: Update of City's progress in responding to the winter storm WHEN: 5:30 a.m. on Saturday, December 19, 2009 WHERE: Department of Public Works Parker Field Operations Center at Hermitage Road and Avenue of Champions BACKGROUND: Mayor Jones will provide an update on the City's efforts in response to the winter storm. Contact: Tammy Hawley, (804) 646-3110

Mayor to Present Toys at City & Radio One Holiday Toy Drive

Who: Mayor Dwight C. Jones Who: Present toys to residents during toy drive distribution event When: 12:15 to 12:45 p.m. on Friday, December 18, 2009 Where: Arthur Ashe Athletic Center 2907 North Boulevard Richmond, VA 23230 Background: Mayor Jones, the city of Richmond and Radio One present new unwrapped toys, books and clothing to residents in an effort to “Build a Better Richmond” for area youth this holiday season. The toy drive began on Tuesday, December 10, 2009, with donations being accepted at any city fire station, City Hall, Southside Community Service Center, and two Radio One events at the Brook Road and Sheila Lane Walmarts. Contact: Tammy Hawley, (804) 646-3110

Celebrate the Holiday Season in Downtown Richmond

The city of Richmond will host a number of citywide events in celebration of this holiday season. City residents and visitors can enjoy the spirit of the season at the 17th Street Farmers’ Market’s Grand Illumination celebration on Friday, December 4 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Local crafters and food vendors will be highlighted at the event, and the Salvation Army International Brass Ensemble will perform a variety of holiday classics. Holiday celebrations will still be in full swing on Saturday, December 12 at the 17th Street Farmers’ Market. From 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., over 80 tuba players will perform in four-part harmony at this year’s Tuba Christmas. Singing Santa will also be at the event, caroling the crowd. This is a must see holiday event for the entire family. For more information on the 17th Street Farmers’ Market, call (804) 646-0477 or visit . Main Street Station will host its annual Holiday Open House on Friday, December 4 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at t

Mayor Jones to Kick-Off City & Radio One Holiday Toy Drive

WHO: Mayor Dwight C. Jones Linda Forem, General Manager Radio One Richmond Clovia “Miss Community” Lawrence, Community Outreach Director Radio One Richmond WHAT: Event to begin the City of Richmond and Radio One Holiday Toy Drive WHEN: 10 a.m. Wednesday, December 2, 2009 WHERE: Richmond Fire Station 10 900 Hermitage Road Richmond, Virginia Background: Donations of new, unwrapped toys, books and clothing are appreciated and will be accepted at any city fire station or at City Hall through December 17. Radio One will also be accepting donations at the Wal-Mart Supercenter at 2501 Sheila Lane from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Dec. 17. Donations will be distributed to children in need within the Richmond community. Contact: Tammy Hawley, (804) 646-3110

City Kicks Off Holiday Season at 17th Street Farmers' Market

The 17th Street Farmers’ Market will kick off the holiday season with the 11th Annual Holiday Market on Friday, November 27, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event will feature local crafters, artisans, food vendors and live entertainment. The 17th Street Farmers’ Market will have Frasier Fur trees available for the “Virginia’s Finest” Christmas tree sale. These trees are grown on the mountains of Floyd County in southwestern Virginia and are known as some of the finest Christmas trees in the region. The Christmas trees are priced at $37 for 6 to 7 foot trees and $47 for 7 to 8 foot trees. The Christmas tree sale will continue to December 13, or as supplies last. Holiday Market proceeds benefit the 2010 17th Street Farmers’ Market children’s garden program. The program provides funding for local children to purchase seeds and plants for a new children’s garden in the spring of 2010. The market is regularly open on Thursdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday

Mayor, City Council and School Board Agree on Plan

Mayor Dwight C. Jones attended today’s informal session of Richmond City Council to speak in support of expediting a resolution to accept the Richmond Public Schools Phase 1 Construction Plan. Eight members of City Council signed on as co-sponsors of the resolution with the Mayor. “Education remains a top priority for the city of Richmond and this administration,” said Mayor Jones. “We have waited too long to deal with the long-overdue problem of antiquated schools. This is a fiscally-prudent and educationally-imperative plan. We are at a juncture now where we are ready to move forward together and develop very specific timelines for the construction of our schools.” Phase 1 of the school’s construction plan consists of two parts, the building of new schools and substantial renovations to some existing schools. Phase 1A of the plan includes a new Huguenot High School, Broad Rock Elementary School, Oak Grove Elementary School and Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School. The new Huguenot

