Latest News

'Wonderful' new gift shop opens on Lee Road

Bill Wort, owner of S'Wonderful Gifts on Lee Road.

A new gift shop has opened in the space previously occupied by Simply Charming in the Cedar Lee neighborhood. Called S’Wonderful Gifts, the store opened on Nov. 17. It offers a wide variety of items, including jewelry, plush animals, ceramics, watches, purses, soaps and nail polish.

Bill Wort, 61, the new store’s owner, has spent most of his life working at museum stores. He grew up in the Washington, D.C. area, and worked at several museums there over the years. In 2007, he moved to Sarasota, Fla., where he ran the store at the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art. Then, in December 2011, the Cleveland Museum of Art hired him to run its shop while the museum was undergoing renovations. He left after about a year.

“I have wanted to open a gift store for some time,” said Wort, who lives on Scarborough Road in Cleveland Heights. “I was looking for a place with foot traffic. Living in the area, I knew about Simply Charming, and my wife shopped there a lot.”

Read Full Story
Volume 9, Issue 1, Posted 9:56 AM, 11.24.2015

Latest News Releases

City of Cleveland Heights Thanksgiving Schedule
- City of Cleveland Heights, November 25, 2015 Read More
Jewish Federation of Cleveland Announces Creative Arts Contest Cash award and publication for winners; contest open to middle and high school students
- Jewish Federation of Cleveland, November 20, 2015 Read More
- City of Cleveland Heights, November 13, 2015 Read More
Heights Residents Invited to "Tell Your Story" November 17
- Non-Profit & Groups, November 3, 2015 Read More
Zephyr Teachout to speak on Corruption in the 2016 Election
- League of Women Voters, November 2, 2015 Read More

View more news releases

ShopCLE hits the streets—misses actual target

In some places, more copies of ShopCLE seem to be dropped on the street than on private property, as the law requires. [Photo by Sarah Wean.]

Each Wednesday for the past few months, ShopCLE, a free "shopper" publication produced by the Plain Dealer and, has literally hit the streets in Cleveland Heights. It's raising ire among residents because many copies, wrapped in thin plastic bags, don't land on private property, perhaps violating the city's littering law.

Residents have complained to city administrators and council members, saying the papers sit for days or weeks on streets and treelawns.

Section 527.09 of the littering ordinance states: "No person shall throw or deposit any commercial or noncommercial handbill in or upon any sidewalk, street or other public property."

On Nov. 2, residents Gail Larson and Carla Rautenberg complained about the haphazard distribution of ShopCLE to Cleveland Heights City Council. “If these bagged papers are not picked up and are carried into the sewers, the plastic of the bags will eventually break down and pollute Lake Erie, our drinking water,” Rautenberg said.

Mayor Dennis Wilcox asked city staff if the Plain Dealer could be cited for littering. City Law Director Jim Juliano replied: “The Plain Dealer will rely every time on its First Amendment rights [to free speech], but we also have litter ordinances, so we're in discussion [with them].”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 12:18 PM, 11.24.2015

Heights barbershoppers give back

Grant Heineman, Orion Brock, Maurice Powers and Graham Ball, gathered around James Yasinow.

As Cleveland Heights City Council Member Melissa Yasinow drove to work on the morning of Friday, Nov. 6, her mind was on her grandfather. Stuck in a hospital, hooked to machines, what would cheer him up? Blind for several years, he couldn't watch a Cavs game or enjoy a new book. What would bring some joy to this beloved old man’s day?

Meanwhile, across town, Cleveland Heights High School musicians were sitting in class, exhausted from weeks of intense rehearsals for the musical "Grease" and gearing up for a weekend with four full-length performances. If anyone had asked them to find an extra couple of hours in their day, the students would have thought they were crazy.

But then Yasinow was struck with an idea: Her Papa may not be able to see, but he could definitely hear. After a few quick phone calls, and the willing approval of school administrators, four members of the nationally recognized Heights Barbershoppers were pulled from their classes to rehearse for another type of show altogether.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 11:20 AM, 11.24.2015

Residents participate in survey on future of Severance

Participants were nearly unanimous in their support of considering Severance in the city's upcoming master plan.

A preliminary tally of responses to a survey undertaken in association with the recent FutureHeights community forum on the future of Severance Town Center showed results that most will not find surprising.

Of the 318 completing the survey, about one in 10 reported having attended the forum, and a slightly higher number said they watched the video of the event that is viewable at Nearly 80 percent reported going to Severance at least monthly (42 percent reported going there at least weekly), and, though the focus of both the forum and the survey was the future of the retail center inside Severance Circle, both were set in the context of the entire district, which includes the struggling center and the mostly viable properties outside the circle.

More than 90 percent said they went to Severance to shop, and more than 70 percent cited government services as reasons for going there. Forty-one percent reported going there to shop for groceries at Dave’s, and smaller percentages of respondents reported going there to eat, for medical services, or to bank.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 10:52 AM, 11.24.2015

Cedar Lee restaurants seek fast-track approval for parking plan

To the Editor:

As owner of Tavern Company and an active member of the Cedar Lee Special Improvement District, I’m particularly interested in the economic sustainability of the Cedar Lee Business District. After observing the area and analyzing online reviews placed by visitors to Cedar Lee, it has become clear that parking during the weekend is a major concern. If visitors experience difficulty or are unable to find parking, they are inclined to keep driving and patronize another businesses district elsewhere.

I and several other Cedar Lee business owners have developed a plan to improve the visitor experience on Lee Road through the addition of a valet parking zone along the street.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 1:39 PM, 11.17.2015

Wanderlust makes one-of-a-kind jewelry in CH studio

Wes Airgood, co-owner of Wanderlust Jewelers.

Wanderlust Jewelers specializes in one-of-a-kind, handmade pieces of jewelry, including engagement rings, wedding rings, earrings, necklaces and bracelets. Wanderlust’s owners, Wes and Heather Airgood, have lived in Cleveland Heights since 2010. They recently moved their studio from Little Italy to 12429 Cedar Road, above Starbucks in the Cedar Fairmount district.

