Frank Jackson has concerns

Submitted by Susan Miller on Mon, 01/26/2009 - 11:01.

"Mayor Frank Jackson has concerns about the city-owned site chosen for a new medical mart and convention center project."

Well, well... welcome to the throng Mayor Jackson.

This flip flopping is so David Byrne -Talking Heads it is laughable. Remember - Making Flippy Floppy? Here's a refresher. This is the last of the lyric - so appropriate as a song for today: 

"Run-a-run-a-run it all together
Check it out - still don't make no sense
Makin' flippy floppy
Tryin to do my best
Lock the door
We kill the beast
Kill it!"

Remember this was on the Stop Making Sense Album... We've got it, we've got it... Next thing you know we'll all be dancing to Burning Down the House on the Mall.

Back to the news: this morning on WCPN we heard, Fred Nance reiterate conditional site selection. It ain't over til the fat lady sings or what?

WKYC and realneo polls indicate many feel this medcon will never materialize.

Let's place bets on what the Cleveland Planning Commission will say. Some could make more cash than they make on the Ohio Lottery by starting office pools. Bookies - are you in on this?

Steve Litt talks basically as co-interviewer on WCPN because he has not been afforded renderings, engineering plans or even a sketch of what the MMPI proposed solution is. Still, Litt raises (pun solidly intended) a good question about elevation. The mall greespace will rise 4 feet above its currenet elevation!?! What!?! and this is too much detail!?! What are they planning to do with Public Auditorium anyway? Meanwhile a local (once upstart) architect has drunk the koolaid weighing in on the potential of this solution and endorsing the site selection. While we're "strengthening Cleveland as a destination", I would like to pont out that there is much that those who are already destined to live here require before we begin entertaining guests... but that aside.

Mark Falanga calls the existing convention center foundation a bathtub. I was laughing so hard, I missed the next comment. Bathtub indeed and Mayor Jackson seems, in a stunning turnabout from last week's cordial interview with Thomas Mulready at the airport, to now want to get out of the bath. Did he learn something about swimming with sharks, potentially "taking a bath" - something we don't know? It seems that as of this writing the county has collected around $52 million for the proposed project. Would we pay this amount for say, insulating or repairing homes in Cleveland? Maybe we would pay this for, oh... I don't know, improved safety services, better schools, improved public transit? 

Frank, Frank, Frank... oh dear! What next? This is a great comedy routine - who's on first. It's Tim Hagan, no Jimmy Dimora, no Peter Lawson Jones, no Fred Nance, no Frank Jackson, no Chris Kennedy, no Mark Falanga... My head is spinning and I'm feeling a bit queasy. Am I dreaming in Fellini's Satyricon?

I don't buy it - the medcon - tax dollars going to support private enterprise, but if we have to have it why would the mayor not welcome the chance to have it on city owned property - the cleveland convention center. What does he want to use city tax dollars to restore Public Auditorium?

Even better are all the folks now weighing in for the other sites. Did Forest City make a lot of phone calls over the weekend? Wagar goes at Wolstein - Wolstein fires back. Still, we have no numbers, no drawings, no cost benefit analysis... sounds like a dud to me. But boy, is it a fun rollercoaster. Look out Cedar Point - Cleveland politicians have got you topped.

( categories: )

"What we got here

"What we got here is.....failure to communicate! Some men you can't reach."

You have 7 egos and one project, during a recession where banks aren't even loaning to each other.

Pick an article, any article, from Roldo Bartimole regarding County leaders pushing projects without any common sense, and then watching our pitiful tax revenue pilfered around to cover bombastic screw ups.

Luckily, the project is on the existing convetion center. Unfortunately, the county was supposed to okay this with public input in 1988!!! Not shove this lunatic forest city proposal of a convention center dangling off a cliff down our throats.

Remember when Hagan quit in the 90s for a foster child dying under county supervision? He couldn't take responsibility for his actions, and just had a mental breakdown at some public meeting. Any more heat and hopefully, he'll "quit" again.

Mail from the Mayor

Go/No Go

  Frank predicts the Medical Mart is a Go/No Go in August 2009.

Didn't Hagan quit to run for governor? I had no idea about the meltdown over his kid...

comments on this post at Cleveland Design City

I had no idea those guys were reading these realNEO posts... We'll I guess you just never know who's gonna post your post. Anyway - Theodore Ferringer responds mentioning blind distrust (I beg to differ - I'm trying my damnedest to "see" how this deal benefits Cleveland) and then Dru McKeown mentions "legally gathered tax for a singular purchase".

My response to their comments:

Legally gathered sales tax? Been reading the ORC lately?

Ohio Revised Code 5739.026 County sales tax for specific purposes.

(A) A board of county commissioners may levy a tax of one-fourth or one-half of one per cent on every retail sale in the county... for any one or more of the following purposes provided that the aggregate levy for all such purposes does not exceed one-half of one per cent:

(1) To provide additional revenues for the payment of bonds or notes issued in anticipation of bonds issued by a convention facilities authority established by the board of county commissioners under Chapter 351. of the Revised Code and to provide additional operating revenues for the convention facilities authority;

If the tax is for more than one of the purposes set forth in divisions (A)(1) to (7), (9), and (10) of this section, or is exclusively for one of the purposes set forth in division (A)(1), (2), (4), (5), (6), (7), (9), or (10) of this section, the resolution shall not go into effect unless it is approved by a majority of the electors voting on the question of the tax.

That's why the long extant CFA quickly dissolved when our elected officials (representative democracy) passed the tax - they would have had to put the tax increase for a convention center (under a CFA) before the electorate... Instead they put it in the general fund. Just curious as to why, so I looked it up. I'm not a lawyer.

Since it is in the general fund - though earmarked for the convention center (and any interest earned is not going to the convention center) it could be redirected. Not to mention it could be repealed. Suggesting that the opportunity cost being squandered on an "if you build it they will come" opaque medmart party center could pay for other needed services may be reductionist. That's another opinion. In my humble opinion, there are things we need that are not a med mart.

Dreaming big, Dru? Me, too. I dreamt that we canceled tax abatements and had payments in lieu of taxes from hospitals and sports teams. Then I woke up and I was still in Cleveland.

addendum - wcpn interview with Bobbi Reichtell Hagan and McCormack - 2003

Theodore - It's not a black and white issue, indeed. This goes back to 1997 and farther apparently - long before I was peering at it through a glass.