displacement of residents from this Euclid Beach Mobile Home Community. Credit: City of Cleveland YouTube

Cleveland residents came to City Council with concerns about the Community Police Commission budget — which is about $224,000 short of what the new commission asked for during city budget hearings. Other residents want city officials to work on affordable housing and prevent residents from being displaced by development.

The Public Comment CLE website has all of the week’s comments and transcripts, edited by Cleveland Documenter Carolyn Cooper.

Register to make a public comment or learn more about the process in our guide to public comment at Cleveland City Council.

Community Police Commission budget

LaTonya Goldsby serves as the president of Black Lives Matter Cleveland and is a co-founder and board member of Citizens For A Safer Cleveland, which championed the Issue 24 ballot initiative that voters approved in 2021. Goldsby said it is imperative that the commission be able to hire extra staff and pay for an attorney as it starts its work, which includes oversight over police discipline. She pointed out that council cut the commissions proposed budget while adding more discretionary money for council members to spend in their wards.

City Council has been a stumbling block to progress made in this city. This is why citizens have taken action, through ballot measures and charter amendments–to begin the process of transforming our local government structure.”

LaTonya Goldsby, Black Lives Matter Cleveland

Watch Goldsby’s full comment.

Brenda Bickerstaff, a Ward 6 resident representing Citizens for a Safer Cleveland said the the Community Police Commission needs the budget it requested in order to pay for an attorney and staff as it begins its work.

It seems to me they want this commission to go away, even though sixty percent of the voters voted for this–to hold these cops accountable…A lot of you may be new but a lot of you been here for a while. You know what the police is capable of, and you still don’t want them to be held accountable.”

Brenda Bickerstaff, Ward 6

Watch Bickerstaff’s full comment.

Housing justice

Credit: City of Cleveland YouTube

Anthony Beard, of Collinwood, representing United Residents of Euclid Beach, said he has been a resident of Cleveland for 60 years and honorably served in the military. He said the residents of his community aren’t against the “greening” of Cleveland or where they live. He said they were not fairly consulted on the process that led to a decision to close down their mobile home community.

We have a case now, where it looks like it’s ‘green gentrification’ where you’re willing to put green space at the expense of people. “

Anthony Beard, Collinwood

Watch Beard’s full comment.

Robert Rice, of Clark-Fulton, representing the Greater Cleveland Housing Justice Coalition shared concerns about gentrification and aggressive realtors trying to snap up properties at low prices and other residents losing their homes because they couldn’t pay taxes or utility bills.

It is clear that the concerns around gentrification aren’t abstract apprehensions of the future, but a real material reality that’s infecting and displacing people in communities today. “

Robert Rice, Clark-Fulton

Watch Rice’s full comment.

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