February 13, 2023

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Public Commenters (17 min)
DeSeanna Morgan  Timothy Sommerfelt  Dontez Taylor  Erick Walker  Vernon Kittrells Jr.  Anastasia Rokisky 

DeSeanna Morgan

Blaine Griffin: First up, we have DeSeanna Morgan, Ward 11, to talk about appraised inner city communities with: jobs, services, biblical outreach.

She's representing Logistics Code. And she is not being paid by anyone. I do want to caution everyone that you are not supposed to be selling any products on council floor.

So, I want to make sure that everyone does know that. That any of the comments cannot be associated with selling products on council floor. Please proceed Miss DeSeanna Morgan.

DeSeanna Morgan: Hello, everyone on the chairs. Thank you, for your accommodations of what you do and contribute to the city.

Again, my name is DeSeanna Morgan. I run a company called Logistics Code. We have expanded globally. I would love to share with you some of the analytics.

I am the founder, CEO and the primary sole proprietor. If you would like to get into those details.

Within a year's span, we started during the peak of the pandemic. People were scared. Citizens were lost. But we had an idea, a purpose and a plan. We have reached globally. Not only United States, but Egypt, Canada, France, India, Australia, Spain, Nigeria, Philippines. Over 609 total countries, within one month span.

How did this happen? God. That National Anthem, being one nation under God. Indivisible, with liberty and justice for all; not only educates those immigrants coming in for green cards. But also allows better citizenship programs.

We have to start with education. I used to formally be a educator, for seven years. I started off at the age of 18. You can do the math of my age. And after getting to, um, more into the community basis--I found that Joe Biden has this new thing coming out with security funding. And not only Medicaid, but once that is eliminated for not only senior citizens, we can allow senior citizens to have more accessible workforces.

This means they will not be imputed to unreliable monies and be complacent. I work with many clients and we have done biblical outreach. But infrastructure is our country's main source, because there are many of us going through mental health crisis.

Now, I'm not speaking of myself. I'm highly educated. I'm continuing to go forth, because of what we have to get into.

Joe Biden also mentioned gasoline. I don't know if anyone had watched that, but when he mentioned gasoline, there were many commentators of different countries.

You know, bashing it. I believe within the 2025 mark, just as he said, we will be reliant upon gasoline. Because you cannot have an electrical circuit and prosper if your lights go out.

Infrastructure. Why infrastructure? Infrastructure is the best thing that we as not only Clevelanders, but American citizens can get into.

I strongly believe that if we were to have more biblical outreach in the forms of judicial forms, getting that citizenship.

Blaine Griffin: Time.

DeSeanna Morgan: Thank you. I'll be back next week.

Blaine Griffin: Thank you.

3:42 Permalink

Timothy Sommerfelt

Blaine Griffin: Next, we have my good friend Timothy Sommerfelt. Uh, Timothy Sommerfelt is from Ward 15. Uh, former head of the Fire union (Note: EMS union).

Community CPR training is what he's here to talk about. And he's representing Gordon Square CPR. And he's not being paid about anyone. Mr. Sommerfelt.

Timothy Sommerfelt: Hello. I'm here, not as a union rep, but as a CPR instructor. Last month, the entire nation watched as an NFL player collapsed and was resuscitated--from Sudden Cardiac Arrest-- while on the football field.

So, the question becomes: How can we affect that same outcome, for every Clevelander who suffers the same fate?

Last year, 784 Clevelanders suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. The American Heart Association teaches that for every minute that someone goes without CPR, their chance of survival falls 7 to 10 percent. And yet, only 26 percent of those Clevelanders who collapsed received bystander CPR--prior to EMS arrival.

In other cities, such as Pittsburgh, that number is much closer to 40 percent. I run a small volunteer CPR program. We trained about 100 people, a year, and every class is full.

We can't keep up with demand. It's not enough. But it wasn't always this way. Prior to 2015, the city of Cleveland through the division of EMS, offered free CPR training--and trained thousands of people each year.

This program was cut due to budget concerns, which is interesting. Because when you look at the General Fund, 30 percent of it goes towards police. 15 percent goes towards fire. But only 5 percent goes towards EMS.

We have to ask ourselves: What do these investment levels say about what we truly value?

With us tonight, is Miss Nicole Ward. Miss Nicole Ward is the mother of Brown's player Denzel Ward. And the founder of the Make Them Know Your Name Foundation for heart health.

One day, her husband Paul was working out in a gym. He collapsed. He suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. And even though there was an AED in the building, nobody knew how to use it. Nobody was trained. And he did not survive.

With Miss Ward, we have Mr. Michael Wager-- who is a retired paramedic for the city of Cleveland. He served 20 years, and one day, in 2014--he collapsed in his garage. He had a sudden cardiac arrest. He started turning blue. His heart stopped.

Luckily, his wife was also a paramedic for the city of Cleveland. She performed CPR. And he is here today, with us and his family. We need more good outcomes like Michael Wager.

And the only way to make that happen, is to provide more CPR training so we can get more people trained. So I ask you guys, as you go through Budget Hearings this week--ask the Safety Director, ask the Mayor. Say, what do we need to do to get more people certified in CPR?

Let's get this done. And let's save more lives. Thank you.

3:29 Permalink

Dontez Taylor

Blaine Griffin: Next, we have Dontez Taylor from Ward 4. Dontez is here to talk, he's from Cleveland. And, uh, he's not representing anyone. And, he just wants to, uh, speak about his neighborhood. Mr. Taylor. Please make sure we acknowledge the time for Mr. Taylor.

Dontez Taylor: Yes. Hello, my name is Dontez Taylor. And, I would like to find out how can we get a street named after Willie Glover. He was a person out here, that was in the gospel industry.

