Cleveland Heights

Seven to vie for unexpired CH council term on Nov. 2 ballot

Seven residents filed valid candidate petitions in the race for the unexpired CH City Council term, ending Dec. 31, 2023, that has been added to the Nov. 2 ballot.

The seven candidates are Erin C. Johnson, Garry Kanter, Robert Koonce, Josie Moore, Ellen M. Roth, Eric J. Silverman, and James A. Williams.

Other Cleveland Heights-specific races on city ballots on Nov. 2 are the following:

  • Cleveland Heights mayor: The two candidates are Barbara Danforth and Kahlil Seren, based on unofficial primary election results (as of Sept. 15).
  • Cleveland Heights City Council member, four-year term: The six candidates, for four council seats, are Lee Barbee II, Craig Cobb, Tony Cuda, Anthony Mattox Jr., Davida Russell, and Allosious K. Snodgrass.
  • Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District Board of Education member: The seven candidates, for three board seats, are Mario Clopton-Zymler, Charles C. Drake, Dan Heintz, Malia Lewis, Maureen Lynn, Mordechai Rennert, and Jodi L. Sourini.
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Volume 14, Issue 10, Posted 2:19 PM, 09.15.2021

CH mayoral race narrows to Danforth and Seren

In the Sept. 14 primary election, Cleveland Heights residents cast their votes for one of three mayoral candidates. According to not-yet-official election results, the tally as of Sept. 15 showed Barbara Danforth in the lead, with 3,105 votes (about 47%), followed by Kahlil Seren with 2,555 (38%) and Melody Joy Hart with 1,007 (15%).

The top two finishers, Danforth and Seren, will face off in the general election on Nov. 2.

Voter turnout for Cleveland Heights' first mayoral primary election was low, with votes cast by fewer than 7,000 of the city's approximately 33,967 (as of Sept. 1) registered voters.

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Volume 14, Issue 10, Posted 11:19 AM, 09.15.2021

Special election on Nov. 2 will fill CH council vacancy

Cleveland Heights City Council announced on Aug. 25 that the seat left vacant by Mary Dunbar, who resigned Aug. 16, would be filled by way of a special election, to be held concurrently with the general election, on Nov. 2. Council had previously announced that it would appoint someone to fill the vacancy, and that it would be accepting applications beginning Aug. 17.

Council's Aug. 25 announcement, posted on the city's website (www.clevelandheights.com), states that authorization for the special election was made in consultation with the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections (BOE), and after a review of the city's charter.

Candidates who are interested in serving out the remainder of Dunbar's unexpired term, through Dec. 31, 2023, must file nominating petitions containing the signatures of at least 50, and no more than 150, "qualified electors" with the BOE by Tuesday, Sept. 7, at 4 p.m.

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Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 5:26 PM, 08.30.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 8-9-2021

AUGUST 9, 2021 – Special joint session with Shaker Heights City Council re: Shaker Lakes

 

  • NEORSD proposal
  • Questions from council members and the public:
    • The need for Horseshoe Lake Dam demolition
    • Post project development
    • Role of the cities
    • Environmental considerations
    • Public input

 

Cleveland Heights Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, members Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Hart, Davida Russell and Michael Ungar were present. Council President Jason Stein was absent. Also present were Cleveland Heights City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Shaker Heights Mayor David Weiss, and four or five Shaker Heights council members.

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Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 1:06 PM, 08.24.2021

Dunbar resigns from CH City Council

Long-serving Cleveland Heights City Council Member Mary Dunbar resigned at council’s Aug. 16 meeting, effective immediately.

Dunbar stated that she had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, explaining, “When I was re-elected for a third four-year term on city council, in November of 2019, I expected to be serving on city council until the end of 2024. Something unexpected has come up.” The rest of her statement follows:

“At the end of January 2020, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Ever since, I have been trying to understand the disease and how best to cope with it. I have studied up on Parkinson’s, done a lot of physical therapy, participated in three clinical trials, and started taking medicine for the disease this year.

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Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 3:15 PM, 08.19.2021

Aug. 12 CH Mayoral Forum now to be held virtually

On Thursday, Aug. 12, the Cleveland Heights Mayoral Forum, sponsored by the Heights Chapter of the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland (LWVGC), will now be held exclusively online. The LWVGC announced the change in response to the increase in COVID-19 cases.

