City Council Work Session & Special Meeting, March 12, 2018

March 31st, 2018  |  Published in Observer Reports

City Council Work Session & Special Meeting
March 12, 2018

Present: Council members Nancy Moore, Tres Roeder, Sean Malone, Anne Williams and Rob Zimmerman; Mayor Earl Leiken; Law Director William Gruber; Economic Development Director Tania Menesse
Also Present: David Gilbert, President of Destination Cleveland and Greater Cleveland Sports Commission; Maura Garven, Manager of Strategic Initiatives; and Lisa Gold-Scott, Assistant Director of Law/Housing Attorney
Absent: Council member Juliana Johnson Senturia, CAO Jeri Chaikin

The meeting was called to order at 7:02 p.m.

Mayor Leiken introduced David Gilbert and explained that, while Destination Cleveland does not specifically address Shaker, it is important to see that Shaker’s future is linked to Cleveland’s future.

David Gilbert and his staff are conducting “listening tours” throughout the metropolitan area focused on learning how to bring visitors to Cleveland as well as determining issues local businesses may have in recruiting talent. They have interviewed 40-50 groups, including communities, developers, corporate partners and universities. Their mission is to make Greater Cleveland a destination location. The work is focused on changing perceptions, attracting visitors and assisting local businesses. Destination Cleveland is funded through a local hotel tax, which is governed by the state and administered by the county. There is an overlap between a place desirable to visit and a place desirable to relocate for work. Locally, Destination Cleveland is assisting with wayfinding (signage and orientation) in the Van Aken District.

Ms. Gold-Scott, city housing attorney, presented the history of the Fair Housing Act. This is the 50th anniversary of 1968 act. Shaker was among the first cities to adopt a related local ordinance and received a HUD grant at the time of adoption. Shaker Heights has a Fair Housing Review Board and conducts landlord training as well as informational sessions for real estate agents. The Fair Housing Act was amended after its initial adoption to include race, disability and religion. Shaker added ancestry and sexual orientation (above required federal level).

Council voted by affirmation to declare April 2018 as Fair Housing Month.

An emergency proposal was presented with a request to award a contract to relocate power poles at Farnsleigh Road and Van Aken Boulevard. This is the third proposal Council has received related to power issues at the intersection. Previously, the problem was thought to be a guidewire issue that was the responsibility of RMS (the Van Aken District developer). However, it was determined that the poles need to be moved and that is the responsibility of the city.

Council approved awarding a contract in the amount of $32,395 and to use funds earmarked for Road Reconstruction.

The meeting adjourned at 8:17 p.m.
Sarah Divakarla

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