On Nov. 19, 5–8 p.m., Wanderlust will hold an open-house event. “We want people to see what we do and how we do it,” said Wes Airgood.

Wes, 33, was born in northern Indiana. His family moved to Toledo when he was in junior high school. In 2005, he earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and then went on to the University of Georgia, where he earned a master’s degree in fine arts, with a concentration in metalwork and jewelry design.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 12:19 PM, 11.14.2015

CH Council Member Jeff Coryell announces resignation

Cleveland Heights Council Member Jeff Coryell.

Cleveland Heights Council Member Jeff Coryell announced his resignation from council, effective Dec. 31, at the Cleveland Heights Council Committee of the Whole meeting on Nov. 9.

“I will be stepping down from city council effective the end of 2015 so that I can move to Detroit and be reunited with my spouse, Phyllis L. Crocker, who was appointed Dean of the School of Law at University of Detroit Mercy in early 2014,” said Coryell.

Coryell will have completed two years of a four-year term on Cleveland Heights City Council that began in January 2014.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 12:21 PM, 11.10.2015

Elected officials comment on Nov. 3 results

On Nov. 3, Cleveland Heights voters approved Issue 53—raising the city’s income tax to 2.25 percent, from 2 percent—with 59.59 percent (7,573) voting in favor. The ordinance goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2016, to support general municipal functions and replace revenue lost through cuts by the State of Ohio. 

Cleveland Heights Mayor Dennis Wilcox, who did not seek re-election, stated, “I am thankful to the city’s voters for passing Issue 53; it’s gratifying to know people understood the issue and are willing to invest in our future. This is a victory for our [city] and for the people here. The city can continue to provide the quality of services that citizens deserve.”

Wilcox added, “Council still has to be a good guardian of taxpayers’ money, and must work to try to expand the tax base through business development and housing.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 9:51 AM, 11.10.2015

Heights Libraries welcomes new branch manager

Sara Phillips is the new University Heights Library manager.

The University Heights Library will welcome its new manager, Sara Phillips, on Nov. 16. Phillips comes to University Heights from the East Cleveland Public Library, where she served as the public services manager. She takes over the position from Aurora Martinez, who is now director of the Morley Library in Painesville.

Phillips began her library career at Heights Libraries, in September 2006, as a reference substitute and then part-time library associate.

She received her Master of Library and Information Science from Kent State University, and is actively involved in committees of the American Library Association and the Northeast Ohio Regional Library System, as well as the Ohio Library Council’s North Chapter Action Council.

“These are exciting times for University Heights, since we’ll be renovating the branch starting in 2016,” said Nancy Levin, Heights Libraries director. “We need a branch manager who is flexible and can handle logistics, among many other aspects of this extensive project.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 10:30 AM, 11.09.2015

Heights Libraries earns top rating for seventh consecutive year

For the seventh year in a row, the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library System has received the highest possible rating in Library Journal's 2015 Index of Public Library Service.

Library Journal—a national publication with a circulation of 100,000 that reports library news, emphasizing public libraries—awards it five-star rating to the top U.S. libraries each year. Heights Libraries has earned five stars in seven out of the eight years that Library Journal has published the ratings, starting in 2008.

Libraries are categorized by yearly expenditure and rated on four criteria: circulation, visits, program attendance, and Internet terminal (public computer) use. Heights Libraries circulation came in at 31 per capita, meaning that roughly 31 items were circulated for every resident in the Cleveland Heights-University Heights service area.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 12:11 PM, 11.06.2015

CH voters approve tax increase; elect Roe to city council

In the Nov. 3 general election, Cleveland Heights voters approved an additional .25 percent income tax (Issue 53), with 59.59 percent (7,573) voting in favor of the increase, and 40.41 percent (5,135) voting against it. The increase raises the city income tax rate from 2 percent to 2.25 percent.

Cleveland Heights voters elected three council members, out of a field of six candidates. They re-elected Mary Dunbar to CH City Council, and elected Kahlil Seren and Carol Roe. Seren, who had previously been appointed to council (in February 2015), to serve out the unexpired term vacated by former council member Janine Boyd, was elected with 5,080 votes. Dunbar received 6,827 votes, and Roe garnered 5,943.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 11:01 AM, 11.04.2015

Heights High fall concert features high school and middle school students

Concert Orchestra students will perform in the Nov. 20 Heights High Instrumental Music Concert. Concert Orchestra members Elizabeth Dicus, Garrett Vandall, Robert Edwards and Dane'sha Garner, (L-R) will perform.

The Cleveland Heights High School Instrumental Music Department will present its first concert of the school year on Friday, Nov. 20, at 7:30 p.m., in the auditorium of the Wiley Campus of Cleveland Heights High School, at 2181 Miramar Blvd. in University Heights. 

The performance features the Heights High Symphony, Concert Orchestra, and Heights High Symphonic Winds, as well as students in Roxboro and Monticello middle schools’ string departments. 

Before the concert, students in the high school’s chamber and ensemble program will perform from 6:30 to 7 p.m. After the concert, the Heights High Jazz Ensembles will perform, for a full evening of exciting music. 

Tickets, available the day of the show, are $3 for students and $5 for adults. Parking is available in the school parking lot as well as on the other side of Miramar Boulevard (accessible from the University Square shopping area).

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 2:54 PM, 10.30.2015

JCU football player earns national award for community service

David Porter, JCU defensive lineman, celebrates his Allstate AFCA Good Works Team trophy at surprise event on Oct. 29.

On Oct. 29, a large group gathered at John Carroll University (JCU) to surprise defensive lineman David Porter with an Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® trophy—a national award and a prestigious off-the-field honor.

Porter arrived at Don Shula Stadium under the assumption that he was attending a typical football practice in preparation for the weekend’s game against Muskingum University. Shortly after the team warm-up, however, Coach Tom Arth asked the team to take a knee as representatives from Allstate and JCU; the Blue Streaks mascot, Lobo; and family [and] friends all stormed the field to surprise Porter.

