CH City Council considers partnering with FutureHeights as city's CDC

Editor’s note: This story as originally published contained some incorrect information. That information, and the story’s headline, have been corrected and updated.

At its July 31 special Council Committee of the Whole meeting, Cleveland Heights City Council discussed legislation to vote on that evening that would declare its intent to partner with FutureHeights as a community development corporation (CDC) and enable the city manager to form a working group to flush out the details.

Council members discussed in detail the various facets of CDCs and working groups on July 31, including what the working group would do and how many members it would have. Council also opined that it would not want FutureHeights to be completely controlled by the city, if it does partner with the nonprofit.

The working group would consist of nine people, likely three members of the city’s staff, three members of FutureHeights, and three members of the community, who would set goals to help guide the CDC and determine the roles of the CDC and city staff.

A week prior, during council’s July 24 Council Committee of the Whole meeting, Enterprise Community Partners presented a report to CH City Council outlining the “current capacity and need for housing and community development activities in the city, as well as possible alignment with activities that a community development corporation (CDC) or similar entity could undertake.” At that time, CH City Council agreed to draft legislation enabling City Manager Tanisha Briley to create a letter of intent (LOI) to form a partnership with FutureHeights that would make the nonprofit group the city’s CDC, and authorizing her to form a working group.

On hand at the meeting, to answer council’s questions, were Anne Jordan and Elizabeth Richards from Enterprise Community Partners, the organization that the city had contracted with in January 2017 to study the need for a CDC through Cleveland Heights' affiliation with the National Resource Network.

Deanna Bremer Fisher, executive director of FutureHeights, said in the July 24 meeting that FutureHeights is "ready to work out the details" whenever the city is, and "will continue to move forward doing what [we] are doing" in the meantime.

CH City Council plans to continue looking into partnering with FutureHeights, and forming a working group, after its August recess.

The full resolution created by council can be viewed here.

Connor O'Brien

Connor O'Brien is a senior majoring in communication and minoring in English at John Carroll University. He is currently an intern for the Heights Observer.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 11:41 AM, 08.01.2017