DCAO of Human Services Carolyn Graham Press Release Correction

The city press release sent on November 16, 2009, incorrectly detailed the educational background of Carolyn N. Graham, the city’s new Deputy Chief Administrative Officer (DCAO) for Human Services. Graham majored in psychology at the University of Baltimore in Baltimore, Maryland however; she did not receive a bachelor’s degree as previously noted, as she was allowed early enrollment in graduate school at Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio. She obtained her first master’s degree in education from Antioch College, and she also holds a masters in public administration from City University of New York Bernard Baruch College in New York, New York; a masters of divinity from the New York Theological Seminary in New York, New York; and a doctorate in ministry from the United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. She has previously served as deputy Mayor for Children, Youth, Families & Elders for the District of Columbia; national director for Council Services, Girl Scouts of the

Mayor Jones Announces Revised City Revenue Projections

~Outlines initial strategy to respond to projected revenue shortfall~ Mayor Dwight C. Jones today announced that city revenue projections for the current fiscal year (FY 2010) are tracking behind the officially adopted FY 2010 Budget. Reductions in state funding, as well as the drop in sales taxes, were cited as leading to an overall projected revenue shortfall of $10 million for FY 2010. “The entire nation has been experiencing lingering effects of the recession and Richmond is no exception,” said Mayor Jones. “A number of key revenue sources weakened in FY 2009, and they are continuing to falter in the current year (FY 2010). Moreover, we have to be realistic and assume that the ripple effects will continue into FY 2011.” The updated revenue estimates are based on revenue collections and economic data from the first quarter of FY 2010. The main driver in the lower-than-projected revenue is a decline in sales tax collections. The local option sales tax is $7.9 million less tha

Mayor Names Carolyn N. Graham as DCAO for Human Services

~Directors of Social Services and Justice Services also announced~ Carolyn N. Graham has been named Deputy Chief Administrative Officer (DCAO) for Human Services for the city of Richmond. In this capacity, she has oversight of the Department of Social Services, Department of Justice Services, as well as the Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities. Her appointment is effective immediately. She is coming to the Richmond area from Washington, D.C. where she has had an accomplished career in human services and support programs. “We are fortunate that Ms. Graham has accepted this position which now completes our executive leadership team,” said Mayor Jones. “The human services component of the city’s work is such a crucial area for service delivery. Ms. Graham’s training and experience with children, youth and families and neighborhood-based municipal services will serve the city of Richmond extremely well.” Graham received her bachelor’s degree in psychology fro

10th Annual Brunswick Stew Festival

On November 7, a fall rite of passage will commence at the city’s 17th Street Farmers’ market, the 10th Annual Brunswick Stew Festival. The Brunswick Stew Festival will start at 11 a.m. and run through 5 p.m. at the historic 17th Street Farmers’ Market located at 17th and Main Streets. This years festival will include music from three bands, Jackass Flats, Proverbial and Native son, beverages from Brown Distributing, and of course plenty of Brunswick stew. There will be over a dozen stew masters ready to take on the challenge of impressing the regions diehard stew lovers. Stew sample cups will be sold at each both from 11 a.m. till 1 p.m., at which time you will be able to purchase quart sized containers from your favorite stew master. As with every event at the 17th Street Farmers’ Market, free parking is available at our lot at 18th and Grace Streets. Contact: George Bolos, (804) 646-0477

Mayor to hold Town Hall at John Marshall High School

“Bringing City Hall to the Community” WHO: Mayor Dwight C. Jones City Officials WHAT: Town Hall to discuss topics such as crime, federal stimulus funding, economic development, H1N1 virus, and the 2010 census. WHEN: Thursday, October 29, 2009 from 6 to 8 p.m. WHERE : John Marshall High School North Cafeteria 4225 Old Brook Road BACKGROUND: Mayor Jones invites residents to the first North Side Town Hall Meeting of his administration, at 6 p.m. this Thursday at John Marshall High School. Similar to the July Southside Town Hall, the emphasis of the North Side Town Hall is to “Bring City Hall to the Community.” Topics of discussion include crime, federal stimulus funding, economic development, H1N1 virus, and the 2010 census. Officials from the city departments of Community Development; Economic Development; Finance; Fire and Emergency Services; General Services (to include the 3-1-1 Call Center); Hispanic Liaison Office; Human

