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Council Meeting Highlights

Mar 04, 2024

Cleveland (March 4, 2024) - City Council held its regular meeting tonight, both in person in Council Chambers and live streamed. Council's next meeting  will be Monday, March 18th. There is no meeting on March 11th. Here are today’s highlights:

Renovating, Building New, Beautifying and Acquiring Homes in Historically Disinvested Areas: Council members approved legislation brought by Council to provide the Cuyahoga County Land Reutilization Corporation a $9,918,000 grant.

The Land Bank will concentrate on Wards 5, 10 and 14, to bring new housing construction, rehabilitation and affordability to create sustainable housing markets in the areas. Council’s grant funding will complement the Land Bank’s ongoing and separate investment in demolition, housing rehab, vulnerable population housing project and neighborhood stabilization. The Land Bank is combining millions of dollars of their own funding to support this initiative sponsored by Council President Blaine A. Griffin and Council members Richard Starr, Jasmin Santana, and Anthony Hairston. 

Gus Frangos, president of the Land Bank, and other officials attended the Finance, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee in February to highlight their work, including investing more than $25 million in Cleveland between 2020 and 2023, and more than $13 million in demolitions across the city, $6.2 million in new housing construction, and $5.2 million in housing rehabilitation. They also highlighted plans for 2024-2025 including an additional $18.2 million in demolitions.  

The $9.9 million grant will be used in these ways: 

  • Subsidize New Construction Gaps ($3,600,000):
  • Subsidize Renovation Gaps ($3,450,000):
  • Targeted Acquisition Fund ($1,720,000)
  • Home Repair / Beautification Pilot Program ($500,000)

Council members worked closely with the Land Bank, taking them on Ward tours to discuss what they hoped for their communities in terms of new or rehabilitated homes and street beautification. Ord. No. 145-2024

Pickleball Fastest Growing Sport Coming to Ward 16: Council approved entering into a  grant agreement with the Euerle Group, LLC,  to provide $100,000 in economic development assistance to partially finance renovation of a building located at 12400 Crossburn Avenue to build an indoor pickleball facility. The new facility will have 10 pickleball courts and transform what is now a long-closed, empty building. Councilman Brian Kazy, who advocated for this project, believes it will be a destination spot when it opens possibly by this summer. “This is part of the city that doesn’t see much investment,” Councilman Kazy added.

Pickleball has been sweeping the nation and is the fastest growing sport in the US. It is played with two or four players on a court similar to a doubles badminton court. The game uses an undersized net, paddles made of wood or composite materials, and hard plastic balls with holes in them. It is played both indoors and outdoors. Ord. No. 107-2024

Include Cleveland in Restored Long-Distance Routes: Council approved a resolution, sponsored by Councilwoman Stephanie Howse-Jones and later all of Council, urging the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to include Cleveland as a stop on the Detroit-New Orleans proposed route. The FRA has released its proposal to add and restore long-distance routes to enhance US passenger train travel. A newly proposed north-south route from Detroit to New Orleans currently does not include Cleveland and Columbus. Detroit-to-Cleveland and Cleveland-to-Columbus routes are critical, well-traveled corridors, the resolution states, and including these segments as part of the Detroit-New Orleans proposed rail service could provide Amtrak with an additional market to increase ridership on the proposed route. Res. No. 273-2024

Budget Gets Second Reading: Passage of the budget requires three readings but cannot be changed after the second reading. The budget must “sit” or “layover” for seven days after publication in the City Record. Ord. No. 160-2024