The forum will take place 7–9 p.m., as originally scheduled, and can be livestreamed via YouTube: https://youtu.be/KIvJolHFIKc, or the bitly URL: https://bit.ly/CHMayor2021Aug12. The forum will be recorded for later viewing.

There will be no in-person audience for the virtual forum; only the candidates, moderator, tech support, and a limited number of LWV volunteers will be in the room.

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Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 12:02 PM, 08.10.2021

Moore suspends her campaign for CH mayor

It is with a heavy heart but clear eyes that I announce the suspension of my campaign for mayor of Cleveland Heights.

For a while now I have gone back and forth about whether staying in the race and pushing issues and ideas into the dialogue through the platform of a mayoral candidate was good for Cleveland Heights. And for a while, I believe it was. However, I no longer think that’s the case.

I ran for mayor because I wanted to present a cohesive, long-term, progressive vision for Cleveland Heights that prioritizes our people and our environment. I have watched so many elections in which the conversation around what’s at stake—and what’s possible—feels so limited. I wanted to be a candidate who would talk about issues that are on people’s minds but might not be treated as priorities in mainstream talking points.

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Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 10:25 AM, 08.09.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 8-2-2021

AUGUST 2, 2021

 

  • Public comments
  • Staff reports
  • Council action
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Also present were Susanna Niermann O’Neil, city manager; Amy Himmelein, clerk of council and finance director; and William Hanna, law director. The meeting lasted about an hour and a half.

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Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 11:26 AM, 08.10.2021

Cleveland Heights unveils centennial mural

This year—Aug. 9, to be exact—marks the 100th anniversary of Cleveland Heights officially becoming a city. Since early 2021, 100 Year/All Are Welcome banners have decorated the city, and various activities have encouraged residents and guests to enjoy the history and beauty of Cleveland Heights. There have been walking tours, garden tours, webinars on the history of the city’s landmarks, and more.

One of the most visible projects was a competition for a mural for the corner of Noble and Roanoke roads, at the Noble-Roanoke Mini Park.

Artists submitted designs in April and May, from which a committee of community members helped make the final selection. Cleveland Heights resident Adam May’s design was the top choice, garnering the most votes.

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Volume 14, Issue 8, Posted 10:04 AM, 07.27.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council special meeting highlights 6-28-2021

JUNE 28, 2021

 

  • City manager’s report
  • Council actions
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. 

An executive session, lasting 85 minutes, was held to consider property purchase or sale and to confer with an attorney on pending court action. The regular meeting was 53 minutes.

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Volume 14, Issue 8, Posted 11:30 AM, 07.16.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 6-21-2021

JUNE 21, 2021 regular meeting

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Police chief’s report
  • Council actions
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Also, present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting lasted about one hour.

 

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Volume 14, Issue 8, Posted 11:39 AM, 07.16.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 6-7-2021

JUNE 7, 2021 regular meeting

 

  • Public comment
  • City manager’s report
  • Zoning code amendments
  • Council action
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Council President Jason Stein was excused. Also, present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna.

The meeting convened at 7:48 p.m. and ended at 9 p.m. An executive session lasting 30 minutes followed the Public Safety Committee Meeting. Another executive session following the committee of the whole lasted 20 minutes.

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Volume 14, Issue 7, Posted 11:44 AM, 07.16.2021

Park Synagogue is for sale

The spectacular Park Synagogue in Cleveland Heights, now referred to as Park Main, is for sale.

The congregation of Park Synagogue, Anshe Emeth Beth Tefilo, can trace its Cleveland-area history back to 1869, when the congregation which would become Anshe Emeth was formed. As the congregation merged with another and expanded, a number of different locations were established, including Park Synagogue in Cleveland Heights.

The original portion of this sacred structure, designed in an expressionist style by internationally renowned architect Eric Mendelsohn, was completed in 1950. The accompanying school, also Mendelsohn's design, opened in 1953, and the Kangesser wing, designed by Michael A. Gallis, with Bialosky and Manders as associates, opened in 1968. Park was one of the first two U.S. synagogues designed by Mendelsohn and it became a model for religious structures across the country.

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Volume 14, Issue 7, Posted 1:47 PM, 06.21.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 5-19-2021

MAY 19, 2021 regular meeting

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager report
  • Clerk of council report
  • Police Chief’s report
  • Council actions
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Also, present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting lasted one hour and 10 minutes.