The event was orchestrated to present Porter with his Allstate AFCA Good Works Team trophy, honoring his outstanding community service involvement.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 12:49 PM, 11.02.2015

CH-UH school district selects architect for middle school renovations

The CH-UH City School District has selected award-winning Moody Nolan as the architect to design the Monticello and Roxboro middle school renovations.

The Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District has selected Moody Nolan as the architectural firm to handle the design of the Monticello and Roxboro middle school renovations.

Moody Nolan, who has received numerous awards for past design projects, was selected from a group of four firms that were interviewed by a committee of district representatives on Oct. 21. The CH-UH Board of Education will officially award the contract to Moody Nolan at its Nov. 2 meeting.

“We are excited to work with Moody Nolan for our middle school renovations,” said Talisa Dixon, CH-UH superintendent. “It became evident very quickly during the interview process that they possessed the experience and the expertise that we were looking for when considering the building designs. Moody Nolan has an impressive track record of working with schools like ours, and we are certain they will deliver top-notch designs for us.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 12:50 PM, 11.02.2015

CH-UH school district hosts partnership event for businesses and community organizations

Canterbury Elementary students Tiana Crosby and Josephine Naypauer presented to area business and community organizations.

The Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District hosted businesses, community organizations and partners for a Celebration of a New Era of CH-UH Schools event on Tuesday, Oct. 20, at Heights High.

Each school in the district was represented by the principal and two students, including Heights High students in early college, art, music and career tech programs. They shared the schools’ programming and successes with businesses and community organizations, and told their stories of development and future aspirations.

Superintendent Talisa Dixon also spoke about the district’s facilities plan and its new strategic plan, and goals for the future.

Dixon and Desiree Caliguire-Maier, the districtwide coordinator of business and community partnerships and enrichment programs, recognized five organizations for their key contributions to the development of the strategic plan, and ongoing support of districtwide programming.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 11:23 AM, 11.02.2015

What’s going on at your library?

Coventry Village Library
1925 Coventry Road, 216-321-3400

Wednesday, Nov. 4, 7 p.m.

Cedar-Coventry Author Series: Paula McLain. Paula McLain's follow-up to her phenomenal bestseller The Paris Wife follows the adventurous life of Beryl Markham, the record-setting aviator in 1920s Africa, caught up in a passionate love triangle with Denys Finch Hatton and Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen).

Lee Road Library
2345 Lee Road, 216-932-3600

Monday, Nov. 2, 7 p.m.

Alice (For the Rest of Us) featuring WCPN’s Dee Perry. 

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 10:09 AM, 11.02.2015

Heights Arts annual holiday store opens Nov. 6

A monoprint, by Lisa Schonberg.

Heights Arts is again shining a spotlight on the many accomplished artists who call Northeast Ohio home with its 14th annual Holiday Store, opening Nov. 6 and running through Dec. 30. A curated show of works by more than 80 artists and artisans, the holiday store fills the entire Heights Arts gallery on Lee Road with fine art prints, paintings, and photographs plus functional art in ceramics, glass, wood and fiber, as well as jewelry, clothing, music, handmade artist cards, books and distinctive holiday items.

“The Holiday Store offers a wonderful opportunity to shop a wider selection than we usually feature, with works by new, upcoming artists as well as new creations from Cleveland’s favorite artisans,” noted gallery manager Courtney Young. “There’s always something special and unique coming in, and because the Holiday Store is open every day—not just one weekend—it’s easy and convenient for shoppers to find the perfect gift for everyone.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:58 PM, 10.30.2015

Arts festival in memory of First Baptist pastor to premiere new play

The First Baptist Church of Greater Cleveland will hold an arts festival Nov. 13–22 in memory of Senior Pastor Martin Rolfs Massaglia, who died in February 2014. The festival will take place at the church, 3630 Fairmount Blvd., and celebrates Massaglia's lifelong devotion to the arts.

The event will feature the world premiere of “What Remains,” a new play by Max Bush, a freelance playwright and director whose plays are widely produced on professional, educational and amateur stages across the country. Bush and Massaglia were collaborating on the play at the time of Massaglia's death.

The play is about the unlikely relationship and ensuing discoveries between a talented young artist named Maggie, who is trying to plan her future after high school, and an elderly woman who hires Maggie to sort through the objects of the woman's life.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:56 PM, 10.30.2015

Chez Bozo

November 1976—exactly 40 years ago—I wasn’t doing anything I was supposed to be doing. I was supposed to be writing music, playing my music (somewhere), writing comedy, performing comedy . . . those kinds of things. I just wasn’t. I was stuck.

I used to get together with other artist friends—musicians, actors, dancers, visual artists—and we’d all commiserate about that same situation. We would usually meet in bars. In the middle of the afternoon. We all hated doing that, but there wasn’t anywhere else to meet. This was before the big coffee movement. Or, at least, before it hit Cleveland. I was living in a small third-floor apartment in some unfriendly guy’s house. Everyone else had other reasons why we couldn’t gather at their places.

But one afternoon, a few of us were sitting around a table in Chester’s, a bar on Coventry, and someone wished aloud that there would be a place other than a bar where we could all meet.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:52 PM, 10.30.2015

CH resident John Brogan publishes his first book

John Brogan at the summit of Mount Marcy in New York. [courtesy John Brogan]

Cleveland Heights resident John Brogan is only 22 years old, but he recently published his first book. In Reflection of Nature, which came out in September, is the story of Brogan’s efforts to deal with his mother’s struggles with cancer and the death of his 14-year-old cousin, who was killed when he was hit by a car when Brogan was only 10 years old.

“The book is about the adventures I took to try and seek solace,” Brogan said. “It was a way to give myself confidence that I would be able to live my life after my mom died.” 

Brogan’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in the summer of 2013. Prior to that, she had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. In January 2015, Brogan began taking trips to various national parks and forests. “I would go when my mom was able to be by herself,” he said. “It was a way to test my ability to be physically and mentally secure. And it was also a way to test my willingness to survive and adapt.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:50 PM, 10.30.2015

Heights Arts names new Haiku master

Marc Zeale, winner of the 2015 Death Match, prepares for haiku combat.

