The Agenda: Local government briefs for 8.24.20

City projects $4.7M net surplus for FY20

The City of Richmond is projecting a net surplus of roughly $4.7 million for fiscal year 2020 based on financial data as of June 30, the last day of the fiscal year. The surplus represents nearly 1 percent of the general fund budget and follows cost-saving measures and budget modifications made in the early stages of the pandemic.

The city had projected a $6 million deficit going into the fourth quarter, with administrators preparing to draw that amount from the city’s contingency reserve, or “rainy day” fund. With projections now showing revenues surpassing what was budgeted in the modified FY20 budget, the city does not anticipate needing to pull any funds from reserve.

Admissions, prepared foods and transient lodging tax revenues were impacted by the pandemic but overall surpassed expectations in the modified budget, the city said. Expenditures effectively broke even, with the city establishing a moratorium on discretionary spending and implementing a temporary hiring freeze.

The projected surplus is unaudited. Audited numbers would come from an annual financial report that is scheduled to be presented near the end of this calendar year.

The Stonewall Jackson statue on Monument Avenue was removed from its perch earlier this summer. (Submitted photo)

City Council soliciting interest in removed Confederate monuments

Richmond City Council is inviting parties interested in acquiring one of the removed Civil War monuments to submit letters of intent by Sept. 8 at 5 p.m. Any parties that have previously expressed interest are required to submit a letter.

Letters must identify specific monuments desired and include: the requester’s name and contact info; name of entity the requestor represents; entity background info, including reasons for wanting the monument; disclosure of public, private, nonprofit, etc. status and purpose; proposal and timeline to acquire and transport the monument; location where the monument would be placed if acquired.

Submissions should be emailed to the office of the council chief of staff at [email protected]

Civilian review board for police is topic of Henrico meeting

Henrico supervisors meet in special session Monday at 5:15 p.m. to discuss the potential creation of a civilian review board for the county’s police division. Details of the meeting are available here.

The board has been receiving public input on establishing a civilian board that would provide oversight of the police division and is encouraging further community discussion following recent police killings of Black Americans, including George Floyd in Minneapolis. In July, the county said it expects to defer any action on a review board until after the Virginia General Assembly considers the issue for possible statewide implementation in late summer.

Planned T-Mobile call center to add 500 jobs, $30M investment

T-Mobile’s planned call center in eastern Henrico County is expected to bring $30 million in new investment, retain approximately 800 jobs and create up to 500 new jobs, according to an announcement by Gov. Ralph Northam.

T-Mobile is planning to plant a call center in a former Sam’s Club in Eastern Henrico. (BizSense file photo)

The telecom giant filed plans in January for a 131,000-square-foot call center at 4571 S. Laburnum Ave., a former Sam’s Club building on the back side of the White Oak Village retail center. The property was purchased the following month for $7 million.

Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the Henrico Economic Development Authority to secure the project. The county was awarded an $826,350 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist with the project.

T-Mobile is eligible to receive state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, as well as the Major Business Facility Job Tax Credit for new full-time jobs created. T-Mobile employs more than 2,300 workers across the state following its merger this year with Sprint.

Facebook data center comes online in Henrico

Aerial shot of the Facebook data center. (Contributed photo)

Facebook’s Henrico Data Center came online this month after breaking ground three years ago. Once fully built, the 2.5 million-square-foot campus in Henrico’s White Oak Technology Park will represent an investment of more than $1 billion and support more than 200 jobs, the company said.

The data center is fully powered by solar energy from Virginia-based projects, and Facebook has contracted for more than 500 megawatts of new solar energy to be added to the Virginia grid. The company said the projects have resulted in hundreds of construction jobs in the area.

Inside the data center. (Contributed photo)

The White Oak facility is the 11th data center that Facebook has built. The center’s first phase was announced in October 2017, and a three-building expansion was announced the following year, representing an additional $750 million investment. With the first phase representing the same amount of investment, and with $250 million spent on constructing the solar power facilities across the state to supply the center, the company’s total investment in Henrico comes to $1.75 billion.

160-unit apartment complex in Midlothian faces deciding vote

Chesterfield supervisors this week will consider approval of a rezoning application needed to allow construction of a 160-unit apartment complex at 14726 Wylderose Ave. and 14731 Midlothian Turnpike, which is near Westchester Commons Shopping Center.

S.L. Nusbaum Realty Co., Salisbury Corp. and Ralph Costen Jr. have filed the request to rezone about 13 acres. The land is currently zoned Light Industrial (I-1), and the applicants desire to rezone it to Multi-Family Residential District (R-MF) with Conditional Use Planned Development (CUPD).

The meeting takes place at 6 p.m. Wednesday. There will be a public hearing. Full agenda here.

Chesterfield planners recommend changes to county parking requirements

The Chesterfield Planning Commission last week voted to recommend adoption of a proposed code amendment to decrease parking space requirements in apartment and townhouse developments.

The staff recommendation comes as a means to streamline and encourage denser development projects. The Board of Supervisors will weigh final approval of the proposal at a future meeting.

Chesterfield names new deputy county administrator

James Worsley

James Worsley, Chesterfield’s parks and recreation director, has been tapped to serve as the county’s new deputy county administrator for human services. The Board of Supervisors is expected to formally appoint him Wednesday. Worsley starts in his new role Oct. 1.

In the role, Worsley will oversee operations of departments and programs including community corrections services, drug courts, mental health support services and social services.

