The mayor lost a battle but the war is far from over.
The plan to bring baseball to the bottom lost a battle last night but the war is far from over. Councilman Jonathan T. Baliles, 1st District, submitted amendments to the capital budget. Under his amendments $13.6 million would be moved to other areas such as schools maintenance, the riverfront plan, vehicle replacement, alley maintenance and district projects such as sidewalks.
Baliles’ amendments was supported by of Council President Charles R. Samuels, 2nd District; Councilman Parker C. Agelasto, 5th District; Councilman Chris A. Hilbert, 3rd District; and Councilwoman Reva M. Trammell, 8th District.
The 5-4 vote does not kill the stadium, but roughly $12.6 million that Mayor Dwight C. Jones proposed for Shockoe floodplain mitigation will have to be reinserted into the budget at a later date should the council decide to move forward with the stadium.
Essentially, the budget proposed by the mayor assumed the stadium would be built but, by removing the money, most of the council is now assuming that the money could be better spent elsewhere.
The council decided to leave $1 million in the budget for any infrastructure improvements necessary for the slave heritage site in the Bottom.
Those voting against the amendment felt that the amendments were an abandonment of Shockoe development.
The mayor can put the money back into the plan with a veto in the next 14 days and it would take a vote 6-3 by the cancel to override the veto.