It's not every year that the Haiku Death Match rolls into town. Heights Arts's Oct. 10 competition at Dobama Theatre was a huge success, with 12 competitors from the far corners of Cleveland vying for the title of 2015 Haiku Master. Haiku topics included nature, politics, food, sex, drugs and rock & roll. Marc Zeale of Euclid captured the title from past master and NASA physicist Geoffrey A. Landis, winning the match with a haiku about the city of Cleveland. Proceeds from the event fund Heights Arts's upcoming literary events. To view a photo album of the event, visit

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:44 PM, 10.30.2015

Matt Harmon's life inspires second album

Matt Harmon. Photo courtesy Matt Harmon.

Longtime University Heights resident Matt Harmon is about to release his second album. Called Childhood Dreams, the album tells the story of a man who meets the woman who becomes his wife, and they have a child. The man starts resenting the fact that his life isn’t what he imagined it would be. He drinks too much and becomes mean. His wife eventually leaves her husband, taking the child with her. The final three songs on the album are in the voice of the child, who has grown up and has become a musician and songwriter.

The album’s story is based on Harmon’s actual life. Now 40 years old, he was born on a U.S. Air Force base in Utah, where his father was in the military service. The family then moved to England; when Harmon was three, his parents divorced, and he and his mother came back to her home in University Heights.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:40 PM, 10.30.2015

Plan ahead for stressful situations

Dr. Beth Shapiro, Ph.D. [photo: Beth Silver]

Most of us understand the importance of planning ahead and researching options for things such as vacations, major purchases and retirement. However, not many of us plan ahead for the stressful situations that naturally come with aging.

Everyone faces the stress of aging, and most of the stress is caused by loss. As time goes on, spouses, friends and pets pass away. As our abilities decline, we lose mobility, independence and options. These losses often bring with them stressful feelings of grief, loneliness, fear, resentment and isolation that have effects not only on the senior, but on the whole family.

Just as we plan ahead for other major life events, so should we plan ahead for the normal stresses of aging. “The key is purposeful planning and educating ourselves about the options before there is a crisis,” said Beth Shapiro, a clinical social worker with a private practice in Cleveland Heights.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:36 PM, 10.30.2015

Senior Citizen Happenings

Senior Citizen Happenings, sponsored by the City of University Heights, are open to all senior citizens. Events take place on Thursdays at 2 p.m. at the University Heights Library. To receive the monthly schedule by e-mail, call 216-932-7800, ext. 205, or send an e-mail to

Nov. 5:  Linda Miller recently retired after 28 years as a music specialist at The Music Settlement, and will share recollections of her work with students, most of whom were under the age of six. By her estimate, Miller influenced as many as 12,000 young lives with her teaching, singing, composing and playing, and she also spent 25 years in CH-UH public schools.

Nov. 12: Instumentalists and vocalists from the Cleveland Institute of Music, one of the country's distinguished music conservatories for both undergraduate and graduate students, will perform a concert.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:33 PM, 10.30.2015

CH Senior Center News

The Cleveland Heights Senior Activity Center, located in the CH Community Center at 1 Monticello Blvd., offers a wide variety of programming for CH residents 60 and older. The following programs are among the highlights for November:

Nov. 10 to Dec. 15, 9:30 a.m. to noon, “Diabetes Self-Management Workshop.” This free workshop for people living with type 1 or 2 diabetes covers techniques to deal with the symptoms of diabetes, appropriate exercise, information on healthy eating, appropriate use of medication, and tips on how to work more effectively with health care providers. Participants will make weekly action plans, share experiences, and help solve problems they encounter in creating and carrying out their self-management program. Space is limited and registration is required.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:31 PM, 10.30.2015

Heights Observer readers suggest new businesses

Each year when FutureHeights conducts its annual Best of the Heights Awards survey through the Heights Observer, the last question asks readers to suggest businesses that they would like to see open up shop in the Heights. Because it is an open-ended question, the responses vary widely. Some suggest specific businesses by name, others suggest an idea for a particular vacant building or business district. Still others mention how much they miss a business that has closed that they would like to see return.

In this year’s survey, readers suggested several businesses for the Cedar Lee Business District: a breakfast place, a diner, a deli, a smoothie bar, a high-end restaurant, a pet store, pet grooming and doggie daycare, a farmers market and a craft-beer bar. Readers also suggested food trucks and music at the green space at Meadowbrook Boulevard and Lee Road.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:29 PM, 10.30.2015

Cedar Center South gets a new look

Cedar Center South is undergoing a facelift. The University Heights shopping center, on the south side of Cedar Road, west of Warrensville Center Road, is owned by Inland Real Estate Corporation, which purchased it in the fall of 2013. Inland is renovating the exteriors of all of the stores, with the exception of Whole Foods and CVS.

The renovations began on July 20, and are expected to be complete by mid-November. Inland plans to hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony when all of the work is done, but no date had been set at press time.

“We are very excited to enhance the center, and we are very pleased with the cooperation from our tenants and from the city of University Heights,” said Kristi Rankin, senior vice president of Inland.

The renovations are being done by Veteran Development and Construction. Though the center has been in existence since the 19502, no one could say when it was last renovated.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:27 PM, 10.30.2015

New music store opens on Lee Road

Rick Szekelyi and Darrell Branch, owners of the new Heights Music Shop on Lee Road. Photos courtesy of James Henke.

A new music store opened Nov. 1 on Lee Road in Cleveland Heights. Called the Heights Music Shop, the store moved into the space previously occupied by Serendipity, at 2174 Lee Road.

The shop is owned by Darrell Branch, who was manager of Heights Guitars on Lee Road before it closed in March 2014, and Rick Szekelyi, a guitarist who has been involved with music for many years. Szekelyi had the idea for the store. He then contacted Cleveland Heights musician Charlie Mosbrook, who suggested that he team up with Branch.

