Cleveland Heights

City manager and council member address CRC

How effective is the council-manager form of government in Cleveland Heights compared to governments led by a popularly elected mayor?

That was the principal question addressed by CH City Manager Tanisha Briley and CH Council Member Kahlil Seren at the Charter Review Commission (CRC) meeting on May 17.

Seren said that he favors changing the form of city government in Cleveland Heights from the current council-manager government to a mayor-council government that is led by a popularly elected mayor, and supported by a professional administrator appointed by the mayor and approved by council.

He said that the current form of government tends to be too timid and too cautious, resulting in relatively few bold ideas and innovation. “Caution can be debilitating,” he said.

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 4:49 PM, 05.19.2018

Developers speak at CH Charter Review Commission meeting

How does Cleveland Heights compare to other local communities in attracting development?

Developer Peter Rubin and architect Paul Volpe addressed that question, and others, at the May 3 Cleveland Heights Charter Review Commission (CRC) meeting, where the two shared their opinions with commission members and others in attendance. Tom Malone, former Cleveland Heights finance director, also spoke at the meeting.

Rubin said that he considers Cleveland Heights to be a “post-maturity” city that now faces two choices. “One would be to manage decline,” he said, “and the other would be to create and execute a new vision, one that puts the community on a positive trajectory.”

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 12:22 PM, 05.08.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 5-7-2018

MAY 7, 2018

  • Public comments
  • Rock salt
  • Sanitary Sewer Overflow Control
  • Street resurfacing
  • Gun laws
  • Police radios
  • Service assessments
  • Cedar Fairmount SID
  • Complete and Green Street Policy
  • Bike Month and National Preservation Month
  • Outdoor dining lease
  • Caledonia Park playground
  • Sale of city property
  • Robert Klein
  • CHHS Alumni Hall of Fame
  • Municipal broadband
  • Police bike auction
  • Announcements
  • Immigration task force
  • Mayor attends meetings

 

Council members present were Mayor Carol Roe, Vice Mayor Melissa Yasinow, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Jason Stein, Cheryl L. Stephens and Michael N. Ungar. The meeting lasted from 7:33 to 8:25 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 1:32 PM, 05.18.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 4-16-2018

APRIL 16, 2018

 

  • Public comments
  • Street improvement bids
  • Marketing and branding
  • City’s strategic plan
  • Zamboni purchase
  • School rankings
  • Bond sale
  • Mayor Roe’s report

 

Council members present were Cheryl L. Stephens, Carol Roe, Mary Dunbar, Jason Stein, Melissa Yasinow and Kahlil Seren. Michael N. Ungar was absent. The meeting was called to order at 7:32 p.m. and adjourned at 8:45 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 2:13 PM, 05.17.2018

CH residents share views on charter review at public forum

On April 19, approximately 80 Cleveland Heights residents participated in the first community forum held by the city’s 15-member Charter Review Commission.

The meeting began with a presentation that described the current council-manager form of government in Cleveland Heights, in which seven part-time city council members are elected on an at-large basis and are assisted by a full-time city manager, whom they appoint.

The presentation also described other forms of municipal governance, including the one most common in Cuyahoga County, in which there is a popularly elected mayor, and a city council to which some or all members are elected by ward.

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 9:40 AM, 04.24.2018

Business owners Zagara and Presser speak to CH Charter Review Commission

Bud Hilf, a member of the city of Euclid’s Charter Review Commission, John Zagara, owner of Zagara’s Marketplace on Lee Road, and Steve Presser, owner of Big Fun on Coventry Road, spoke to the Cleveland Heights Charter Review Commission (CRC) at its March 29 meeting.

Hilf told the CRC that Euclid’s commission voted 6-3 in favor of changing that city’s current form of government, led by a popularly elected mayor, to one led by a city manager. He explained that Euclid’s city council subsequently chose not to place that charter amendment proposal on the ballot.

Regarding Euclid’s charter review process, Hilf noted that there was virtually no public input and, in his opinion, some of the council-appointed commission members seemed to be pursuing their own personal agendas.

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 8:56 AM, 04.03.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 4-2-2018

APRIL 2, 2018

 

  • Public comments
  • Liquor permit request
  • CDC Partnership
  • Event announcements
  • April proclamations
  • Mayfield Road signalization
  • System for ranking schools
  • Rejection of House Bill 512
  • Immigration task force
  • Cedar Fairmount plan
  • Mayor’s report

 

Council members present were Mayor Carol Roe, Vice Mayor Melissa Yasinow, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Cheryl L. Stephens and Michael N. Ungar. Jason Stein was absent. The meeting lasted from 7:36 to 8:26 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 10:10 AM, 04.17.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council regular meeting highlights 3-19-2018

MARCH 19, 2018

 

  • Swearing in of safety forces
  • Public comments
  • Community Center fitness equipment
  • Bike path striping project
  • Liquor license
  • Top of the Hill property tax agreement
  • Event announcements
  • Vacant properties and foreclosures
  • Homestead discount rates
  • Staff compensation
  • Open meetings and public records laws
  • New standing committee names
  • Beyond essential operations of city government
  • Executive sessions
  • Mayor’s report 