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Volume 14, Issue 7, Posted 11:13 AM, 07.16.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 5-24-2021

MAY 24, 2021 – special meeting

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb; Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, clerk of council and finance director, and Law Director William Hanna. 

A one-hour executive session was held prior to the special meeting to cover “claims or disputes involving the public body and review of labor contract negotiations.” The special meeting lasted ten minutes.

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Volume 14, Issue 7, Posted 9:56 AM, 06.14.2021

CH residents deserve a public hearing on Meadowbrook-Lee site

Cleveland Heights citizens have not been asked what they think about the city’s (sixth) attempt to develop [the site at] Meadowbrook Boulevard and Lee Road.

My friends and I think that putting in an urban activity park (a space with a stage; an area to hold farmers markets, or food trucks; a water feature, etc.) is a good idea for the 1.07-acre space at Meadowbrook and Lee.

Many people agree—more than 668 have signed our Change.org online petition—and have joined with us to help make this happen.

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Volume 14, Issue 6, Posted 11:44 AM, 05.27.2021

CH Community Development Block Grant applications open June 3

The city of Cleveland Heights encourages eligible residents and organizations to apply for Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding, available annually. This federal program, run by the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, allocates money to eligible municipalities to be used in the areas of economic development, housing rehabilitation, and programming that specifically serves low- to moderate-income persons and neighborhoods.  

In Cleveland Heights, CDBG funding has historically supported organizations that serve the aging, the disabled, and at-risk youth; wrap-around services; housing rehabilitation programming and assistance; and business development in eligible districts.

The application period for 2022 CDBG funding will open on June 3 and close on July 15. For more information about the program, and to access the online application, visit www.clevelandheights.com/CDBG.

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Volume 14, Issue 6, Posted 11:02 AM, 05.27.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 5-3-2021

MAY 3, 2021 regular meeting

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Legislation 
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting lasted 50 minutes.

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Volume 14, Issue 6, Posted 11:42 AM, 05.27.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 4-19-2021

APRIL 19, 2021 regular meeting

 

  • Public comments
  • Chief of police report
  • Cedar/Lee/Meadowbrook
  • Council approvals
  • Consent agenda
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. This was Mr. Cobb’s first meeting. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna.. The meeting was one hour long.

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Volume 14, Issue 6, Posted 8:59 AM, 05.11.2021

CH marks centennial with events and tours

The city of Cleveland Heights will celebrate its centennial with a series of learning opportunities and events in 2021. Residents and visitors are invited to learn about the city’s history, share their own stories, and explore Cleveland Heights’ many amenities. 

Cleveland Heights officially kicked off its centennial celebration last fall, with the launch of its “All Are Welcome” campaign. It has promoted the campaign throughout the city, with window displays, bus wraps, videos, and discussions on social media.

The city has launched a new microsite, ClevelandHeights100.com, as a hub for centennial information. The site provides a detailed history of the city, accompanied by archival photos.

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Volume 14, Issue 5, Posted 10:23 AM, 04.30.2021

CH Democrats to host programs on elected mayor

This November, for the first time, Cleveland Heights voters will elect the city's mayor.

Prior to this election, Cleveland Heights has had a city council/city manager form of government, [in which city council members appointed a mayor from their own ranks]. In light of this momentous change in the city’s form of government, Cleveland Heights Democrats is planning a series of public meetings.

At its next regular monthly meeting, on May 13, 7 p.m., Cleveland Heights Democrats will feature a presentation by Len Friedson, of Citizens for an Elected Mayor.

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Volume 14, Issue 5, Posted 10:19 AM, 04.30.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 4-5-2021

APRIL 5, 2021 regular meeting

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Legislation
  • Proclamations
  • Purchases for public works
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. This was Mr. Cobb’s first meeting. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting began at 8:22 p.m. and ended at 10:14 p.m. The meeting was delayed about an hour by an executive session.

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Volume 14, Issue 5, Posted 8:49 AM, 05.11.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 3-24-2021

MARCH 24, 2021 special meeting

 

  • MetroHealth’s proposal
  • Public comments
  • Planning director’s report
  • Presentation
  • Amendment resolution
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. This was Mr. Cobb’s first meeting. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, Law Director William Hanna, and staff members Mary Trupo and Jim Lambdin.

The meeting lasted two hours, 29 minutes, not including executive session.