The shop sells guitars and other stringed instruments, including banjos and ukuleles. It also sells effects pedals, strings and other accessories, and will offer lessons and provide full-service instrument repairs. In addition, it will hold workshops on such topics as songwriting and how to take care of your guitar. And it will host open-mic events. It plans to present in-store concerts by both local musicians and others who are in the Cleveland area for concerts and other events. The owners hope to team up with local arts-centered institutions to bring other programs into the store.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:24 PM, 10.30.2015

Cross-promote and your business can have its cake—and eat it, too

Cross-promotion is probably one of the most cost-effective and accessible marketing tools. When done right, it can yield lasting benefits. 

Luckily, it seems that the Heights offers a nearly unending buffet of opportunities for businesses, organizations, brands and events, so all can eat well from the cross-promotion table.

What is cross-promotion and how does it work?

The widely accepted definition of cross-promotion is “the cooperative marketing by two or more companies or institutions of one another's products.” For the Heights, I’d take that definition a little further and say that cross-promotion is “the use of existing events to earn more from what’s already here.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:19 PM, 10.30.2015

Beaumont students recognized by National Merit Scholarship program

Anna Zipp, Josie Zucca and Alena Prcela (from left).

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) has recognized the academic success of three members of Beaumont School’s class of 2016, two of whom are Heights residents. Anna Zipp (Cleveland Heights) has been named a National Merit semifinalist, and Alena Prcela (Mayfield Heights) and Josie Zucca (University Heights) have been named commended students. 

Altogether, the extracurricular involvement of these three students encompasses membership in five varsity sports teams, and 11 clubs and honor societies, including student council, Academic Scholars, and the National Honor Society.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:04 PM, 10.30.2015

Three Heights seniors are National Merit commended scholars

Hannah Smith, Graham Ball and Aviva Klein, (from left).

Heights High seniors Graham Ball, Aviva Klein and Hannah Smith have been named National Merit Commended Scholars, placing among the top 5 percent of more than 1.5 million students who took the 2014 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). About 34,000 commended students are recognized nationwide for their exceptional academic promise.

Graham Ball is active in the vocal music program. He’ll perform in the upcoming musical, “Grease,” and has had leading roles in three past school musicals. He is a member of the Barbershoppers and A Capella Choir, along with the National Honor Society and Tri-M Music Honor Society. Outside of school, he is a member of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra Choir and a church choir.

Aviva Klein is the principal bassoon player in the Heights Symphony and the Symphonic Winds, and plays the trumpet in the Marching Band and the Jazz Band.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:02 PM, 10.30.2015

Co-captain leads Heights girls soccer team in scoring

Heights girls soccer team co-captain Eryn Bernard.

Eryn Bernard, Heights High’s girls soccer senior forward and co-captain, is the team’s leading scorer, with 11 goals at the end of the regular season. The team ended its season on Oct. 15 with a 4-0 win over Brush, and a 10-6-3 record.

Bernard is backed by senior classmates Allegra Steiger, Kelly Moore, Anna Crowley, Kaila Mathis and Francesca Hadden.

The Heights team maintained a solid defense throughout the season, allowing opponents less than a goal and a half per game. The defense is anchored by juniors Emily Benson, Soli Collins, Jessa Lammert, and sophomore Lauren Iott. Sophomores Ally Boyd and Gwen Wright complete the team’s stingy back line.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 2:45 PM, 10.30.2015

Heights High students to perform 'Grease'

Junior Callie Swaim-Fox (left) and senior Flannery Jewell (right) will play Sandy, the lead female role, and senior Maurice Powers will play Danny, the lead male role.

Heights High will produce the musical “Grease” Nov. 5–7, at 7:30 p.m., and Nov. 8, at 4 p.m., in the auditorium of the temporary Heights High in University Heights. The show features a love story between two teenagers in the 1950s and will showcase student singing, acting and dancing.

More than 130 Heights High students will perform in leading roles and as members of the chorus. The lead male role, Danny, is played by senior Maurice Powers, and the lead female role, Sandy, is played by senior Flannery Jewell and junior Callie Swaim-Fox.

“I have been impressed with the students’ talent and work ethic,” said Jesse Lange, director and vocal music teacher. “And I have seen so many of the experienced students step up to mentor the less experienced students. Their leadership has been invaluable.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 2:42 PM, 10.30.2015

Heights High Options Program hosts community summit

Law enforcement representatives who attended the Heights High Options Program summit: (back row, from left) C. Randolph Keller, chief prosecutor, Shaker Heights; Detective Grafton, Shaker Heights; Police Chief Porrello, Lyndhurst; Police Chief Hammett, University Heights; Police Chief Nietert, South Euclid; Police Chief Robertson, Cleveland Heights; Thomas Roper, retired CH officer; (front row, from left) Officer Tomorrow, Lyndhurst; Lieutenant Orians, University Heights; Options student ambassadors Cherronn Hodges, Nathan Jolly, Aaron Hemphill; Investigator Berry, Cleveland Heights; Officer Mack, Cleveland Heights; and Brian Williams, Options Program coordinator.

The Options Program, Cleveland Heights High School’s alternative high school program, hosted a community summit on Oct. 8, with local law enforcement and 60 Options Program students participating. Police chiefs, detectives and officers from Cleveland Heights, University Heights, South Euclid, Shaker Heights and Lyndhurst attended the event.

Brian Williams, Options Program coordinator, explained the purpose of the event. “The community summit was designed to provide local law enforcement and our students a space to talk about community, respect and communication,” he said. “Our students had the opportunity to understand what it is like to walk in the shoes of a police officer and the officers were exposed to the success and resiliency of our students.”

The summit began with a brief welcome and introduction of all law enforcement officials, community partners, and school district central office administrators in attendance. Students and guests then attended one of three discussion sessions that were facilitated by Options Program staff, which focused on characteristics of a healthy community, respect and positive communication.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 2:40 PM, 10.30.2015

Young artists fight childhood cancer

Devin Johnson, 3, Noelle Johnson, 5, and Ruthie McFarland, 7 (from left), creating art for the Big Feelings show. Photo by Jodie Johnson.

On Oct. 6, a nontraditional art show opened at Phoenix Coffee on Lee Road. It drew a special crowd of artists, surrounded by family, friends, and customers eager to purchase pieces. Of the 20 pieces in the collection, 11 sold during the exhibit’s opening night. 

