Three fight to become the first elected mayor of Cleveland Heights | Elections

Barbara Danforth, Melody Joy Hart and Kahlil Seren are running to become the first elected mayor in Cleveland Heights’ 100-year history. The city operates under the city’s administrative form of government.

The top two candidates for the Primary on September 14th will face off in the general election on November 2nd.

Cleveland Jewish News emailed the candidate a questionnaire containing the following questions: The survey was sent to the candidate’s address provided to the Kaiyahoga County Election Commission. Their answers are:

-Compliance with staff reporter Becky Raspe

Barbara Danforce


Year: 72

Profession: Executive Coach Consultant

education: Bachelor of Science, Eastern Michigan University.University of Pittsburgh Faculty of Law, Ph.D. in Law

Why are you running

I love this city. I don’t live anywhere else, but Cleveland Heights may be even better. Some housing stocks are not old enough and the business district is struggling to recover. Residents voted for a strong mayoral government, and I can make the changes our city needs. The job of the new mayor will be very difficult. The mayor needs to rebuild the government and shift the culture. As YWCA’s Executive Director, I reorganized and served as CEO of a charter school system with 24 schools, 1,000 staff, and a $ 62 million budget. I led these organizations where ultimate accountability is mine. There is one chance to make this transition correctly. We look forward to working with the residents to make Cleveland Heights the best.

Important issues of concern and how do you plan to resolve them?

Housing – To ensure compliance with housing laws, the urban housing sector needs to be rebuilt and renewed in its technology, legislation, enforcement of violations and staffing. The city needs to expand its relationship with the CDC Future Heights to maximize staff capacity to manage and improve housing stock.

Commercial Development – ​​Review and revise your master plan with a vision of smart and innovative development that meets the needs of your residents. Specific goals and timelines are developed and updated to help commercial projects move faster.

Business District – Real estate owners and merchants in our business district are struggling to survive. I will work with them, the SID, and the CDC to determine the best strategy to invest some of the ARPA funds to help them recover.

Infrastructure Repairs – Cleveland Heights has received an EPA Consent Decree on Repairing Storm and Wastewater Systems. Financial planning is required to complete the project with minimal financial impact on the population.

Safety – Our police station needs to be properly staffed, equipped and trained to ensure a safe city for all.

What is the difference between you and other challengers?

As a private practice lawyer and an assistant lawyer in Iowa, I have honed my outstanding problem-solving, negotiation, and communication skills. As Chief Prosecutor of Cleveland in Mayor Michael White’s Cabinet, I learned about the internal workings of a powerful mayor-style government. As a senior legal counsel to the Kaiyahoga Children and Family Services Department, I helped families struggling to survive and children at stake. As Senior Vice President of Executive Search Company Ratliff & Taylor, I helped hire, interview, screen, and deploy talented people at companies in northeastern Ohio.

Melody Joy Heart



Year: 68

Profession: Former Treasury Officer Councilor

Currently elected political offices: Cleveland Heights City Council

education: Bradley University, Bachelor of Science; Keller Graduate School of Business, MBA

Why are you running

After talking to the mayors of other cities, they said they needed financial insight, a history of civic participation, management skills, and the ability to collaborate with city knowledge. I have been a civil servant on the urban housing issue for over 6 years, attended the council for 4 years, and then ran for public service and won. I have a certified accountant and have over 30 years of management experience as a finance officer. I noticed that there are some other candidates, but I had all of them, so I love this city and thought I should run.

Important issues of concern and how do you plan to resolve them?

The mayor’s vote was passed because people wanted responsiveness not seen in the city. We will revive the community-related functions as a liaison with the residents. We will issue a policy that resident requests and questions must be answered within 48 hours. If further investigation is needed, staff should call the resident within 48 hours and let them know exactly when they will be answered.

I will fully staff the housing sector and rebuild the way it operates. I want to make strategic enforcement on real estate owned, seized and vacant by bad investors and make them compliant with our housing law. I would like to change the housing law to offer civil enforcement options instead of criminal enforcement. For homeowners, I work with the court and city to detour programs for homeowners whose homes are not code compliant in order to remove the home from the court system and work with the Home Repair Resource Center. Was carried out. To get the help needed to repair their home.

The development of the Severance and Noble Triangles is a priority of our economic development team.

What is the difference between you and other challengers?

I am the only one who has all the qualities that other mayors feel they need. I have been openly involved with the Cleveland Heights Housing Commission of the Greater Cleveland Congregation and have been walking around the neighborhood for over 6 years, so I have a deep knowledge of our housing and other issues in the city. I am currently a councilor. I am the only person with a strong financial background with over 30 years of career as a finance officer. A certified accountant, certified by the Ministry of Finance and certified in financial planning and analysis. Thanks to my 30 year career, I have a wide range of management skills and can handle complex issues. I have knowledge of the city and its operations and have built relationships with the city council and city officials. I have worked with my career and council.

Carlyl selenium



Year: 42

Profession: Policy Advisor, Kaiyahoga County Council Secretariat

Currently elected political offices: Cleveland Heights City Council

education: Cleveland State University, Bachelor of Arts; Cleveland State University, Master of Science in Urban Studies

Why are you running

Cleveland Heights is at an inflection point. You can continue the status quo under a different position or fulfill the promise of change you requested when you created this elected mayoral position. I have been working for many years to promote government to more faithfully reflect the priorities of our community. I am running for mayor because I have values ​​that match the values ​​of the community, skills and experience that match challenges and opportunities, and the courage to overcome current thinking. This role risks untested candidates who are inexperienced and unable to demonstrate true leadership, or who are reluctant to take the necessary steps in the face of tough decisions due to lack of values ​​and courage. Too important to expose to. I’m running because I deserve a devoted and ready mayor to get the job done well on the first day.

Important issues of concern and how do you plan to resolve them?

Major issues include housing maintenance and development, economic revitalization, public safety and sustainability. I solve these problems by focusing on the basics of local governments and ensuring that we have sufficient personnel and process capabilities to effectively fulfill our responsibilities. Increase government efficiency through process improvements, performance management, and organizational restructuring to enable departmental prioritization focused on these specific issues without sacrificing basic quality of service. Become. We will build a town development function in the city government to expand our housing redevelopment efforts. Home inspection and economic development staff cannot be expected to carry out community development work effectively. The restructuring frees existing capabilities and is intended for current staff to perform in the areas of economic development (focusing on existing SMEs) and targeted code enforcement (focusing on investment real estate). You can focus on more focused and targeted work than you do. I work with communities and safety forces to implement new strategies and make current public security activities more comprehensive than relying solely on follow-up criminal investigations, but using preventative models to address crime precursors. Strengthen with a tactical approach. Work with resident experts and work with Power a Clean Future Ohio to bring sustainability and environmental concerns to every aspect of public activity.

What is the difference between you and other challengers?

My experience and expertise in the local government distinguishes me from other candidates. I am the only candidate with the most government experience and substantial election experience in this race. I have worked on behalf of Cleveland Heights as a volunteer on the Citizens Advisory Board and as a city council member for many years. I have a proven track record of advancing our city by demonstrating a dedication to Cleveland Heights that no other candidate has. Professionally, I have been a key advisor to the county council on economic, labor and community development issues for a decade, designing and implementing policies and programs that support the entire county. I am the only candidate involved in the transition of the government from one form to another through my teaching experience since the inauguration of the new Charter County Government.

Three fight to become the first elected mayor of Cleveland Heights | Elections

Source link Three fight to become the first elected mayor of Cleveland Heights | Elections

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