The Observer welcomes opinions about candidates and issues
Municipal elections are coming up this November. This is the third local election cycle that the Heights Observer has been through since its inception, and it’s an important one. Cleveland Heights residents will vote for five of seven members of city council this year. University Heights residents will vote for mayor and four of seven members of council. Residents of both cities will vote for three of five members of the CH-UH Board of Education. In addition, a school facilities bond issue, the first since the 1970s, will be on November’s ballot.
As a hyper-local publication with a goal of providing information to Heights residents in order to build a better community, municipal elections are very important to us.
Many civic-minded people and groups are seeking opportunities to express their opinions about candidates and issues. The Observer, in its role as a forum for sharing information about the community, welcomes the opportunity to publish these diverse opinions.
Contributors may include the candidates themselves; however, because we have limited space in our print publication (each page of the newspaper costs money to print, and the number of pages we print is based on the advertising revenue in that issue) we must limit candidate submissions in the print edition between August and November to paid advertisements.
Online—where we have no space limitations—candidates can submit articles, blogs and opinion pieces. All candidates are invited and encouraged to make submissions at the Heights Observer website (www.heightsobserver.org) and the Heights Observer blogs (www.blogs.heightsobserver.org/). This ensures that everyone is treated equally.
In the print issue, we welcome comments and contributions of non-candidates right up until the election. In partnership with the nonpartisan League of Women Voters, we will provide detailed information about the candidates in a Voters’ Guide in the October print issue. We will also partner with the league to host a Candidates Forum on Oct. 8 at the Cleveland Heights Community Center.
One point that bears emphasis is that we will not endorse candidates. The Heights Observer is published by FutureHeights, a community-building organization with 501(c)3 status, which means that the IRS recognizes it as not-for-profit/tax-exempt. As such, neither FutureHeights nor the Observer is permitted to endorse any individuals running for public office.
FutureHeights is permitted, however, to advocate for a “yes” or “no” vote on a particular issue or ballot initiative.
FutureHeights has been involved in one of the ballot issues that will be before the community this fall: I am the executive director of FutureHeights, and I served on the Lay Facilities Committee, which recommended the school facilities plan that the facilities bond issue would fund. FutureHeights has not yet determined whether it will advocate on behalf of this issue.
If FutureHeights decides to advocate for this or any other issue, the opinion will be clearly marked as such.
The Heights Observer itself will not take a position but will welcome all opinions. So, the opinions you may read in this newspaper or on its websites reflect the views of the individual authors, not the newspaper.
We encourage you to educate yourself about the candidates and issues, and then vote on Nov. 5.
Deanna Bremer Fisher
Deanna Bremer Fisher is executive director of FutureHeights and publisher of the Heights Observer.