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Making a Public Comment

Council welcomes public comment. Fill out the online form below for your chance to make a public comment at the next regular Monday council meeting. Read the procedures for public comment.

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Public Comments

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Tax abatement
The city's residential tax abatement program is unfair and inequitable. A lot of people think that only justification for it is to expand the supply of affordable housing. So I urge you to restrict tax abatement for only that purpose. But, short of that, I’d like to recommend some specific ways the current legislation should be strengthened. First, the proposed legislation to renew tax abatement divides the housing market into three tiers — strong market, middle market, and opportunity market — with the percent of allowed abated value in each being 85, 90 and 100%. This differential is so small it’s meaningless. To have an impact, it should be something like 0% in strong markets, 60% in middle markets, and 100% in the opportunity markets. Second, there’s an in lieu of payment of $20K/unit for the affordable housing set-aside requirement for multi-family developments. That seems way too low. Developers will just pay it to reap the larger windfall of the tax subsidy. It’s also too little to allow the city’s affordable housing fund to produce a unit of affordable housing. So the amount should be increased substantially. Third, why do tax abatements have to run for 15 years? What research shows that this is the appropriate length of time? You should not be afraid of reducing the term — perhaps testing 5 years. Finally, to quality for tax abatement projects must comply with the city’s green building standard. This is a really good requirement, but the standard should be strengthened, especially for new construction. The current options are for low levels of green building certification, such as LEED Silver, which is easy to achieve with modern building techniques. At a time of climate crisis, we should be requiring new buildings to have near net-zero for energy use. In conclusion, the proposed tax abatement legislation moves the city incrementally in the right direction, but it needs to be strengthened in a number of ways.
Name: David Beach
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Posted: May 18, 2022
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Blue Recycle Cans
When the decision to give everyone 1 black garbage can and 1 blue recycle can was made, it was made with recycling being mandatory and every house. But now because I dont want to recycle, you are taking our blue cans away, but not giving us a new black one. Where will all that trash go? The stuff we used to recycle will now be in the trash. We need an additional trash can now. This is why I know people throw the extra garbage on other dump sites in the area. Also, rather than PAY a company to pick up the blue cans we arent using, why cant we just keep them and use them around our yards? It is SAVE the city money!!!!!
Name: Gregory T White
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Posted: May 16, 2022
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Complete Streets
Residents deserve & need safe streets for connecting with neighbors for walking to work for walking to the bus for playing (gasp!) in the street for riding bikes for crossing walks for block parties for building community for everything that HUMAN BEINGS DO! For far toooooo long, we’ve made it to ez to drive everywhere. We ‘ve made it too EZ to drive fast & carelessly. It’s a national issue and a local one. It’s in the best interests of the humans of this city to make drivers PAY ATTENTION by slowing down cars & trucks & allocating more space for bikes/people/scooters/etc.
Name: John McGovern
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Posted: May 9, 2022
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Street Repairs: Woda and Upper Glendale South Bound, going towards Warrensville Hts.
I am finally at a point to reach in again, as many residents have over the years. I have lived on E. 183rd since 2011. In 10 years they only patch this little street called Woda, Adlai Steven CMSD School sit on it. My neighbors and many residents have complained consistently about how bad this little street is and it's tearing up our cars. Many of us have spoke with our Council person Mr. Jones and Mr. Terelle Pruitt during both of their terms. What is the problem? Is RITA tax collection not providing the funds for resurfacing? Woda is a very short street. Every street surrounding the school has been repaired except Woda and the upper part of Glendale. Why? The residents are tired of complaining. My elderly neighbors have called and complained many, many times over the years. It is that difficult to get the fund from the RITA account to fix that street. Our taxes go up, up the services are down. Please, reply back on what plans are in place or who else do we need to complain too? In order to get WODA Ave. Not a patched up repair again, but completely replaced and resurfaced in 2022. Thank you for this space.
Name: Tansy Cowan
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Posted: May 6, 2022
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The ward I live in and the properties that should be fined because of violations. Loud music all night long, garbage cans sitting out all week long. Race related issues, mind you I am white and get picked on. Have made several complaints nothing happins.
Please look into this matters, I live across from Warner school were people are parked at night shooting guns and every thing else too.
