Village Square Hosts 12th Annual Town Hall

Village Square Hosts 12th Annual Town Hall

On March 20th, the Village Square hosted the 12th annual Tallahassee Town Hall with City and County Commissioners attending. WFSU’s Tom Flanigan moderated the event and engaged with the Commissioners in discussion about issues of importance to the residents of our community.

Flanigan asked City Commissioner Dianne Williams-Cox her thoughts on the firefighter’s union and the city’s contract negotiations. Williams-Cox noted that contract negotiations with the union are “delicate” and said that she believes that eventually the City and the union will get to where they need to be. However, she also noted in the meantime the issue has been publicized stating, “Unfortunately it’s been played out in the media, and that’s never a good thing when you’re trying to get a resolution.”

When City Commissioner Curtis Richardson was asked to address the issue of gun violence in the community, Richardson responded by saying that “53% of the gun violence in our community comes from guns that were stolen from unlocked cars”, and that over 50% of the gun violence is domestic in nature. Richardson explained that in order to address those two issues the City has partnered with the Urban League and law enforcement officials who have started a campaign to encourage people to not leave their loaded guns in unlocked vehicles.

Additionally, County Commissioner Brian Welch addressed the topic as well stating, “With young people, you can’t law enforcement your way out of gun violence. There has to be a conversation about what goes on at home, there has to be a conversation about– how do we keep kids in school? How do we increase those third-grade reading levels? How do we keep kids from being suspended?”

The panel was asked to address the new Florida bill recently signed by Governor Ron DeSantis that bans homeless people from sleeping on public property. County Commissioner Rick Minor explained that to his knowledge the bill will allow the private sector to sue local governments if there is a public encampment of homeless people and there are no other resources for them. Minor said that in order to address homelessness two things have to be addressed, “Number one we have to have compassion for people on the street. Number two we also have an obligation as local government elected officials to ensure that our neighborhoods are safe.”

When the County Commissioners were asked to address the County’s decision to realign their funding on non-profits that serve children through the Children’s Services Council, County Commissioner David O’Keefe replied, “I don’t think voters expected to reduce funding from the County and apply it over the CSC. I thought they voted for new money for new services, and the way I see it is if we have service providers that can get money from both to expand more services, we need more services. And if our service provider expands to the maximum of their capacity then they’ll choose which funding source is best.” He continued, “Within the constraints we have budget wise, I think that we ought to sick to only adding to the extent we can.”

3 Responses to "Village Square Hosts 12th Annual Town Hall"

  1. Gun violence isn’t caused by guns in unlocked cars. They can’t magically go out and shoot people. Gun violence is caused by PEOPLE, stealing guns and buying guns legally AND THEN committing crimes. Fire Curtis. He’s a moron.

  2. You didn’t need a crystal ball to know that a program (CSC) in Tallahassee that duplicated other existing services with no accounting for what it does was another waste in the making. It is just another vague program but the name sounds good so we pony up. Similar to naming it puppy and kindness committee – of course taxpayers will pay for it. You like puppies, don’t you? And kindness? How could you not? And if you ask how many puppies we’re saving you are just being a nuisance. How DARE you sir? We’re busy spreading kindness.

  3. I voted against having the CSC because there is no Accountability on anything they do, No Oversite, NOTHING. Look for the Article that Ex-Commissioner Bryan Desloge wrote on it, very enlightening.

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