Our allies on the Richmond City Council have told us what we should be doing now: at every meeting, speak in Open Forum about the importance to our community of phasing out coal operations.
We need to tell the Richmond City Council to phase out coal operations at the Levin-Richmond Terminal at every meeting of the council. A couple of people speaking at each meeting can be effective in keeping council members aware of the urgency of this issue and the popular support for the ordinance phasing out coal, presently with the city attorney’s office. In addition, it publicizes the issue to the many residents who watch the televised (and archived) meeting or read the on-line minutes.
This is the ideal time to turn up the heat! We’ve collected more than 1,000 signatures on our letter to the council, and we’ll be getting more signed in the next few weeks.
Open Forum occurs at the start of each meeting, and it allows the public to address the council about items not on the agenda. You don’t have to be a Richmond resident to participate.
To speak in Open Forum, complete and file a pink speaker’s card with the City Clerk prior to the start of Open Forum. These cards are available at the desk in the hallway and at a table at the front of the council chamber. The amount of time for each speaker varies: 15 or fewer speakers, 2 minutes; 16–24 speakers, -1/2 minutes; and 25+ speakers, 1 minute. After that you can go home!
Here are a few suggestions for topics:
- Advocate for phasing out coal handling and storage at the terminal with the Richmond Coal Ordinance.
- Thank the council for its April 23 action. More info here.
- Encourage the council to direct city staff to put the Richmond Coal Ordinance on the council agenda ASAP.
- Share your concerns about coal in our community:Do you live along the train line or near the terminal, and is your health or the health of your family affected (asthma, COPD, respiratory problems, heart disease)? Are you hoping to move away because the coal dust in your neighborhood?
If you are planning to speak, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and put NCIR Comment in the subject line.
This can be a brief but high-impact action for No Coal in Richmond!
May 21, 6:30 PM
— and every first and third Tuesday — sometimes also on the fourth Tuesday
City Council Chamber
450 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond
More info on the No Coal in Richmond website