Elected-mayor proponents seek signatures to place issue on ballot this fall
Volunteers will be fanning out across Cleveland Heights on Saturday, June 8, and Sunday, June 9, inviting residents to support putting a city charter amendment on the Nov. 6 ballot that, if approved, would create the office of a full-time Cleveland Heights mayor, directly elected by citizens.
Since May 17, more than 40 volunteers for Citizens for an Elected Mayor (CEM) have collected more than 2,000 signatures. To place the charter amendment on the ballot, just over 2,100 signatures of registered voters are needed—10 percent of the number of voters in the last election.
CEM plans to collect at least 3,200 signatures before submitting them for verification. If the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections certifies enough signatures, city council [will] approve an ordinance to put the proposed amendment on the ballot.
“We are thrilled with the response,” said Len Friedson, CEM’s treasurer, who is coordinating the petition drive. “People are telling us how important it is for all voters to have a voice on this issue in the fall.”
Volunteers plan to be at Zagara’s Marketplace, 1940 Lee Road, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 8, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, June 9; and at the Compton Road block party, Sunday, June 8, 2–6 p.m.
Also this weekend, during most opening hours, volunteers will be collecting signatures at:
- Cleveland Heights Community Center, 1 Monticello Blvd.
- Cumberland Outdoor Pool, 1740 Cumberland Road
- Lee Road Library, 2345 Lee Road
- Mac’s Backs - Books on Coventry, 1820 Coventry Road
Those unable to make it to any of the above locations this weekend, who would like to sign wish to sign the petition, can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or call Friedson at 408-608-4963. Anyone interested in volunteering to collect signatures can sign up at www.citizensforanelectedmayor.com.
Michael Bennett, a 29-year resident of Cleveland Heights, is secretary of Citizens for an Elected Mayor.