Name: William “Bill” Moody, Jr.
Biography: William “Bill” Moody, Jr. was first elected to Portsmouth City Council in 1998. He has served as vice mayor, as well as the council’s liaison for organizations like the Portsmouth Amphitheater, the Portsmouth Port and Industrial Commission, and the Hampton Roads Regional Jail.
1. Why should residents elect you to City Council again?
The answer to why an incumbent should be elected is different from someone seeking office for the first time. The incumbent has a record and should be held accountable for what they’ve done and what they’ve tried to do to make their city a better place to live, work, play, and to do business. I feel I score well in all categories. I’ve made it a point to stay engaged and connected with Portsmouth’s citizens and communities. I’ve also been an advocate for making our city government more transparent. In a well documented case I was levied a $1,500 fine by a former mayor for simply answering a question from a citizen on social media. I sued City Council for levying the fine and won a favorable court ruling. I have also been an avid supporter of economic development and the list of projects that I have successfully supported is substantial; Victory Crossing, Kroger Marketplace, The Renaissance Hotel, The relocation of Tidewater Community College to Portsmouth, Churchland Library, and numerous new communities such as; Newport, Lake Shores, Hidden Cove, Harbor Vista, Sterling King Apartments, Westbury, Myrtles at Olde Towne, River Pointe, The Quarters at Park View. In addition I have supported the construction of 3 new schools during my tenure. I have also been a no vote on raising real estate taxes and have been outspoken on the need to make our municipal government more efficient by seeking ways to collaborate with our school administration in combining services to save tax dollars.
2. What is the most pressing issue facing your community, and how would you address that issue?
The biggest challenge is balancing our many needs with our limited revenue. Approximately 52% of our land is occupied by local, state or federal governments. We are addressing it by exercising a policy of prudent spending and an aggressive approach to economic development. This year alone we’ve had approximately 160 million in new construction and redevelopment. In the last 3 years we had $100 million in private investment that resulted in 800 multi family units in our Downtown Area.
3. Where do you stand on raising taxes to balance your locality’s budget?
I am opposed to raising real estate taxes and fees to balance our budget. I believe we need to make wise spending decisions and seek ways to operate government more efficiently.
4. What your plan to reduce crime?
My plan is to make sure that we maintain a full compliment of 260 sworn Police Officers. In addition, I support our Administration’s programs to build trust and legitimacy within our communities. Those programs consist of Chief Forums with communities, monthly community walks, and rapid engagement of support in the event of trauma. We have also collaborated with federal, state, civic leagues, faith leaders, business leaders, and citizens. I will also continue my support of deploying Community Impact Officers.
5. What are your community’s biggest infrastructure needs, and how do you plan to fulfill them?
Portsmouth is an old city with some downtown water & sewage lines approaching 100 years old. We are dealing with it through a Downtown Master Utility Project consisting of multiple phases. The primary construction began in the summer of 2017 and is scheduled for completion in early 2019. The secondary construction scheduled to be completed in late 2018. In addition to replacing water and sewage pipes sidewalks and curbing will also be replaced.
6. What businesses and industries would you try to attract to your community?
I have supported focusing on businesses that bring good paying jobs to our city and provide needed services to our citizens. We need more retail stores for women and men’s apparel. I would like to see a Belk’s Department store or something similar locate in one of our existing vacant stores. One of Council’s 4 Major Things is becoming a Smart City. By smart we are planning on providing a network of 5K technology for existing and new businesses and providing the technology to areas of our city that have been neglected by the corporate providers.