Efficiency Study Makes C’ville Recommendations

UVa’s Weldon Cooper Center has released the results of their efficiency study of the city government, Rachana Dixit writes in the Progress, and has recommended a series of ways that Charlottesville can save money without reducing the quality of government. One recommendation is to take another look at school funding, which has increased substantially per pupil in the past decade. Interestingly, the study found that Charlottesville’s staffing levels are pretty lean—save for the police and social services, which are at appropriate levels—which is the same conclusion drawn in the efficiency study of Albemarle, which was done by a totally different organization. It’s also recommended that some taxes and fees be increased slightly, including taking the personal property tax rate from 4.2% to 4.28%, which would match Albemarle’s rate.

You can read the study itself (2.5MB PDF) for the full details.

12 Responses to “Efficiency Study Makes C’ville Recommendations”

  • Starting to read it, but had to stop and look for my sunglasses because the glare from the whitewash was hurting my eyes.

  • The study was done by the Weldon Cooper Center. They’re basically unimpeachable.

  • OK, no grain of salt. Open minded all the way. Thanks.

  • “The study was done by the Weldon Cooper Center. They’re basically unimpeachable.” Since that center predicted that the city had lost around 10% of its population when, according to the 2000 Census, it had actually gained population, I’m always questioning when I read their findings.

  • I think you might be confusing things. The Census Bureau reported an 8.7% drop in the population between 2000 and 2004, not the Cooper Center.

    But my point wasn’t that they’re always right, but that they’re to be trusted, because they’re totally independent from the city. My wife used to work for the Cooper Center, and I did some consulting there a few years ago—the folks there are interested in truth, and have absolutely no interest in what Charlottesville (or any other locality) wants to hear.

  • No, I’m talking about around 1999 when I worked with the local census committee. At the time the prediction was somewhere around 36,000 and it actually came in at 45,000 by including about 5,000 students who should have been included in the county’s population instead.
    You are saying that the center’s integrity is unimpeachble and on that I have no evidence against, so I can’t disagree with you there. Thanks for clarifying.

  • I skimmed the report this morning. Might read it later. But I wonder who told Weldon Cooper the circuit courthouse was built in 1983? Talk about a major error, whew!!

  • The City should revert to town status now.

  • Demo, when was it built? It looks vintage late-mid-20th century to me. You’re not thinking of the historic county courthouse, are you?

  • No, I am thinking city circuit court building. It’s the building Judge Coles actually passed away in, and this was in or around 1975 or 1976. I do not recall the exact decade it was built, but 1983 is way off. It’s been there at least 45 to 50 years, if not longer.
    The Albemarle circuit court was originally built back in 1763 to 1781 (google).

  • 1983 was probably the time they remodeled the building.

  • I don’t recall the building ever being remodeled. And I have had the occasion to enter and exit the building quite a bit since the early 70s. Even if it was remodeled, Weldon Cooper claiming it was built in 1983 is way off base. I’m not sure how they could make a mistake like this. Perhaps a typo, built in 1963??
    It was closed several times for a thorough cleansing back in the mid 90s, Sick Building Syndrome. I still have an 8 x 10 glossy photo in my desk where the then Sheriff Rittenhouse sat in his office with the windows open for fresh air circulation… while the rest of his employees had to work in a sealed courtroom during this Sick Building fiasco.

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