Home City Council Jay Roberson explains why he’s stepping down from Birmingham City Council

Jay Roberson explains why he’s stepping down from Birmingham City Council

Jay Roberson (podium) is shown with from left: his parents James and Linda, his wife Niva and his sisters Jemia and Shayla. (Ariel Worthy Photo, The Birmingham Times)
By Ariel Worthy
The Birmingham Times

Jay Roberson announced Thursday that he will step down from his District 7 Birmingham City Council seat on September 10.

Roberson said his wife, Niva, has accepted a position with the Alabaster City Schools which means he will move to that city from Birmingham.

The decision was an emotional one, but a “day that causes me and my family to celebrate our past as public servants,” he said, during a press conference at Lawson State Community College. “My family has been public servants and our future is to write a new chapter together in our lives.”

He made the announcement with some fellow Birmingham City Council members present including President Valerie Abbott, Hunter Williams, Sheila Tyson and John Hilliard. Also in attendance were Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin, former Birmingham Mayor William Bell and neighborhood leaders.

Roberson, 45, the council’s president pro tem who was recently elected to a third consecutive term in 2017, said he is proud of the success in his district, he said.

“We introduced the 100 Days of Non-Violence, a youth-led initiative to combat violence amongst young people in our community,” he said. “For five years, not a young person under the age of 18 during this campaign died to senseless violent acts in the city of Birmingham.”

Roberson also acknowledged attractions in his district including Red Mountain Park and Lawson State Community College.

As for running again for public office, Roberson said “that’s a God calling.”

“If God leads me to run again we’ll run,” he said.

What’s Next?

Per the Mayor-Council Act, the city council will make an appointment to fill the vacancy, which will take place at a council meeting once Roberson steps down. “We will start interviewing people after he has vacated the position,” Abbott said. “(They will serve) until the next city election [in 2021].”

Abbott said the council will likely announce the acceptance of resumes at the next city council meeting.

“We have a very tiny window here,” Abbott said. “The 10th of September is coming up and we have to move pretty fast.”