1) Property values have tanked due to Monument Avenue vandalism
Who would know better about the plummeting property values on Monument Avenue than the six Monument Avenue residence whom have cited it as a primary reason underpinning their lawsuit that is, at that moment, halting Northam’s egregious abuse of power to remove the Lee statue.
It’s hard to discern the real motives behind Northam’s divisive actions, but steam rolling the rights and wealth of private citizens is unbecoming by any leader, let alone a Governor. If Government officials believe they can crush property values by exercising hasty partisan policies, then why should their constituents be obliged to keep up their end? What good does it do financing the very same government that can’t even prevent graffiti vandalism?
The age-old adage still applies: don’t bite the hand that feeds you.
2) Many local businesses are suffering from the pandemic shutdown & economic fallout
Big Tech is good for one thing, and that’s giving us the ugly facts at scale. In July, Yelp reported 26,160 total restaurant closures of its users, 15,770 of which were permanent. Eight weeks later, those numbers jumped to 32,109 closures — 19,590 of which are permanent.
The situation is bleaker in Virginia, with 58% of restaurant owners reporting that they will be gone in six months without help. The Yelp report ranked Virginia 12th in terms of permanent closures nationwide, and 13th when factored by population.
Initial reports have claimed that at least 30 of Richmond area restaurants have closed down, but that number promises to rise unless drastic measures are taken. And restaurants aren’t the only victims, we can’t forget about hair salons and our Carytown specialty retailers who rely on the massively depleted foot traffic in order to remain afloat.
Richmond, and Virginia as a whole, could’ve avoided such a heavy-handed economic blow by simply keeping our calm in the beginning of the overblown pandemic.
It’s the job of government to provide well-vetted facts devoid of politicized bias and, if absoutley necessary, the Government should pass legislation introducing equitable regulation. It is not the job of Government to obstruct everyday commerce through looney lockdowns. Moreover, it should scare every American that Governor’s can now, at will, disturb private enterprise through panicked edict after panicked edict with seemingly no end in sight.
I believe in empowering the American people with the best available information and resources. Leaders don’t hide in the basement; leaders step out in front to provide solace and courage. Vote Mike D. to change the defeatist attitude of Richmond’s city council!
3) If schools are virtual why are we paying the same tax rate?
It’s not fair to the tax -payers that reopening our nation’s schools has become a political football. Why must tax payers be cow-tied into paying for half the services because school districts are too fearful to open?
Richmond City schools, like many democrat urban districts, have decided to embrace virtual learning. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out if kids aren’t in schools then that must mean less electricity is being used, fewer meals being subsidized, and virtually no buses being ran.
In a similar instance, Virginia’s Fairfax County, which largely has failed to provide students any meaningful instruction or content online during the pandemic, local revenue ($10,791) added to state revenue ($3,242) means parents are financing more than $14,000 in revenue per pupil per year, not including federal funding.
If taxpayers aren’t receiving the adequate school services that their hard-earned tax dollars deserve, there should either be a serious re-evaluation of the current tax-rate, or serious consideration of a tax rebate after a forensic audit of how RPS maintained its finances amid the ‘Covid-school-year.’
My views align with those of the respectable conservative think tank, the Heritage Foundation, whom believes that:
Too many districts are failing to uphold their end of that contractual obligation. Families should immediately be provided with a refund—a prorated portion of the money that would have been spent by the state in which they reside and by their local school district from the beginning of March through the end of the school year.
Those dollars should be placed in a restricted-use education savings account that parents could use to pay for virtual tutors, online learning, textbooks, curriculums, diagnostic tests, and other products and services, in order to maintain education continuity for their children during this crisis.
Such a refund would build on the principle that education funding should always be student-centered and portable, rather than institutional.
4) The public needs to be ensured their Emergency Services don’t have their hands tied
It’s my humble opinion that City Council member’s must be trustworthy stalwarts of the public services they are endowed to administer. But when City Council members, such as Michael Jones of the 9th District, takes one the divisive mantle of the #BLM social justice warriors in preference to being a respectable public servant for all, consequently, people begin to loose faith in the system.
If people actually begin to believe the rhetoric that first responders are their enemies rather than a force for good in order to maintain a stable society for all; then, in due course, society will eventually end up manifesting the very fear-based reality that was sold to them in the first place.
A few words from a City Council member, Michael Jones, summarizes his deep-seated and racially-divisive views:
I am calling for a deep dive into the Richmond Police Department’s budget with the intention of defunding the police. Funding must be reallocated to communities that have been disproportionately impacted by over-policing and a continued lack of resources. We must reinvest in and support Black people, Black organizations, Black creatives, and Black businesses in our city. This discussion cannot wait any longer. Lives – Black lives – depend on it.
5) Discretionary spending on public amenities, like bike lanes, should be halted until Public Safety is restored
The number one priority of all local and state Governments is to keep their citizens safe. Unfortunately, the chaos initiated in Milwaukee, which spawned to Seattle and then Portland, has somehow inseminated itself in the city of Richmond.
Many RVA residents have been blindsided by the destruction of their beautiful city. Now, several months since the violence engulfed large swaths of the city, you’ll still encounter city blocks with boarded up windows. Not a very welcoming sight for visitors and tourist who are seeking to spend their hard-earned dollars..
What keeps communities safe is a vibrant downtown that’s pro-business, pro-law enforcement and pro-cleanliness. On all three fronts our current City Council has failed. They have turned their backs on our businesses; they have played games with our law enforcement; and they have allowed our internationally famous public works of arts to be desecrated.
Until a long-term plan that reaffirms City Council’s support of basic, fundamental and essential services, in no way should the current city government concern itself with frivolous spending and discretionary projects such as bike lanes.
It’s not the job of the city to dictate a direction for its’ citizens; it’s the job of a city government to safeguard an environment where citizens prosper commercially and communally.