Chairman Haulman convened the November 19, 2015 HRPDC Executive Committee Meeting. The following actions were taken and items discussed:
Special Presentation—Resolution of Appreciation to James K. Spore
In recognition of Virginia Beach City Manager Jim Spore’s upcoming retirement, Chairman Haulman presented him with a Resolution of Appreciation for his many years of service to the Commission.
Chairman Haulman asked for a motion to move the Public Comment portion to the beginning of the agenda. It was decided that this will be the future format of the PDC agenda.
Mr. Ellis James of the City of Norfolk spoke regarding his concerns about refugee entry and fear mongering.
Executive Director’s Report – Mr. Crum highlighted two important upcoming events: the Urban Crescent Meeting on Education Funding to be held December 11th at University of Mary Washington and the Regional Legislative Forum on December 16th at the Chesapeake Conference Center. All Commission members were asked to encourage their fellow local elected officials to attend these important events.
The following items were approved under the Consent Agenda:
Regional Legislative Agenda – Julia Hillegass, HRPDC Public Information and Community Affairs Administrator presented the proposed legislative agenda as developed by the HRPDC Legislative Ad-Hoc Committee. Hampton and Poquoson asked that the region lend its support to an amendment to the State Code making it unlawful to operate a motor vehicle in such a manner to increase floodwater levels which cause damage to vehicles or property and making that act a class 4 misdemeanor. This item will be added to the list of regional emerging issues and staff will provide support during the legislative session.
The first HRPDC/HRTPO Legislative Forum has been scheduled for December 16, 2015 at 10 a.m. at the Chesapeake Conference Center. At this forum, representatives of the HRPDC and HRTPO Boards will present their legislative priorities to the Region’s Federal delegation and General Assembly members.
Public Education (K-12) Funding – James Clary, HRPDC Senior Economist provided a presentation reviewing the important role that education plays in the regional economy and provided information on federal, state, and local trends in education funding. While much has been said about “brain drain” in the region, equally significant are the impacts to social services when the less educated, under employed stay in an area. Internationally, overall levels of spending on education increase as the size of the economy increases.
In the United States, increased spending does not equate with increased educational outcomes. In FY11, local spending surpassed state spending for education. Between FY09 and FY14, state per pupil funding for education has dropped 23% in Hampton Roads. Members discussed the importance of pushing this issue with our General Assembly delegation. Mr. Crum provided more details about the speakers and the agenda for the Urban Crescent meeting on December 11 and again urged all to attend with their colleagues.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.