We have heard from an Eastlake Lobbyist that Mayor Dennis Morley wants to eliminate the current economic development program called ECDC. LFC is trying to understand why the Mayor believes it is not working as it was intended. Perhaps he will share with us his thoughts so that it can be decided in the court of public opinion what is best for Eastlake taxpayers.
Here is an opinion given to us on this subject that has now become controversial:
In my opinion, the ECDC committee has had an enormous positive impact on the City of Eastlake and surrounding cities over the past 3 years. Numerous events have brought businesses, non-profits, and residents together. Also, the mayors of Eastlake, Willoughby, and Willowick have applied for block grants to improve the condition of Vine Street partially due to the impact from the Vine Street Corridor Meetings created and run by the ECDC Committee.
Business that once fought with each other now sit side by side and plan events in the Vine Street Corridor Meetings. The Banquet Facilities Meetings typically have numerous local pastors attend and numerous events have been brought to the Eastlake Banquet Facilities (Wedding Show, Birthdays, etc). Programs offered by local churches for families facing addiction, disabilities, grief due to loss of a family members, and food banks/free community dinners have been promoted to the surrounding communities.
The ECDC Committee has partnered with hundreds of businesses, the Eastlake Women’s Club, Fight Against Addiction, Amy’s Adoptable Dog Rescue, C-21 Asa Cox Homes (Christmas Program), and others. We typically hold fundraisers at the events, which have included: Eastlake Police K9, Fight Against Addiction, Hurricane Relief, Amy’s Adoptable, etc.
I have no documentation that he intends to appoint Judy Moran to the new Events Committee he would like to create.
Here is the the letter that Mayor Morley sent to the City Council President:
On Wed, 28 Nov 2018 11:48:23 -0500, “Dennis Morley” wrote:
I am formally requesting that council abolish 154.01 ECDC and changing it to an event committee sponsored by council. I do not believe it functions as it was intended. Please see yellow highlight. [LFC changed it to bold & underlined] I do congratulate what the committee has done over the past few years. Please share your thoughts. I will look at someone that could work with the committee from the administration side if it is changed to event committee.
154.01 ESTABLISHMENT; MEMBERS; TERMS; POWERS.
The Economic and Community Development Council (ECDC) is hereby created, with jurisdiction to advance, encourage and promote the industrial, economic, commercial, recreational, green infrastructure and civic development of the City in accordance with an Eastlake Master Development Plan.
The ECDC shall consist of nine (9) members approved by Council, unless specified otherwise, and shall consist of: one (1) member of Eastlake City Council, two (2) members from the Eastlake Administration, one (1) officer from the Western Lake County Chamber of Commerce, one (1) member from the Eastlake Business Community, one (1) member from the Eastlake Port Authority and three (3) Eastlake residents, two (2) to be appointed by City Council and one (1) to be appointed by the Mayor. All members of the ECDC shall serve for a term of five (5) years, except that the initial term for the following shall be three (3) years, and five (5) years thereafter:
One City Council member
One Eastlake resident
The Chamber of Commerce representative
The Eastlake Port Authority representative.
The ECDC is hereby authorized and empowered to periodically recommend to City Council that appropriations of funds be made necessary to accomplish the purpose for which the ECDC was created, including, but not limited to, funds necessary to retain outside consultants, to retain grant writers and to apply for grants and to match any grants so obtained, and general property development. The ECDC may, with Council’s approval of the necessary appropriation, retain outside consultants, retain grant writers and apply for grants and match any grants so obtained for general property development.
(Ord. 2010-006. Passed 1-26-10.)
Mayor Dennis Morley
35150 Lakeshore Blvd.
Eastlake, Ohio 44095
(440) 951-2200 ext. 1002
(LFC Comment: Sorry, Mayor Morley, but we do not read in your letter exactly what the ECDC is NOT doing. It looks like you want to make changes for the sake of making changes, so that means there may be other motives. Taxpayers would like to know exactly why the ECDC should be abolished and what would your “events committee” do better?)
Here is another opinion we received from another well-connected citizen:
“Word is the Mayor recently tried to dissolve the port authority. The state of Ohio does give port authorities a lot of leeway in terms of economic development that municipalities don’t have. You can probably confirm this by requesting copies of the minutes for Eastlake city council and Eastlake port authority meetings. Why would the Mayor want to dissolve existing entities that involve economic development? Especially if they are working.
Judy Moran is a woman of action. She and Mayor Morley spent a lot of time together fundraising for the Miracle League, a very worthwhile endeavor. Judy, an ex-Commissioner and current President of the Board of Directors for the Miracle League of Lake County (https://www.miracleleagueoflakecounty.org/contact), is the new Administrative Assistant to Mayor Morley (see Mayor’s page on the website https://eastlakeohio.com/mayors-office/). Supposedly there were multiple candidates for the job, but Judy was the most qualified. Most qualified how I wonder? Sad that those other candidates, who I believe were likely very qualified from an administrative skill set perspective, never even had a chance. Showing up was a waste of their time…they had to interview others to make it look legitimate. Disgraceful.
Something smells rotten in Eastlake.”
(LFC Comment: These are strictly one person’s opinions, and we will give any Eastlake representative. or citizen a chance to respond. We will be sending records requests for minutes.)
Dennis Morley & Judy Moran – Nurenberg Paris’ April Charity Partner, The Miracle League of Lake County
Every child deserves a chance to play baseball! The Miracle League removes the barriers that keep children with intellectual and physical disabilities off the baseball field and lets them experience the joy of America’s favorite pastime. Here to tell us more are Dennis Morley, Mayor of Eastlake, and Miracle League Board President, Judy Moran.