 

Council members present were Mayor Carol Roe, Vice Mayor Melissa Yasinow, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Jason Stein and Cheryl L. Stephens. Michael N. Ungar was absent. The meeting lasted from 7:50-8:25 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 9:30 AM, 04.17.2018

Charter Review Commission plans April 19 community meeting

The 15-member Cleveland Heights Charter Review Commission (CRC) plans to pose the following three questions to participants at its upcoming community meeting:

  • What type of government do you prefer for Cleveland Heights and why?
  • What other elements should be added or changed to improve local government?
  • What are the three most important qualities you want to see in local government?

The meeting is scheduled for April 19, 7–9:30 p.m., at the Cleveland Heights Community Center, 1 Monticello Blvd. (at Mayfield Road).

The purpose of the meeting, as stated by the commission, is to provide information about the current Cleveland Heights charter, review common models of local government, and provide an opportunity for collaborative reflection on the current form of local government in Cleveland Heights and whether changing it would improve the quality of life in the city.

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Volume 11, Issue 4, Posted 10:17 AM, 03.20.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 3-5-2018

MARCH 5, 2018

  • Public comments
  • Committee assignments
  • Cedar Lee plan
  • NOPEC electricity aggregation plan
  • NE Ohio Sewer District easement
  • City employee salaries

Council members present were Mayor Carol Roe, Vice Mayor Melissa Yasinow, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Jason Stein, Cheryl Stephens and Michael Ungar. The meeting started at 7:39 p.m. and ended at 8:06 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 4, Posted 2:03 PM, 03.26.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 2-20-2018

FEBRUARY 20, 2018

  • Public comments
  • Meadowbrook and Lee site
  • Public safety report
  • Ohio Fairness Act
  • Replacement of traffic signals
  • Top of the Hill
  • Mr. Brisket loan
  • New council committee structure
  • Mayor Roe report

Council members present were Mayor Carol Roe, Vice Mayor Melissa Yasinow, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Cheryl L. Stephens, Jason Stein and Michael N. Ungar. The meeting lasted from 7:32 to 9:10 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 4, Posted 2:12 PM, 03.26.2018

CH Charter Review Commission plans community forum

On April 19, the Cleveland Heights Charter Review Commission (CRC) will hold a community forum to invite broader citizen participation in the process of considering changes to the city’s charter.

The CRC made this decision at its March 1 meeting, its sixth, and plans to determine the time and place of the forum at its regular meeting on March 15.

Also at the March 1 meeting, Les Jones, Forest Hill Home Owners president, and Tom Wagner, Lakewood Charter Review Commission member, spoke.

Jones, a 40-year Cleveland Heights resident, told the CRC that the Forest Hill Home Owners association has worked well over the years with the city government. He said, though, that he favors changing the charter to allow citizens to elect the mayor directly, and would support changing the current at-large council to include some members elected by ward.

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Volume 11, Issue 4, Posted 10:21 AM, 03.06.2018

Cleveland Heights makes progress on economic development objectives

The city of Cleveland Heights is moving forward with its plans to redevelop two large vacant parcels within the city: the Top of the Hill site and the Lee/Meadowbrook site.

Tim Boland, the city's economic development director, presented a draft RFQ/RFP for the 1.07-acre Lee/Meadowbrook site to CH City Council at its Feb. 12 Committee of the Whole meeting, and requested council’s authorization to move forward.

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Volume 11, Issue 3, Posted 1:31 PM, 03.01.2018

Mayors and citizens share views with Charter Review Commission

During a nearly three-hour meeting of the Cleveland Heights Charter Review Commission on Feb. 15, 12 citizens spoke of their interest in changes to the way Cleveland Heights elects its leaders.

Among those who spoke were John Zagara, owner of Zagara’s Marketplace; Bill Mitchell, former owner of Mitchell’s Fine Chocolates; Kermit Lind, an attorney and professor; Bruce Hennes, a communications consultant; and Paul Volpe, an architect.

Lind told the commission that the challenges facing inner-ring suburbs like Cleveland Heights have changed dramatically in the past 40 years. “Local governments now need to be more nimble, creative, collaborative and wary of external factors that cause instability and deterioration of the physical environment,” Lind said. He also stated that Cleveland Heights government is not as effective as it once was.

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Volume 11, Issue 3, Posted 12:00 PM, 02.20.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 2-5-2018

FEBRUARY 5, 2018

  • Public comments
  • Zoning requests
  • Zoning fees
  • Top of the Hill
  • Citizen appointments
  • February recognitions
  • Council Member comments
     

Council members present were Mayor Carol Roe, Vice Mayor Melissa Yasinow, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Jason Stein, Cheryl L. Stephens and Michael N. Ungar.