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Volume 14, Issue 5, Posted 9:01 AM, 05.11.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 3-15-2021

MARCH 15, 2021 regular meeting

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Police chief’s report
  • Legislation 
  • Recreation committee appointment
  • Council seat appointment
  • Consent agenda
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Craig Cobb, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. This was Mr. Cobb’s first meeting. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, Law Director William Hanna, and Police Chief Annette Mecklenberg. The meeting lasted one hour and 17 minutes.

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Volume 14, Issue 5, Posted 8:54 AM, 05.11.2021

CH City Council appoints Cobb

After more than a year, the stalemate is broken—and Cleveland Heights again has seven council members. At the March 15 Cleveland Heights City Council meeting, Council Member Davida Russell unexpectedly announced that she had concluded her preferred candidate would never be appointed and moved that Craig Cobb fill the vacancy on council.

Russell stated that she had not discussed the motion with any of her colleagues prior to the meeting, and had, in fact, decided during the meeting to make it. The regular council meeting followed a Council Committee of the Whole meeting, during which a lengthy discussion took place about a possible charter amendment regarding filling council vacancies.

Cobb said the motion came as a complete surprise to him. “I had the council meeting on in the background—not paying any attention—and then I heard my name mentioned,” he said in an e-mail.

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Volume 14, Issue 4, Posted 10:50 AM, 03.16.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 3-1, 3-3-21

MARCH 1, 2021

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager's report
  • Council actions
  • Consent agenda
  • Council member comments
  • Committee of the whole meeting

 

Present at this regular meeting were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael Ungar. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting began at 7:50 p.m. and ended at 8:30 p.m.

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Volume 14, Issue 4, Posted 1:37 PM, 03.23.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 2-16-2021

FEBRUARY 16, 2021

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Police chief’s report
  • Finance director’s report
  • Council action
  • First readings of new legislation
  • Committee of the Whole meeting

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Council Vice President Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council and Finance Director Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna.

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Volume 14, Issue 4, Posted 9:53 AM, 03.10.2021

MetroHealth expansion meeting to take place online March 4

MetroHealth will host a Zoom webinar to discuss the forthcoming expansion of its Cleveland Heights facility on Thursday, March 4, from 7-8 p.m.  

In Nov. 2020, MetroHealth announced plans to expand its behavioral health and addiction services by building on to its Cleveland Heights campus. Original plans included 110 treatment beds, a psychiatric urgent care, and specialized units.

Dr. Julia Bruner, MetroHealth's senior vice president for behavioral health operations, will discuss how the expanded facility will meet the need for increased mental health services in Cuyahoga County; and development and building team members will review the project's blueprint and timeline. A Q & A session will follow the presentations. 

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Volume 14, Issue 3, Posted 11:16 AM, 03.01.2021

LWV asks CH council to act

The Heights League of Women Voters (LWV), a chapter of the LWV of Greater Cleveland, has added its voice to those expressing frustration over Cleveland Heights City Council’s impasse on filling the council seat that has been vacant since March 2, 2020.

In a statement, read at the Jan. 19 CH council meeting during the public comments period, the Heights LWV noted that last spring, at council’s request, it conducted videotaped interviews of the many applicants for the council vacancy left by Melissa Yasinow’s resignation. Those interviews were completed April 30, 2020, but now, nearly 10 months later, no appointment has been made.

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Volume 14, Issue 3, Posted 8:04 AM, 02.23.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 2-1-2021

FEBRUARY 1, 2021

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Chief of police report
  • NOPEC grants
  • February proclamations
  • 2021 Appropriations
  • Racial Justice Task Force
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Council President Jason Stein, Vice President Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Davida Russell, and Michael N. Ungar. Melody Joy Hart was excused. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting was 45 minutes long.

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Volume 14, Issue 3, Posted 9:48 AM, 03.08.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 1-19-21

JANUARY 19, 2021

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Police chief’s report
  • 2021 budget
  • 3750 Bainbridge Road
  • Council member comments 

 

Present were Council Vice President Kahlil Seren and members Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael Ungar. Council President Jason Stein was excused. Also present were City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The virtual meeting lasted from 8 to 8:52 p.m.

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Volume 14, Issue 3, Posted 9:57 AM, 03.08.2021

Melody Joy Hart announces CH mayoral run

Cleveland Heights City Council Member Melody Joy Hart is running for mayor of Cleveland Heights. Hart was the top vote-getter in the November 2019 council election. She has served one year, and attended council meetings for more than four years prior to her election.

