Cleveland Heights Council meeting highlights 1-2-2024

JANUARY 2, 2024 - special organizational meeting

  • Clerk of council’s report
  • Election of council officers
  • Council comments

Present were Mayor Kahlil Seren and council members Janine Boyd, Craig Cobb, Tony Cuda, Gail Larson, Anthony Mattox Jr., Jim Petras, and Davida Russell. Also present were Addie Balester, clerk of council, and William Hanna, law director. The meeting ran for 35 minutes.

Clerk of council’s report

Ms. Russell was elected president pro tempore to preside over the organizational meeting until the election of a council president.

Council elected Tony Cuda as council president, with Mr. Mattox and Ms. Boyd voting for Ms. Boyd. Mr. Mattox explained his opposition to Mr. Cuda, citing the latter’s unwillingness to work collaboratively with other council members and the administration. Ms. Russell was unanimously elected Council Vice President. Law Director Hanna administered oaths of office to Mr. Cuda and Ms. Russell.

Council member comments

Ms. Boyd expressed satisfaction with legislation passed in 2023 and her intention of presenting additional legislation in 2024.

Ms. Larson expressed her appreciation for family, friends, campaign workers, and voters. She outlined her priorities as [being] housing and building code enforcement, Severance Center redevelopment, city support for business districts, climate change and sustainability planning, walkability and and bike safety, and more opportunities to hear residents’ views. She called for council to work collaboratively with each other and the administration.

Mr. Petras expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve and his commitment to working collaboratively with members of council and the administration.

Ms. Russell described her commitment to work for the people and invited residents to contact her with their concerns.

Mr. Mattox expressed frustration at Mr. Cuda’s lack of responsiveness to concerns about disparate impacts of proposed housing legislation that were aired by Mr. Maddox while serving on the Housing Committee chaired by Mr. Cuda. He asked Mr. Cuda to work collaboratively with all council members.

Mr. Cuda thanked his colleagues for electing him council president, praised Ms. Russell, complimented Mr. Petras for his diligent door-to-door campaign, and congratulated Ms. Boyd, Ms. Larson, and Mr. Petras on their elections. He expressed his interest in building a productive relationship with the mayor to benefit the community.

LWV Observer: Jill Tatem.

Meeting packets, legislation, and other information can be found on the city website at:

Videos of council meetings can be viewed on the “City of Cleveland Heights, OH” YouTube channel:

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Volume 17, Issue 2, Posted 2:42 PM, 01.30.2024