 

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Volume 11, Issue 3, Posted 9:26 PM, 02.20.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 1-16-2018

JANUARY 16, 2018

  • Public comments
  • Project bids
  • Zoning code amendments
  • 2017 wage and salary ordinance amendment
  • Income tax amendment
  • Water agreement amendment
  • Charter Review Commission
  • Martin Luther King Jr. celebration
  • Mayor’s comments

Council members present were Mayor Carol Roe, Vice Mayor Melissa Yasinow, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren and Jason Stein. Cheryl L. Stephens and Michael N. Ungar were absent. The meeting lasted from 7:32 to 8:13 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 3, Posted 9:05 PM, 02.20.2018

CH Council members see no need to change form of government

Four members of Cleveland Heights City Council, who spoke at Jan. 18 and Feb. 1 meetings of the city’s Charter Review Commission (CRC), all share the opinion that the city’s current council-manager form of government is working well, and there is no need to change the city charter to allow for a popularly elected mayor.

At each of the two meetings, CRC members interviewed two of the four council members—Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Mike Ungar and Melissa Yasinow—for 45 minutes. The Feb. 1 meeting was, in effect, a continuation of the Jan. 18 meeting. Council members Roe and Ungar were interviewed at the first meeting, and Dunbar and Yasinow were interviewed at the second. Prior to the meetings, each of those council members responded in writing to a questionnaire distributed by the commission. As of the Feb. 1 meeting, council members Cheryl Stephens, Kahlil Seren and Jason Stein had not returned the questionnaire.

CRC members asked the CH council members if they believe that a popularly elected mayor would be able to lead Cleveland Heights more boldly, more decisively, or with greater vision than the current system of a seven-member council and its appointed city manager.

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Volume 11, Issue 3, Posted 10:53 AM, 02.06.2018

CH City Council identifies priorities for 2018

At its Jan. 22 meeting, Cleveland Heights City Council discussed priorities for the 2018 year. Although the members of council did not change as a result of the 2017 election, council did elect a new mayor and vice mayor at its first meeting of the year on Jan. 2, perhaps signaling a change in direction.

Cleveland Heights has a council-manager form of government, which means that the mayor and vice mayor are the president and vice president of city council, and are elected every two years by their peers on council, rather than by the public. A professional manager, who serves at the will of city council and is not elected by the public, operates the city.

Carol Roe, the city’s new mayor, is a registered nurse and licensed attorney who lives in the Noble neighborhood. She was elected to council in 2015, and is chair of council’s Administrative Services Committee.

 

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Volume 11, Issue 2, Posted 10:14 AM, 01.30.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 1-2-2018

JANUARY 2, 2018

  • New council terms
  • New mayor and vice mayor
  • New municipal judge
  • Council member comments
  • Public comment—bottled water
  • Gas aggregation
  • Civil immigration law panel discussion
  • Development projects 

 

Council members present were Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahlil Seren, Jason Stein, Cheryl L. Stephens, Michael N. Ungar, and Melissa Yasinow. The meeting lasted from 7:34-8:53 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 2, Posted 3:06 PM, 02.06.2018

Charter Review Commission surveys city council and staff

Following its second meeting, held on Jan. 4, the Cleveland Heights Charter Review Commission sent a list of four questions to city council members, the city manager, city department directors and chairpersons of its boards and commissions.

The 15-member citizen commission prepared the questions as a way to learn about needed changes to the city charter from the perspective of the city’s elected officials and top administrators.

The questions were:

  1. What parts of the Charter should be considered by the Commission, without necessarily implying that you believe a change should or should not be made? 
  2. For each part identified in Question 1, explain briefly, (a) why the item should be considered and if you think a change may be warranted, then (b) what the change should be and why.
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Volume 11, Issue 2, Posted 10:13 AM, 01.16.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 12-4-2017

DECEMBER 4, 2017

  • Public comments
  • 2018 operating and capital budget and appropriation
  • Zoning variances
  • Zoning code amendments
  • Overnight on-street parking
  • Protected liability self-insurance
  • Charter review commission
  • Cain Park entertainment programs
  • Recreation and park use regulations and rates
  • 2017 appropriations and expenditures amendments
  • City account signatories
  • NOPEC Gas Aggregation Program
  • Sanitary and storm sewer maintenance
  • Property purchase for Mayfield Road Signalization project
  • Mayor’s report and holiday wishes

Council members present were Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahlil Seren, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. Vice Mayor Jason Stein  was absent. The meeting lasted from 7:51 to 8:54 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 1, Posted 10:47 AM, 01.30.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 11-20-2017

NOVEMBER 20, 2017

  • New and promoted police officers
  • Public comments
  • Bid authorization
  • Nuisance property
  • Charter review commission
  • Recreation rates and regulations for 2018
  • Small Business Saturday
  • Budget ordinances
  • Cain Park Village security cameras

Council members present were Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Carol Roe and Michael N. Ungar. Melissa Yasinow was absent. The meeting lasted from 7:39 to 8:35 p.m.

