8 con­tend­ing for 4 Eu­clid Coun­cil seats, 2 for pres­i­dent

The News Herald (Willoughby, OH) - - Local News - By Chad Fel­ton cfel­ton@news-her­ald.com @be­lievethatcfnh on Twit­ter

With cur­rent Eu­clid City Coun­cil Pres­i­dent John Mon­roe va­cat­ing his seat, two can­di­dates vy­ing to fill it will ap­pear on the Nov. 7 non­par­ti­san bal­lot — chal­lenger Alisa Boles and cur­rent coun­cil mem­ber Char­lene Man­cuso.

The win­ning can­di­date will serve a four-year term and earn $13,000 in 2018. There are cur­rently 34,208 reg­is­tered vot­ers in Eu­clid, ac­cord­ing to the Cuya­hoga County Elec­tions Board.

Pres­i­dent of Coun­cil Boles

Boles, if elected, said she would tap into all avail­able re­sources to fur­ther mar­ket­ing, eco­nomic and com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment, and cit­i­zen en­gage­ment.

“I think Eu­clid need­lessly suf­fers from an in­fe­ri­or­ity com­plex. We need to make sure our res­i­dents know about ev­ery­thing we have to of­fer and we should all do our part in pro­mot­ing our city to oth­ers. I can’t think of another suburb where you have Lake Erie, a Lake Metroparks (prop­erty), an ice arena, an abun­dance of neigh­bor­hood pools, a rock climb­ing gym, in­door beach vol­ley­ball, a golf course and even a disc golf course — es­pe­cially not one that also has an award­win­ning li­brary and con­ve­nient ac­cess to down­town Cleve­land, Univer­sity Cir­cle and other re­gional cul­tural cen­ters.

“As I talk to folks around Eu­clid, I am hear­ing con­cerns about un­der­uti­liza­tion of busi­ness dis­tricts, hous­ing code en­force­ment, street and tree main­te­nance, tax eq­uity, trans­porta­tion eq­uity, ed­u­ca­tion and en­gage­ment of youth, prop­erty values and ad­e­quacy of safety forces,” she said. “I am in­vested in the suc­cess of this city. I em­body the change Eu­clid needs to move for­ward. Eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment and com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment go hand in hand. Many of our qual­ity-of-life prob­lems are symp­toms of our eco­nomic sit­u­a­tion. On the flip side, any­thing we do to make Eu­clid a bet­ter place to live and work can at­tract new res­i­dents and busi­ness own­ers to our area.

Man­cuso

Man­cuso be­lieves her back­ground as an ad­min­is­tra­tor re­spon­si­ble for large bud­get health care pro­grams has pre­pared her to un­der­stand the nu­ances of deal­ing with fi­nan­cial mat­ters in a pub­lic arena.

“I think my ex­pe­ri­ence, my pas­sion and my com­mit­ment to mov­ing Eu­clid for­ward makes me the best can­di­date for Eu­clid Coun­cil pres­i­dent,” she said. “We need to make sure our hous­ing stock, whether rented or pur­chased, meets the safety stan­dards needed, that houses are de­mol­ished in a timely man­ner when left by prop­erty own­ers, and that our busi­nesses have a clear path and con­sis­tent process to ad­dress new or on­go­ing needs that will in­crease the like­li­hood of their suc­cess in Eu­clid.

“I want to work with my col­leagues to as­sure safe neigh­bor­hoods where we can all en­joy our homes, our yards and our neigh­bor­hoods. I would like coun­cil to be a driv­ing force in es­tab­lish­ing and/or fos­ter­ing neigh­bor­hood as­so­ci­a­tions that can bring neigh­bors to­gether. When we know each other, lis­ten to each other and un­der­stand each other more, we can over­come most ob­sta­cles.”

In ad­di­tion to the pres­i­dent of coun­cil seat, races in four of Eu­clid’s eight wards also will ap­pear on the bal­lot: Ward 2; Ward 4; Ward 6; and Ward 8. A to­tal of eight coun­cil can­di­dates are run­ning for four seats.

The can­di­dates are Lee F. Bock, Patrick De­laney, Laura J. Gor­she, Brian T. Moore, An­gela K. Steele, Richard Tolton and John M. Wo­jtila. Ward 2 in­cum­bent Made­line Scarniench is re­tir­ing. In­cum­bent Kris­tian Jarosz of Ward 4 is run­ning un­op­posed.

Those elected will earn $11,000 in 2018.

Ward 2 Moore

If elected, Moore said hous­ing will be a cen­tral pri­or­ity.

“It is my in­tent to as­sist with pro­grams to help home­own­ers and renters main­tain and im­prove the qual­ity and ap­pear­ance of the hous­ing stock in Eu­clid,” he said. “Re­gard­ing neigh­bor­hood en­gage­ment, Eu­clid has an out­stand­ing set of pro­grams that help cre­ate an at­mos­phere of un­der­stand­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tion amongst its very di­verse com­mu­ni­ties. I in­tend to fully sup­port the growth and ex­pan­sion of th­ese pro­grams.”

Moore also would fo­cus on safety, and would seek to cre­ate an ef­fec­tive means of com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween res­i­dents and safety forces so that the city’s po­lice and res­i­dents are more ca­pa­ble of un­der­stand­ing ex­ist­ing is­sues.

“I have been a ser­vantleader my en­tire life and de­sire to do so in the po­si­tion of Eu­clid City Coun­cil, Ward 2,” he said.

Tolton

Tolton did not re­turn a News-Her­ald ques­tion­naire.

Ward 6 Bock

Bock, like many of the can­di­dates, feels the city’s hous­ing pro­grams need to be stronger.

