Dr. Richardson Please Come Back!
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This petition was written by following people listed on alphabetical order: Gloria Beard, Tanesha Hudson, Katrina Turner, Abby Tanenbaum Guskind and Jojo Robertson
The undersigned citizens of Charlottesville are petitioning City Council to bring back Dr. Tarron Richardson into the position of City Manager. We feel that our city has been in complete chaos since his departure. It has continued to fall apart and there's little to no hope that anyone new can mold it back together. We can prove based on FOIA requests that Dr. Richardson was hampered by city officials who didn’t respect where their authority ended and his began. We can also prove the media portrayed Dr. Richardson unfairly and had access to the truth and the same FOIA requests but Dr. Richardson put much time and effort in reorganization of the various city departments and he did it well! He was able to streamline departments that were similar within one portfolio. He was able to keep a triple-A bond rating and did not increase the tax rate. Dr. Richardson provided approval to move forward with creating the 360 program and funding for equipment. He brought to us a CAT, human resources, and a new public works director. In addition, Dr. Richardson was essential to bringing the first Black Fire Chief. He pushed departments to seek alternative funding and grants, in particular the Safer Grant for Fire Department so that city dollars could be used in other avenues. He moved fire mechanic from solely working on fire vehicles at the fire department to the garage. This improved service levels because a lot of city vehicles need service and fire vehicles are not always down. In addition, Dr. Richardson cared for the community and made it his priority to get to know the citizens as well as his employee's. He met weekly online with community activists to address their concerns. Dr. Richardson provided in-kind services to public housing community. He could also been seen giving food out to various housing projects in the city. In addition, he helped people in the community when he knew at times he would not get recognition. He helped people with rent and did things privately that the vast community is not aware of. He dedicated a group of employees to review public housing projects and issues every Friday.
Dr. Richardson restructured planning and zoning processes to create a more efficient and effective process for developers and their submissions. He began the process of reducing fleet expenditures by evaluating life span of vehicles, the outfighting of vehicles and cost for each vehicle (I.e. the chief and captains in the police department do need their vehicles outfitted like the day-to-day patrol cars because they are doing any chasing or stops).
Dr. Richardson created a deputy city manager position titles instead of assistant city manager position titles to be in compliance with state law. He stabilized the city budget amid the pandemic. Prior to Dr. Richardson leaving, the city budget was in a good space. Look at the budget today since he's been gone and you'll see the difference. In closure, City Council is supposed to listen to the people in the community. Council is not supposed to do what they think is right for
them, but should be doing what is right for the community at large. We hope that council listens to us and do what is right by
contacting Dr. Richardson and doing what is best by the city and bring him back in any facet that best heals this city and stabilize it once and for all. Give him the tools to be successful and we can turn this city around and be the World Class city we should be.
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