We’re a bit late with the third question that RVANews, the community news aggregator for Richmond, has put to candidates for mayor and City Council — but as long as we get the info out before the election, right? RVANews emails questions to candidates each week; responses are emailed back. Simple stuff. You can visit RVANews […]
We’re a bit late with the third question that RVANews, the community news aggregator for Richmond, has put to candidates for mayor and City Council — but as long as we get the info out before the election, right?
RVANews emails questions to candidates each week; responses are emailed back. Simple stuff. You can visit RVANews to see how the mayoral candidates responded (and candidates from other districts). Here’s how candidates for the 2nd and 3rd District City Council races responded to the RVANews question of the week — “What are your thoughts on the relationship between the current mayor and city council? Outline a model for how you’d like to see the mayor and city council work together in the future.”
Charles Samuels, District 2 candidate
The current Mayor and City Council have been finding their way in what is a totally new system for Richmond. It is understandable that there have been some difficulties in sorting out the boundaries of powers and responsibilities. There is nothing wrong with fighting for what one believes. That being said, not every issue needs to go to court. I believe there is a necessity in providing quality services to the citizens of Richmond and I do not believe those can occur as they should when there is this level of infighting between the Legislative and Executive branches of government.
The model for the Mayor and City Council working together exists in many cities throughout the U.S. and in the Federal Government. The Mayor is the Executive Branch and City Council is the Legislative Branch. In a smoothly functioning city government, this division of powers provides needed checks and balances that benefit all concerned. There must be communication between the two branches. Parties on both sides have much to gain by working for the residents and not against each other.
Jonathan Davis, District 3 candidate
I am disappointed and dismayed at the relationship between City Council and the mayor. The citizens of the Third District have suffered because of the bickering and quarreling and my opponent, the incumbent, has been among the worst offenders. The priority must be on solving problems for the citizens of Richmond, sitting down, working together and building consensus, rather than grandstanding for the media. There will be reasonable disagreements and they must be handled in a constructive manner. The citizens of my district have been the losers because of the incumbent’s tunnel vision and his needing to win an argument in front of the cameras rather than address real problems.
The mayor and the council must have a cooperative, working relationship for the benefit of the citizens. My opponent has wasted valuable time bickering with the administration. It takes two to fight and my opponent prefers to grandstand his disagreements with City Hall rather than address neighborhood problems. As a City Councilman, I intend to focus on solving problems and creating a cooperative, working relationship with the mayor’s administration rather than expending time and energy bickering to prove a point. The city will never reach its full potential until the council and Mayor work together.