My City Council

Email Icon
No Saved Ward
Delete Ward IconDelete Ward

No Saved Ward

Visited Pages

The following links are virtual breadcrumbs marking the 6 most recent pages you have visited on ClevelandCityCouncil.org.

*All data will be cleared once you clear your browser cookies

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.

Registrations can also be submitted:

* In person at Cleveland City Hall, Room 220, 601 Lakeside Ave. NE. Paper forms are available to register.

* If you don't want to fill out the online form below, you can download this form and fill it out and email it to publiccomment@clevelandcitycouncil.org or drop it off at Council offices. (Parking at City Hall on the upper lot is free on Monday's after 5 pm.)

Make a Comment in Person

 

Registrations to speak at a regular council meeting can be submitted between noon Wednesday and 2 pm on the Monday before a regular 7 pm council meeting. (Early and incomplete registrations are not accepted.) Only the first 10 are accepted.


Make a Comment Online

 

If you don't want to speak at a Council meeting, please submit your written comments below. 

 


Public Comments

Filter By
Housing Code Enforcement Owner Occupied
I bought an Historical property at 3234 W 43rd St Cleveland Oh 44109 in Jan 2012 and left Berea, Ohio to start my life and the property was a foreclosure from a Wells Fargo Bank. It needed lots of repairs which I’ve spent 85,000 bringing it to code. I fell in love with this old butcher shop from the late 1800s and it will be designated as a Cleveland Landmark in June 2022 or so. Since then I’m 2019 Inspector To y Baraisic had pursued me for minor violations during August of 2019 for painting and minor repairs. However none of my neighbors have been written up for their homes which are worse than mine. I have been singled out “Selective Code Enforcement” which is considered criminal and I feel this is a poor way of handling these situations with homeowners that are low income to moderate income instead of working with them. I have not neglected my property and I was cited during a time right before the weather got bad in 2019 and I was going to fix and paint the next spring which I did. I was placed in a SIP program and since then put heavily under a microscope while my neighbors and neighborhood is in great disrepair along with drug problems and gunfire and theft. Home values are low here. I have cooperated in with my attorney in the program but I am being still treated hostilely. I feel my Constitutional rights to due process are being violated and I have the right to speak at my hearings but I am silenced by Magistrate Embry and held in a continuous loop where my legal correspondence from me and my lawyers aren’t being reviewed and the progress that I’ve done not being recognized and I am being harassed by Tony Baraisic the City’s Inspector who refuses to cooperate and work along with me to help complete my program. I am not a criminal and I am not a thug. I am struggling financially and I feel that code enforcement is being abused and the authority of those overseeing it are overstepping their authority as well. My rights as a home owner are being ignored and the violations are selective and not equal for the neighborhood and others here have gone years without doing anything to their properties. I know I looked them all up. This is illegal and is code enforcement harassment. I want City Council to decriminalize code enforcement for homeowners. It’s ridiculous the way it’s being handled. Councilwoman Jasmine Santana has helped me and Community Housing Solutions has spent along with me over $45000.00 this past year alone on my home and it’s very nice. There is a couple issues I’m working on but the magistrate is not following the guidelines for the SIP docket and this is causing me to not be able to provide food on my table for me and my mother who lives with me. This isn’t supposed to be happening and there needs to be intervention with City Council. I have so much more to say and elaborate on regarding my case and all that I’ve done please allow me to tell you in person one on one. Please let me go before City Council and plead my case to you. You are the legislative body that controls and manages housing code enforcement. Please help me call me. I have been physically sick and I’ll and almost ready for hospitalization because of how I’m being mistreated. I love my home and this isn’t the way to welcome me to Cleveland.
Name: Eugene M Pate, II
|
Posted: Jun 3, 2022
Read More
Dirt bike use on city streets
I have been watching cleveland build parks for kids and young adults. Ball parks basket ball parks. Kids and young adults that have these dirt bikes have no place to ride or enjoy having fun on there bikes. An intercity dirt track that can be made from properties of vacant buildings and run by parks and recreation department. I'm an old dirt bike racer and rider and I had to travel a long ways to enjoy my dirt bike. Give the kids your adults a place to enjoy their bikes without having to brake the law. You have the tools too do this. Thanks
Name: Dana A Sanvido
|
Posted: May 24, 2022
Read More
Tax Abatement Reauthorization, Ordinance 482-2022, as amended by the Committee on Development, Planning and Sustainability. Please provide my public comment to the full City Council. Thank you.
