Hey yall –

It has just been brought to public attention that members of the Monroe Park Conservancy Alice Massie, Ukrop, and Dray have all made campaign contributions to Charles Samuels.

Due to this obvious conflict of interest I am requesting that Samuels not be allowed to participate in votes regarding the MPC and that his decision to allow no public comment at today’s land use committee meeting and Monday’s city council meeting be revoked. Charles Samuels should have zero say on this matter.

Additionally John Baits of the MPC has donated to Hilbert and Robertson, and Ukrop has donated to Graziano, Baliles,  and Hilbert. Mayor Jones also a board member has given $1025 to Ellen Robertson.

These council members should recuse themselves from any decision regarding Monroe Park or the Monroe Park Conservancy.

Thanks to Montigue Magruder and Silver Persinger for these discoveries.
Look for yourself here:

http://www.vpap.org/candidates/profile/money_in_donors/152342?end_year=2012&start_year=2011

http://www.vpap.org/donors/profile/index/12564

http://www.vpap.org/donors/profile/index/11236?end_year=2010&filing_period=all&lookup_type=year&start_year=1996

http://www.vpap.org/candidates/profile/money_in_donors/9426?end_year=2013&filter_schedule=all&industry=all&locality=all&max_years=15&order=amount&page=2&start_year=2012&submenus=cands_local&zip_code=all

Robert Ukrop has also given to Graziano[$400], Hilbert [$500], Baliles [$200], and Samuels [$150]  http://www.vpap.org/donors/profile/index/7730?cmte_type_1=all&cmte_type_2=all&end_year=2013&lookup_type=year&max_years=15&order=amount&page=2&start_year=1996&submenus=donors

Looks like Mosby is the only clean member of the Land Use Committee!

http://www.vpap.org/candidates/profile/money_in_donors/198803?end_year=2013&filter_schedule=all&industry=all&locality=all&max_years=15&order=amount&page=3&start_year=2012&submenus=cands_local&zip_code=all

Here is the power point presentation created by Mo Karnage for presentation to the Land Use Committee. So far, they refuse to allow Mo the time to present, even though they allowed Alice Massie from the Monroe Park Conservancy to present her bid.

If you would like Mo to come to your school, organization, religious group, or whatever and make a presentation with this powerpoint please email Mo at mokarnage @gmail.com  to schedule.

There is a narration that is missed in just the powerpoint. But hopefully you will still find it to be a useful educational tool.

Again thanks to all who helped with research, pictures, editing, and more.

From our friend Scott Burger. This is an important issue regarding economic justice, environmentalism, and also the terrible neoliberal spending practices by Mayor Jones:

Looks like time to retool and restart the water rates reform campaign. In recent months, reformers have focused on the very questionable PILOT(payment In lieu of taxes) for federal taxes in the water bills, but this proposed rate raise by Mayor Jones is troubling.

http://www.change.org/petitions/reform-richmond-s-water-rates

Notice that most communities show consumption in number of gallons used per day.  We still get a number of ccf’s used per month.  I doubt that many people know how many gallons are in a CCF or what CCF even stands for. If consumption was shown on the bill as gallons used per day people would understand that they are probably using more water than they realize.  (And the service charge is still not shown on the bill!)

I am concerned that Richmond is still not really encouraging customers to conserve water because the utility makes more money by selling more water … until the next drought hits!

Thanks,
Scott

http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/local/city-of-richmond/richmond-budget-includes-utility-rate-increase/article_90d24931-66ed-5252-af3b-9ee795153810.html

Richmond budget includes utility rate increase

In Richmond, the budget proposed by Mayor Dwight C. Jones increases school maintenance funding by $14.9 million over five years, puts all parking-related money in a new enterprise fund and creates a standalone Department of Emergency Communications to reduce emergency response times.

The city budget also calls for higher utility rates, with monthly bills set to increase by $6 for the average household.