“I bring a strong financial background and management skills to city government, together with progressive values,” stated Hart. “I will run an effective, transparent and responsive city government.”

Hart has extensive experience as an executive. She is a CPA (certified public accountant), a CTP (certified treasury professional), and is certified in financial planning and analysis. Relationship management was a key component of her work with banks, rating agencies, vendors, and investors, developing win-win solutions for all parties.

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Volume 14, Issue 3, Posted 11:44 AM, 02.13.2021

A roadmap to electing a new CH mayor

On Nov. 2, Cleveland Heights residents, for the first time, will directly elect their mayor.

In November 2019, voters overwhelmingly approved (with 64 percent voting in favor) the Issue 26 charter amendment, changing the city’s form of government to a mayor-council structure from what had been a council-city manager form.

The new mayor—who will now be directly elected by the city’s voters, rather than chosen by the city’s council members from among their own ranks—will appoint a professional administrator to help run the city, and work alongside CH City Council.

In the lead-up to the fall election, detailed below are some key dates and provisions of the new charter amendment regarding the process of electing a new CH mayor.

The mayor: The mayor is elected in a non-partisan race every four years, beginning in 2021, with no term limits.

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Volume 14, Issue 2, Posted 12:37 PM, 01.29.2021

Cleveland Heights names new planning director

Eric Zamft is the new planning director for the city of Cleveland Heights.

In late 2020, the city conducted an extensive search for a new planning department head to take over from Richard Wong, who retired.

The city manager and human resources director evaluated the applicants, who hailed from across the country.

"I am excited to join the Cleveland Heights community,” Zamft said. "I visited friends in Cleveland Heights a few years back and fell in love with this city. To be able to move here and help usher the city into the future is a great honor and privilege."

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Volume 14, Issue 2, Posted 3:13 PM, 01.25.2021

Jan. 20 forum to explore mayor-council government transition

Cleveland Heights Council Member Melody Joy Hart is sponsoring her second forum on the city’s transition to a mayor-council form of government.

This forum, scheduled for Jan. 20, 7 p.m., will highlight the process the city of East Providence, R.I., and its community took to transition from a city manager-council form of government to a mayor-council form.

The first elected mayor of East Providence, Mayor Bob DaSilva, along with East Providence Assistant City Solicitor Dylan Conley, will share East Providence’s story with forum participants. They’ll outline the opportunities and challenges they experienced, and continue to see, under the new form of government.

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Volume 14, Issue 2, Posted 1:34 PM, 01.14.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 1-4-21

JANUARY 4, 2021

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Chief of police report
  • City manager
  • 2021 budget
  • Council member comments

 

Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, and Michael Unger were present. Davida Russell was absent. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting was 46 minutes long.

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Volume 14, Issue 2, Posted 9:57 AM, 01.29.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council special meetings highlights 12-21, 30-2020

DECEMBER 21, 2020

Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, and Michael Ungar were present. Davida Russell was absent. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting was only three minutes long.

CARES Act funds

Council amended an appropriation ordinance to increase the amount previously enacted. This was necessary to spend, by December 31, $118,000 in CARES Act funds allocated to Cleveland Heights by the Cuyahoga County Council. Unexpected retirements also increased the income side of the 2020 budget. 

 

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Volume 14, Issue 2, Posted 10:01 AM, 01.29.2021

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 12-7-2020

DECEMBER 7, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • Chief of police's report
  • City manager’s report
  • Clerk of council’s report
  • Insurance program
  • Appointments
  • Council leadership designations change
  • COVID testing event
  • Support for school funding bill
  • Appropriations
  • Vacant council seat
  • Doan Brook
  • CARES Relief Funds
  • Foreclosure penalties
  • Racial Justice Task Force
  • Consent agenda 

 

Present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael Ungar. Mr. Seren arrived late, but was excused. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna.

A thirteen minute executive session was held during the committee of the whole meeting to consider the terms of a sale or lease of city-owned property. The public meeting began at 8 p.m. and lasted until 9:30 p.m.

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Volume 14, Issue 1, Posted 10:28 AM, 12.14.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 11-16-2020

NOVEMBER 16, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager‘s report
  • Chief of police report
  • Clerk of council’s report
  • Housing code and foreclosures
  • Boards and commissions
  • Parks and recreation for 2021
  • Justice Reform Task Force
  • City finance
  • Refuse and recycling
  • Landmark commission
  • Mayor’s report

 

Present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell and Michael Ungar. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna.