TO: The Cleveland City Council FROM: Arthur Hargate, Ward 6 RE: Ordinance No. 482-2022 I am writing to provide public comment on the reauthorization of Cleveland’s Residential Tax Abatement program. The bottom line is the tax abatement proposed reauthorization before Council as amended by its Development, Planning and Sustainability Committee doesn’t go nearly far enough to encourage housing equity in Cleveland. The last several years of high end development in high end areas of the city has exacerbated the affordable housing crisis in Cleveland. The City of Cleveland’s (hereafter “City”) panicked efforts to increase its tax base due to population loss has functioned to increase inequity, racial segregation and income / wealth disparity. Meanwhile, developers and property managers of high end rental have gorged themselves on the largesse of the City’s taxpayers. Council should immediately end tax abatements for market rate and luxury apartments. 85% abatement in the “hot” market neighborhoods is ridiculous, entirely unnecessary and an abusive insult to those of us that pay ever increasing real estate taxes in this city. Investors and developers need no subsidies whatsoever to build high end apartments. Council should also reduce the 15 year abatement term for anything other than affordable housing. Council should provide robust incentives for home renovation and first time home ownership. Council should also end the giveaway to remote investor developers and property managers extracting the economic vibrancy from our neighborhoods in excess rents. This will serve to restore much needed cash flows to Cleveland schools, libraries and the Metroparks. Further, the Area Medium Income should be pegged to that which it is in the City itself, and the $20,000 fee to enable affordable units is absurdly low at $20,000. Tax abatements should be limited to one in a lifetime so that people cannot move from abated property to abated property and never pay property taxes in the City. This current legislation as amended isn’t transformative in terms of equity, and it can and should be. It doesn’t do enough for forgotten neighborhoods and their disenfranchised residents, and the legislation appears to still cater too much to the posh, the privileged and the powerful in our community. An unvarnished and common sense driven perspective on tax abatement is shared by many, many Cleveland residents who have witnessed the ugly, unfair and inequitable effects of this policy for decades, both at a macro and ground level. It’s time to stop catering to the well-to-do and finally do something bold with tax abatement policy to help address directly Cleveland’s two critically debilitating issues: affordable housing and poverty. Doing something bold with tax abatement policy now can create significant velocity in that direction. Conceptually the legislation of course makes sense and is long overdue, after almost twenty years of allowing the affordable housing crisis to proliferate, but even in committee Council seems to water down provisions that other major cities have had in place for years, so as to make the developers, banks and property investor elite happy. Many worthy organizations involved in making recommendations to the City appear to have also been especially tactful, seemingly to not alienate the powerful, influential and well-connected investor, developer and contractor community, as well as their ubiquitous power-broker attorneys. Are we that desperate to encourage population growth and tax revenues (other than property) that we must make the finance, investment and real estate community wealthier to an extreme while forgotten citizens in forgotten neighborhoods see their infrastructure crumble around them? The obsequious catering to profits before people was obvious in the 2020 Tax Abatement Report and the 2030 Equity Housing Plan. There were many good things in both but also monumental accommodation, as no one appears to be willing to be clear and call out the way the posh, privileged and powerful in our city have profited for decades by driving a civic agenda that has had the net effect of helping to keep poor people poor and living in costly, substandard housing. You’ve heard this from many smart people and its true: poverty is a policy choice, and it wasn’t a policy choice of our government officials here. It was a policy of the power elite in the greater Cleveland area, of which the finance, investment and real estate cabal is an integral part and driving force. It was their policy towards economic and property development that focused on the downtown playground for the well-to-do and a handful of Cleveland’s neighborhoods. It was their policy that refused to acknowledge and attack directly endemic poverty, overwhelming racism and housing discrimination in a truly effective way. It was their policy that to this day rewards rich people for catering to rich people. Every stratum of the real estate market here has been poached by investors, and as a result affordable housing is in crisis and poor people have only stayed poor. We remain the poorest big city in the United States, and every economic development decision in the City must now be viewed through the filter of this one question: what directly will this do for poor people in poorer neighborhoods in this city? That exact question must be asked of the reauthorized tax abatement policy. It is clear that our tax abatement policy and practices have contributed to both entrenched problems: lack of affordable housing and poverty, saying nothing of the money it has stripped from our schools. Increased urban density in certain “chosen” areas to get income tax revenue, other regressive taxes and retail activity never “trickles down” to actually address either problem in a meaningful way and largely just benefits the Cleveland power elite. Take a ride around Gates Mills, Hunting Valley, Chagrin Falls or Pepper Pike. Then take a ride around some of our forgotten Eastside neighborhoods and tell me this is not a fact. The income and wealth disparity in this community is as stark as anywhere in the United States, and tax abatement