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March 09, 2009

Julian Taliaferro announces campaign for re-election to City Council

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20090309-Taliaferro0 Councilor Julian Taliaferro (D) announced on March 9, 2009 that he would run for re-election to the Charlottesville City Council. Taliaferro was elected to his first term in 2006 and he currently serves as the Vice Mayor. With the initiation of this campaign, he becomes the third Democrat to vie for the two open seats on City Council. and Kristin Szakos and Dave Norris have also launched their respective campaigns. The Democratic Party will hold an “unassembled caucus” to select their candidates on a date to be announced, but sometime between May 8th and June 9th.  The general election will be held on November 3, 2009.

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In the announcement address held in front of Charlottesville City Hall, Taliaferro listed four issues he considers central to his campaign, “our public education system, affordable housing, efficient and effective deliver of city services, and the preservation and enhancement of our quality of life.” 

When asked by a reporter about any concrete goals for another term, Taliaferro highlighted two items. "One of the things I certainly want to bring to some sort of resolution is the community water plan and obviously I want to continue to support the public education system in the City," said Taliaferro.

Taliaferro praised the City’s recent efficiency study as well as the City’s fiscally conservative outlook on budgeting, and attributed this approach to allowing the community to weather tough economic times with few service cuts.

“This council has taken a leadership role in implementing green city initiatives that will protect our environment,” said Taliaferro to a gathering of about thirty supporters.  He said he is particularly proud of the enhancement of transit services secured within the last few years .

Watch the video below:

Taliaferro also defended Charlottesville’s revenue-sharing agreement with Albemarle County. “I have been somewhat dismayed at some of the careless remarks of some of the County leadership regarding our long-standing annexation agreement.” He summarized the history of the agreement, and insisted that the County is getting a good deal in return for the City’s lost potential for annexation. He said he would like to stop arguing over revenue sharing and work toward the consolidation of some City and County services.

In response to another question from the media, Taliaferro acknowledged that he attended a recent citizen protest of the proposed Meadowcreek Parkway on the previous Saturday. As City Councilor, Taliaferro voted in favor of easements for the Meadowcreek Parkway in June 2008. He told reporters that he hadn’t changed his mind yet, but that he is listening carefully to the opposition’s arguments and is leaning “a little more” against the project then he had been previously.

Taliaferro stood with several current and former public officials while giving his address in front of City Hall. Former City Mayors Tom Vandever and Blake Caravati, current City Treasurer Jennifer Brown, current City Commissioner of Revenue Lee Richards, current City Commonwealth Attorney, Dave Chapman, and candidate for City Sheriff, Mike Baird, all stood to show their support for Taliaferro’s re-election campaign.  Brown, Richard and Chapman’s positions are elected in the City and will also appear on the November 2009 ballot.

See Charlottesville Tomorrow's Election Watch page for complete coverage of the City's 2009 elections for City Council.

Daniel Nairn & Brian Wheeler

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