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Volume 14, Issue 1, Posted 10:40 AM, 12.07.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 11-2-2020

NOVEMBER 2, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Police Chief’s report
  • Racial Task Force
  • Other council actions
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Davida Russell, and Michael Ungar. Melody Joy Hart was absent. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna.

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Volume 13, Issue 12, Posted 11:50 AM, 11.30.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 10-19-2020

OCTOBER 19, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager report
  • Clerk of council report
  • Police chief report
  • Council actions
  • Council member comments

 

Present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Davida Russell, and Michael Ungar. Melody Joy Hart was absent. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna.

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Volume 13, Issue 12, Posted 11:58 AM, 11.30.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 10-5-20

OCTOBER 5, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Police chief’s report
  • Clerk of Council report
  • Sale of bonds
  • Public works items
  • Mayoral compensation
  • October proclamations
  • Council member comments 
  • Committee of the whole meeting

 

Present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell and Michael Ungar. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting lasted 45 minutes.

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Volume 13, Issue 11, Posted 8:55 AM, 11.04.2020

Cleveland Heights launches 'All Are Welcome'

In September, Cleveland Heights launched “All Are Welcome.” Not a slogan or a campaign, the initiative includes physical reminders placed throughout the community, in the form of “All Are Welcome” window displays, bus wraps and videos, as well as discussions on social media on the theme.  

It is intended to be a celebration of the city’s diversity and a display of how much residents value its strong sense of community.

“The city of Cleveland Heights has always been a place that strives to be a city where diversity is valued, and openness, inclusivity and respect are cherished traits,” said Mayor Jason Stein.

“The ‘All Are Welcome’ initiative recommits to the ongoing tradition of our community, that we believe in the value and the importance of diversity in our neighborhoods and in our commercial areas,” said Acting City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neill.

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Volume 13, Issue 11, Posted 5:45 PM, 10.05.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 9-21-20

SEPTEMBER 21, 2020

 

  • Public comments 
  • City manager’s report
  • Police chief’s report
  • Recycling agreement
  • Mayor and administration compensation
  • Transfer of properties
  • Council member comments 

 

Present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell and Michael Ungar. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna O’Neil, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting lasted 40 minutes.

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Volume 13, Issue 11, Posted 9:01 AM, 11.04.2020

CH ballot Issue 6 is one step in transition

On the Nov. 3 election ballot, Cleveland Heights voters are being asked to vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on Issue 6—a proposed city charter amendment that reads as follows:

“Shall Article VII, Sections 3, 4, and 5 of the Charter of the City of Cleveland Heights be amended to provide that candidates for all elected offices shall file petitions with the election authorities not later than 4:00 p.m. on the ninetieth (90th) day prior to the date set for the primary election?”

Ballot Issue 6 pertains to the city’s mayoral elections—the first of which will take place in fall 2021. In November 2019, CH voters approved ballot Issue 26, a charter amendment to change the city’s government from the current council-manager form to a mayor-council form, in which residents directly elect the city’s mayor. The winning candidate in November 2021 will take office on Jan. 1, 2022.

This year’s ballot issue is intended to clarify ambiguity in the city’s charter.

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Volume 13, Issue 10, Posted 11:04 AM, 10.01.2020

Oct. 8 forum will address elected-mayor transition

On Oct. 8, Cleveland Heights Council Member Melody Joy Hart and a committee of concerned citizens will host an online forum to inform the public about the city’s transition to an elected-mayor form of government.

The forum will explain the transition, discuss the skills and traits that are desirable for an elected mayor, and seek to determine citizens’ expectation for the new government.

“This will be an important change, electing our first mayor in 100 years,” said Hart. “We need to do all we can to get it right.”

The forum will take place via Zoom on Thursday, Oct. 8, at 7 p.m., and will feature a panel discussion with University Heights Mayor Michael Dylan Brennan, Maple Heights Mayor Annette Blackwell, and South Euclid Mayor Georgine Welo.