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Volume 11, Issue 1, Posted 10:45 AM, 01.30.2018

CH Charter Review Commission to make recommendations in time for November 2018 ballot

The Cleveland Heights Charter Review Commission held its first official meeting on Dec. 7. Cleveland Heights City Council appointed the 15-member commission to review all aspects of the city’s charter and make recommendations for changes. City council will then decide which items to place on the ballot for residents to vote on.

The commission expects to submit its recommendations to council by May 2018, in time for council to place the revisions on the November 2018 ballot.

The first item the commission will address is the city’s form of government. Cleveland Heights is currently governed by a seven-member city council, with all members elected at large (citywide), and by a city manager, who is appointed by council.

Of Cuyahoga County’s 57 municipalities, only Cleveland Heights and Bedford Heights are governed without a popularly elected mayor.

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Volume 11, Issue 1, Posted 10:35 AM, 12.12.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council tax budget hearing and regular meeting highlights 11-6-2017

NOVEMBER 6, 2017

  • Public comments
  • Budget reserve
  • Refuse transfer trailer
  • Professional engineering services RFQ
  • CDBG application
  • Zoning code hearing
  • Public health services
  • Sale of K-9 officer
  • Civil immigration enforcement
  • Charter review commission
  • Correction of clerical error
  • In memoriam, Robert Dunbar
  • Election Day is November 7

Council members present were Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Carol Roe and Michael N. Ungar. Melissa Yasinow was absent. The meeting lasted from 8:02 to 8:34 pm.

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Volume 10, Issue 12, Posted 4:53 PM, 01.01.2018

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 10-16-2017

OCTOBER 16, 2017

  • Public comments
  • Playground equipment
  • ODOT
  • Washington Boulevard
  • CDBG (First Reading)
  • Transportation for Livable Communities Initiative
  • Zoning variance
  • Ambulance purchase
  • County hazards mitigation plan
  • Charter review commission
  • Liquor permits
  • Mayor’s comments

All council members were present: Mayor Cheryl Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahil Seren, Michael Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. The meeting lasted from 7:41 to 8:23 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 12, Posted 4:47 PM, 01.01.2018

CH Senior Center News

A recent article in The New York Times spoke to the benefits of dance for exercise, especially as one ages. The demands of learning new steps, the benefits of the movement, and the social engagement that occurs while dancing all contribute to increased health.

The Cleveland Heights Senior Activity Center (SAC) offers a variety of opportunities to dance. Among them is a class on Argentine tango, a social dance based on natural walk that can be enjoyed and danced by adults well into their 90s. Ann Dobyns and Charles Scillia teach the basics of the tango, and a bit about its history and the culture in which it developed.

Wes Senseman teaches English Country Dance—traditional dance and music from the British Isles.

Line Dance, taught by Gladys McGlothin, promotes physical fitness through dance exercise and contemporary music.

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Volume 10, Issue 12, Posted 10:50 AM, 12.04.2017

Cleveland Heights crime statistics for the first half of 2017

The following charts present a year-to-year comparison of serious crimes reported in Cleveland Heights during the first six months of each year, 2011 through 2017. Full-year data will be reported here when it becomes available through the Cleveland Heights Police Department’s data-management process—typically around April. 

These crime reports are not subjective. Since 2011, the CHPD has emphasized consistency with the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) guidelines—a regimented, clearly defined set of rules for classifying and reporting crime that has been updated continually since being introduced in 1930.

 

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Volume 10, Issue 12, Posted 9:52 AM, 11.21.2017

CH appoints 15 to charter review commission

At its Oct. 16 meeting, members of Cleveland Heights City Council named 15 appointees to the city's Charter Review Commision. They are: Patrycia Ajdukiewicz, Jessica Cohen, Craig Cobb, Michael Gaynier, C. Randolph Keller, Howard Maier, John Newman Jr., David Perelman, Carla Rautenberg, Vince Reddy, Maia Rucker, Allosious Snodgrass, Katherine Solender, James Vail and Sarah West.

Cleveland Heights voters originally adopted the city's charter in 1921. The document defines the organization, powers, functions and essential procedures of the city's government.

In 1972, an amendment to the charter set forth that "Council shall, at least once during each ten-year period, by ordinance or resolution, determine whether to appoint a Charter Review Commission to review the entire Charter. The first ten-year period shall end December 31, 1982. Thereafter each successive ten-year period shall commence on the date of Council's ordinance or resolution making such determination." The last time the city convened a charter review was in 1982.

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Volume 10, Issue 11, Posted 10:16 AM, 10.24.2017

CH council candidates address Noble neighborhood concerns

Noble Neighbors sponsored a Cleveland Heights City Council candidates forum on Oct. 3, at Noble Road Presbyterian Church. Incumbent candidates Cheryl Stephens, Melissa Yasinow and Michael Ungar participated, as did T. Nadas, who is running for a first term. Council Member Jason Stein, who is seeking re-election, was unable to attend and was represented by Council Member Carol Roe.

