Statement from Jon Baliles - November 5, 2016

Three days ago when I withdrew from the mayor’s race I called upon the remaining candidates to consolidate into one viable alternative to Joe Morrissey because our city needs to move forward.

It was a difficult but necessary decision.

But with three days to go, it is clear the field of candidates will not change and many of my supporters are asking me for direction.

Earlier this week, I asked my supporters to not vote for me on the ballot on Tuesday to send a message because the stakes are too high and our city’s future is too valuable.

I greatly respect my supporters and our shared passion for doing what is best for Richmond. I will not tell them how to vote, but can only tell them how I will vote on Tuesday.

My endorsement of Levar M. Stoney for mayor comes down to my belief that he best represents the next generation of leadership for our city that will work collaboratively with others to make the best decisions.

Richmond has come a long way since I was born here and we have achieved substantial progress in the last 15 years. We know there are so many people that are ready to help this city move to the next level and beyond. But we have much more to do because there are well-known problems that we need to resolve. It will take new thinking, an experienced team, and the determination to really address these issues.

No longer can we rely on big shiny projects to provide revenue for schools or basic services. No longer can we rely on the same promises to move our city forward and provide opportunities and advancement for people whom have been ignored for too long.

Now is the time for the next generation of leaders to move Richmond forward.

We can do this, but we need someone who will work across the city, involve citizens from Woodville to Windsor Farms, and from Bellemeade to Bellevue. Someone that will look at the longstanding problems with creative new ideas and who displays the determination to put them into action. Levar Stoney is that leader and he should be our next mayor.

I hope you will join me in choosing to advance Richmond to the next level with Levar, who is up to the challenge. He can lead the way to a brighter future and make Richmond work – for all of us.