There are no meetings of either the Asheville City Council or the Buncombe County Commission this week.
Use our prepared email templates to take action on this week’s items.
Things of concern, more information needed
Follow Up: Buncombe County Commission Meeting – County appointments to the Community Reparations Commission (January 17th)
In last week’s report, we asked for clarification on the County’s process for appointing new members to the Community Reparations Commission (CRC). We got a consistent response from three County Commissioners: Amanda Edwards, Jasmine Beach-Ferrara, and Martin Moore. Here is Commissioner Edwards’ response: “Thank you for contacting us to learn more about our selection process. The vacancies for the Reparations Commission were publicly posted after being announced during a County Commission meeting, community members applied, and we interviewed all applicants during a public meeting on Jan. 17, before voting on who was appointed.”
We wonder why the Community Reparations Commission (CRC) wasn’t asked to make any recommendations for new appointments to their body. This is a common practice for governing bodies to use in filling seats on Boards and Commissions. The County Commission has repeatedly stated that they want to follow the leadership of the CRC, and seeking input from them before making future appointments would further demonstrate that they want to support rather than dictate how the Commission’s work unfolds.
Things to do
We encourage you to reach out to the Buncombe County Commissioners and ask them to commit to seeking input from the Community Reparations Commission before making new appointments to that body. You can use our template link to open up an email to adapt, copy and paste the content below, or write your own message and send it from their contact page.
Things that sound like a step in the right direction
Asheville City Council passes Stop the Harm recommendation from the Community Reparations Commission (Staff memo and resolution)
The Asheville City Council voted on January 24th to approve the Immediate Recommendation “Stop the Harm” that was unanimously passed by the Community Reparations Commission (CRC) at their December meeting.
We’re pleased with how quickly the City has moved this forward, and with the plan that was developed by Equity and Inclusion Director Brenda Mills and Assistant City Manager Rachel Wood, in collaboration with the CRC. Director Mills reported that she called every member of the CRC individually to ensure that the revised plan met with their approval, which demonstrates an admirable level of accountability.
Things to do
We encourage you to reach out to the Asheville City Council and key City staff members and express appreciation for the adoption of the Reparations Commission’s Stop the Harm recommendation. You can use our template link to open up an email to adapt, copy and paste the content below, or write your own message to AshevilleNCCouncil@ashevillenc.gov, firstname.lastname@example.org, and email@example.com.
CITY COUNCIL EMAIL TEMPLATE TEXT
You can open this email in your own email program by clicking here. To proceed manually, you can copy and paste the text below into an email and then address it to City officials.
Send to: AshevilleNCCouncil@ashevillenc.gov, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Subject: Thank you for committing to Stop the Harm
Dear Equity and Inclusion Director Mills, Assistant City Manager Wood, and City Council Members,
I want to express gratitude for the passage of the Community Reparations Commission’s Stop the Harm recommendation on January 24th. I appreciate City Council’s unanimous vote, and also the efforts of Ms. Mills and Ms. Wood to craft a plan that expedites the much-needed equity audit and also promises ongoing accountability to the Reparations Commission.
Thanks for your leadership,
COUNTY COMMISSION EMAIL TEMPLATE TEXT
You can open this email in your own email program by clicking here. To proceed manually, you can copy and paste the text below into an email and then address it to the County Commission.
Send to: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Engaging the Community Reparations Commission on future appointments
Dear County Commissioners,
You made appointments to the Community Reparations Commission (CRC) at your January 17th meeting, following your usual practice of posting the openings publicly. I am writing to ask you to revise your process going forward, by formally seeking out the recommendations of the CRC for future appointments to their body. This is a common practice for governing bodies to use in filling seats on Boards and Commissions, and would further center the leadership of the CRC in leading our local Reparations process.
Thanks for your leadership,