City projects $4.7M net surplus for FY20

The City of Richmond is projecting a net surplus of roughly $4.7 million for fiscal year 2020 based on financial data as of June 30, the last day of the fiscal year. The surplus represents nearly 1 percent of the general fund budget and follows cost-saving measures and budget modifications made in the early stages of the pandemic.

The city had projected a $6 million deficit going into the fourth quarter, with administrators preparing to draw that amount from the city’s contingency reserve, or “rainy day” fund. With projections now showing revenues surpassing what was budgeted in the modified FY20 budget, the city does not anticipate needing to pull any funds from reserve.

Admissions, prepared foods and transient lodging tax revenues were impacted by the pandemic but overall surpassed expectations in the modified budget, the city said. Expenditures effectively broke even, with the city establishing a moratorium on discretionary spending and implementing a temporary hiring freeze.

The projected surplus is unaudited. Audited numbers would come from an annual financial report that is scheduled to be presented near the end of this calendar year.

The Stonewall Jackson statue on Monument Avenue was removed from its perch earlier this summer. (Submitted photo)

City Council soliciting interest in removed Confederate monuments

Richmond City Council is inviting parties interested in acquiring one of the removed Civil War monuments to submit letters of intent by Sept. 8 at 5 p.m. Any parties that have previously expressed interest are required to submit a letter.

Letters must identify specific monuments desired and include: the requester’s name and contact info; name of entity the requestor represents; entity background info, including reasons for wanting the monument; disclosure of public, private, nonprofit, etc. status and purpose; proposal and timeline to acquire and transport the monument; location where the monument would be placed if acquired.

Submissions should be emailed to the office of the council chief of staff at [email protected]

Civilian review board for police is topic of Henrico meeting

Henrico supervisors meet in special session Monday at 5:15 p.m. to discuss the potential creation of a civilian review board for the county’s police division. Details of the meeting are available here.

The board has been receiving public input on establishing a civilian board that would provide oversight of the police division and is encouraging further community discussion following recent police killings of Black Americans, including George Floyd in Minneapolis. In July, the county said it expects to defer any action on a review board until after the Virginia General Assembly considers the issue for possible statewide implementation in late summer.

Planned T-Mobile call center to add 500 jobs, $30M investment

T-Mobile’s planned call center in eastern Henrico County is expected to bring $30 million in new investment, retain approximately 800 jobs and create up to 500 new jobs, according to an announcement by Gov. Ralph Northam.

T-Mobile is planning to plant a call center in a former Sam’s Club in Eastern Henrico. (BizSense file photo)

The telecom giant filed plans in January for a 131,000-square-foot call center at 4571 S. Laburnum Ave., a former Sam’s Club building on the back side of the White Oak Village retail center. The property was purchased the following month for $7 million.

Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the Henrico Economic Development Authority to secure the project. The county was awarded an $826,350 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist with the project.

T-Mobile is eligible to receive state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, as well as the Major Business Facility Job Tax Credit for new full-time jobs created. T-Mobile employs more than 2,300 workers across the state following its merger this year with Sprint.

Facebook data center comes online in Henrico

Aerial shot of the Facebook data center. (Contributed photo)

Facebook’s Henrico Data Center came online this month after breaking ground three years ago. Once fully built, the 2.5 million-square-foot campus in Henrico’s White Oak Technology Park will represent an investment of more than $1 billion and support more than 200 jobs, the company said.

The data center is fully powered by solar energy from Virginia-based projects, and Facebook has contracted for more than 500 megawatts of new solar energy to be added to the Virginia grid. The company said the projects have resulted in hundreds of construction jobs in the area.

Inside the data center. (Contributed photo)

The White Oak facility is the 11th data center that Facebook has built. The center’s first phase was announced in October 2017, and a three-building expansion was announced the following year, representing an additional $750 million investment. With the first phase representing the same amount of investment, and with $250 million spent on constructing the solar power facilities across the state to supply the center, the company’s total investment in Henrico comes to $1.75 billion.

160-unit apartment complex in Midlothian faces deciding vote

Chesterfield supervisors this week will consider approval of a rezoning application needed to allow construction of a 160-unit apartment complex at 14726 Wylderose Ave. and 14731 Midlothian Turnpike, which is near Westchester Commons Shopping Center.

S.L. Nusbaum Realty Co., Salisbury Corp. and Ralph Costen Jr. have filed the request to rezone about 13 acres. The land is currently zoned Light Industrial (I-1), and the applicants desire to rezone it to Multi-Family Residential District (R-MF) with Conditional Use Planned Development (CUPD).

The meeting takes place at 6 p.m. Wednesday. There will be a public hearing. Full agenda here.

Chesterfield planners recommend changes to county parking requirements

The Chesterfield Planning Commission last week voted to recommend adoption of a proposed code amendment to decrease parking space requirements in apartment and townhouse developments.

The staff recommendation comes as a means to streamline and encourage denser development projects. The Board of Supervisors will weigh final approval of the proposal at a future meeting.

Chesterfield names new deputy county administrator

James Worsley

James Worsley, Chesterfield’s parks and recreation director, has been tapped to serve as the county’s new deputy county administrator for human services. The Board of Supervisors is expected to formally appoint him Wednesday. Worsley starts in his new role Oct. 1.

In the role, Worsley will oversee operations of departments and programs including community corrections services, drug courts, mental health support services and social services.

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