Noble Neighbors leader Brenda May opened the forum. She explained that questions had been sought from residents, winnowed down to three, and sent to the candidates in advance of the event. May noted that the area served by Noble Neighbors covers two of the city’s eight square miles and is home to more than a quarter of its approximately 44,000 residents. “The health of this part of the city is critical to the health of the city and school district,” she said.

Candidates were given time to make opening and closing remarks, and respond to the three questions: what they saw as assets and opportunities in Noble, how they would promote owner-occupancy, and how they would support the work already being done in the community.

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Volume 10, Issue 11, Posted 11:08 AM, 10.10.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 10-2-2017

OCTOBER 2, 2017

  • Public comments
  • Zoning code updates
  • Civil immigration enforcement
  • Small business grant program
  • Mayor Stephens' report

Present were Mayor Cheryl Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, and council members Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahil Seren, Michael Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. The meeting lasted from 7:55 to 8:25 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 11, Posted 12:59 PM, 11.16.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 9-18-2017

SEPTEMBER 18, 2017

  • New firefighters and police officers
  • Objection to liquor permits
  • National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
  • Domestic Violence Awareness Month
  • Welcoming City guidelines

Present were Mayor Cheryl Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, and council members Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahil Seren, Michael Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. The meeting lasted from 7:55 to 8:15 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 11, Posted 12:54 PM, 11.16.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 9-5-2017

SEPTEMBER 5, 2017

  • Public comments
  • New refuse transfer trailer
  • Banking services
  • Public service plan for Coventry Village
  • Tax proceeds

All council members were in attendance: Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Carol Roe, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow.

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Volume 10, Issue 10, Posted 11:29 AM, 09.20.2017

Forest Hill is a 'sanctuary' church

Cleveland Heights was in the national spotlight on Sept. 12 when Forest Hill Church, Presbyterian held a press conference announcing that it was granting sanctuary to Leonor Garcia, a single mother of four from Akron. The church is among a dozen religious institutions across the United States that are providing sanctuary to undocumented immigrants, and is the first in Northeast Ohio.

“My hope is to encourage more churches to declare themselves sanctuary and open their doors in hospitality to people who are in need,” said Forest Hill Church Pastor John Lentz.

Garcia came to this country as a teenager. “She was a homeowner, had a job, had absolutely no criminal record and had been checking in with immigration officials for years,” said Lentz. Then, when she checked in with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in August, for a routine meeting, she was given an ankle monitor and told she would be deported on Sept. 14.

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Volume 10, Issue 10, Posted 2:25 PM, 09.29.2017

CH City Council considers partnering with FutureHeights as city's CDC

Editor’s note: This story as originally published contained some incorrect information. That information, and the story’s headline, have been corrected and updated.

At its July 31 special Council Committee of the Whole meeting, Cleveland Heights City Council discussed legislation to vote on that evening that would declare its intent to partner with FutureHeights as a community development corporation (CDC) and enable the city manager to form a working group to flush out the details.

Council members discussed in detail the various facets of CDCs and working groups on July 31, including what the working group would do and how many members it would have. Council also opined that it would not want FutureHeights to be completely controlled by the city, if it does partner with the nonprofit.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 11:41 AM, 08.01.2017

CH to hold community meeting on Top of the Hill development site

The city of Cleveland Heights has announced the date of a public meeting to update the community on the Top of the Hill development project. The meeting, planned for Sept. 19, 7 p.m., will take place at the Cleveland Heights Community Center.

According to a statment on the city's website, the purpose of the meeting is to answer questions and receive input from residents on the project.

The city executed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with developer Flaherty & Collins Properties on July 18, and next steps are the negotiation of a formal development agreement, which will establish the specific elements of the project as well as the process the development will follow as it moves toward final approval.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 12:54 PM, 08.28.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council special meeting highlights 7-31-2017

JULY 31, 2017

  • Public comments
  • Objection to liquor permits
  • Public services plan for Coventry Village
  • Commercial loan
  • Lease change for Boss Dog Brewery Co.
  • Community development corporation working group
  • Zoning variances
  • Planning commission meeting

Present were Mayor Cheryl Stephens, Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahil Seren and Melissa Yasinow. Vice Mayor Jason Stein and Michael N. Ungar were absent. The meeting lasted from 7:36 to 8:14 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 5:47 PM, 09.03.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council tax budget hearing and regular meeting highlights 7-17-2019

JULY 17, 2017

  • 2018 tax budget presentation
  • Public comments
  • ATM Ordinance
  • Meadowbrook Boulevard waterline replacement bids
  • Meadowbrook Boulevard reconstruction project funding
  • Zoning variance request
  • Medical marijuana ordinance
  • Paris Climate Agreement resolution
  • Access Cleveland Heights cell phone app
  • 2018 Tax Budget approval
  • Mayfield Road signalization project
  • Charter commission applications
  • Cain Park Arts Festival
  • Recycling
  • Lock your cars

All council members were present: Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Carol Roe, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. The hearing lasted from 7:17–7:48 p.m. The meeting lasted from 7:59–8:38 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 5:45 PM, 09.03.2017

CH City Council votes to form CDC working group

At its July 31 meeting, Cleveland Heights City Council declared its intent to partner with FutureHeights as the city’s community development corporation (CDC) and authorized the city manager to form a working group to flesh out the details. The resolution passed 4-1, with Council Member Kahlil Seren casting the dissenting vote. Council Members Michael Ungar and Jason Stein were absent.

