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Mayor’s intention was to ‘really push RVA’

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)–Mayor Dwight Jones highlighted Richmond’s need for cash in his “State of the City” address on Thursday night at the new Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School.

“The reality is, as the city grows, so do our expenses. Our public schools, roads, and numerous other services need more money,” Jones said.

The Mayor said his plan to bring baseball to Shockoe Bottom is about generating tax revenue to pay for those services, along with creating economic development to help the city’s 26 percent poverty rate.

[CLICK HERE: Paul Goldman says Mayor Jones praises himself, says he made Richmond greatest ever]

“The future of the city is at stake in terms of our limited opportunities to grow our tax base, and I think we have a program before the people that will generate close to 200 million dollars in 20 years, so I think we have to do it because we need money,” Jones said.

Of course, the Mayor has to sell the plan to city council and everybody is waiting to hear if they’re going to support it.

City Council Member Parker Agelasto told CBS6’s Melissa Hipolit he can’t sign off on the proposal in its current form because he still has a lot of questions about the plan’s financing.

He also said he wished the Mayor would have talked more about the city’s parks.

“We’ve got this downtown river front plan to expand our park access to the urban core, and I didn’t see enough about that, and I was sorry about that primarily because the 5th District, I consider the park district, given all the access we have to the James River Park system,” Agelasto said.

Mayor Jones also talked about the city’s schools, revealing that he has a plan to address the school system’s large maintenance needs.

Those school improvement projects would cost the city $100 million.

The Mayor said we can expect to hear the plan at his budget presentation in a few weeks.

Mayor Jones did not mention the city’s troubled Department of Social Services in his address, so CBS6’s Melissa Hipolit asked him afterwards what he is doing to fix problems raised in a recent audit.

“We are actively working on attracting personnel, and we are actively working on triaging the places where there are problems and we will correct them,” Jones said.

The Mayor told Melissa this was a much shorter “State of the City” address than last year.  He said he scaled it back from 40 minutes to about 15 minutes, and the intention of this speech was really to push RVA.

12 comments

  • RK

    Please citizens of Richmond, help Mayor Dwight Jones they need the money for all of next year’s city parties. The city is in dare need for money unless it’s time to throw a party. I guess we could change the city name to Richmond,D.C. I mean hell it’s so close.

  • gregory

    another official elected for no other reason but skin color.Hows that approach to things working out for you in any area?

  • Truth

    Our Mayor of the people (only if you look like him), the city is a mess, streets are coming apart, graffiti abounds, neighborhoods are not partoled (to wit cars parked in no parking zones, alleys, by fire hydrants) the city in general is a unsafe place to live and work. A mayor that preaches to his church members about council members that ‘don’t look like us’ Racist mayor for Richmond- the un-state of Richmond should be your concern, not the color of folks skin

  • Manalishi

    “Mayor’s intention was to ‘really push RVA’” Yup, into the abyss. Because that’s what democrats do. Stereotypical, redundant, and how dare anyone call them out for what they are.

  • Glen Allen

    This Mayor is a perfect example illustrating that some people are just downright crooked, and it matters not what color they are or what political affiliation they hold. This (black/Democrat) Mayor is conducting himself in the same unethical fashion as the former (white/Republican) Governor. Is either of their actions illegal? I don’t know, but they are certainly unethical, and downright dirty.

    Clearly the tax payers of the City of Richmond should be given the opportunity to make a choice as to whether to move forward with baseball in the Bottom, or leave it on the Boulevard. This should be done by referendum, and I think it is safe to say that most people are aware of this, and are in agreement, yet this Mayor is moving forward in a direction that does not permit his people (Richmonders) to have a say on one of the most important decisions in front of them today.

    Yes, City Council members are elected by the people (Richmonders) to make the majority of local government decisions on their behalf based upon what their constituents tell them, however, in major capital investments such as this, the tax payers should have every method available to them to make their own decisions. Referendum is the best way to make that happen. City Council should (and is) educate their constituents on the overall impact, and the details, but the people paying the bill should be the people that vote.

    So while the Mayor stands there telling you that you must be a racist, or not a loyal Richmonders, or team player, unless you support his plan, the tax payers must stand tall and tell him & City Council, that you prefer to make your own educated decision in the privacy of an election booth.

  • jackburton77

    Look at all of the right wing racism in this thread. Thankfully the south isn’t rising again.

    Good Job Mayor. You are giving Richmond the much needed facelift it needs to move forward.

    To all of you talking trash…please move.

    • Glen Allen

      The racist here is the Mayor, perhaps you have not been following the story. It started with a speech he gave to Baptist Ministers Conference several weeks ago.

  • Dustin Cavanaugh

    Spending millions on a double-A no name baseball team won’t make money. This is not a major league team and even the Braves were a triple A not a Major League team. If the Braves didn’t make enough money where they found it necessary to renovate the diamond then why do people think this no-name double-a farm team for the San Francisco Giants? It’s obvious it’s about race and the need for control by Mayor Jones. He race baited but in actuality the only one making it about race is him. Jones is the racist in this whole mix.

  • Wade Dering

    Mabe the va capital should look in to pro sports like MLB NBA NHL MLS if statice is what rva is after or VCU foot ball or major league concerts something much more lucrative than AA ball please! I hope they think much bigger than this please tell me if I am wrong . We think way to small hear.

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