The Big Feelings exhibit is the creation of the We Hate Cancer Club, which was founded this past summer by a group of Cleveland Heights kids ranging in age from preschoolers to middle-schoolers. The goal of the exhibit is to increase awareness about, and raise funds for, children’s cancer.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 11:55 AM, 10.30.2015

How voting and holiday shopping are alike

By the first week of November, elections will be over. You’re smart enough to make your own decisions—and the community is too diverse for the small group of us who work on the Heights Observer to have any business telling you what to think.

That’s why it’s a core principle of the Observer to facilitate discussion of public issues without taking sides. The Observer doesn't endorse candidates or issues, and we don’t filter out ideas we dislike.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 11:44 AM, 10.30.2015

Article failed to mention Lee Road businesses that have opened

To the Editor:

I am perplexed by the article [in the October issue] which spelled out the businesses that have closed on Lee Road.

The article did not mention that new and interesting businesses have opened up.

  • The sandwich shop Black Box Fix replaced Sweetie Fry.
  • Momo's Kebab replaced Phiner Bistro.
  • Joey’s Italian Bistro replaced Jimmy O’Neal’s Pub.
  • In addition, the Buddhist Center is occupying a large space that has long been an eyesore since the pet store left.
Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 11:40 AM, 10.30.2015

Columnist Regina Brett to speak on Dec. 1 in free event

Regina Brett speaking at the The City Club of Cleveland.

Regina Brett, well-known inspirational columnist for the Plain Dealer and Cleveland Jewish News, and a New York Times bestselling author, will appear at Nighttown on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 6–8 p.m. The public is invited to this free evening, A Conversation with Regina Brett, sponsored by Appletree Books and Cedar Fairmount Special Improvement District.

Regina Brett is the author of God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life’s Little Detours, which has been published in more than 24 languages. She also wrote, Be the Miracle: 50 Lessons for Making the Impossible Possible, and God is Always Hiring: 50 Lessons for Finding Fulfilling Work. All three books are collections of inspirational essays and stories from the lessons life taught her.

At the Dec. 1 event, the public will have an opportunity to hear Brett talk about her life. Her conversation will reflect the ups and downs, and twists and turns everyone faces.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 11:35 AM, 10.30.2015

Church of the Saviour welcomes new leaders

Rev. Judy Wismar Claycomb and Rev. Andy Call.

In the United Methodist Church (UMC), when candidates for the ministry are ordained as elders, they agree to become itinerant pastors. This means they follow in the footsteps of John Wesley and are moved from one congregation to another, at the discretion of the conference bishop. So, when Reverend Dr. Charles Yoost announced he would retire as the senior pastor of Church of the Saviour, effective June 30 of this year, Bishop John Hopkins, resident bishop of the UMC’s East Ohio Conference, began a search for his replacement.

The result of this search was that Reverends Judy Wismar Claycomb and Andy Call were introduced to the staff-parish relationship committee for approval and, on July 1, joined Reverend Dianne Tobey Covault, to become the pastoral ministry team at the church.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 10:22 AM, 10.30.2015

Shop with a conscience at Nov. 22 fair trade festival at Forest Hill Church

Finish your holiday shopping early and feel good about your purchases at the Shop with a Conscience Fair Trade Festival on Sunday, Nov. 22, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Forest Hill Presbyterian Church.

For nearly a decade, Forest Hill Church has hosted Cleveland Heights’s Ten Thousand Villages shop for an annual day of fair trade shopping. Three years ago, it added additional fair trade vendors and opened the event to the public. This year, local artists and craftspeople will be featured as well.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 10:18 AM, 10.30.2015

Baby Gym begins season at Bethlehem Lutheran Church

Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Cleveland Heights will begin its fourth year of Baby Gym on Nov. 14, with an added feature. Along with its indoor playroom, the church will have a Baby Shop, offering gently used baby items and children’s clothing, sizes newborn to 6x. All goods and activities are free. 

Baby Gym is a place where parents can play with their children (up to age 5) in a relaxed atmosphere—especially useful during harsh Cleveland winter weather when outdoor activities are impractical or impossible.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 9:53 AM, 10.30.2015

Danay Johnson is a whirlwind of energy

Danay Johnson. Photo courtesy Jan Kious.

When Keith Johnson of Cleveland Heights checked in to the Golden Temple Villa Hotel in Siem Reap, Cambodia, in 2007, he had no idea that his life was about to change, nor did the manager of the boutique hotel, Danay Sopheakkdey. Two years later, Danay and Keith got married in a traditional Cambodian ceremony, and she moved to Cleveland Heights.

“When you come here, you start from the beginning, like a baby,” said Danay Johnson. “You don’t know about the simple things.” It took two years for her to improve her English and begin to feel comfortable living in America.

Johnson was born in a village in Kampong Cham province, Cambodia. When she was six years old her parents divorced and her father left the family of five to fend for themselves. Both of her parents’ families suffered losses during the reign of the Khmer Rouge. Her father served in the military and her mother suffered from depression and PTSD from the war years. Initially, her two older siblings supported the family, but at the age of 16 she had to stop her education and find work to support her mother and two younger siblings. She often worked seven days a week, 16 hours a day, to earn enough money.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 6:20 PM, 10.29.2015

Heights family establishes nonprofit to help bereaved families reconnect

Rebecca Meyer, age 5, in 2013, with a cache of carnival prizes. Rebecca's love of the boardwalk is the inspiration for the Nov. 15 fundraiser.

The number of families who deal with the death of a child every year is staggering. In 2012, the Make-A-Wish Foundation fulfilled 14,000 wishes for kids with life-threatening illnesses. That same year, 9,000 kids (ages 2-14) died from illness. For many, “there is a grieving family with siblings on the other end,” said Kat Meyer, Cleveland Heights resident and co-founder of Rebecca’s Gift.

Despite meaningful grief services for surviving parents and siblings, families often remain overwhelmed by the financial and logistical impacts of illness and loss. Just managing day-to-day, many are not able to see the potential benefits of taking a break, together. Mindy Stewart, LPC, pediatric bereavement specialist at Hospice of the Western Reserve, said, “Planning your first family vacation away, while living in this season of grief, may feel just as daunting or heart-wrenching as planning a funeral.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 6:08 PM, 10.29.2015

New program offers yoga for disabled adults

Judith Eugene and Sohail Ahmad.