Name: Amy
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Posted: May 2, 2022
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Proposed Ordinance 282-2022 before the Council Committee on Development, Planning and Sustainability, for the Public Hearing April 26, 2022
TO: The Council Committee on Development, Planning and Sustainablity RE: Proposed Ordinance 282-2022, Public Hearing April 26, 2022 Dear Mr. Hairston and Ms. Santana, I am writing regarding proposed Ordinance 282-2022 which comes before the City Council Committee on Development, Planning and Sustainability on Tuesday, April 26, 2022 at 9:30 am. As my wife is immunocompromised, due to the risks of contracting COVID-19 myself and putting her in danger, I am unable to attend in person but will watch the live broadcast. Although this meeting is a “Public Hearing” it is not clear if and how public comment will be heard. Because my wife Joan Hargate is a property owner who may be directly affected by the zoning proposed in this ordinance, I ask that this email letter and its inline attachment be made a part of the administrative record for this hearing. The method to do that is not clear either, so if there is a different and official way to do that, please let me know. Procedurally I find it unfortunate that these proposed zoning changes apparently went through the City Planning process without the public or potentially affected property owners being given an opportunity to weigh in. Property owners on Edgehill Rd. are directly impacted and knew nothing of this proposed change in zoning across the street from them until we received the notice of this hearing in your committee from City Council on April 15, 2022. I conveyed my thoughts on this notice and the its lack of transparency in an email to Ms. Patricia Britt, Clerk of Council, dated April 21, 2022. A copy of that email is included in the body of this email and I would like it included in the administrative record. Because I am no expert on zoning in Cleveland and the notice from Council on Ordinance 282-2022 was virtually unintelligible to me and my neighbors, I sought an explanation from City Council and the Little Italy Redevelopment Corporation (LIRC), our Community Development Corporation. The information that I was provided by both City Council and LIRC was a general overview of the need for the legislation, which was that Nottingham Spirk intended to use the MacGregor site for office space and needed the rezoning to do that. Further, it was explained that a Multi-Family zoning classification was needed to be consistent with the portion of the MacGregor parcel that sits in Cleveland Heights. I asked for a detailed explanation of the actual zoning changes compared to the existing zoning, but that information was not provided. As such, I sought advice from an architect I know so I could understand the zoning changes and potential implications. Again, I am a layperson who has virtually no understanding of these matters, so if I have misunderstood any of what is proposed I offer my apology with the hope that these matters will be made crystal clear in plain English at your Public Hearing on April 26. If the underlying need for these zoning changes is as it was conveyed to me, the proposed zoning changes appear to go well beyond what would reasonably be necessary to facilitate that need, in my opinion. First, the zoning for the MacGregor site and an adjacent parcel on Overlook is proposed to be Multi-Family with a 60’ foot height limitation, a 25’ or over 70% increase in what the zoning allows today. It would be important to know why such a zoning classification is needed for office space. It seems inappropriate, unless the zoning is needed for a much larger development project being contemplated. If such a project is being contemplated, the public should be made aware of that. As well, 60’ foot structures being built on these parcels intended to be rezoned on the east side of Overlook would be unreasonably imposing, given the structures currently on those parcels. Secondly, the zoning for the parcel directly across the street from our house and the Edgehill Townhomes is proposed to be changed from Residential-Attached (Townhouse) to a far less restrictive Residential-Industrial. This parcel is nowhere near the MacGregor site, and this proposed change is entirely inconsistent with the present uses along Edgehill Rd. Some of the industrial uses allowed under this proposed zoning classification are absurdly inappropriate, likely a function of the antiquated zoning code, nonetheless the property owners on Edgehill will be significantly disenfranchised and the neighborhood compromised if industrial uses were permitted in this strictly residential setting that contains Townhouses that are attached. Boiled down, these are my main concerns. The rezoning process and procedure fail to engage the affected public in a meaningful way early in the process. The process does not make clear how the affected public can participate. The proposed zoning in Ordinance 282-2022 goes well beyond what appears to be needed to accomplish the intended purpose as City Council