Happy Holidays and Best Wishes
It goes without saying that the Holiday Season is upon us and I wish to thank all of the organizations, individuals, and businesses who have been working to make our community a better place. My sincere thanks to the East 140th, East 156th and East 185th Street Neighborhood Associations for their continued involvement in Ward 8. To our local development corporations, Northeast Shores, Collinwood Nottingham and St Clair-Superior, thank you for your participation and vision. To our neighborhood churches and other groups for their outreach – not only to their congregation but to those in need in the Greater Collinwood and Glenville communities. Even though we as a community continue to deal with challenges and issues I am thankful that I live in this great ethnically, racially and spiritually diverse community that is truly cosmopolitan.
We have many things to be thankful for this past year including improvements in our three lakefront MetroParks; with much more coming in the next two years. The Euclid Creek Tunnel project is in the homestretch with completion planned for 2015. The installation of new storm sewers to address the ongoing problems with basement flooding will also improve water quality along our entire lakefront. The acquisition and renovation of abandoned and vacant homes has been ongoing through our development corporations and will expand next year. The near completion of the Waterloo Arts & Entertainment District along Waterloo Road and East 156 Street is redefining our neighborhood as the east side arts district. The recent reorganization of the Collinwood Nottingham Villages Development Corporation will refocus their mission to include prioritizing the St Clair and East 152 Street corridors. Then there is the growing partnership between our community and the City of Euclid for targeting redevelopment of the East 185th Street and East 200th Street corridors.
In 2014, we saw a more aggressive approach to public safety issue by our neighborhood groups and concerned residents. We all know that the biggest deterrent to criminal activity is an engaged citizenry. Our ward has always distinguished itself by being proactive and working with the 5th District Police Commander and his officers. I look forward to that continued partnership as we go into the new year with all of its challenges. We all know though that challenges present opportunities as well. Therefore, I am calling upon everyone who lives, works and plays in Ward 8 to become more engaged than ever before. This includes that fact that we must press the Jackson Administration and the City’s Department of Building & Housing to do a better job on enforcing the city’s basic building code specifically with regard to absentee landlords with abandoned, foreclosed and vacant properties. This is the number one complaint I hear at neighborhood meetings and there is a direct tie to criminal activity with many of these properties. Good landlords maintain their properties and tend not to rent to bad families. Be observant on your street call the Police or the B&H hotline or the animal warden etc. when there is an issue! I like nosey neighbors who care enough to take action regarding their street and show up at the neighborhood meetings.
Bad weather is coming – make sure you and your home is ready. Call in any street lights out, abandoned cars on the street, water leaks, etc to my office or the appropriate City departments. I may always be reached at my office at (216) 664-4236 or my email at email@example.com.
On that note I look forward to seeing all of you in the New Year; God willing. I wish you and your families a HAPPY, JOYOUS and SAFE HOLIDAY SEASON and a PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR! GOD BLESS YOU and the WARD 8 COMMUNITY!
Michael D. Polensek