The Travesty of "Good Government"

Submitted by lmcshane on Thu, 07/20/2017 - 02:02.

 Today was a devastating blow to residents who want to see accountability in government.   It has been known for some time that the "Community Development Corporation" known as Detroit Shoreway Development Corporation is a fraud and a front for shady real estate deals - but the extent of corruption was assumed to be strictly local and not necessarily state-wide.  Now, it is apparent that the unchecked FUNNELING of federal monies to greedy local "developers" also extends to the operation of the Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA).

Residents who clamor for services in our neighborhood--like me in Brooklyn Centre, like Diane Morgan in Stockyards, like Fay Harris in Ohio City -- are intentionally kept in the dark about the applications to Ohio Housing Finance Agency.  There is no way to actually block the funneling of federal money to these set-ups known as CDCs and the fake social service agencies, like Cleveland Housing Network and EDEN,  that have been created to PRETEND to serve the public with their front of "caring" for the homeless and the indigent.  Detroit Shoreway cares too little about actual affordable housing and cares way too much about catering to the construction of tax-abated shoddy housing aka Marous townhouses along the lakefront.

The backstory: Cleveland Housing Network applied- and with apparently NO SCRUTINY by Ohio Housing Finance Agency was awarded - for two low-income tax credit projects:  International Village and Emerald Alliance XI.

International Village was first trotted out to residents as the "Dream Neighborhood," chronicled as a fraudulent scheme here at REALNEO and, NEVER presented as an OHFA application for community input.

Diane Morgan explains:

Well, it looks like Joe [Cimperman] finally is getting his way. OHFA is awarding $5 million dollars to CHN with Metro West [ latest fake incarnation of Detroit Shoreway Development Corporation]  to develop 22 infill houses.

If I am reading this right, each house will cost $265,252 to build. A total of $1.2 million in professional fees,

Rent $640 plus utilities with a maximum rent of $1,039.

"International Villiage is a 22-unit scattered site single family infill project that will be available to families at or below 60% of the area median income (AMI).

This project is a crucial component of the City of Cleveland's and the Metro Wes Community Development
Organizations' revitalization plan "International Village: Cleveland's Dream Neighborhood."

This plan seeks to build on the neghboorhoods history of welcoming Puerto Rican migrants and immigrants. Centrered on the Thomas Jefferson Newcomers Acadamy, a CMSD school that serves non-English speaking students, this project will provide housing and services to
allow newcomers to the City of Cleveland to thrive in their new home."

(BTW, the typos are on the official document)

Now here are a couple of issues around this:

There has been no community engagement
What median income is this based on? Last I looked it was, $27,000.
Who are they renting to? It doesn't specify. When they tried to shove this program down our throats over the past two years, it was for refugees.

At least the rendering is reflective of the houses here in the community and not the crap they build in OC or Tremont

It is going to be interesting to see how this unfolds, how much money Metro West gets from it and shuffles to DSCDO, not our community and if my friends who live there and have worked hard maintaining their community gardens are going to lose the spaces. Kat Ledger


Emerald Alliance XI aka the demolition and give-away of the vacant YMCA and commercial property at 3873-3881 Pearl Rd - has also been chronicled extensively at REALNEO.  Our neighborhood was only made aware of this "project" -in the works for YEARS- because two residents (Michael Minich and Michael Lance) were accidentally told by Tony Bango at Detroit Shoreway Development Corporation during "neighborhood" planning meetings held to address the abyssmal state of our "gateways" to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.

Despite protest letters, calls and web postings - including the still "under construction" status of Emerald Alliance X (10!) (how many goddamn Permanent Supportive Housing units do you need in a city like Cleveland - that is losing population by the minute??)

At all levels - residents have been intentionally shut out of the "development" of these "low-income" projects meant to enrich the pockets of the contractors steered to these projects. Nothing seems to dissuade OHFA to examine the real "outcomes" of these funding requests- not even, the federal indictment of a Cleveland Housing Network official for accepting bribes.

 Ohio Housing Finance Agency must, therefore, be in collusion with Cleveland Housing Network and the applicants for these funds.  There is no other conclusion. We are screwed.

