City of Charlottesville estimate to clean spray paint under community scrutiny

City of Charlottesville estimate to clean spray paint under community scrutiny
Police released an estimate for how much it costs to repaint E. Market Street. (Source: WVIR)

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The City of Charlottesville’s estimated cost to clean the graffiti spray painted outside the Charlottesville Police Department headquarters during a protest last Sunday is under scrutiny from community members.

Earlier in the week, the city released its initial estimate for the clean-up. A receipt totaled the cost of cleaning and re-painting that portion of the street at $19,630.78. The high price tag immediately came under scrutiny from members of the community demanding to know how the cleaning had cost that much.

In further documentation disclosed after several Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests by members of the community, the $19,000 price tag included a future project to completely repave that portion of Market Street. That repaving project makes up $15,000 of the bill provided.

The total cost of the work done to cover the spray paint spent to date was just $4,439.08. That figure in and of itself is mostly the hourly wages of salaried city employees and the estimated cost of using equipment the city already owned, totaling $3,483.24. The total amount cash spent out of pocket on the clean-up adds up to $955.85, much of which was spent on paint.

Four people were arrested by Charlottesville police in connection with the spray painting during the protest, and charged with vandalism. Charlottesville city officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment for this story.

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