City’s Green Initiatives Result in Green Certification

The city of Richmond is involved in several initiatives to become a greener city by reducing the city’s carbon footprint. The following is a detail of the initiatives the city is currently involved in: Green Government Challenge The city of Richmond will receive a green certification award for its participation in the Virginia Municipal League’s 2009 Green Government Challenge during today’s City Council meeting. Michael Amyx, Virginia Municipal League executive director will present the award tonight to Mayor Dwight Jones and members of City Council. The Green Government Challenge is a competition among local governments to encourage the implementation of specific environmental policies and practical actions that reduce carbon emissions. Local governments earned “green points” by implementing or adopting up to 30 policies and actions divided into 11 categories ranging from energy efficiency and green buildings to land-use and innovation. Richmond earned points for the James River

City Welcomes Opening of The Belvidere at Broad

The city of Richmond welcomes The Belvidere at Broad to the business community as the restaurant holds a grand opening celebration on Wednesday, October 21, 2009 at 5:30 p.m. The restaurant is located in the Jackson Ward corridor at 506 W. Broad Street. The Belvidere at Broad is supported by family, friends, neighbors, and the city of Richmond’s Department of Economic Development. The business received financial assistance through the department’s Commercial Area Revitalization Effort Program and the Enterprise Zone Program. The Belvidere at Broad is locally owned and operated by husband and wife team, David and Julie Hassen. “We wanted to be a part of the downtown revitalization. There is a need for more restaurants in the historic Broad Street Art Corridor to support the thriving neighborhoods nearby,” stated Julie Hassen. “When we discovered the building for the restaurant, we thought it was a good opportunity to make an improvement to the area. A restaurant offers the visibility

City’s “Imagine Festival” Celebrates Community Diversity

The city of Richmond will host the 5th annual “Imagine Festival” at Broad Rock Park on Saturday, October 24, from noon to 5 p.m. Admission to this community and family event is free. The Imagine Festival is an exciting event offering free food, dance performances, arts, crafts, vendors, and fun activities for the entire family. A unique component of this year’s festival is a softball tournament including teams from the Richmond Police Department and area community organizations. “This is a perfect opportunity for the community to come together with city departments such as the Richmond Police Department and truly get to know each other in a fun atmosphere. The Imagine Festival helps break down the “Us – Them” barrier so that we can get to know each other and true communication, cooperation and collaboration can begin. I hope families throughout Richmond can come and enjoy this unique event,” said Mayor Dwight C. Jones. The Imagine Festival began in 2005 as a community outreach event

City Hall Takes Proactive Approach to Combat Flu

Instituting a hands-on approach to combating flu in the work environment, Richmond City Hall conducted an on-site flu clinic designed to take an active approach to seasonal flu prevention. In partnership with the city’s health provider, Southern Health, the city of Richmond delivered a streamlined process between employer, insurance carrier and provider. With this approach, city of Richmond employees and dependants over age 18 who are covered by Southern Health simply fill out a form, show their insurance card, and a claim that does not require a co-payment is filed for employees. Employees are then provided their flu shot on-site by Southern Health, IVNA (Instructive Visiting Nurse Association). During the City Hall flu clinic conducted on October 12, 2009, over one third of the 450 participants had never had a flu shot before. When asked why they chose to get the shot this year when they haven’t in past years, the number one response was "because you came to us and it was

Mayor Comments on Norman Sales' Retirement

Mayor Dwight Jones issued the following statement on the retirement of City Attorney Norman Sales. "The city of Richmond is losing a dedicated public servant, Norman Sales, when he retires. Norman has been a balanced and knowledgeable city attorney, and we are the better for his work here. It is with sadness that I received Norman's announcement. However, I know that he makes the move for personal reasons, and I wish him the best in his future endeavors." Contact: Tammy Hawley, (804) 646-3110

Statement of City Attorney Norman Sales Announcing his Retirement

City Attorney Norman Sales issued the following statement today: "It is with mixed emotions that I announce my retirement from the city of Richmond, effective December 31, 2009. "It has been my pleasure and privilege to serve in the City Attorney’s office for more than 20 years and over the last four years as City Attorney. It goes without saying that I have many memories, accomplishments, challenges, and successes that will be indelibly etched as part of the fabric of my life forever. I have great affection for the city of Richmond and its citizens. My work with the city will always be a source of pride and satisfaction for me. "I want to be clear that my decision to retire at this time has no relation to any matters previously or now before Council for consideration and also has no bearing on my relationship with the current or any past administration. Indeed, I feel that my current relationship with the City Council and the Jones Administration has been a cordia