( categories: )


Julian Castro and Pres. Obama  issued a HUD policy statement (after Ferguson MO) that discouraged federal money being spent to further concentrate poverty into areas already exhibiting significant concentrations of  poverty.  The Ohio Housing Finance Agency is exacerbating the concentration of poverty in the two neighborhoods where they have recently granted these low-income tax credits. I get an Ohio Voucher application in the mail on an almost monthy basis - which I throw away since the Greater Cleveland Food Bank is another disaster destroying community values of self-reliance and self-sufficiency.  I will appeal the decision made by OHFA to HUD Secretary Ben Carson.






COLUMBUS - At its July 19, 2017, meeting, the Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) Board announced the recipients of the 2017 Housing Tax Credit (HTC) program awards, used to fund the construction, acquisition and rehabilitation of affordable housing communities throughout Ohio. Nearly $26 million in federal housing tax credits was awarded to 33 developments to create 1,698 housing units serving families, seniors and individuals with disabilities:

  • Barnesville Manor, Barnesville
  • Grove Street PSH, Middletown
  • Sunrise Terrace, New Carlisle
  • Heritage Apartments, Coshocton
  • Colfax Family Homes, Cleveland
  • Emerald Alliance XI, Cleveland
  • International Village, Cleveland
  • Knickerbocker Apartments, Bay Village
  • Forest City Square Apartments, Cleveland
  • Blacklick Crossing, Reynoldsburg
  • Parsons Village II, Columbus
  • Madison Villa, Cincinnati
  • Cincinnati Scholar House, Cincinnati
  • The 821 Flats, Cincinnati
  • Carpenter Flats, Norwood
  • Ashley Villa, Ashley
  • Art Works Lofts, Dayton (Phase II)*
  • Crawford Station, Marion Township
  • Mayfield Homes, Logan
  • Meadow Ridge Apartments, Mount Vernon
  • Cottages at Riverview, Elyria
  • Arlington Square Apartments, Elyria
  • General Franklin, Dayton
  • Shepard Crossing, Port Clinton
  • Ravenna Township Family Housing, Ravenna
  • Spring Hill Apartments, Akron (Phase III)
  • Middlebury Commons, Akron
  • Arlington Ridge Townhomes, Akron
  • International House at San Tomasso, Akron
  • Senior Homes of Marysville, Marysville
  • The Livingston, Columbus
  • Shawnee Grove, Circleville Township
  • Poindexter Village, Columbus (Phase IV)*

*Art Works Lofts and Poindexter Village each received consideration for a Local Initiatives Award in 2016, meaning that OHFA committed to funding a second phase of each development in the 2017 Tax Credit Round.

Selected developers claim tax credits over a ten year period to help offset the costs associated with construction or rehabilitation of a housing development. In exchange for the credits, owners must maintain rents that are affordable and limit occupancy to residents with low- to moderate- incomes for up to 30 years.

"As safe and decent housing grows harder to find, and the resources for creating new affordable housing choices shrink, OHFA is incredibly proud to partner with these outstanding organizations to leverage private investments for the benefit of our state," said OHFA Executive Director Sean Thomas. "This vital program creates jobs, supports rising communities and invests in Ohio's infrastructure."

Each year, HTC recipients are selected based on the policies and goals of the program, including affordability, location and experience of the development team. The 2017 HTC recipients were chosen out of 83 applicants seeking more than $67 million in credits.

OHFA has administered the HTC program to facilitate the creation and preservation of more than 115,000 units in the state since 1987. For more information regarding OHFA or the HTC program, please contact OHFA at 888.362.6432 or visit

Housing First ad by PD and now Crains

The comments  are telling - (of course, REALNEO reporters)

So let me get a clear understanding of this "news" which is basically a totally uncritical public relations effort by the Plain Dealer on behalf of our many local "non" profits. The tin trumpet has sounded! Homelessness will officially be over in 2019. This claim is utterly laughable. What is more likely to be true is that HUD LIHTC which fund these "projects" are likely to be worth about 83 cents on the dollar after the corporate tax rate is reduced to 21% from 35%. Additionally it is also unlikely that additional Section 8 vouchers will be granted which pay ALL the rent ($650 per unit) to CHN and EDEN will be granted as Section 8 vouchers are going to be reduced NOT increased by the Simon Legrees NOW running the HUD money pit in Washington DC. These Housing First projects are a huge TAX FREE cash cow for Cleveland Housing Network now rebranded as something else and the Emerald Development and Economic Network who claim the charitable exemption on the over $30 million dollars in Section 8 real estate housing they own for which they pay ZERO in property taxes. This fraudulent property tax exemption is currently investigation by the IG at HUD as well as state and local agencies. Now THAT might be something a real reporter would look into.


