University Heights City Council meeting highlights 2-21-2017
FEBRUARY 21, 2017
- Public comments
- Mayor’s report
- State of the City Address
- Street beautification
Present were Mayor Susan Infeld, Vice Mayor Susan Pardee, and council members Pamela Cameron (arrived after roll call), Phil Ertel, John Rach, Steven Sims and Mark Wiseman. Also present were Law Director Luke McConnell and Clerk of Council Kelly Thomas.
The meeting was held from 7:05 to 8:15 p.m.
Thanks to EMS and police:Sheila Hubman thanked members of the emergency medical service and police for their kind and professional assistance during her recent medical emergencies. She asked council to consider installing an elevator in city hall, moving meetings to a nearby empty store (Tops?), or installing a stationary camera in the back of council chambers. There is a stair lift, which she used to attend the meeting, but as it requires assistance from the fire department to use, she was unable to attend independently. Mayor Infeld reported that they had been looking at elevator options, but because of particular circumstances in the building, the cost would be close to $1 million dollars. She also noted that the journalism program at John Carroll University (JCU) was videotaping the meetings at one point and she would see if that was an option again.
JCU outreach: Mike Bishop, a JCU student, announced that he is a member of the university’s Committee for Community Outreach and that he would be happy to meet with council regarding any university-related issues. He also said that he would see if the journalism program would be able to resume providing video services for council meetings.
Tullamore Road house: Kathy Adam-Case, who lives next door to 3505 Tullamore Road, thanked council for its assistance in getting the house demolished. The property, now a field of mud, is the “most beautiful” mud she has ever seen. She also noted the high cost of leaving a property vacant for so many years. The inspector felt that it would have cost $100,000 to repair the physical damage to the home, not including the cost of modernizing upgrades.
Mayor Infeld reported that Dominion East Ohio Gas is replacing smaller gas lines with larger capacity lines on Green Road south of Cedar Road, and also on Churchill Road.
State of the City Address
The entirety of the mayor’s address can be found at universityheights.com in the February newsletter. Mayor Infeld reported that the city has expanded green space, improved streets and utilities, collaborated with neighboring communities, and remained a strong steward of the city’s finances, carrying more than $2.5 million dollars into 2017, or 19 percent of the city’s funds, which is recommended by the Government Finance Officers’ Association. The new park has already become a popular feature, and movie nights will be added this summer. Pool enhancements are continuing, and now senior citizens are able to join the Cleveland Heights Senior Center. Streets are being paved, and water and gas lines replaced. Warrensville Center Road is being altered to improve pedestrian and bicycle safety, and the joint dispatch center will become a reality shortly with the build-out beginning later this year. The high school students will move back to the new high school building, and Wiley will be prepared to take in middle school students from Monticello and Roxboro middle schools.
Council approved submitting a grant application to the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District for replacing the double-wide sidewalks along Warrensville Center, Bushnell and Lansdale roads, and restoring tree lawns with trees and grass.
Finance director position
Mayor Infeld is continuing to interview candidates for the position of finance director. Larry Heiser, former finance director, is continuing to help with the interview process and also to ensure that the city remains in compliance during this transition period.
Purchase of a new garage truck
Service Director Jeffrey Pokorny requested approve the purchase of a new garbage truck. Council agreed to postpone the decision until the council meeting on March 6 to allow council members time to review the proposal. This is a budgeted purchase.
[The LWV observer had to leave the meeting at this point.]
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 email postings of full reports, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org 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.