Wednesday, October 02, 2013

With East Cleveland mayoral race over, attention now turns to Council

Eight candidates seeking three seats means major council turnover possible

East Cleveland City Hall will see a substantial makeover even though Mayor Gary Norton’s reelection is a mere formality following his resounding victory in yesterday’s Democratic primary. 

The unofficial count from the County Board of Elections shows Norton garnered 1385 votes, two-thirds of the 2099 ballots cast. City Council president Dr. Joy Jordan won 563 votes, or about 27%, while political novice Vernon Robinson received 151 votes, about seven percent.

Since no Republican or independent candidate filed for mayor, Norton will be the only candidate for mayor on the November ballot.

Jordan’s decision to challenge the mayor means there will be a new council president next term. At least two new council members will be sworn in as first-termer Chantelle C. Lewis did not file for reelection from Ward 3. Lewis has been council vice president since last year.

There are eight candidates running for three seats on city council. Five candidates – Brandon L. King, Nathaniel Martin, Genevieve Mitchell, Ryan Ross, and Gloria B. Smith Morgan — are running citywide for one of council’s two at large seats. Martin is an incumbent.

In addition, three candidates — Vidah Saaed, Ernest L. Smith, and Thomas Wheeler — are running in Ward 3 to succeed Lewis.

With new top council leadership guaranteed, and a new council majority possible, East Cleveland residents may see an end to the mayor-council hostility that has existed for much of the past eight years, spanning the first Norton administration and that of his predecessor, Eric Brewer.

Candidate forums scheduled
All council candidates have been invited to participate in two candidate events. The first event, sponsored by the Ohio 8th House District Black Caucus, will be this Saturday, Oct. 5 at the East Cleveland Public Library, 14101 Euclid Avenue. The Ward 3 candidates are scheduled to appear in debate from 1-3PM; the five Council at Large candidates are scheduled to appear from 3:30-5:30PM.

Council candidates have also been invited to a forum co-sponsored by the League of Women Voters and the Northeast Ohio Alliance for Hope [NOAH], a grassroots community organization. That event is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 26 at 12:30PM at New Covenant Lutheran Church, 1424 Hayden Ave, East Cleveland OH 44112.

NOAH and the LWV are also co-sponsoring a candidate forum for East Cleveland School Board candidates. That event is scheduled for Monday, October 21, at 6PM, also at New Covenant Lutheran Church.


drichonesmom said...

Thank you for this information. I am not always able to attend a lot of the meetings and sometimes I don't get as much information as you have in this article. I pray that more people in East Cleveland come out and vote for the council candidates. I cannot say I was shocked at the low turnout for our elections.

Richard said...

Thanks for your comment. I hope you will attend one of the council candidate forums. My analysis suggests the turnout was not so bad as it may seem. I will be posting on that within the next couple of days.

Thanks for reading!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this. Difficult to find accurate details about what is going on.

Richard said...

Thank you for reading. We as a community have been suffering in strange ways: there often seems to be an inverse relationship between the amount of vital information we receive — especially about our local communities — and the number of channels that exist as purported sources of information. The landscape is shifting all around and underneath us. I look to provide reliable information and insight about selected areas that otherwise might go either underreported or inadequately reported.

Your feedback is valuable and appreciated. Keep it up, please!