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Volume 13, Issue 10, Posted 11:08 AM, 09.29.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 9-8-2020

SEPTEMBER 8, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • Recycling agreement
  • Police technology equipment
  • Consent agenda
  • City manager report
  • Chief of police report
  • Liquor notice
  • Council member comments 

 

Council members present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell, and Michael Ungar. Also present were Acting City Manager Susanna Niermann O’Neill, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting, held virtually online, lasted from 8:30 to 9:27 p.m.

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Volume 13, Issue 10, Posted 11:03 AM, 09.23.2020

CH council member hosts listening session

CH Council Member Davida Russell continues to learn from the community through her series of listening sessions, “You Talk - I Listen.”

Russell has scheduled the next community conversation for Sept. 19, 10–11:30 a.m., at the Front Stage Multiplex, (formerly the Regal Movie Theatre) at Severance Town Center, 3492 Mayfield Road.

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Volume 13, Issue 9, Posted 8:04 AM, 09.01.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 7-20-2020

JULY 20, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • Actions requested by city manager
  • Objection to liquor permits
  • Charter amendment
  • Consent agenda
  • Police report
  • City manager resigns
  • City manager’s report
  • Council member comments 

 

Present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart and Michael Ungar. Davida Russell was absent. Also present were City Manager Tanisha Briley, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The open meeting lasted one hour and 11 minutes. The meeting can be viewed on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gp2jCaNCQhc.

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Volume 13, Issue 9, Posted 5:33 AM, 08.25.2020

Cleveland Heights' Covid response

As communities continue adapting to the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, several organizations in Cleveland Heights are providing resources to the city's residents. To increase their impact, the city of Cleveland Heights has granted CARES Act funding to the following organizations for Covid-19-related initiatives:

The Office on Aging is conducting free wellness checks for elderly and homebound Heights residents, and continues to connect them with essential services, such as meal programs and medical care.

CHN Housing Partners launched a rental assistance program on July 15 to help households pay or defer bills, as much of the workforce remains unemployed or furloughed as a direct result of the pandemic.

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Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 9:38 AM, 07.31.2020

CH City Manager takes new position in Maryland

At the July 20 Cleveland Heights City Council meeting, City Manager Tanisha Briley announced her resignation, effective Sept. 1. She will become the city manager for the city of Gaithersburg, Md., located outside of Washington, D.C.

Mary Trupo, the city's director of communications and public engagement, sent out a news release after the meeting. In a subsequent e-mail, and updated release, Trupo announced that the current vice city manager, Susanna Niermann O'Neil, will become the acting city manager after Briley's departure, stating that council members selected Niermann O'Neil "to lead the city through the next 16 months and the final transition to a strong mayor form of government."

The city's full announcement can be viewed on the city's website, at www.clevelandheights.com/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=295

Briley has been Cleveland Heights' city manager since August 2013.

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Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 11:06 AM, 07.21.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 7-6-2020

JULY 6, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • Racism as a public health crisis
  • Council member recusal
  • Nonconsensual dissemination of private images
  • Ohio CROWN bill
  • 5G wireless
  • Consent agenda
  • Council member comments
  • City manager report
  • Chief of police report

 

Council members present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell and Michael Ungar. Also present were City Manager Tanisha BrileyClerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting began at 8:09 p.m. and adjourned at 10 p.m.

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Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 7:42 AM, 07.28.2020

CH City Council tables vacant council seat vote at July 6 meeting

Approximately one hour into its July 6 virtual Council Committee of the Whole meeting, Cleveland Heights City Council entered into executive session toas stated on its posted agenda"consider the appointment of a public official." Council has been one member short of its seven slated positions since Melissa Yasinow's resignation on March 2.

owever, no mention was made of that discussion after executive session, nor at the subsequent city council meeting. In an e-mail, Mayor Michael Stein confirmed that no decision had been made, stating that the matter "needs more discussion."

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Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 2:19 PM, 07.07.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 6-15-2020

JUNE 15, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Police report
  • 5G wireless and other legislation
  • CDBG
  • Council member comments

 

Council members present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell and Michael Ungar. Also present were City Manager Tanisha Briley, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting lasted a little over one hour.

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Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 8:33 AM, 07.13.2020

TOH breaks ground in June 24 ceremony

The city of Cleveland Heights and development partner Flaherty & Collins held a ceremonial groundbreaking event on June 24 for the newly underway Ascent at the Top of the Hill (TOH), a mixed-use development.