Mayor to Sign Sister City Agreement With Ségou, Mali

WHO: Mayor Dwight C. Jones Mayor Ousmane Simaga of Ségou, Mali City Council President Kathy Graziano City Councilman Bruce Tyler WHAT: Signing of Sister City Agreement between the city of Richmond and city of Ségou of the Republic of Mali. WHEN: Noon, Tuesday, October 13, 2009 WHERE: 900 East Broad Street 2nd Floor Large Conference Room Richmond, VA 23219 BACKGROUND: Through the efforts of Richmond's Sister City Commission and locally based Virginia Friends of Mali, Richmond City Council passed a resolution on June 3, 2009 to pursue official sister city relationship with Ségou, Mali. In his letter of introduction to Mayor Simaga, Mayor Jones stated, “Our cities have many things in common, from our identity as capital cities, to the rivers that flow through our vast landscape, and the history and culture that make us educational and recreational destination

City Implements Urban Blight Reduction Program

Immediate benefits of organizational restructuring realized As part of the recent reorganization of several city of Richmond departments, the city has implemented a new program aimed at reducing urban blight. The new program, being orchestrated by the Department of Public Works (DPW) will address the maintenance needs of vacant properties in four city precincts. To date, more than 250 privately owned properties, which previously came under the purview of the Department of Community Development (DCD), will now be mowed and maintained by DPW. “I believe this new program follows Mayor Dwight Jones’ dedication to ensure the best use of taxpayer dollars and implementing operational efficiencies,” said city Chief Administrative Officer Byron Marshall. “The Mayor takes great pride in the city, its beauty and rich history. As such, all neighborhoods will receive the same level of service to maintain the aesthetics and integrity of our community, as we work toward making Richmond a tier o

City Restructures Economic and Community Development Departments

Office of Real Estate Services is also part of change City of Richmond Chief Administrative Officer Byron C. Marshall, along with Deputy Chief Administrative Officer (DCAO) for Economic and Community Development, Peter H. Chapman, put forth a restructuring plan today that will enable local government to pursue a more comprehensive and strategic approach to economic and community development. "We are announcing the first of several organizational changes that are designed to make the Richmond City Government a much more effective facilitator of both economic development and community revitalization," Marshall said. "The Mayor has asked for a more competent, responsive and technically proficient administration and I believe the changes being put forth will bring about many of the operational efficiencies he is looking for." Central to the changes being announced is the consolidation of the City's Office of Real Estate Services into a proposed Department of Eco

City CARE Program Assists Local Entrepreneur

Local Entrepreneur Crystal Richards will open Nappy by Nature, a hair salon, with assistance from the city of Richmond Department of Economic Development’s Commercial Area Revitalization Effort (CARE) and Enterprise Zone Programs. The salon, located at 1820 Hull Street, will hold a grand opening today, September 15, 2009, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. “At a very young age, I knew I wanted to be in the hair care industry,” said Richards. “My goal was to one day operate my own salon and I am very excited that the day is finally becoming a reality.” “It is extremely fulfilling to see a business excel to this point and utilize the financial incentives offered through the city’s CARE program,” said city Director of Economic Development Carthan Currin. “By providing business assistance through financial and enterprise zone incentives, we are stimulating private investment in the city.” To celebrate the grand opening, Nappy by Nature is offering specials to youth ages 4 -17 on Tuesday. The salon s

Richmond Healthy Start Initiative Awarded $4.5 Million Over 5 Years

The Richmond Healthy Start Initiative has been notified that they will receive $4.5 million over the next five years through the Healthy Start program at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The program is dedicated to ensuring that low-income and disadvantaged pregnant women receive the health care they need. Services include outreach, home visitation, case management, health education, perinatal depression screening, interconceptional care and other effective approaches to ensure a healthy pregnancy and a healthy birth. U.S. Congressman Bobby Scott stated, “Healthy Start is exactly the type of community-based prevention program that will save lives and also millions of dollars in healthcare costs down the road.” “I am thankful that the Richmond Healthy Start Initiative has been selected to receive this funding,” said Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones. “Congressman Scott has been a true champion for our program and I thank him for his efforts in ensuring we receive this fu

