Friday, January 18, 2013

East Cleveland Citizens Want Answers from City Officials

The turmoil in East Cleveland knows almost no bounds these days. The city has returned to fiscal emergency, the mayor shows no respect to the city council he once presided over and the council shows him the same disdain. The city’s elected leaders seem unable to agree on virtually anything except an abiding love for their broken city.

NOAH members stand at East Cleveland City Council
meeting as letter is read addressing city's budget crisis.
Mayor Gary Norton is seated in foreground.
This past Tuesday, however, a group of East Cleveland residents, organized by the nonprofit community action group known as NOAH [the Northeast Ohio Alliance for Hope]* packed East Cleveland’s tiny council chambers and read aloud a courteous but emphatic summons to the mayor and council president.

The letter invites both the mayor and the council president to attend a moderated forum on January 28 to discuss the budget and the budget process.

The mayor immediately announced that he would attend the forum. We are awaiting a response from the council president and will update this post when we hear from her.

The full text of the NOAH letter is as follows:

The Honorable Mayor Gary Norton          Council President Joy Jordan 
East Cleveland, OH                                     East Cleveland, OH

The recent actions of elected leaders in East Cleveland threaten to decimate the safety of the residents of East Cleveland. Over the past few years, East Cleveland has made significant gains in reducing crime and improving police response time. In light of the recent budget crisis that has resulted in drastic cuts in safety forces in our city, residents are disappointed to view community leaders resorting to bickering and ad hominem attacks. Residents want a government that works together to address the challenges that face our community. The residents of East Cleveland deserve a government that reflects their dedication and devotion to this community.
The NOAH Core Team invites you both to attend a moderated forum to discuss the budget. The forum will take place on:

Monday, January 28th
Time: 6:30pm
New Covenant Lutheran Church
1424 Hayden Ave.
East Cleveland Ohio 44112

This is an opportunity for the Mayor and the Council President to discuss the City’s current budget condition and the budget process in an objective non-biased forum.    The moderator and the audience will ask questions.
Please contact the NOAH office at 216-834-2324 or email us at to respond to this invitation. We look forward to a civil and informative discussion. Thank you.

* My company, AGS MEDIA LLC, has done consulting work for NOAH. However, we had no involvement in NOAH’s decision to take the actions referred to in this post.

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