New City Councilor Heather Hill Weighs in on Event Permits Ahead of First Meeting

Posted: Updated:
Heather Hill Heather Hill

Charlottesville city leaders are looking to help the city move forward from the white supremacist events and violence that broke out over the summer.

Two new faces officially get to work Tuesday when City Council meets for the first time in 2018.

Tuesday, Heather Hill and Nikuyah Walker will take part in their first Council meeting. Hill says she's prepared to give her newly elected position everything she's got.

“It's that delicate balance,” Hill said.

Topping Charlottesville's agenda in 2018 is dealing with the tragedy and fallout that hit in 2017. Tuesday night, city council is taking up event permits.

"It's just really giving us as a city a lot more flexibility and a lot more control over how those events are gonna be played out, at the same time we need to respect people's right to freedom of speech,” Hill said.

The proposed changes include filing for a permit at least 60 days before an event involving 10 or more people.

Hill is concerned 10 people may be a low threshold. She also says they'll look at the applicant's past and criminal history.

"I think it's important to really hear from those who are in those roles or have experienced the events first hand or experienced the process of applying for permits to really have the opportunity to share their thoughts, and that way we can consider those,” Hill said.

With a New Year also comes a new mayor.

"In the last couple runs that it’s been clear coming into the meeting that the council had aligned on a decision but I don't know that we're there, but I think that that's a good place to be, and that we can actually have a meaningful dialogue in front of our public,” Hill said.

No matter who is chosen, Hill says turning things around in 2018 starts with hearing each other out.

"I think that it's important for us as a Council to hear each other's voices but the community to kind of hear alongside us,” Hill said.

NBC29 reached out to newly Walker, for comment on Tuesday’s agenda, but she didn't get back to us. Council's meeting begins at 7 p.m. in City Hall.