RT-D: EDA has ‘less accountability to the voters’

Sports like baseball, football, etc., all have tricky plays that use deceptive moves to gain an advantage. Now comes the Richmond Times-Dispatch to throw a penalty flag at one of Mayor Dwight Jones’ favorite tactics.

…the Richmond Economic Development Authority is struggling with debt. Part of the problem: The Redskins training facility, which is supposed to house more than the Redskins, has some vacancies.

Click here to read the editorial.

Jones’ desire to use the EDA concept to facilitate his so-called “revitalization” plan should make red flags pop up for Richmonders of every political stripe.

Yet, if you try to get someone who favors building a baseball stadium in Shockoe Bottom to defend using the EDA’s dimly lit path to finance it, what you’re likely to get from them is that it’s all too complicated for the voters/taxpayers to grasp. So you should just shut up and get on the bandwagon for Shockoe Stadium.

Well, rather than shut up, we Richmonders should tell our elected officials we don’t want the EDA gimmick to ever be used again to circumvent prudence and reason when making long-term financial plans and commitments. Today’s RT-D’s comment hit the nail on its head when it said the EDA has “less accountability to the voters.”

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RT-D editorial stiff-arms National Trust

Photo from the National Trust for Historic Preservation by Ron Cogswell.

Today the Richmond Times-Dispatch published a rather strange opinion piece related to the significance of Shockoe Bottom’s slave market history and the bubbling controversy about building a baseball stadium in that neighborhood.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation recently listed Shockoe Bottom among the 11 most endangered historical sites in the U.S. Unfortunately, the designation does little besides add one more talking point about a subject that has been talked nearly to death. The National Trust’s assessment is brief and superficial.

Click here to read the entire piece.

So according to the RT-D if the National Trust for Historic Preservation can’t say “No,” in a new way — something that hasn’t seen said before — it should butt out of our local controversy. For some of us who remember Virginia’s history in the ’50s and ’60s, this attitude has a familiar ring to it.

Moreover, this editorial misses the point that Shockoe Bottom’s history matters to the nation; it isn’t just something for us in Richmond to settle without considering the larger picture. That’s exactly why the National Trust for Historic Preservation weighed in. It looked at a situation and felt a brighter spotlight needed to be pointed at it.

Doug ‘Squirrelly’ Wilder is having fun again

Squirrelly2

The wily veteran populist, Doug ‘Squirrelly’ Wilder, 83, is back in the game. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that Wilder isn’t through with his effort to sabotage the beleaguered Mayor Dwight Jones’ rather unpopular proposal to build Shockoe Stadium.

Former Gov. L. Douglas Wilder has jumped back into the debate over the future of Shockoe Bottom by calling for the creation of a public advisory group on preserving the history of the city’s oldest neighborhood.

Apparently, no matter how many times former Virginia governor/Richmond mayor has changed his mind about the baseball stadium issue, or the establishing of a slavery museum — over the years — in 2014 Wilder stands firmly against whatever Jones wants to do on either matter.

To read the entire RT-D article, written by, Michael Martz, click here.

Yes, Wilder is having fun again … same as it ever was. The illustration above was done in 2008 to accompany a SLANTblog post of mine about Wilder’s shifting positions on the baseball stadium issue and his history of squirrelly moves, in general. For background, click here to read it.