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Mayor’s administration agrees to certify $9.5 million in needed funds

RICHMOND, Va. -- After a tumultuous week, Richmond City Council continued its budget amendment discussions Monday morning.

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney's administration agreed to certify $9.5 million in anticipated new revenues.

In addition, council members agreed to suspend the development agreement, that involves delinquent tax sales, for one year. That certifies $3 million to be kept in the revenue category.

Last week, council voted to pursue legal action against the Stoney administration because it would not agree to certify the funds. Stoney said legal action was not necessary and there were some items of clarification that the administration needed from city council and the city attorney.

The agreement could mean that the new budget would fully fund Richmond schools with no property tax increase. It would also mean that city council would not make a 1.5% cut to city departments.

With the $3 million now freed up due to the year suspension of the development agreement, city council now has an $813,000 surplus that could be used to fund GRTC and route enhancements, even after they were denied almost a $1,000,000 dollars in funds in the proposed budget, last week.

"There are some things that GRTC needs to do. There are some things that need to happen, from a fair collection standpoint but I hope that with the fact that there is right now a positive balance of $813,000 that we could apply it to that GRTC line," said Councilman Michael Jones.

The GRTC discussion was moved for a later time as has several other items to address first.

A second meeting is scheduled for Monday afternoon at City Hall.

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