Once upon a time I ran a news site, now I just have opinions on the news. 

Good morning, RVA: Affordable housing, a call to Hanoverians, and burgers

Good morning, RVA! It's 35 °F, and that rain continues—and may even switch over to snow depending on where you sit. Later this morning, though, things should dry out and the sun should come out.

Water cooler

Michael Paul Williams has a great piece this morning about affordable housing and inclusionary zoning, prompted by Coucilmember Robinson’s RES. 2017-R086. This resolution would have the City create a policy that required developers to designate 10% of the residential units in whatever they were building for folks making less than a certain percentage of the city’s average median income (probably around 80%). Important caveat: The requirement would only apply to city-owned properties or city-financed developments! This resolution has been sent back to the Land Use, Housing and Transportation Standing Committee—who will meet on February 20th—for more deliberation and tweaking. Before that meeting, I’m going to put together an affordable-housing PDF reading list for you so you can feel informed and weigh in should you choose. Stay tuned!

Justin Mattingly was at last night’s Education Compact meeting and has the news you can use. Sounds like whipping votes for his proposed meals tax increase is going to be a dang challenge for the mayor. We’ve got councilfolk all over the map: Gray wants to start over with the facilities plan, Larson’s skeptical, Agelasto wants to bundle in a cigarette tax increase, Addison has said he’s opposed to any tax increases but is willing to listen. You can find a link to a Facebook livestream and a PDF of the presentation given to the Compact team over on RVA Dirt. Of note in the PDF are the pages listing out potential revenue sources available to the City. This table is very similar to a presentation given by the same company (Davenport) back in 2016, but marks the Motor Vehicle License Tax as now unavailable and does not mention historic tax credits. A single high five to whoever thought to include the page listing out the impact of the meals tax on meals of different costs. 7.5% of a $100 meal is not a ton of money for folks eating a $100 meal.

If you are a human who lives in Hanover County, works in Hanover County, attends school in Hanover County, or is an alum of Lee-Davis High School or Stonewall Jackson Middle School, I encourage you to take this survey the School Board released about changing the names of those two schools. It’s the internet, so you’re free to fill it out if you’re not a Hanoverian, but, ultimately, I don’t think that’d be helpful. Hanover County needs to see that a significant number of its own will not accept public schools named after Confederate generals. Don’t give them the “outside agitators” excuse.

The WaPo has an update on the General Assembly’s attempts at expanding Medicaid. Unfortunately, the Republicans have taken a blood oath to prevent any Medicaid expansion that does not include a work requirement, and the rest of us are left to consider if Medicaid expansion with terrible strings attached is better than no Medicaid expansion at all. Nothing makes finding a job easier than worrying about how you’ll afford your next visit to the doctor!

Suddenly, there is a ton of burger-related content on Richmond Magazine! We’ve got a make-at-home recipe from Stephanie Ganz—WHICH INCLUDES PUTTING DUKES IN THE MEAT?? There’s a review of our town’s burger offerings, both fancy and regular type. And, finally, in case you’ve forgotten, a list of the required burger ingredients.

In big, big fried chicken news, I hear the Bonchon at VCU is open?

This morning's longread

Wyatt Tee Walker, a local, national and international civil rights icon who served as chief of staff for MLK, dies at 88

From the Richmond Times-Dispatch comes this obituary of Civil Rights Leader Wyatt Tee Walker who died last week.

In 1946, Dr. Walker enrolled in Virginia Union University, where he earned his undergraduate degree in chemistry and physics and a Master of Divinity degree. “I met Tee Walker in college, he being my senior, and we formed a relationship that continued throughout our lives,” said VUU alumnus L. Douglas Wilder, who would make history by becoming the nation’s first elected African-American governor. “He had a sharp mind and an intellect that contributed meaningfully to our society and particularly the civil rights movement. Further, his participation with Dr. King gave rise to the activating of those concerns for many others.”

If you’d like your longread to show up here, go chip in a couple bucks on the ol’ Patreon.

Good morning, RVA: Email your councilmember, meet the new sheriff, and get a tour of state politics

Good morning, RVA: Public housing thoughts, PILOTS, and pizza