The Richmond real estate tax rate would remain unchanged at $1.20 per $100 of assessed value.

For the fiscal year that starts July 1, Jones proposed a total general fund of $777.3 million, up from $760.5 in the current year.

The budget includes an additional $1 million for school operations, which still leaves an estimated $3.8 million gap in the schools budget to be addressed.

The mayor’s budget has no salary increases, but the plan absorbs an 8.4 percent rate increase for health insurance.

The budget was presented on March 13. The City Council is in the process of reviewing the details and hearing presentations from city departments.

A public hearing will be held April 14. Council amendments are due later this month, and the budget is scheduled to be approved in May.

For the month of April the Food Not Bombs Sunday meal will be prepared at 3100 n. 1st Avenue in Highland Park.

Please come to help cook at 12.

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The meal will as always be served at 4pm in Monroe Park at the corner of Main and Belvidere. A grocery giveaway will happen after the meal.

The host house also really needs help with clean up after the meal, around 5:30-6. Please come back to help clean!!! 3100 n. 1st Ave.

In May the Wingnut will be hosting the Food Not Bombs cooking for the month, and we look forward to seeing you then!
Solidarity not Charity!!!

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We might be looking for a new roommate or two at the Wingnut  sometime over the summer. So if you or someone you know are sober and might be looking for a place in June or more likely July please get in touch!

Gardens and dogs and cooking and cleaning and community and respect and cookouts and copwatch and books and bikes and bees and environmentalism and intersectional feminism and anti oppression and lgbtq and fighting racism and challenging ourselves and mental health and green living and zines and thrift and diy and communication and food not bombs and shows and kids and potlucks and crafting are all things we are into.

We are involved in a number of community events and projects as well as a number of political issues on a local level. From supporting fast food workers and the fight for $15, to fighting to keep Monroe Park Open and Free, we are involved and would like to live with others who are involved politically in an anarchist context.

We would prefer someone who would like to stick around for a while so it would be great to have the next few months to all discuss it together!!!

Non-cis men are encouraged. No cats or caged animals allowed. We have 4 dogs and would be reluctant to add more to the mix unless they all got along really well.

Rooms that might be available are from $275 – $325 and from Oct – March its an extra $50 a month for oil heat. Maybe more for heat if we have another doozy winter. Rent includes water, electric (no space heaters and no ac), internet and landline phone. Security deposit needed as well.

Please get in touch to see if both parties would be interested! Wingnut_collective @yahoo.com

April 9 @ 4 is a special Land Use Committee meeting on Monroe Park with no allowed public comment.

April 14 @ 6 is the City Council Meeting where again no public comment will be allowed. However, you can sign up to speak during the Pubic Comments period and use that time to express your outrage at the privatization of a public park.

Call 646 7955 to speak to a City Clerk and request to speak during the public comments period at the City Council Meeting on April 14th.

You can not it seems officially sign up to speak for an issue that is on the agenda, which Monroe Park is, so you may want to say you are speaking on something tangential to the issue and not say Monroe Park specifically.
You can only sign up to speak during the public comments period once every 3 months.

If you do not feel like signing up during that period but still wish to speak, keep in mind that yelling or interupting council can result in you being banned from meetings for 6 months. However if you do not care about being banned you might speak out of turn. We would urge everyone to not do anything to get arrested at these public meetings. Civil disobediance may have its time and place down the line regarding this issue, but that is something we should have a developed strategy and support network for.

Please bring signs and banners to these meetings expressing the Keep Monroe Park Open and Free ideas. There will also be shirts available for sale for $5 and the money will go towards future expenses of the Keep Monroe Park Open and Free campaign.

If anyone wants to make fact sheets or fliers to distribute before, during, and after the meeting that would be very helpful.

Additionally, email, call and get in touch with Council Members. If you feel their spirits need to be moved in a better direction hold religious ceremonies on public sidewalks with bucket drums outside of their homes. All legal tactics should be employed.

