On October 5, 2011, public access television host Andrea Copeland and the

League of Women Voters of Charlottesville/Albemarle

co-sponsored a candidate forum for the seven candidates seeking election to three seats on Charlottesville city council.

About 40 people attended the forum in city council chambers which was broadcast live on public access channel 10. The general election is November 8.

Read this article for complete coverage by The Daily Progress


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0:00:54 — Welcome from Andrea Copeland, Moderator

0:02:02 — Welcome from Debora Hoard, League of Women Voters of Charlottesville/Albeamrle

0:04:17 — Candidate introductions by Copeland

0:08:09 — Candidate opening statements

Scott Bandy (I)

Kathy Galvin (D)

Andrew Williams (I)

Satyendra Huja (D)

Bob Fenwick (I)

Dede Smith (D)

Brandon Collins (I)

0:15:55 — Question 1: Once again Charlottesville has been voted one of the #1 places to live.  Would you comment on how our city can expand to welcome newcomers to the city without disenfranchising long-time residents or pushing out low-income residents?

Responses from Bandy, Smith, Williams, Galvin, Fenwick, Collins

0:22:50 — Question 2: There is a declining African-American population in our city.  How do you make Charlottesville a city of choice for African-Americans?  If no African-American elected to city council, will the community still have an advocate? [Directed initially to Huja]

Responses from Huja, Williams, Galvin, Fenwick, Bandy

0:28:27 — Question 3: With a growing Latino community, what will be your first step to engage them? [Directed initially to Bandy]

Responses from Bandy, Collins

0:30:22 — Question 4: How do you realistically combat poverty?

Responses from Smith, Fenwick, Huja, Williams

0:35:21 — Question 5: What role does city play creating jobs and stimulating economy?  [Directed initially to Galvin]

Responses from Galvin, Collins, Bandy, Fenwick, Smith

0:40:52 — Question 6:  The Meadow Creek Parkway, the Western Bypass, and the water supply plan, have these issues been made too big at the expense of other issues?  [Directed initially to Huja]

Responses from Huja, Williams, Galvin, Smith, Collins

0:46:33 — Question 7: Infrastructure… the Belmont Bridge, development along Cherry Ave, the Tonsler Park master plan, what do we do about these things? [Directed initially to Bandy]

Responses from Bandy, Huja, Galvin, Williams

0:51:35 — Question 8: The current make-up of the city council is all Democratic.  Should we move away from partisan elections and do you think more politically diverse council will better represent the community?  [Directed initially to Collins]

Responses from Collins, Smith, Fenwick, Huja, Williams, Galvin, Bandy

0:59:20 – Audience question 1: What do you plan on doing for youth to keep them off the streets and why doesn’t city contribute more to youth programming?  [Directed initially to Collins]

Response from Collins

1:01:28 – Audience question 2: In the past year, city council came up with 5 jobs for ex-offenders.  Would you support an expansion of this to create more full-time jobs for ex-offenders.

Responses from Huja, Smith

1:03:20 – Audience question 3: If elected, what will you do to address the homeless population and ensure that no one is left behind?

Responses from Galvin, Bandy

1:04:44 – Audience question 4: UVA is a top school, education is important.  Has anything been done to get scholarships to the children of housekeepers and other workers?

Responses from Smith, Williams, Huja

1:07:03 – Audience question 5: Does all growth fight poverty?  UVA has grown and continues to pay less than a [living wage] for some staff?

Responses from Collins, Williams, Galvin

1:11:00 – Audience question 6: What do you see as the role of the neighborhoods in decision making related to traffic calming and other planning issues?

Responses from Huja, Fenwick, Smith, Williams

1:15:04 – Audience question 7: What will you do to ensure citizens of public housing are involved in all aspects of decision making with the Charlottesville Redevelopment and Housing Authority?

Responses from Galvin, Collins

1:18:03 – Audience question 8: In past years, the city has funded organizations designed to help the community, but they have not produced results.  How will you support organizations that produce results?

Responses from Smith, Huja, Williams

1:20:57 – Audience question 9: According to this questioner, the Nestle corporation gave the Nature Conservancy $1 million for a pilot project that would increase a locales water storage capacity?  [Given TNC’s role in the water supply plan], does that pose a conflict of interest?

Responses from Bandy, Huja, Fenwick, Smith, Galvin, Collins

1:26:47 – Audience question 10: Mr. Fenwick, if you believe in partisan politics, why aren’t you running as a Republican or with another party?

Responses from Fenwick, Williams

1:29:20 – Audience question 11: If you are willing to spend more money to attract people to Charlottesville, are you willing to spend more money on education [or our existing citizens to keep them in the community]?

Responses from Galvin, Williams, Fenwick

1:34:06 – Audience question 12:  On Meadow Creek Parkway, why do you think it is that VDOT after spending 2 years to get a permit to cross a stream, the day before they were [going to be in court], came up with a new plan?  Are you in favor of a road council has not even seen a complete design for?

Responses from Smith, Huja, Williams

1:38:42 – Audience question 13: Resident asks about whether additional resources can be made available for low-income and homeless residents.

Responses from Collins, Huja

1:40:38 – Audience question 14: What steps will you take to encourage local employers to hire ex-offenders?

Responses from Galvin, Fenwick

1:43:24 – Moderator Copeland asks independent candidates which one Democrat they could work with among the other candidates, and vice versa for Democrats of independents.

Responses from all

1:47:30 – Closing statements


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