Norfolk City Treasurer says he will not resign after corruption conviction despite City Council request

Posted at 4:57 PM, Dec 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-15 17:05:45-05

burfootNORFOLK, Va. – City Treasurer Anthony Burfoot told News 3 that he will not step down from his position despite City Council’s request that he resign by 5 p.m. Thursday.

Norfolk City Council officially asked the City Treasurer to step down during Tuesday’s city council meeting.

The resolution passed unanimously.

Burfoot was found guilty Friday on six charges of political corruption and perjury.

Tune in tonight to News 3 at 11 for exclusive access inside the treasurer’s office.

Council wants Burfoot gone but at this point it’s just a request.

Mayor Kenny Alexander explained their position during the meeting and said, “This has been a taxing experience for the citizens of Norfolk but our city is resilient and our city council remains dedicated to restoring public trust and pursuing transparency and working in the best interest of all of our residents.”

However, Alexander refused to speak to the media after the meeting and left the council chambers immediately.

When asked about the resolution Councilman Paul Riddick said, “I think the city did the responsible thing.”

Councilman Tommy Smigiel said, “I think it really sends a message to the public that we’re serious about this. We want to make sure we have the trust but once again we’re so limited in what we can do as a council.”

The resolution that passed states, “City Council directs the City Manager to take all actions necessary to secure the City’s financial assets, including but not limited to all city taxes, levies, assessments, rents, fees and all other revenues accruing to the city.”

City officials explained they are trying to protect the financial integrity and control the city’s banking system.

“The jury has rendered a verdict and the process is not over yet there’s a lot ahead of us. There’s no reason for him to resign at this time. He’s not going to abandon the job that he was elected to do and is continue to do faithfully,” according to Burfoot’s attorney Andrew Sacks.

Sacks said Burfoot wants a fair opportunity to appeal his case.

Under Virginia law Burfoot is allowed to remain in office until all appeals are exhausted.

Burfoot is supposed to be sentenced in April for his perjury and political corruption charges.

There is also a recall hearing January 7 and the judge in that case has the right to suspend Burfoot.