The event went very well, with approximately 75 people attending in-person or via Zoom. The five candidates (Michael Payne, Lloyd Snook, Dashad Cooper, Natalie Oschrin, and Bob Fenwick) made opening statement and then addressed questions and shared their thoughts on a wide variety of topics, e.g. top priority if elected, fuel efficiency and carbon emissions reduction, affordable housing, transportation, housing development in the Rivanna River floodplain, gun violence, and more.
The recording of the forum is available here (welcoming remarks end at 3:30).
Thanks to the candidates for showing up for another forum, to Lewis Combs for nicely moderating, to John McLaren for organizing, to Suzanne Michels and Nancy Damon and Erin Monaghan for assistance at the event (probably others!?), and to Buford Middle School for hosting!
Note: last night’s forum was the last one we’re sponsoring before the June 20 primary. We held a House of Delegates Forum on April 26 (recording is online here) at the Jefferson School, co-sponsored by the Albemarle Dems, and the Executive Committee decided in April that a Cville Dems State Senate forum wasn’t needed since quite a few others were already scheduled.
Our wonderful voter registration team, led by Suzanne Michels and Barbara Shenefield, will table at events at least once every weekend between now and Election Day: registering new voters (including those who’ve recently moved to or within our area), helping voters figure out where they can vote, and helping folks who need to have their voting rights restored file the necessary paperwork.
There are few things more satisfying than signing up a new voter! You can visit this online signup form to see what dates we need people. We’d love to have more folks pitch in, and if you’re even a little bit of an extrovert, you’ll enjoy it! Or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you might be interested.
We’re looking for some extra volunteers for the June 20 primary so we can staff a table at each polling location (and the two discontinued ones, Tonsler and Alumni Hall), to thank voters for coming out and hand out information about upcoming events, newsletter, volunteer opportunities, etc.
The Cville Dems will host a post-primary informational forum, likely a late summer or early fall in-person event, about the City’s upcoming Draft Zoning Plan (all three mdoules are now available). Our party hasn’t taken a position on the issue yet.
A planning group has started meeting to organize the forum and would like to know:
- What issues are you most interested in (e.g. affordable housing, parking, density requirements, trees and environmental impacts)?
- What are some of the takeaways and/or fears people have shared with you (in person or online)?
- If you’d like to join our group!
For any or all of these, please reach out to us: email@example.com .
On Monday May 22 the Full Committee will meet, weather permitting, at the Forest Hills Park picnic shelter, 1000 Forest Hills Park Ave., starting at 6pm; the unusual start time gives primary candidates a final Full Committee opportunity to informally meet and chat with members before the primary. Please bring your own chair and an extra if possible. If rain (or snow!) is forecast, we’ll email everyone to switch to Zoom.
Tentative agenda item highlights (after the candidate time ends):
- Assuming we can get a quorum (so please attend if you can!!), vote to amend our bylaws to reflect precinct redistricting necessitated by the 2020 census (details in last month’s newsletter). The proposed amendment language, with full explanation, is here.
- Volunteers will be needed to staff current polling places and the two old polling places (Alumni Hall and Tonsler) on Primary Day to answer voters’ questions and thank them for coming out to vote.
- June 2 Summer Bash Fundraiser report (see below).
- Charlottesville City Council Candidate forum on May 24 (see below).
- June 26 picnic with Albemarle Dems (see below).
- Zoning info forum (see below).
As America comes dangerously close to defaulting on our debt obligations, which would have catastrophic economic consequences, Speaker Kevin McCarthy continues to demand an incredible 22% domestic spending cut.
You can help pressure Republicans to back down from tanking the economy by (1) retweeting some of the latest posts from the White House Twitter feed and (2) making sure your friends and family know just how much harm such massive cuts would cause, especially to the most vulnerable Americans.
Some specific effects:
- “Thirty million fewer healthcare visits. Fewer staff, increased claims backlog, longer wait times for benefits. Almost a $30 billion shortfall for veterans funding.” Military Times, 4/24/23
- “…kick 300,000 children out of child care and Head Start, slash nutrition services for more than 1 million seniors and turn off the heat in 5 million low-income homes.” MSNBC, 4/23/23
- “…make healthcare more expensive and less accessible for 2 million vulnerable people who rely on community health centers.” MSNBC, 4/23/23
- Education Secretary Miguel Cardona “said the budget cuts would hurt students and student loan borrowers in part by eliminating loan forgiveness, ‘pulling 60,000 educators and support staff from schools’ and ‘derail(ing) the response to the youth mental health crisis in this country.'” USA Today, 4/25/23
- “…make college more expensive by reducing the maximum Pell Grant award by nearly $1,000 for the 6.6 million recipients, as well as 80,000 who will no longer receive those grants.” MSNBC, 4/23/23