Re-elect Mayor Gayle McLaughlin Re-elect Mayor Gayle McLaughlin

PO Box 5284,
Richmond, CA 94805
(510) 237-1456
Re-elect Mayor Gayle McLaughlin
Mayor Gayle McLaughlin Newsletters
Gayle's Message 2010
About Gayle
Richmond Positive Steps
Richmond Next Steps
Gayle's Supporters
News & Media
Photo Gallery
Action Center
Gayle's Home Page
<< Return to Newsletters Main Page  

December, 2008
Message from Mayor McLaughlin

Opportunities for input and for remembering

Dear Friends,

Please join me at two special hour-long sessions coming up over the next 2 weeks.

I invite residents on December 12 to join me at a special session of my weekly Meet-with-the-Mayor to begin exploring ideas for prioritizing spending of Measure T revenue. Measure T, as most of you know, was passed by the voters on Nov. 4, 2008. It will make changes to the City's business license ordinance, resulting in increased revenue from large manufacturers. The business license fee increase for Chevron in 2009 is estimated to be between $16 and $20 million.

Time and location for this session are detailed below. There will be more opportunities in the new year to give input for those unable to attend this December 12 meeting.

What: Meet-with-the-Mayor session focusing on ideas for use of Measure T revenue

When: Friday, December 12, 5:30 - 6:30 pm

Where: Madeline F. Whittlesey Room, Richmond Public Library, 325 Civic Center Plaza


The following week, on December 19, I would like to invite residents to share in a moment of reflection to honor the memory of those whole lives were lost to homicide in Richmond in 2008. To date there have been 26 homicides in our city this year, and we grieve the loss of each of these lives.

Last year at this time there had been 38 homicides, and I am very grateful for the reduction, which I attribute to a number of factors: the ongoing day-to-day work of the Richmond Police Department, the 2008 implementation of the Office of Neighborhood Safety's Street Outreach program, numerous additional community-based street outreach efforts, and the continuous transformation of the City in a new and better direction -- a direction that demands economic, social, and environmental justice, as well as community empowerment, for all within our great diverse community. While we celebrate our successes, part of our empowerment comes from joining together and remembering our profound losses. Please join me on December 19th for this remembering.

What: Meet-with-the-Mayor session to honor the memory of 2008 homicide victims

When: Friday, December 19, 2008, 5:30 - 6:30 pm

Where: Madeline F. Whittlesey Room, Richmond Public Library, 325 Civic Center Plaza

Thank you all for your ongoing support in building ONE RICHMOND. Let us continue to work within our city, our region, our state, our nation, and our world facing courageously all difficulties and transforming them into creative opportunities for all.

Thank you,

Gayle McLaughlin Mayor of Richmond

Dear Friends,

As we move into the last month of 2008, there is so much to reflect on. This year has been an intense and incredible year here in Richmond. Our local elections brought forward so many positive results. Two out of the three Richmond City Council candidates that I endorsed were successful. Councilmember Tom Butt was reelected and Councilmember-elect Jeff Ritterman will soon become the newest Richmond City Councilmember!

Although the third candidate I endorsed, Jovanka Beckles, did not succeed (having very narrowly missed winning the third available seat), Jovanka continues to serve in many official and non-official capacities throughout our community as a progressive leader and visionary.

The Richmond City Council will also shrink down to 7 members from 9 members in January. New dynamics, new opportunities, and new frontiers will result for us all as a result of a changed City Council. The swearing-in ceremony for the new council will take place in the Council Chambers on January 13, 2009.

In addition to the election of new council, we experienced another electoral victory this season. We are in the midst of experiencing a momentous occasion here in Richmond having won the passage of Measure T (otherwise known as A Fair Share For Richmond). Thank you to the voters of Richmond for your wisdom and foresight in passing this key initiative that will bring new revenue into the city to serve unmet needs. Please read the Contra Costa Times guest editorial below written by Jeff Ritterman, Jovanka Beckles and me titled: A Fair Share for Richmond Comes True .

Lastly, I want to extend an invitation to all to come to a potluck event celebrating the work and commitment of my Environmental Justice Environmental Health Task Force. Please join us on Wednesday, Dec. 3, 6:30 pm at Atchison Village Community Center. For more details, please contact Nicole Valentino at or (510)62-0-6527.

Thank you to the entire community of Richmond, and all our friends, for helping us advance the priorities of a peaceful, healthy, and sustainable future for our city!

Sincerely, Gayle McLaughlin Mayor of Richmond ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Published November 29, 2008, Contra Costa Times

A Fair Share for Richmond Comes True
by Gayle McLaughlin, Jeff Ritterman, and Jovanka Beckles

The Nov. 4 local election brought a welcome influx of funds to the people of Richmond with the passage of Measure T.

So many people made this victory possible. For 18 months, volunteers worked tirelessly on this grassroots campaign. More than 5300 signatures were gathered to place Measure T on the ballot. Volunteers worked evenings and weekends, creating literature and newsletters, distributing signs, making phone calls, and going door to door in every neighborhood of the city. The Yes on T Campaign was outspent 20 to 1, yet our efforts prevailed thanks to the hard work of so many. While much gratitude is in order, a special thank you goes to the nearly 15,000 Richmond citizens who supported Measure T with their vote.

While we are overjoyed with the passage of Measure T, we are aware that some businesses have expressed concern about how Measure T will affect them. We want to reassure small businesses that Measure T will not raise their fees. We invite any business that has concerns about this measure to sit down with us and look at the numbers. For those large manufacturers whose fees will be increased, we believe that the investment Measure T will allow in city services will more than offset any burden.

Measure T was designed to bring in much needed city revenue from those who can most afford it and to invest the funds to benefit those most in need. The daunting economic challenges we face as a result of the current crisis shows clearly why Measure T funds are so desperately needed.

With Measure T funds, we can expand job training opportunities, reducing unemployment and the social ills which accompany it. We can invest more in infrastructure repair, fixing our streets and beautifying our city. We can invest in improving our educational and after school opportunities for our children. The list of needs is long. We will be initiating a public process to determine the best use of the funds from year to year, addressing needs and quality of life for all.

Richmond has been on the brink of transformation in recent years. There are decades of poverty, neglect, and social and environmental injustice to overcome. The city also suffers from political and ideological divisions. Now is the time for all of Richmond to join together. This revenue will be key to allowing our transformation to materialize fully. The voters have spoken. Measure T has passed. We ask that all of Richmond come together to embrace this measure so that we can invest these funds as soon as possible. There is no time to lose. By all of us coming together and investing wisely in our city, Richmond can serve as a national model of economic recovery during these challenging times.

We invite all of Richmond to join with us in our efforts to make Richmond a healthier and a safer place for all.

McLaughlin is mayor of Richmond, Ritterman is Richmond councilmember-elect, and Beckles is a Richmond economic development commissioner.


PO Box 5284,  Richmond, CA 94805
(510) 237-1456   •
 Sincere Design