“The Water­line Re­place­ment Pro­gram needs to be fur­thered in the ward,” he said. “And com­mu­ni­ca­tion within the ward needs to be greatly im­proved. Elected of­fi­cials should be seen in the neigh­bor­hoods.

“Hav­ing lived in the ward for 44 years, I have the ex­pe­ri­ence and knowl­edge to see that Ward 6 is mov­ing for­ward and re­ceiv­ing its share of im­prove­ments. I know where to go and who to see so that pos­i­tive things hap­pen. I want to serve the ward and will work hard for all my neigh­bors.”

De­laney

“Eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, safety and hous­ing are three ar­eas that need to be pri­or­i­tized,” De­laney said. “Eu­clid needs to re­build its tax base, not just de­fer to rais­ing taxes. We need to fo­cus on our po­ten­tial and re­sources to at­tract new busi­nesses. Crime, too, con­tin­ues to be a con­cern. The safety forces must main­tain and even in­crease lev­els of safety in the com­mu­nity, that can be (done through) more per­son­nel and tech­nol­ogy. It also shows the ur­gency on restor­ing the tax base to bring in more re­sources to de­liver this to the com­mu­nity.

“The city must com­mit to in­creas­ing the value of our hous­ing stock. We have the op­por­tu­nity for more hous­ing starts since the post­war era. We need to mar­ket the city’s strengths and at­tract res­i­dents and re­duce the amount of va­cant homes.”

De­laney de­scribes his po­si­tion as in­cum­bent an honor, and, if re-elected, plans to also chal­lenge the ad­min­is­tra­tion with checks and bal­ances.

“Eu­clid City Coun­cil needs ex­pe­ri­enced lead­er­ship, and I bring that,” he said. “I re­spect­fully ask the vot­ers to keep proven lead­er­ship and ex­pe­ri­ence on Eu­clid City Coun­cil and vote Patrick De­laney.”

Wo­jtila

If elected, Wo­jtila, who served Ward 6 from 2008 to 2011, would make safety and se­cu­rity the ward’s high­est pri­or­ity.

“This will help pro­mote sta­bil­ity and fos­ter growth,” he said. “I will con­tinue what I pre­vi­ously started while on coun­cil with the up­date of our zon­ing code, which needs to be cur­rent and rel­e­vant, fos­ter­ing pos­i­tive re­de­vel­op­ment. I would work to try and cre­ate neigh­bor­hood as­so­ci­a­tions where they don’t cur­rently ex­ist.

“Uti­liz­ing this ex­pe­ri­ence along with my 32 years as a civil en­gi­neer work­ing in real es­tate de­vel­op­ment, my voice on coun­cil will be for­ti­fied by knowl­edge, in­tegrity and vi­sion. I am ac­tive in the com­mu­nity and will work tire­lessly to rep­re­sent the res­i­dents of Ward 6. I am ex­tremely proud of my pre­vi­ous ac­com­plish­ments on coun­cil and hope to re­sume th­ese ef­forts.”

Ward 8 Gor­she

Gor­she feels the great­est is­sue fac­ing Eu­clid is rev­enue, and the nec­es­sary funds to main­tain streets, re­pair in­fra­struc­ture and hire more po­lice and fire, as well as pur­chas­ing new ser­vice de­part­ment equip­ment. If re-elected, she plans to ad­dress th­ese con­cerns and more.

“Res­i­dents have come to know me well over the past few years as their coun­cil rep­re­sen­ta­tive,” she said. “I pro­vide ser­vice and of­fer re­solve. I have and will con­tinue to meet with res­i­dents at their homes, at the sight of an is­sue or in cof­fee shops. We will con­tinue to dis­cuss next steps and work to­gether. I have and will con­tinue to be the res­i­dents’ ad­vo­cate, be­ing mind­ful of their pock­et­books.

“Eu­clid is in a time of change, a change where ex­pe­ri­ence mat­ters. I am an ex­pe­ri­enced leader with proven re­sults. I will con­tinue to work for sound in­vest­ment strate­gies that im­pact our qual­ity of life in the neigh­bor­hoods, our hous­ing, safety, and ob­tain the right busi­nesses so that our com­mu­nity will con­tinue to pros­per. The city has mon­u­men­tal debt, now in re­pay­ment, a de­clin­ing tax base and a higher poverty rate than most neigh­bor­ing ci­ties. I will be work­ing hard to find ways to in­crease rev­enue to the gen­eral fund with­out adding more of a fi­nan­cial bur­den to our al­ready taxed res­i­dents.”

Steele

If elected, Steele would like to im­ple­ment more re­sources and men­tor­ing pro­grams for the city’s youth be­tween the ages of 14 and 18.

“I would like to es­tab­lish a LifeSkills pro­gram and part­ner with the schools, our lo­cal busi­nesses and some of our se­nior ci­ti­zens,” she said. “This pro­gram will be set up to fol­low the child from ninth grade un­til they grad­u­ate high school. The pro­gram will be geared on teach­ing chil­dren ba­sic skills which adults take for granted. This pro­gram will get them pre­pared to go on to col­lege or the work­force.

“I would also help in part­ner­ing with the po­lice de­part­ment and the com­mu­nity. Hav­ing the po­lice get a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of the cul­ture of the ci­ti­zens, while the ci­ti­zens get to know the po­lice and have more pos­i­tive in­ter­ac­tions with them, will cre­ate con­fi­dence in the po­lice de­part­ment. This will help with bridg­ing the gap with the peo­ple of Eu­clid and the po­lice de­part­ment.

“I be­lieve it is time for a change and I am the one who can bring those changes and bright vi­sions to re­al­ity,” she said.

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