Cleveland Heights City Council meeting highlights 5-20-2013

MAY 20, 2013

  • Resident communications: Bike Week, Cain Park Dog Project
  • Equipment purchases
  • Zoning variances
  • Ruffing School learning project
  • Nuisance properties
  • Police and Fire Pension Funds

Council member Janine R. Boyd was absent.

Resident communications:

Bike Week: Resident Ian Hoffman spoke on behalf of the Heights Bike Coalition about the observance of Bike Week last week. He described The Ride of Silence, commemorating bikers who have lost their lives, and thanked the city for providing a police escort. Bike to Work Day was held on Friday, May 17, and a coffee-and-cookie stop was set up at Edgehill and Overlook roads, one of the most heavily traveled bike routes in the region. Hoffman presented a thank you poster signed by many riders in gratitude for the recent repaving of the hill and the anticipated “sharrows” and dedicated bike lane. They gave Richard Wong, planning director, special thanks.

Cain Park Dog Project: Resident Carrie Whitehouse, speaking on behalf of the Cain Park Dog Project pilot program, said things are going well with no major problems in any area related to dogs. She discussed the difference between a dog-friendly park, like Cain Park, and a dog park. The project has volunteer coverage [for] the cleanup stations. A big cleanup will take place just prior to the Arts Festival in July and two dog-related programs this summer will be publicized on [the Dog Project’s] website.

Equipment purchases

Council approved purchases of equipment through the Ohio Department of Administrative Services Cooperative Purchasing Program, including:

  • A new push pit power unit for the transfer station from Refuse Equipment and Truck Services at a cost not to exceed $28,975;
  • A replacement tink bucket for the streets department of the public works department from Southeastern Equipment at a cost not to exceed $16,975;
  • A full-size, four-wheel-drive, F350 cab and chassis from Valley Ford at a cost not to exceed $28,503.50; and
  • A cab protector, flatbed body, and strobe lights from Best Truck Equipment at a cost not to exceed $13,515.

Zoning variances

Council granted variances from the zoning code to:

  • Keith Kiefer, 1326 Cleveland Heights Blvd., to allow construction of a freestanding two-car garage in addition to an attached one-car garage because it is not possible to add a code-conforming second bay to the existing garage.
  • Yosef and Tehilla Greenberger, 3825 Berkeley Road, to permit two air conditioning units to be located 1.5 feet from the property line where a five-foot setback is required. The narrow lot with the attached garage limits potential sites and a rear-yard location would require supply lines that are too long to work properly.
  • Michael Montlack of Michael Montlack Realty, 2627 Mayfield Road, to grant a variance from off-street parking regulations that would be required for the conversion of a first-floor storage room to an ADA-accessible one-bedroom apartment while providing no additional parking. This was recommended by the BZA for many reasons, including enhancement of the neighborhood by an accessible apartment and the landlocked position of the building, which makes adding parking impossible.

Ruffing School learning project

Council approved an agreement with Ruffing Montessori School to permit use of a city public right-of-way for ecological and educational purposes. The school will build a bio-retention cell and stormwater learning lab as part of a parking lot improvement.

Nuisance properties

Council declared three properties to be nuisances:

  • 2807 Avondale Ave., owned by Keith Pace. The estimated cost to raze and clean is $15,500.
  • 1654 Coventry Road, owned by Kenneth and Deborah Mate. The estimated cost to raze and clean is $15,500.
  • 3346 Tullamore Road and 2251 Goodnor Road, a double home owned by Georgene Coneglio. The estimated cost to raze and clean is $15,500.

Police and Fire Pension Funds

Council approved legislation affirming the policy of “pick-up” contributions to the Ohio Police and Fire Pension Funds. Each officer makes a mandatory contribution, which is matched by the city and will rise each July for the next three years. The current amount is 10 percent. It will be 10.75 percent this July, 11.50 percent in 2014, and 12.25 percent in 2015.

LWV Observer: Blanche Valancy.

These meeting summaries are abstracted from LWV observers’ written reports. The summaries have been edited and prepared by Anne McFarland, Charlene Morse, and Maryann Barnes. To receive e-mail postings of full reports, send an e-mail to or join through Google groups using “lwv-chuh observer reports” as a search phrase.

These reports contain member observation and selected highlights of public meetings and are not official statements of the Heights Chapter of the League of Women Voters Cuyahoga Area. This disclaimer must accompany any redistribution of these reports.

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