University Heights City Council meeting highlights 2-17-2015

FEBRUARY 17, 2015

  • Cuyahoga Harbor dredging
  • Law director
  • Funds
  • Home inspections
  • Ford Fusion
  • Community park
  • Resurfacing program
  • Four bay doors
  • Sale of rubbish truck
  • SWAT team
  • Police cars
  • Senior transportation
  • Council iPads to reduce waste

All council members were present.

Cuyahoga Harbor dredging

Mayor Susan Infeld reported that the Ohio EPA is concerned and is seeking input on dredging practices in the Cleveland Cuyahoga harbor. The Army Corps of Engineers wants to drop the dredged material into the lake.

Law director

Council approved and Mayor Infeld swore in Luke F. McConville as the new law director for the city of University Heights.


An ordinance was presented on first reading to advance funds of $100,000 from the general fund to the park fund development process until the bond money is received from the county.

Home inspections

An ordinance requiring home inspections to be completed prior to transfer was presented on first reading. Eric Tuck-Macalla, building commissioner, realized that when a home was sold through sheriff’s sale there was no mechanism for requiring point-of-sale inspections. This ordinance would also be useful in cases in which a corporation purchases a home with the intention of “flipping” it.

Ford Fusion purchase

Council approved the purchase of a 2015 Ford Fusion S for the building department. The price was quoted from the Ohio State bid list. The department is buying one new vehicle each year and will replace either the Dodge Durango or the truck.

Community park

Council approved an agreement with Braun and Steidl Architects to design and manage construction of the city of University Heights community park for the cost of $132,353. Two council members, Mark Wiseman and Pamela Cameron, voted no. This contract is to draw up detailed design plans for the new park so that the city can then seek bids for the actual construction. The city received two proposals—one from Braun and Steidl and the second from Knight and Stolar. Both firms proposed a team concept, working with other firms for landscaping and engineering. The mayor, Service Director Jeff Pokorny, and City Engineer Joe Ciuni felt that Braun and Steidl’s proposal followed the specifics of the request for proposal more concisely. Councilman Steven Sims said that he would like to see more diversity in the contractors. Six other firms picked up packets but only two submitted proposals. Although the bid from Knight and Stollar was $300 lower, it was felt that the Braun and Steidl bid more accurately reflected what the city was looking for. Wiseman asked if they could see the complete bid packets from both firms, but Councilman Phil Ertel [said he] felt that council should move forward with the vote since construction of the park is supposed to begin this spring.

Resurfacing program

Council approved obtaining bids for the 2015 road resurfacing program with Shaker Heights. The bids will include Allison Road, which was removed from last year’s list. It was noted that curbs last 50–70 years, and that the city has been replacing curbs when needed to improve the streetscape of the city.

Four bay doors

Council approved obtaining bids for the replacement of three bay doors on the truck garage and one bay door on the mechanics garage. The metal doors are rusted from the inside and the bottom two panels are not functioning correctly. The wood door is dilapidated.

Sale of rubbish truck

Council authorized the sale of a 1986 Crane Carrier Rubbish Truck with a 1996 Glider Kit on or to sell for scrap if warranted. Service Director Pokorny reported that the truck’s scrap value is $4,000. The truck is no longer in use. Money from the sale would be put back into the general fund.

SWAT team

Council approved the payment of $10,847.25 for the 2016 EDGE agreement. This is for the cost of the regional SWAT team, which includes three members from University Heights. The cost is prorated between the five participating cities and is based on actual costs for maintaining the team, as accounted for by the city of South Euclid.

Police cars

Council approved the purchase of five police cars for $136,197 from the state purchasing program. Crown Vic’s are no longer available and the Dodge Chargers purchased previously are not holding up well. On any given day, the city has two vehicles that are out of service awaiting repairs. These five cars will replace three vehicles and add two more to the fleet to allow for vehicles that are out for repairs.

Senior transportation

Council approved a contract with the Senior Transportation Connection to provide rides for senior citizens in University Heights. The contract allows for 60 one-way rides per month—50 individual and 10 group rides. The individual rides are at a cost of $25 to the city and $3 to the passenger. The city will continue to track and promote use of the service.

Council iPads to reduce waste

Council approved the purchase of nine iPads, keyboard folio cases, and AppleCare+, at a cost of $5,111.46, for use by city council members, the law director and the clerk of council. This program was recommended by the Civic Information Committee in an effort to reduce paper usage and increase efficiency and organization. Council also approved a policy to assure the proper use of the tablets.

LWV Observer: Wendy Deuring.

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 of Greater Cleveland. This disclaimer must accompany any redistribution of these reports.

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Volume 8, Issue 4, Posted 3:17 PM, 03.09.2015