The Loving Hands Group, a life-enrichment business based in Cleveland Heights, and Anytime Fitness, a University Heights fitness club, have teamed up to offer yoga classes for disabled adults. The yoga classes, which are free, began in August, and are held every Friday, from noon to 1 p.m.

“I call this ‘gentle yoga,’ ” said Judith Eugene, who runs both the Loving Hands Group and Loving Hands Yoga and Reiki, based at her house on Hampshire Road in Cleveland Heights. “We usually have about 10 people attend these classes, and members of Anytime Fitness can also attend.”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 5:54 PM, 10.29.2015

GrowingHeights is working for the monarch

Augustina Odenbrett, Taron Wright, and David Mackenzie.

GrowingHeights, in partnership with a local AmeriCorps program, made some sweeping changes to the butterfly gardens on the corners of Cedar Hill and Euclid Heights Boulevard. The group set to work to both beautify and benefit greenspace, and to save the butterflies.

The collaboration is meant to impact AmeriCorps members' nearby neighborhoods through environmental service and educational opportunities. The Cleveland Heights cohort of GLISTEN AmeriCorps members is coordinated by Augustina Odenbrett, and all Cleveland Heights AmeriCorps members are CH-UH high school students. GLISTEN stands for Great Lakes Innovative Stewardship Through Education Network.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 5:44 PM, 10.29.2015

Candidates address Noble neighborhood concerns at Meet the Candidates event

Attendees talking after the Noble Neighbors candidates forum.

More than 100 people attended the Noble Neighbors candidates forum on Oct. 6 at Noble Road Presbyterian Church. Neighborhood leader Brenda May moderated the discussion, which focused on issues affecting the Noble quadrant of Cleveland Heights—the parts of the city north and east of Taylor and Mayfield roads. The six candidates running for three seats on Cleveland Heights City Council and the three candidates running for two seats on the Cleveland Heights-University Heights school board all participated.

May opened the discussion by noting that, while the candidates were being asked to focus on issues affecting the northern part of the city, the challenges facing Noble have an impact on the entire community. She then set out the format for the evening, in which candidates would make brief opening and closing statements and address, in one- or two-minute time frames, questions they had been given in advance. Audience members were asked to listen politely, and, although there was no opportunity for the audience to ask questions during the formal part of the event, all of the candidates were available afterward for one-on-one conversations.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 5:21 PM, 10.29.2015

End remote-control education

Susie Kaeser

My friend has a remote control for her gas fireplace—the epitome of luxury. Curl up on the couch, pick up a good book, click the remote, and you have instant fire and comfort. Clickers are great for making instant and inconsequential decisions, such as whether to watch TV, listen to music or enjoy a fire.

Politicians, though, have decided that to be educated now means to pass an unreliable standardized test and, through a program of education reform that focuses on testing to make serious decisions about children, teachers, schools and money, are using a remote-control approach to improving schools.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:03 PM, 10.29.2015

Making Ohio a Right to Work state would weaken Cleveland Heights Teachers Union

Think about these three scenarios regarding buying an ice cream sundae:

  • The first person gets a sundae with a cherry on top and pays full price.
  • The second gets a sundae, doesn’t want the cherry, and pays full price. In fairness, the ice cream clerk rebates five cents for not taking a cherry.
  • The third gets a sundae, doesn’t want the cherry, and refuses to pay anything.

These three situations exemplify the laws in different states pertaining to collective bargaining agreements.

Paying full price are union members. They pay dues and are represented in their relationship with their employer, and with their state and national parent organizations.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 2:58 PM, 10.29.2015

Bier is featured speaker at annual meeting of Forest Hill homeowners

Tom Bier

Thomas Bier, senior fellow at Cleveland State University’s Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs, will be the keynote speaker at the annual meeting of the Forest Hill Home Owners Association (FHHO) on Tuesday, Nov. 10. The meeting will take place at McGregor Home, 14900 Private Drive.

This meeting is free and open to all residents of the Forest Hill subdivision. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.; light refreshments will be served. The meeting will be called to order at 7:15 p.m. and will include a review of FHHO business, Bier’s keynote address, and open discussion on current FHHO initiatives and future plans for Forest Hill.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 2:48 PM, 10.29.2015

Passage of Issue 8 is critical to the Heights and the county

On Nov. 3, Cuyahoga County voters will have the opportunity to continue to invest in Cuyahoga County’s critical arts and culture community by renewing the penny-and-a-half per cigarette tax they originally approved in 2006. In the decade since voters passed the levy by a resounding 57 percent, our arts and culture sector has helped fuel Cuyahoga County’s revitalization.

Since grants funded by the arts and culture levy were distributed in 2007, more than $125 million has been awarded for operations and projects to more than 300 organizations operating at more than 2,500 locations in every corner of the county. These include everything from museums and cultural institutions to small community theaters, nonprofit galleries, nature centers and much more.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 2:46 PM, 10.28.2015

Severance Town Center's future discussed at public forum

Participants share their ideas for Severance in breakout groups. Photo by Deanna Bremer Fisher.

Severance Town Center—the shopping center located at the intersection of Mayfield and Taylor roads in Cleveland Heights—has been deteriorating for much of the past decade. On Oct. 21, about 200 people attended a forum at the Cleveland Heights Community Center to discuss the future possibilities of Severance.

FutureHeights presented the forum, which featured presentations by five people, including three members of the FutureHeights Civic Engagement Committee. The forum’s attendees also shared their thoughts about what could be done with the Severance area.

Vince Reddy, a project manager at LAND studio and a member of the FutureHeights Board of Directors, opened the program by giving the history of Severance.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 10:27 AM, 10.27.2015

City takes step in the right direction for water in Cleveland Heights

On Sept. 21, Cleveland Heights City Council authorized City Manager Tanisha Briley to negotiate an agreement with the Cleveland Water Division. The vote was unanimous among the six council members present. (Melissa Yasinow was absent.)