Dr. Ian Smith Joins Richmond in Walk Off Challenge

50 Million Pound Challenge Walk Off Set For Saturday WHO: Mayor Dwight C. Jones Dr. Ian Smith (founder/creator of The 50 Million Pound Challenge, New York Times bestselling author of The 4 Day Diet) WHAT: 50 Million Pound Challenge Walk/Run Off WHEN: September 12, 2009 Registration begins at 8 a.m. Opening remarks at 8:30 a.m. Challenge Walk/Run Off begins at 9 a.m. WHERE: Chimborazo Park East Broad Street and 32nd Street BACKGROUND: The 50 Million Pound Challenge is a free national health initiative encouraging people to come together and take control of their health by getting fit. Richmond joins 15 cities and more than 37,000 teams from across the country that will be participating in the Challenge Walk Off on September 12. Challenge event activities include a 2-mile walk/run-off, line dancing, clowns, arts and crafts, and wellness vendors. State Farm will provide raffle prizes during the event to i

Join Mayor Jones in the 50 Million Pound Challenge Walk Off

Mayor Dwight C. Jones and Dr. Ian Smith, founder and creator of the 50 Million Pound Challenge, invite residents to participate in the 50 Million Pound Challenge Walk Off, from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, September 12, at Chimborazo Park. In an effort to encourage citizens to take a step toward a healthier lifestyle, Mayor Jones, the Department of Parks, Recreation & Community Facilities and the Richmond City Health District have planned a family friendly event at Chimborazo Park, East Broad and 32nd Streets. Event registration begins at 8 a.m. and the 2-mile walk/run begins at 9 a.m. Other activities for the Challenge include line dancing, clowns, arts and crafts, and wellness vendors. State Farm will provide raffle prizes during the event to include $100 Visa gift cards, iPod Shuffles, a Wii Fitness system, and more. Everyone that signs up for the Challenge walk or run will receive free healthy snacks and a free 50 Million Pound Challenge t-shirt provided by State Farm. To join

Sole Source Review Panel Added to City's Procurement Process

Internal panel designed to help ensure compliance The City of Richmond announced today its intent to step up efforts to ensure departmental compliance with procurement rules for city contracts. The enhancements are partly a result of an administrative review recently conducted by Mayor Dwight Jones' Administration following an Inspector General's report on the city's Procurement Services Department. The Inspector General's report was issued as a result of a 2007 complaint alleging that the Procurement Services Department incorrectly awarded a sole source contract for the purchase of police vehicles. "Our internal review of this matter indicates that the Procurement Services Department did not properly follow procurement rules in the awarding of the contract in question. The Department took corrective actions within 60 days of the questionable procurement. However, our findings indicate that there still aren't sufficient safeguards to ensure full complianc

Social Services Financial Management Undergoing Major Review

Client Services Will Not Be Impacted Mayor Dwight C. Jones’ administration announced today efforts to reorganize the Richmond Department of Social Services and to correct what has been determined to be major financial management failures. This week the administration became aware of billing errors that have been generated by the department to the Commonwealth of Virginia. “We’ve identified financial management failures that have resulted in an estimated $3.8 million in over billing to the Commonwealth of Virginia. We’ve already begun the process of correcting the billing with the proper State representatives and we're working closely with the City's Auditor,” said City Chief Administrative Officer Byron Marshall. “This management failure has highlighted for us an area of City government that must be retooled. We have no evidence that any of this is based in fraud or corruption, but rather poor management and record keeping which indicates a need to make significant proced

City Cooling Shelters Now Open

The City has opened three cooling shelters to assist residents during the anticipated heat this week. The cooling shelters are open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., today, Monday, August 10 through Wednesday, August 12. City cooling shelters are opened when the temperature/heat index reaches or exceeds the 95 degree mark. Cooling shelters are located at: -Southside Community Center, 4100 Hull Street -Department of Social Services, 900 East Marshall Street -East District Center, 701 North 25th Street Bottled water will be available, but food will not be provided. Pets, with the exception of service animals, will not be allowed. All residents should take measures to stay hydrated and avoid prolonged exposure to the heat during the day. For more information regarding cooling services, citizens can contact the Department of Social Services Fuel Assistance Office, 646-7046. Elderly citizens with heat related issues can contact the Adult Protective Service Unit, 646-7367. In the event

Richmond Adult Drug Court to Hold July Graduation

The Circuit Court of Richmond’s Adult Drug Court will hold a graduation ceremony for five Adult Drug Court graduates on Friday, July 31, at 1 p.m., at the Richmond Police Academy, 1202 Graham Road. David Hicks, City Senior Policy Advisor to the Mayor will be the guest speaker. The ceremony and reception to follow, which is open to the public, marks the completion of an intensive 18-month outpatient program of drug treatment, probation supervision, judicial monitoring, and community service for participants in the Adult Drug Court. One of 1,500 drug courts operating in the United States and one of 26 drug courts in Virginia, the Richmond Adult Drug Court monitors non-violent drug-addicted offenders with pending cases in Richmond’s Circuit Court. Offenders volunteer for the program, and participate only after approval of the Richmond Commonwealth Attorney. Participants must meet all program requirements to graduate, including maintaining gainful employment, abstinen