policy has only served to help keep it that way. The suburban elites investing in real estate and pulling the strings have done quite well in taking advantage of this tax abatement policy. Those living in Cleveland’s neglected neighborhoods have not. Yes, tax abatement is just one tool and we need to use a big tool kit to get on top of affordable housing and poverty, but tax abatement policy must be used boldly going forward in its next iteration to preferentially help Cleveland’s most vulnerable, and I ask that you focus on amending the legislation in ways that will directly do that. For too long developers, many with investment funding from outside the city, have profited handsomely building and acquiring, then becoming the property managers of high end rental. As well, we know that “vulture” investors have gobbled up tracts of cheap homes and rented them at exorbitant prices while letting them deteriorate. Developers claim they are meeting insatiable market demand for high end rental. Intuitively, this makes no sense. A far more likely scenario is that the finance, investment and real estate cabal has successfully manipulated the market by squeezing the supply side and profiting from the run up in pricing and demand. The tax abatement goodies have also been so lucrative that you have seen a proliferation of developers evolving to also become property managers of the high end rental they just built. The profitability must be staggering, and it would be wise to gain visibility to their economic model. Developers have pocketed the tax abatement, played the spread between low cost to acquire land and buildings and high rent and have extracted the economic vitality of neighborhoods in excess rent. That’s one way that poor people stay poor, and moderate income people never get ahead. Every dollar spent on excess rent flowing out of the community to remote landlords is a dollar not spent on local goods and services, so how is that wise economic development for the City of Cleveland? The market demand story is likely just another “big lie” created by crafty investor marketers. Who do you think funds the market studies that are promoting this lie of insatiable market demand for high end rental? Rentals are filled because there is little or no affordable housing that can be purchased. There is no “silver tsunami” not conjured up and mythologized by investors, and truly independent studies reveal millennials would much prefer to buy a house if they only could, rather than throw their money away on stupidly high rent. But Wall Street has invested in high end rental and made affordable housing impossible to find, so we’re stuck with paying way too much for way too little. People rent because they cannot afford to buy, because they rent and pay too much. And all the while tax abatement was a key to making that lush deal for investors, developers and property managers pay off like crazy in Cleveland. Other cities acted years ago to stem this kind of feeding frenzy by rapacious real estate investors. It also would be good to know exactly who is hiding behind those secretive LLC’s for high end rental projects or bulk acquisition of distressed homes? Investors from New York, Texas, Detroit, Hong Kong, Singapore, Moscow? We know the U.S. real estate market is a favorite for the international dark money laundering racquet. How much dark money is invested now in Cleveland’s high end rental real estate market? Would it be a good thing for the City to know that? It’s time to end the money grab by investors, developers and property managers and help average and poor people in this city. End abatements for market rate and luxury rental. Assure we know who the investors are behind each real estate development LLC. Clearly understand how their business model works. Know exactly who is benefitting, who is paying and how much for each. Assure robust public participation in the property development project planning and implementation. Provide ample protections against gentrification. Restore much needed cash flows to our schools, libraries and Metroparks. Provide highly scaled abatements that target forgotten neighborhoods and especially home renovation and first time home buyers. Give preference to owner occupied purchased homes and help lower income people get into them. Help keep seniors in their homes. Make homeownership the vehicle for wealth creation it should be in every Cleveland neighborhood. Help people first, not corporations. Cleveland can do this. One candidate for County Executive says we don’t think big enough; we don’t have enough big ideas. Here are a few. Provide plenty of living wage jobs for poor people in Cleveland. Revitalize the poorer neighborhoods, refurbished and rebuilt by minority contractors and filled with local business fed by local investors. Assure every Clevelander has housing that is affordable for them in their income bracket. Tax abatement policy can help. Please amend the legislation such that it preferentially helps our most vulnerable residents in every ward of the City. Thank you, Arthur Hargate, Ward 6
Name: Arthur Hargate
|
Posted: May 19, 2022
Read More
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
|
Posted: May 18, 2022
Read More
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
|
Posted: May 16, 2022
Read More
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
|
Posted: May 9, 2022
Read More
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
|
Posted: May 6, 2022
Read More
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
|
Posted: May 2, 2022
Read More
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
|
Posted: Apr 25, 2022
Read More
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
|
Posted: Apr 22, 2022
Read More