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Council Meeting Highlights (4/17/23)

Apr 17, 2023

(Cleveland – April 17, 2023) - City Council held its regular Monday meeting tonight, both in person in Council Chambers and through live streaming.  The next regular meeting is April 24th . Here are tonight’s highlights:

Rental Assistance and Housing Navigation: Council approved allocating CHN Housing Partners $5 million of general funds that were previously allocated for rental assistance to be used to help qualified Cleveland residents address emergency rental needs such as affordability and accessibility. CHN ultimately allocated $100 million in federal, state, county and city funds in rental assistance through the American Rescue Program Act. These general fund dollars had been preserved to allow for the post pandemic rental assistance program to help families out of housing instability and get into housing that is affordable based on their income. Ord. No. 396-2023. The $5 million will go to:

  • Security deposit, equal to one month’s rent (grant or loan)
  • Forward rent, up to 3 months (grant)
  • Direct administrative costs (grant)

Black Maternal Health Week: Councilwoman Stephanie Howse sponsored a resolution, passed by council, designating April 11- April 17, 2023, as Black Maternal Health Week in Cleveland and recognized Black Birth Matters, a collaborative partnership between Birthing Beautiful Communities, Pregnant with Possibilities Resource Center and Village of Healing for their ongoing efforts to raise awareness for Black maternal and infant health. Res. No. 491-2023

Digitizing Fire Records: Council approved spending $130,000 to digitally scan the Fire Prevention Bureau’s  Occupancy/Incident records to eliminate the need for the Fire Department inspectors to spend long hours conducting research for upcoming occupancy inspections and permitting activities. It will also allow the Inspectors to be more responsive to the business community and their inquiries concerning permits and other matters. Ord. No. 140-2023

Overhead Pedestrian Bridge: Council approved issuing a permit to the Cleveland Clinic Foundation to encroach into the public right-of-way above East 89th Street to construct and then maintain an overhead pedestrian bridge. The bridge will connect a parking garage with the new Neurological Institute Building that is currently under construction. Ord. No. 282-2023

Walgreens Bows to Political Pressure from Ohio Attorney General: Council passed a resolution, sponsored initially by Council members Jenny Spencer, Deborah Gray, Rebecca Maurer, Jasmin Santana, and Stephanie Howse and later by all of council, opposing Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost for signing the letter from Republican attorneys general to CVS and Walgreens warning against dispensing and mailing abortion pills and rebuking Walgreens for bowing to political pressure and declaring it will not dispense certain abortion pills in Ohio. Res. No. 446-2023

Reproductive Freedom and a 50% plus One Rule: Council passed a resolution, sponsored initially by Council members Stephanie Howse, Jasmin Santana, Rebecca Maurer, Deborah Gray and Jenny Spencer and later by all of council, supporting the Reproductive Rights ballot initiative, “The Right to Reproductive Freedom with Protections for Health and Safety”, that is currently collecting signatures. The resolution also calls out the hypocrisy of the state lawmakers who want to amend the Ohio Constitution to no longer allow a simple majority of 50% plus one vote of the state electorate to pass charter changes. Res. No. 447-2023