Mayor to Hold Initial Town Hall Meeting at Southside Plaza

“Bringing City Hall to the Community” WHO: Mayor Dwight C. Jones City Officials WHAT: Town Hall Meeting WHEN: 6 – 8 p.m. - Wednesday, July 29, 2009 WHERE: Southside Community Service Center 4100 Hull Street Richmond, VA 23234 BACKGROUND: Mayor Dwight Jones invites residents to the initial Town Hall Meeting at Southside Plaza with the emphasis of the event being “Bringing City Hall to the Community.” During this meeting, the Mayor will specifically discuss crime, federal economic stimulus funding, and the 2010 census. Officials from the City departments of Community Development, Economic Development, Finance, Fire and Emergency Services, General Services, Hispanic Liaison Office, Human Resources, Justice Services, Libraries, Minority Business Development, Parks and Community Facilities, Police, Public Works, Public Utilities, Richmond City Health District, Richmond Public Schools, Sheriff’s Office, Social Services,

City and Venture Richmond Announce Riverfront Progress

Canal Walk Serves as Catalyst for Ten Years of Economic Success Mayor Dwight C. Jones and Venture Richmond Executive Director Jack Berry issued an economic progress report regarding the 32 acres of Downtown riverfront property. The Canal Walk has served as the economic engine spurring growth along the Riverfront with more than $390 million in private sector investment in the Riverfront development area. In the 1990’s, the business community and the City worked together to create a master plan for Downtown riverfront development. "I can remember the early planning stages for the Canal Walk and it is so exciting to be able to report on the tremendous success and growth that the project has generated for the Riverfront area so far," said Mayor Jones. "It is clear why the total assessed value of our Riverfront development area has tripled, increasing from $242 million in 1998 to $757 million in 2009. Imagine what those numbers will look like when the Reynolds site is red

Police "Take-Home" Car Policy Tightened

Mayor Dwight C. Jones today issued an update highlighting changes in the Richmond Police Department's (RPD) Take-Home Car Policy. Acknowledging the benefits of a take-home car policy within City limits, the Mayor noted his desire to begin the process of completely phasing out assigning marked take-home vehicles to officers who live outside the City. "Within the City limits, a take-home marked vehicle program offers the benefit of an increased police presence and heightened visibility in our neighborhoods. This works to deter crime. Allowing selected individuals (special operations, sector lieutenants and command staff) who live within 15 miles of the City limits to take vehicles home allows for a quicker response to critical incidents and enhances the solvability of crimes. What we don't want is a lax policy that allows for vehicles to be taken out of the City to distant localities. I believe the proposed changes that Chief Norwood has brought forth will strengthen

Mayor’s Statement on Auditor’s Procurement Report

Mayor Dwight C. Jones issued the following statement regarding the City Auditor’s report on the Procurement Services Department: “These are very serious allegations. I’ve had discussions with my leadership team about this matter. As a result, the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), Byron Marshall, has initiated an administrative review that will be conducted by the Deputy CAO for Operations, Chris Beschler and will be completed within a week to ten days. While this review is underway, Garland Williams will serve as acting director of Procurement Services. Williams is presently acting as assistant director of the City’s Department of Budget and Strategic Planning and has previously served as acting director of the City’s Department of Economic Development. “This administration has respect for the rules of law and will not condone any misuse of public office. In follow up to the City Auditor’s submission of his report to the Commonwealth’s Attorney, I contac

City CAO Byron Marshall Confirmed

Mayor Dwight Jones' choice for Chief Administrative Officer of the City of Richmond was confirmed tonight by a unanimous vote during a special session of the Richmond City Council. Marshall will immediately assume the role of CAO on a part time basis for the duration of July and assume the role in a full-time capacity as of August 1, 2009. He was sworn in tonight by the City Clerk, Lou Brown Ali. During the special session, Mayor Jones said, "we all want viable neighborhoods, effective youth programs, great schools and a responsive City administration. I'm offering you one of the best and the brightest to fill out our administration's organization." Following a national search for the City's CAO which began when Jones took office in January, Marshall became the candidate of choice in mid-June. He addressed the City Council during its regularly scheduled session on June 22, 2009, at which time he answered many questions that had arisen in the media. Coun