The legislation will take effect Sept. 4, when council returns from its summer recess. City Manager Tanisha Briley will create a nine-member working group that will have three city staff representatives, three FutureHeights representatives, and three members of the community at large. The group will discuss goals and priorities, governance, funding sources and other topics to help guide the CDC and determine the roles of the CDC and city staff.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 11:32 AM, 08.08.2017

Residents share ideas for Coventry site

On July 27, the city of Cleveland Heights held a public meeting on the potential sale and development of the Coventry School site, which includes Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Park and Playground. The forum brought together members of Cleveland Heights City Council, the city manager and the city’s economic development director, as well as residents who voiced their opinions about, and hopes for, the Coventry site.

Attendees wanted to discuss what types of development might occur, how development would impact quality of life, how much influence a developer would have, whom would benefit from the development, and consideration of any similar projects that nearby cities might have undertaken.

Tanisha Briley, city manager, assured residents that any developer with whom the city may partner will not be able to tell the city what to do with the Coventry site. Briley said that “the train has not left the station,” meaning that no official decisions on the site have been made, and noted that when they are, residents will be informed. She stated that the goal of the RFQ/RFP process was “to stimulate creativity from the development community,” and that the city had set no minimum economic impact to be generated by development.

 

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 1:06 PM, 07.31.2017

City of CH to hold public forum on Coventry school site

On July 27, the city of Cleveland Heights will hold a public meeting at 7 p.m. at the Cleveland Heights Community Center, to enable residents to voice their opinions and comments about the development of the former Coventry school site, including the Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Park and Playground. 

In the days following the public meeting, the organizations that are housed in the Coventry school building will host Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus Community Weekend, a series of events at the site, including Coventry Village Special Improvement District’s showing of the family-friendly movie "Power Rangers" at 9 p.m. on July 27, a building open house on July 28, a playground cleanup and community picnic on July 29, and the Cleveland Foundation’s “Common Ground” discussion at Ensemble Theatre, focusing on the future of the arts in Cleveland Heights, on July 30.

The public meeting is in anticipation of the release of an RFQ/RFP (Request for Qualifications/Request for Proposal) that the city will issue regarding the site’s development. The city has agreed to take into account public input prior to its release. A copy of the current draft RFQ/RFP can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 2:09 PM, 07.25.2017

City hires communications director

Cleveland Heights announced in a July 17 press release that Mary Trupo has been hired as its director of communications and community engagement.

Trupo comes to the city from Washington, D.C., where she most recently was senior advisor and director in the Office of Public Affairs for the International Trade Administration (ITA) in the U.S. Department of Commerce. She has previously worked in communications for the National Association of Realtors and the American Public Transportation Association.

The press release states that Trupo is skilled in the development of effective marketing, outreach and communication strategies. In her last position she oversaw the production, marketing and distribution of newsletters, Web content, talking points and speeches.

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 11:15 AM, 07.18.2017

Ribbon-cutting celebrates remodeled Turtle Park

On July 2, a ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrated the remodeling of Turtle Park.

Also known as the Euclid Tot Lot, Turtle Park sits on the corner of Euclid Heights Boulevard, Hampshire Road and Overlook Road. The park is designed primarily for children ages 2–5, and is known for its signature turtle structure, which sits in the middle of the park.

In March 2017, Cleveland Heights City Council approved a contract of just over $66,000 to completely remodel the park. The Cleveland Heights Parks and Recreation Department funded the work, which included installing entirely new seating, playground equipment and shading, while maintaining the park’s original layout.

Cleveland Heights residents, members of the city’s parks and recreation department, and other city staff attended the July 2 ceremony that introduced the newly remodeled Turtle Park.

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 11:23 AM, 07.17.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 7-3-2017

JULY 3, 2017

  • Public comments
  • New and promoted police officers
  • HOME agreement with HRCC
  • Top of the Hill development
  • Medical marijuana ordinance
  • Charter Review Commission
  • National Parks and Recreation Month
  • Tax budget
  • Bond anticipation notes renewal

Five council members were present: Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Kahlil Seren, Carol Roe, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. Mayor Cheryl Stephens and Council Member Mary Dunbar were absent. The meeting lasted from 7:46 p.m. to 8:14 p.m., with Vice Mayor Stein presiding.