Cleveland Heights City Council members, city officials, the developer, and representatives from the Cedar Fairmount Special Improvement District and the Cleveland Heights-University Heights school district participated in the event.

The four-acre project site is located on Cedar Road and Euclid Heights Boulevard, just up the hill from University Circle.

Construction is expected to be completed within an 18- to 24-month single-phase construction cycle. The general contractor on the project is Cleveland Construction.

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Volume 13, Issue 7, Posted 7:54 AM, 06.30.2020

CH council appointee decision tabled until July

After the June 22 Cleveland Heights City Council meeting, Mayor Jason Stein stated that council had not yet selected anyone to fill the council vacancy.

Noting that each of the four finalists, Craig Cobb, Anthony Cuda, Robert Koonce, and Anthony Mattox Jr., had a good interview with the six current council members, Stein said, “We will take time to reflect and continue the discussion at the July 6th meeting.”

The sole agenda item on the June 22 Cleveland Heights Council Committee of the Whole meeting, which took place in executive session, was “[t]o consider the appointment of a public official.”

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Volume 13, Issue 7, Posted 12:45 PM, 06.24.2020

Russell launches 'You Talk, I Listen' series

On June 6, Cleveland Heights City Council Member Davida Russell hosted the first in a series of Town Hall listening sessions with residents of the Noble and Taylor roads community. A group of 10 Zoom participants comprised residents, business owners, and members of the faith community. More than 100 others listened on Facebook Live. Two more meetings are planned, for late June and July.

The objective of the first Town Hall was to identify concerns and issues that impact the health and growth of this area of the city, and to create a process to develop solutions.

“I live in this community and I have my own thoughts about what it needs,” Russell said, “but I feel it is important to hear what others think about what would enable the neighborhood [to] grow and prosper.”

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Volume 13, Issue 7, Posted 3:01 PM, 06.22.2020

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 6-1-20

JUNE 1, 2020

 

  • Public comments
  • City manager’s report
  • Executive session limits
  • Council voting legislation
  • Fair practices
  • Wireless infrastructure on public ways
  • Consent agenda
  • Police chief’s presentation
  • Council member comments

 

Council members present were Mayor Jason Stein, Vice Mayor Kahlil Seren, Mary Dunbar, Melody Joy Hart, Davida Russell and Michael Ungar. Also present were City Manager Tanisha Briley, Clerk of Council Amy Himmelein, and Law Director William Hanna. The meeting began at 8:37 p.m. and ended at 10:05 p.m.

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Volume 13, Issue 7, Posted 9:17 AM, 06.15.2020

CH promotes 'Shop Local Bingo' to support city businesses

As businesses reopen in-person services, the city of Cleveland Heights has come up with a gamified approach to encourage local shopping. 

"Shop Local Bingo," as described on the city's website, works just like the classic game. The scorecard, available for download, lists 24 CH businesses.

According to Mary Trupo, director of communications and public engagement for the city of Cleveland Heights, businesses were selected randomly, but "with emphasis put on diversity of locations." The first round features restaurants, bars and grocers. Trupo noted that other types of merchants will be included as more businesses reopen.

Following any line on the card, participants can purchase goods from these businesses online or in-store. They must then take pictures of themselves holding both their purchases and receipts. Per the city's instructions, "once you have a Bingo (horizontal, vertical or diagonal), send all of your pictures in one e-mail to bingo@clvhts.com, or send a direct message to Instagram (@clvhts), or our Facebook (@clevelandheightsoh) with all your pics. Be sure to attach your marked card as well!" 

Submissions will be entered into a weekly drawing to receive "a Cleveland Heights dinner/dessert/beverage/groceries experience on usa $50 value to your choice of featured businesstwo $25 gift cards," according to the site.

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Volume 13, Issue 7, Posted 12:49 PM, 05.19.2020

CH crime rates drop for 7th year in a row

For the seventh consecutive year, the incidence of serious crime in Cleveland Heights continued to drop in 2019, hitting its lowest level since the police department began keeping credible statistics in 2011.

The 71 violent crimes reported in 2019 were a 24 percent decrease from the year before. Property crimes were down slightly, at 702 compared to 714 the year before.

The number of burglaries jumped last year to 114 from just 63 in 2018. But, that’s due to a change in the way incidents are being classified, according to Cleveland Heights Police Chief Annette Mecklenburg.

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Volume 13, Issue 6, Posted 9:16 AM, 06.02.2020