City Council Regular Meeting, February 2018

March 3rd, 2018  |  Published in Observer Reports

Shaker Heights City Council
Feb. 26, 2018

(Prior to the regular council meeting, there was a 6 p.m. executive session to discuss personnel matters.)

Present: Mayor Earl Leiken; Council members Sean Malone, Earl Williams, Tres Roeder, Juliana Johnston Senturia, Anne Williams, Nancy Moore, Robert Zimmerman
Also present:  Chief Administrative Officer Jeri Chaikin, Law Director William M. Ondrey Gruber, Finance Director Robert H. Baker, Chief of Fire Patrick F. Sweeney, Director of Planning Joyce Braverman, Economic Development Director Tania Menesse, Housing Commissioner William Hanson

The mayor called the meeting to order at 7:33 p.m. and announced it adjourned at 8:20 p.m.

The Fire Department will apply for a $25,000 Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Fire Prevention and Safety Grant to purchase photoelectric smoke detectors. It will also apply for a $13,300 grant from DHS through the Firefighters Grant funding program to purchase two training simulators.

Council approved:

  • A personal services contract with Greenman-Pedersen, Inc., for $117,207 for Farnsleigh Streetscape improvements
  • The City Planning Commission’s approval of permits for signage in the Van Aken District
  • A $100,000 Vision Fund forgivable loan that will allow the consulting and engineering firm, Mannik & Smith Group, to move into Tower East (the tallest building in the city, and the last building in the United States designed by architect Walter Gropius). Established in 2010, the Vision Fund was developed to remedy market imbalances and competitive lease rates by targeting businesses that will bring wage taxes to Shaker. Eleven loans have been disbursed so far, with two still pending to Le Chaperon Rouge and Shaker Rocks.Chair of the Finance Committee, Sean Malone, noted that the Vision Fund loans will generate positive returns for the city when portions of the Van Aken District open up later this year.
  • The sale of a city-owned condominium and garage space at 19101 Van Aken Blvd. for $1 to the Shaker Club Condominium Unit Owners Association in order to redevelop the property (which has been vacant for more than years and no property taxes have been paid since 2008) and renovate it in order to get it back on the market.

 Public comment on agenda items:

Sara Schiavoni expressed concern that three Vision Loans remain outstanding and that $105,000 remains uncommitted in the Vision Fund, and wondered if the city is trying to bring a grocery store into the Van Aken District. She expressed wonderment at what enforcement provisions were negotiated since there was no information in the Financial Committee meeting minutes.
Audrey Morris


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