and the LIRC have explained it and the proposed zoning negatively impacts property owners on Edgehill Rd. I ask that you and your committee take these comments into consideration in your deliberations on Tuesday, and I look forward to better understanding how the affected property owners can engage with City Council on this important legislation. Thank you, Arthur Hargate on behalf of property owner Joan Hargate 2327 Edgehill Rd., Cleveland Ward 6 Email to Patrica Britt: From: Arthur Hargate <arthurhargate@gmail.com> Sent: Tuesday, April 19, 2022 2:42 PM To: Patricia J. Britt <pbritt@clevelandcitycouncil.org> Cc: Blaine Griffin <bgriffin@clevelandcitycouncil.org>; Raymond Kristosik <rkristosik@sbcglobal.net>; Anthony Hairston <ahairston@clevelandcitycouncil.org>; Jasmin Santana <jsantana@clevelandcitycouncil.org>; sjohnson8@clevelandohio.gov Subject: Proposed Legislation: Edgehill Zoning Changes Dear Ms. Britt, We received the attached letter from the City regarding proposed zoning changes across the street from us on Edgehill Road in Little Italy last Friday. The letter itself is in my estimation cryptic and difficult to understand. I was able to download the proposed legislation, and as I am not an expert on zoning, it didn’t turn out to be too much help and was more confusing than illuminating. My neighbors on Edgehill Rd. are equally perplexed by the content of the attached letter they received from the City. Incredibly, the Community Development Corporation where we live, the Little Italy Redevelopment Corporation,) was unaware of this mailing or the proposed legislation. I am writing to express my concern that the communication with the community on this matter and matters like this could be clearer and more explanatory. Without spending considerable time researching this, and taking up the time of Councilpersons, it would be impossible to understand what is going on. Not everyone has the time to do that research or to break away in the morning of a weekday to attend a meeting virtually or in person. Many people are at work, and many people do not have all the skills or computer equipment available to them to do the Internet research to accumulate the background and understanding, if it is even available, much less attend a meeting virtually. Further, I don't think it's fair for residents who may be impacted by legislation like this to go into a public hearing with so little information to find out what is being contemplated for their neighborhood and react to it in real time without thoughtful consideration. Being a public hearing as opposed to a public meeting implies a legal significance that requires a high degree of diligence to its preparation. The very last thing that should happen is for a process like this to be less than conscientious or rushed in any way. The public has a right to a thorough, complete and deliberative evaluation of what is being proposed that could directly affect the quality of life in their neighborhood. In the interest of full disclosure and transparency, when a notice like this goes out it would be ideal if the information leading up to the action or meeting was provided to the potentially affected community, including an understanding of those individuals who are asking for this legislation and why. What is the legislation's purpose? What exactly do these zoning changes accomplish? What needs justify the expansive scope of this proposed zoning change? I’m sure there is substantial background information that precipitated the legislation, as it was originally introduced almost a month ago, and the public has a right to understand that information well before they are expected to react to or opine on it in an official proceeding of the City. That is what I believe true public engagement entails: proactively and thoroughly informing people early in processes so they can fully participate in development and favorable outcomes in their neighborhoods. I have requested additional information from Councilperson Griffin, and if at all possible and before the meeting on Tuesday, April 26, I ask that you consider if more detailed information can be provided on this legislation with a full explanation in plain English as to what the differences in the zoning proposed are, why they are being requested, what justifies the scope of the zoning, who wrote the legislation and who requested that it be written. Thank you, Arthur Hargate 2327 Edgehill Rd., Ward 6
Name: Arthur Hargate
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Posted: Apr 25, 2022
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Trash along roads and interstates around the city and surrounding communities
I am making a simple comment to reach out to the City of Cleveland and surrounding communities. I am a little concerned about the amount of trash along our roads and freeways and if there is anything we can do to resolve this issue before the shredders (grass cutting equipment )come out in Spring to totally multiply the trash and plastic bags polluting our medians and grassy areas along our highways. My personal opinion but I believe it s shared by many. Thanks for listening.