And, he helped out in our community. He did all kinds of things in our community, and everything else. And, I would like to see how we can get a a street name for, um, yes and everything else.

And, I would like to see how we can get the street for [DJ] Silver B. He was the person that was out here that helped us, that helped us out here, too.

And, did what we had to do out here in our community, and everything else. He mentored, he did all he can do.

And, Willie Glover did too. God bless.

1:26 Permalink

Erick Walker

Blaine Griffin: Next, we have Erick Walker. Erick Walker's from Ward 4. He's here to talk about the abandoned Fulton School on East 40th, in Ward 1.

And, to talk about his neighborhood. He is not being paid by anyone. Mr. Walker.

Erick Walker: Good evening, City Council. Robert Fulton Elementary School, an 80 year old building, which taught children from grades K-8, closed on June 9, 2010.

Today, 12 years later, their abandoned property has become an eyesore in our neighborhood of Mount Pleasant. This building has now begun to fall apart--piece by piece.

The parking lot has consistently become an area for illegal dumping. As well as a site for illegal fireworks, during the Fourth of July. This site continues to plague our community and promote the Broken Window Theory--which I quote: "Is seemingly minor instances of social and physical disorder in urban spaces, which can contribute to an atmosphere of lawlessness, that encourages more serious crime (end quote)."

An Ordinance issued by the last City of Cleveland Council--Number 1131-2021--November 29,2021 states: An emergency ordinance authorizing the Mayor and the Commissioner of Purchases and Supplies to acquire the Robert Fulton School property, located at 3291 East 140th Street, for future redevelopment for the Department of Community Development to convey the property to Tober Development Corporate Company, LLC or its designee and to enter into an agreement between the city and the redeveloper."

Today, as far as me and my neighbors can see, nothing has been accomplished. The Cuyahoga County Ohio Tax website--My Place--lists Parcel Number: 130-15-001--Robert Fulton--still under the ownership of the Board of Education.

Cleveland Municipal, a cleveland.com, article titled: "Cleveland District Reaches Agreement With Developers To Make Use Of The 14 Vacant School Properties," dated June 30, 2021 said an offer of $79,000 was given for Robert Fulton.

To date, all of our lists, emails inquiries, have gone unanswered and ignored. About this property, by city council. It is our hope in 2023, to see Mount Pleasant treat it with the same urgency as the Buckeye-Woodland abandoned property.

To see our neighborhood treated with the same urgency as the near West Side. To see our neighborhood treated with the same urgency as the East 105th Corridor. To see our neighborhood treated with the same urgency as the demolition of the light bulb factory owned by General Electric. And treated with the same urgency as the $435 million Gateway Development Corporation.

This problem has been here far too long. And we the community, are demanding attention to this matter from the leaders of the city of Cleveland. Mount Pleasant can't wait any longer, Mr. Mayor.

Blaine Griffin: Thank you.

3:18 Permalink

Vernon Kittrells Jr.

Blaine Griffin: Next, we have up from proud Ward 6, Mr. Vernon Kittrells, Jr. from Fairfax. He's here to talk about the Fairfax Recreation Center. He is not representing anyone. And he's not being paid by anyone. Mr. Kittrells please take the mic.

Vernon Kittrells, Jr.: Good evening. My name is Vernon Kittrells. I'm here to speak on the forgotten, part neglected part of the Fairfax neighborhood.

Fairfax Recreation Center needs repairs, from the inside to the outside. From the top, to the bottom. I understand some repairs are coming.

The children's playground is deplorable. The tree fell on the fence, back in the baseball diamond at Fairfax, years ago.

This tree crushed the fence. It's still there. There's no repairs to the fence, or no removal of the tree. I urge the recreation committee of the council and administration, to go see this for themselves. Thank you.

1:06 Permalink

Anastasia Rokisky

Blaine Griffin: Next, we have Anastasia Rokisky. And, she is representing Ward 4. And, the topic that she's here to discuss is traffic safety on the border of Cleveland and Shaker Heights.

Uh, Miss Rokisky is not representing anyone. And, she is not being paid by anyone.

Anastasia Rokisky: Hello. I hope you're all having a good day. Um, so, I live on the very edge of Cleveland. Right on the border with Shaker. And, for any of you that know, Larchmere Road is not the safest road to pull out from.

And maybe drive down, because people from the connecting streets don't have much visibility.

So, I know that this issue, compared to a lot of other people's concerns--and in the grand scheme of things--is not that big.

However, on a daily basis, it is very dangerous to pull out from my street onto Larchmere Boulevard.

And, as of right now, I'm dependent on a private mirror that exists on the cross street of 130th-- which is Cleveland property. And I also shout out to Cleveland, because you guys were super helpful when I called the city helpline.

Um, in terms of hearing the issue and helping me figure out what to do next. And also responsiveness, so that was something that was very helpful from Cleveland. And maybe not so much Shaker, but I'm trying to figure out what next steps are to make access from cross streets on Larchmere safer for residents. Of course, I'm in Shaker but most of Larchmere and those cross streets is Cleveland.

I'm not quite sure what next steps are, but whether to traffic safety study or something like that. But as of right now, you have to pull out halfway into the road--just to see what's on coming.

And all it's going to take is one person getting hurt, or hit. And I know that there have been some improvements on the Cleveland side to pedestrian safety there. But for driving safety, not so much.

And when that private mirror that's owned, gets knocked due to wind, there's absolutely nothing for anybody to go off of. So, that's why I'm here. And also, shout out to Silver B.

He was a, he was a really big important part of the Hip-Hop community in Cleveland--who recently passed--and really promoted that culture.

So that would be cool, if he had a street name, too. So thank you. Just need help with Larchmere. So thanks.

2:36 Permalink