CH Citizens for Good Government supports CRC's conclusions

Cleveland Heights Citizens for Good Government (CHCGG) is a political action committee (PAC) created by former members of the Charter Review Commission (CRC). I co-chair this group with Jack Newman, former CRC chair, and Lee Chilcote, former CH City Council member.

We provide continuing support for the conclusions of the CRC—a group of 15 CH residents who worked for 16 months to make recommendations to improve our government. We are committed to the citizens of Cleveland Heights, to clarify what is at stake on Election Day this November.

Identifying the most effective, efficient and equitable way to deliver services to our residents must be left to a professional, qualified city manager with skills and training. We currently have that in place with our council-manager form of government. It permits the seven directly elected city council members to have equal voices, and encourages cooperation and accountability between them and our city manager.

We do not want one person with all the power. Our council-manager form of government is the most common form of municipal government in the United States. It keeps partisan politics and corruption, that we see in so many other communities in Cuyahoga County, out of Cleveland Heights.

For that, and many other reasons, we believe the council-manager form of government should remain in place. With more than 600 employees and an annual budget of more than $80 million, our city needs qualified, nonpartisan and professional management—not a politician who may make decisions based on campaign contributions and favors.

The leaders of an opposing PAC reject the recommendations of the CRC and promote a government that substitutes politics for professionalism. Their proposal [would] replace our form of government with a leader whose only requirement is being a Cleveland Heights resident, and not being a felon. This shift would open the door for a power grab. We cannot allow political favors, political hires, and political contracts in our city.

Unfortunately, the recommendations of the CRC won’t share the ballot on Nov. 5 with the opposition’s proposal. If it did, it would have provided citizens with a clear choice between the two very different visions for our future.

We must stop this power grab. Our group is committed to protecting and improving our city by defeating this effort to upend our form of government. We are working to get our message to voters despite the political barriers we face to counter the narrative created by politicians who stand ready to take over Cleveland Heights should we fail.

We say no to injecting politics into our city services, including police, fire, trash pick-up and snow removal. They are practical services—not political.

We say no to destabilizing our system by putting in charge one partisan politician who can be influenced by contributors and election supporters.

We say no to political deals on Nov. 5.

Mike Gaynier

Mike Gaynier is a leadership consultant and co-chair of Cleveland Heights Citizens for Good Government, a PAC formed to inform voters about the benefits of the council-manager form of government. He served on the CRC.

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Volume 12, Issue 9, Posted 1:30 PM, 09.02.2019