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 2:15 PM, 07.25.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 6-19-2017

JUNE 19, 2017

  • Public comments
  • Liquor Control permit transfer applications
  • Coventry Village SID plan
  • CDBG funding
  • Sewer system consent decree and sewer rates
  • Abatement of nuisance properties
  • Charter Review Commission
  • Guidelines for emergency legislation
  • Mayor’s report

All council members were present: Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Carol Roe, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. The meeting lasted from 7:50 p.m. to 10:23 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 2:14 PM, 07.25.2017

A back-to-school refresher on the municipal court

Based upon the most recent reporting year for the Ohio Courts Statistical Report, there were 17,549 new filings, transfers and reactivations in the Cleveland Heights Municipal Court. In comparison, the municipal court in Shaker (which includes Beachwood, Hunting Valley, Pepper Pike, Shaker Heights and University Heights) had 14,320, Euclid had 10,430, South Euclid had 6,100, and East Cleveland had 5,081.

As our kids get ready to head back to school, maybe it is time for a refresher on our third branch of government, the judicial branch. For many, what goes on in our courts, and especially our local, municipal court, is unclear. At their core, our courts uphold the rule of law, resolving disputes and testing and interpreting our laws in a fair and rational matter.

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 10:46 AM, 07.17.2017

Cleveland Water to replace all CH meters by year's end

Cleveland Water has announced plans to replace all water meters in Cleveland Heights with new “state-of-the-art” automated meter reading (AMR) technology. The utility expects its Clear Reads project to be completed by the end of 2017, and stated that the new meters and their installation will not result in any additional costs to customers.

Every new meter is connected to an “endpoint,” a small battery-powered device that will read each water meter multiple times each day, then send the meter readings via radio signals to a “collector,” which then will transmit that data to Cleveland Water.

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Volume 10, Issue 7, Posted 11:35 AM, 06.29.2017

CH takes action on Arco dump site

The six-acre Arco Recycling dump, located at the corner of Noble Road and Euclid Avenue in East Cleveland, is packed with large amounts of construction debris. Concrete, wood, plaster, metal and brick from building demolitions throughout Northeast Ohio have been piling up since the dump opened in 2015.

The dump sits directly in the backyards of East Cleveland residents’ homes on Noble Road. They have complained about the dump site, not only because it is an eyesore, but because they are concerned that it could be hazardous to their health.

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Volume 10, Issue 7, Posted 11:32 AM, 06.29.2017

City Council agrees to hold public meeting on future of Coventry School site

In response to requests from Coventry Building tenants and residents, Cleveland Heights City Council decided to delay the issuance of a Request for Qualifications/Request for Proposal (RFQ/RFP) for the Coventry School site until a public hearing is held. At its Council Committee of the Whole meeting held immediately prior to the June 19 City Council meeting, CH City Council decided to remove from that evening's council meeting agenda a request from the city manager to receive proposals for the redevelopment of the Coventry School site.

At the June 5 CH City Council meeting, attorney Lee Chilcote, speaking on behalf of the Coventry tenants, stated that there was “a disconnect” between what the RFQ/RFP draft called for and what citizens had called for in 2008, when they recommended to the school board that the Coventry Building become an arts center. One of three requests that Chilcote made of council was that a public process be conducted prior to the issuance of the RFQ/RFP.

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Volume 10, Issue 7, Posted 12:26 PM, 06.20.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 6-5-2017

JUNE 5, 2017

  • New director of finance/clerk of council
  • Public comments
  • Coventry Village SID renewal
  • Civil Service Commission appointment
  • Energy conservation bonds
  • LGBT Pride Month
  • CDBG Fund agreements
  • Water and sewer rates and regulations
  • Sanitary sewer system consent decree
  • Sewer rates increase
  • Sale of Coventry School
  • BottleHouse outdoor dining
  • Zoning variances
  • Nuisance property abatements
  • Sale of K-9 officer to his handler
  • Mayor’s report

Council members present were Cheryl L. Stephens (mayor), Mary Dunbar, Kahlil Seren, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. Jason Stein (vice mayor) and Carol Roe were absent. The meeting lasted from 7:50 to 9:28 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 7, Posted 1:57 PM, 07.25.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 5-15-2017

MAY 15, 2017

  • Public comments
  • New firefighter
  • Friends of Cain Park raffle
  • New finance director/clerk of council
  • Charter review commission legislation
  • Replacement pages for city code
  • Energy conservation bonds
  • HHCC employees’ income tax allocation
  • Congestion mitigation and air-quality funding
  • National Merit Scholarship winners
  • MetroHealth “micro-hospital” at Severance
  • Top of the Hill memorandum
  • Peddlers and solicitors fees raised
  • National Gun Violence Awareness Day
  • Events announced by council members

All council members were present: Cheryl L. Stephens (mayor), Jason Stein (vice mayor), Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahlil Seren, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. The meeting lasted from 7:30 to 8:40 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 7, Posted 1:56 PM, 07.25.2017

CH City Hall and developer part ways on "Top of the Hill" project

The City of Cleveland Heights and Fairmount Properties — the private company that had been selected to develop the "Top of the Hill" site — announced on May 11 they had discontinued negotiations on the project. It was originally hoped construction of the multi-use project, located on the vacant lot at the intersection of Cedar Road and Euclid Heights Blvd., would begin in 2018.