This is not just about Monroe Park – this is a neoliberal attack on the poor, people of color, lgbtq folks, homeless, immigrants, indigenous, and more. The NFL training camp, Revitalize RVA plan,  Tredegar Green, and more are part of the overall attack.

Spring time!

Posted: April 4, 2014 in Uncategorized

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We are getting to work on some spring time projects. One being a witch perennial herb bed and the other being our bee hives. Sadly one bee hive didn’t survive the winter. We think hive beetles were the culprits. So we are going to harvest the honey from that hive.
We will later clean the hive and try to help a new batch of bees make a home at our home and help pollinate our neighborhood.

Join RPEC & Virginia Organizing on Tax Day, Tuesday, April 15th, at the
Richmond Post Office on Brook Road. We’ll be holding signs and handing
out flyers that show “Where Your Tax Dollars Really Go.”

Most of our tax dollars are spent on war and the military (not
education or jobs). We’ll also be sharing information about the
trade-offs between defense spending and community needs.
Hold a sign
or pass out information!
This is a nonviolent leafletting action.

Please join us! Contact Sam McKinney (sam@rpec.org) to volunteer for
shifts beginning at 3pm.

More information here:
https://www.facebook.com/events/1574054699487180/

Hello everyone,

Today is one of the big days for the fast food campaign. Today workers from across the nation are going to be standing tall and fighting back against wage theft. Its going to be a good day.

Again, we are going to meet at 4pm at the Weinstein Community Center at 5403 Monument Ave, at 4:45 we are going to leave for the Wendys on 4805 W Broad St; at 5 on the dot we are all going to go into the store and start the action.

Please make every effort to come and to turnout others. A large turnout not only makes this a successful action but it also helps protect the workers at the Wendy’s who are going to speak and participate in this action. If management sees a lot of community support they will be less willingly to retaliate against the workers because they know they have the support of the community.

Hope to see you on the other side!

In solidarity,

Guillermo Zamora
Organizer
Raise UP

A message from the Virginia Defenders:
To all the folks who have signed the petition against a Shockoe Bottom stadium:

Five months after Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones unveiled his proposal to build a minor-league baseball stadium in the heart of what once was the largest slave-trading district north of New Orleans, City Council still has not voted on the controversial plan. This is a testimony to the movement that has been built up around this issue, a movement that includes the more than 3,700 people who have signed the anti-stadium petition.

Today is April 3, 2014 – the 149th anniversary of the day Union troops, led by Black soldiers, marched into Richmond, tore open the slave jails and ended nearly 200 years of slavery in the city. Amazingly, this is not an official holiday here. To rectify that omission, stadium opponents have organized “Liberation Day 2014,” a program to commemorate and celebrate the fall of the Confederacy and the liberation of Richmond.

As part of our program, Virginia resident Linsey Williams, a direct descendent of “Twelve Years a Slave” author Solomon Northup, will be reading from her ancestor’s account of the night he spent in a Richmond slave jail. As she reads his moving story, she will be standing on the very spot in the Shockoe Bottom district where the jail once stood – and where the mayor and the wealthy developers he represents want to build the stadium.

If you live in the Richmond area, please join us at 6 pm at the site of Lumpkin’s Jail, at what would be 15th and East Grace streets – just south of East Broad Street, between Interstate 95 and the CSX railroad. (More information is in the attached media release.)

And for everyone, PLEASE SHARE THIS PETITION with your social media friends. Every time someone signs online, a note goes to the mayor and every member of Richmond City Council. Council members have mentioned several times how many emails they are receiving on this issue. It really does help. http://www.change.org/petitions/city-of-richmond-mayor-dwight-c-jones-and-city-council-oppose-building-a-baseball-stadium-development-in-shockoe-bottom

To find out more ways you can help, pleases contact the Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality at: DefendersFJE@hotmail.com.

Thank you all for your interest and support.

Phil Wilayto
for the Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality
Richmond, Virginia