The City of Cleveland Heights has taken a significant and potentially historic step.

For the past 110 years, since the introduction of piped water and indoor plumbing, Cleveland Heights has been a master meter community. This means the city has purchased water from Cleveland and resold it at a marked-up rate to residents and businesses. Unlike tax increases, which must be approved by voters, and service fees, which are authorized by city council, water rates can be raised at the discretion of the city manager and her staff.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 9:27 AM, 10.27.2015

University Heights will accept applications to fill council vacancy beginning Nov. 5

On Nov. 5, University Heights City Council will begin accepting letters of interest and resumes to fill a vacancy on council that will occur on Jan. 1, 2016. University Heights has four city council seats open for the Nov. 3 election, for which only three candidates submitted petitions. Vice Mayor Susan D. Pardee has announced that residents of University Heights who wish to be considered for appointment to the open position are invited to send letters of interest and resumes to City Hall, c/o Clerk of Council Kelly M. Thomas, 2300 Warrensville Center Road, University Heights, Ohio, 44118, or by e-mail to Letters of interest and resumes will be accepted until 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 19.

The city charter gives council 30 days to fill the vacancy after Jan. 1, 2016; otherwise, the Mayor is responsible for the appointment. Because the vacancy is established following the results of the Nov. 3 election, city council will accept letters of interest and resumes between Nov. 5 and Nov. 19. City council will acknowledge each application and provide opportunity for interviews with selected candidates.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 1:55 PM, 10.22.2015

Boulevard Neighbors plans Nov. 4 community meeting on safety

Boulevard Neighbors, one of Cleveland Heights’s newest community associations, invites residents to its next community meeting, Improving Safety in Our Neighborhood, on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 7 p.m., at Temple Beth El, 3246 DeSota Ave.

Officer Andrew Watkins, of the Cleveland Heights Police Department’s Community Response Team, will address questions raised by members of Boulevard Neighbors in previous meetings, including providing information about the Block Watch program, and will also take questions from those in attendance. 

Boulevard Neighbors comprises streets around Boulevard School, from Mayfield Road to Berkeley Road (north to south), and Taylor Road on the east to Lee and Cumberland roads (east to west).

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 10:10 AM, 10.27.2015

Candidates should follow law on political sign placement

To the Editor:

I recently concluded attendance at the Cleveland Heights Citizen’s Police Academy. What a wonderful learning opportunity this experience was. My mind was stretched as I gained an understanding of the work of our police department.

At the first class of the academy, we were taught the definition of “crime.” A crime is anything that breaks a law. Things are legal or they are not legal, based on statutes in the criminal code and ordinances.

Citizens are held to the standard of following laws. One does not need to know specific legality of an issue to be required to obey all laws. Laws are created in
response to a specific situation. Once a law is written, compliance is mandatory.

This brings me to the issue of political signs in Cleveland Heights. The statute addressing temporary signs states in part “. . . All yard signs must be placed parallel to the street adjoining the yard upon which they are placed and must be set back at least 20 feet from the nearest edge of the sidewalk . . .”

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 3:16 PM, 10.26.2015

CH City Council candidate Julie Love deserves consideration

To the Editor:

I’ve been a Cleveland Heights resident for over 35 years, and this year is the first time that I’ve noticed such general interest in a city council race. I would like to thank all of the candidates who are offering to serve our city. I’ve attended several events where candidates offered their views on how to advance Cleveland Heights. We are indeed fortunate to have so many candidates devoted to our city. 

I conclude that candidate Julie Love more than deserves our serious consideration. She analyzed CH financial statements and recommended a different choice for voters. Using her training as a certified public accountant, she offers us a viewpoint that is unique. Unlike all of the other candidates (or existing council members), she opposes an income tax increase at this time. She has taken a courageous stand, since it will be CH voters who will make the final decision in November, not city council. I agree with her that a tax increase will not be effective at “protecting” the city, as some people have argued.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 11:39 AM, 10.21.2015

Planning commission approves adaptive reuse for Grace Lutheran Church

The landmark Grace Lutheran Church.(source: Grace Lutheran)

At its October meeting, the Cleveland Heights Planning Commission conditionally approved the adaptive reuse of the landmark Grace Lutheran Church, 13001 Cedar Road, as an office for Horizon Health Services, a home health care provider, which plans to move from smaller quarters near Shaker Square. Grace Lutheran, which moved to Cleveland Heights from East 55th Street in Cleveland in 1927, had been searching for a buyer for its property; the mostly older congregation had dwindled in size to fewer than 100 active members. Previously, a developer who had been interested in redeveloping the property for residential uses withdrew his offer after it became apparent it would be necessary to demolish the church to make the project work financially.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 10:06 AM, 10.20.2015

Mayor Wilcox urges CH voters to vote for Issue 53

Over the past four years, the state of Ohio has slashed the state’s local government fund and eliminated the inheritance tax that resulted in $7 million in cuts to the City of Cleveland Heights budget, leaving the city with a significant financial hole. We currently face a $2.6 million deficit for our 2016 budget. 

We have done our best to offset these losses through belt tightening, staffing cuts and regional cooperation. In the past decade we have reduced our staff by about 19 percent and since 2007 by 15 percent—or about 100 employees in total. In 2014 and 2015 we have taken many actions to cut our budget—and find efficiencies.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 10:13 AM, 10.20.2015

CH council candidate Nadas explains "change of heart" in now supporting passage of Issue 53

I began my campaign for city council with a set of ideas on how best to tackle the challenges facing our city. However, I have stated many times that I do not have all the answers and invite suggestions from all of our residents as community input will be vital to the success of any actions taken to get Cleveland Heights back on the right track. Over the past several months, I have had the opportunity to speak with many different people and have been challenging myself to not just come to the table with my own ideas and solutions, but to also embrace the will of the people, as if I am elected I will be representing that will. In that spirit, I have come to change my view on Issue 53, the 0.25 percent income tax increase, and now support its passage.

Read Full Story
Volume 8, Issue 11, Posted 10:16 AM, 10.20.2015