The model in NEO warehouses the mentally ill without services and a police report requested for any one of these facilities will give the Plain Dealer evidence on how these projects REALLY impact neighborhoods like Brooklyn Centre - where CHN-Eden, which  collects "rent" on their tenants (homeless are fast-tracked for their SSI benefits) without paying property taxes on their facilities that are fraudulently listed as "private hospitals."



NRP used low income tax credits on Foster Pointe "senior" housing in Brooklyn Centre - but they are not a "hospital," so at least they are paying property taxes on the sizable profit they make off of their residents. 


Sensing a disruption in the balance in power in Washington - the local machine has to weigh in on one of their go-to money makers.  Forget the warm and fuzzies here, especially from Matt Zone - this is all about the money and not about the homeless.  As pointed out by Wall Street Journal:


Kill the Loopholes, Including the One for ‘Low-Income Housing: Developers and investors, not the poor, benefit most from the credit. It should not survive tax reform.



"The low income housing tax credit should be ended.  It is a sweetheart deal for well-connected developers, attorneys, accountants and government regulators.  These players all get paid by so-called "soft-costs", which often may exceed 35% of overall deal cost."


Letter to County Council members Dan Brady and Yvonne Conwell

  As the County Council representatives for Cleveland city wards 14 and 12 - I am asking you both to stop the proposed CHN-Eden project recently pimped by Crain's Cleveland and Clevelanddotcom. I am also requesting a formal response to this email.


Cleveland Housing Network has been "rebranded" as Cleveland Housing Partners- to conceal their disastrous history as a manager of low-income housing.  There are also a number of shady elements that point to a history of collusion between the past administrators at Cuyahoga County Treasurer's office, Cleveland City Council members and the Cleveland Housing Network administration under Rob Curry. The Michelle Jarboe article in 2015 acknowledges the scheming that took place while the property taxes on the YMCA mounted to over 118K.  

Cleveland Housing Network has had its eye on the property for at least seven years, as part of a broad, multi-organization push to end chronic homelessness in Cuyahoga County. But real estate tangles made it impossible to pursue anything concrete before now.


Former Brooklyn YMCA, long empty, will be razed; housing project planned (photos, video



Former Brooklyn YMCA, long empty, will be razed; housing project planned (p...

Since the YMCA closed the facility in 2006, the building has been a subject of debate, frustration and strife in...



Cuyahoga County should not allow public dollars to be used to prime this project.  

If the properties at 3881-3873 Pearl are demolished through the Cuyahoga County Land Bank - the land should be made available to a commercial developer who will recoup the tax revenue lost to support Cuyahoga County services.  


As proposed in the scheme outlined by CHN-Eden, there will be no property taxes collected on this "apartment complex" - despite, the fact that CHN-Eden and low-income tax credit investors will see a significant revenue stream from the "rent" on this project.  The CDC Detroit Shoreway also participates in marketing Emerald Alliance XI for the significant "soft costs" development fee that they will attach to the project.


This deal is bad for Cuyahoga County and bad for residents.  I anticipate your written response.




Laura McShane


NOTE: Rokakis made this a policy at Board of Revision(BOR) while at Cuyahoga County. Jarboe: "One other wrinkle with the former YMCA: Over the years, various ownership entities filed appeals with the Cuyahoga County Board of Revision, seeking reductions to the property's value - and, in turn, reductions in their tax bills. The county traditionally does not pursue tax-foreclosure cases against property owners while such appeals are pending. While conducting research for this story, I found BOR cases from 2008, 2009, 2012 and 2014."