Name: Robert
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Posted: Apr 22, 2022
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State of the city address
Fuck you youre bullshit. Why in one of the most impoverished neighborhoods N Collinwood is the only grocery store with healthy food Daves Supermarket closing. Seriously where are our people gonna go now but to a gas station? I call shinanigans
Name: Harold j deboe
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Posted: Apr 21, 2022
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Existing Black Women Commission and Women Commission registerd name with the State of Obio.trade name and services
The City of Cleveland consideration of proper name for their pending newly found committe for Black Women. The Commission is taken and registered with the State of Ohio. Its proper to respect the name 9fvan already ecisting irganization, to do otherwise is politically disrespectful and a slippery slope of deceptive practice
Name: Kimberly F Brown
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Posted: Apr 20, 2022
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City Land Bank Disposition Policy
These are the comments, with links to resources, that I made at City Council on April 4, 2022: Cleveland City Council Public Comment, April 4, 2022 Land Bank Disposition Policy Contact Info: Marge Misak marge.misak@gmail.com 216-299-1641 Good evening. My name is Marge Misak. I’ve lived in the City of Cleveland for more than 30 years, and I directed the first community land trust here. In my current work, I provide technical assistance to the Franklin County Land Bank in Columbus as they develop a countywide community land trust. I’m here tonight to talk about what happens to land in our city, specifically, land that the city currently owns in the land bank. As council members, you are often asked to weigh in on decisions about land bank parcels. And Mayor Bibb has the intention of creating a Vacant Land Task Force to identify opportunities to – quote – “market, sell, and develop city-owned vacant lots throughout Cleveland.” I would like to suggest that, before creating a more efficient system for selling land bank lots, it’s critical that the city create an equitable policy. Such a policy would shine a light on our vision for an equitable future for all residents, especially those who are homeless or unaffordably housed. What might that take? First, know our history. We could look to Evanston, Illinois’ discrimination study that made the case for their reparations program for a good example of a historic look. Closer to home, the impact of foreclosures and abandonment have been well documented by the Vacant and Abandoned Property Action Council (VAPAC). Daniel Kerr’s book, Derelict Paradise, documents a longer history in Cleveland of urban development policies that led to displacement and homelessness. Then, what might an equitable land bank policy include? I’d like to suggest three good ideas and some places that have put them into practice: 1. First: Transition from a focus on ‘highest and best use’ to establishing criteria that prioritize neighborhoods and residents impacted by long term disinvestment and displacement. The Albany County Land Bank in New York did exactly that and has a good example of a process with those priorities. 2. Second: Prioritize land for permanently affordable housing development to address the critical shortage in the City of Cleveland, where it’s estimated that 9300 homeowners and more than 26,000 renters pay more than half their income on housing. The Atlanta Land Bank’s policies and procedures establish that priority and have followed it up – and tested it out in court – with an agreement with the Atlanta Land Trust. 3. And finally: Create a path to permanency for green space initiatives in the City of Cleveland, whether it’s for community gardens or community gathering spaces. Look to green space land trusts like those in Baltimore or Chicago for good examples. Thank you for your time and attention. I’d be happy to follow up on these issues. Resources Evanston Policies and Practices Directly Affecting the African American Community, 1900 - 1960 (and Present), 2019, https://www.cityofevanston.org/home/showpublisheddocument/59759/637382881295170000 Derelict Paradise: Homelessness and Urban Development in Cleveland, Ohio, by Daniel R. Kerr, 2011, https://www.umasspress.com/9781558498495/derelict-paradise/ Albany County Land Bank Corporation, Disposition of Real and Personal Property Policy, https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5947fe9a2994cac227744c26/t/6172cd7143237f304161d994/1634913649424/ACLB+Disposition+of+Real+and+Personal+Property+Policy+%28Adopted+October+2021%29.pdf Metro Atlanta Land Bank, Policies and Procedures, https://secureservercdn.net/104.238.71.33/v6z.7af.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/Metro-Atlanta-Land-Bank-Programs.pdf and https://www.metroatlantalandbank.org/our-programs/#programs Atlanta Land Trust, https://atlantalandtrust.org/ Baltimore: Preserving Community-Managed Open Spaces, https://baltimoregreenspace.org/wp-content/downloads/CMOSguide_000.pdf Baltimore GreenSpace, https://baltimoregreenspace.org/ Chicago: NeighborSpace, http://neighbor-space.org/ Land Banks and Community Land Trusts: Partnering to Provide Equitable Housing Opportunities Now and for Future Generations, Kim Graziani, Center for Community Progress, 2021, https://communityprogress.org/publications/land-banks-and-community-land-trusts/
Name: Marge Misak
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Posted: Apr 6, 2022
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