But with this news, City Hall is back at square one, seeking a developer for the site.

Construction supplies currently located on the site are for an unrelated gas-line replacement project taking place this summer in the Cedar-Fairmount district.

Following is the full text of a letter announcing the decision. It was released jointly by ...

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Volume 10, Issue 7, Posted 7:03 PM, 05.11.2017

CH City Council initiates new agreement for Top of the Hill

At its May 15 meeting, Cleveland Heights City Council voted to authorize City Manager Tanisha Briley to negotiate a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Indianapolis-based developer Flaherty & Collins Properties to move forward with the “Top of the Hill” project.

The Top of the Hill project refers to the approximately four acres of city-owned property at the corner of Cedar Road and Euclid Heights Boulevard at the top of Cedar Hill. As a highly visible property at the gateway between the Heights and University Circle, developing this property has been a long-time goal of the city.

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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 1:35 PM, 05.16.2017

City of Cleveland Heights to increase sewer fees to comply with Clean Water Act

Once the city of Cleveland Heights institutes phase one of a sanitary sewer remediation plan, prompted by a proposed federal Consent Decree, CH residents’ sewer bills will increase. The federal government is enforcing the Clean Water Act of 1972, which requires municipal sanitary collection systems to operate without overflows during wet weather.

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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 11:49 AM, 05.30.2017

Enforcing the housing code in CH

Springtime in Cleveland Heights. We can finally get out of our homes and see the early blooms of the daffodils and tulips. Taking a closer look, we may note that it is time to get that porch painted, or maybe the chimney needs tuckpointing.  That may, in turn, lead us to wonder if our neighbor down the street is going to be getting their driveway redone. Or maybe it is not a neighbor down the street, but instead some unknown entity that owns the home, and already the grass needs cut, the broken window replaced, and the fallen gutter repaired.

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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 1:33 PM, 05.31.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 5-1-2017

MAY 1, 2017

  • Poet laureate program
  • Public comments
  • Liquor permit transfer requests
  • Heart monitor/defibrillator machines
  • Charter review
  • Proclamations
  • Rock salt
  • Equipment purchases
  • NatureWorks grant application
  • Zoning variance
  • Mayor’s comments
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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 10:02 AM, 06.20.2017

Cleveland Heights City Special Council meeting highlights 4-17, 4-24-2017

APRIL 17, 2017

  • Public comments
  • Decision regarding votes on legislation
  • Zoning variance
  • Fence permit fees
  • Outdoor dining
  • Certificates of occupancy
  • Police vehicles
  • Charter Review Commission
  • Issuance and sale of bonds
  • Professional energy service agreement
  • Reaching Heights Spelling Bee team
  • Boston Marathon
  • Gun violence
  • Mayor’s State of the City report
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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 9:59 AM, 06.20.2017

CH announces pilot program to permit food trucks

In a May 19 news release, the city of Cleveland Heights announced that it was launching a food truck pilot program in which the use of food trucks is now allowed on private property as part of an outdoor dining conditional use permit. Approval for the operation of a food truck at a business with an outdoor dining permit must be approved through the city's planning department.

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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 11:22 AM, 05.23.2017

City selects new developer for Top of the Hill

Following its announcement on May 11 that it had mutally terminated an agreement with Fairmount Properties to develop the Top of the Hill site in the Cedar Fairmount Business District, the city announced on May 12 that it was moving forward with its second choice developer, Flaherty & Collins Properties of Indianapolis.

The following is text from that announcement. Information about the Top of the Hill project is available on the city's website, under the planning and development section, studies and plans, here.

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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 9:38 AM, 05.13.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 4-3-2017

APRIL 3, 2017

  • Public comments
  • Bid received
  • Liquor permit transfer requests
  • Energy services
  • Zoning variances
  • Certificate of occupancy change
  • City charter review
  • Proclamations
  • Issuance and sale of bonds

Present were Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, and council members Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahlil Seren, Michael N. Ungar and Melissa Yasinow. The meeting lasted from 7:56 to 8:49 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 5, Posted 1:15 PM, 05.01.2017

Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 3-20-2017

MARCH 20, 2017

  • University Hospitals presentation
  • Public comments
  • Bid for pavement striping
  • Zoning code update
  • Master Plan adoption
  • Deadline extension for property tax exemptions
  • Term extension for HOME funds
  • CHPD Bicycle Auction
  • Non-bank ATM regulations
  • City employee compensation and benefits
  • CAC appointment
  • Charter review
  • Withdrawal of proposed mutual aid agreement
  • Playground upgrade
  • Active citizenry

Present were Mayor Cheryl L. Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, and council members Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahlil Seren and Melissa Yasinow. Michael N. Ungar was absent. The meeting lasted from 7:42 to 8:59 p.m.

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Volume 10, Issue 5, Posted 1:13 PM, 05.01.2017