Public commenters spoke to Cleveland City Council about menthol cigarettes being targeted at the Black community, about barriers to accessible housing for seniors and about why the city’s law banning large balloon releases is not being enforced.
The Public Comment CLE website has all of the week’s comments and transcripts, edited by Cleveland Documenter Gennifer Harding-Gosnell.
Accessible senior housing
Joe Gauntner, of Ward 3, proposed several legislative changes that he said would improve the chances for older adults to stay in the areas of the city where they live, including changing building codes to allow construction of one-floor homes and requiring developers who receive tax abatements from the city to offer accessible, first-floor housing.
Menthol cigarette dangers
Waverly Willis, the owner of Urban Kutz barbershops, gave a personal account of watching his parents suffer the effects of cigarette smoking and asked council to ban the sale of flavored tobacco products, including menthol.
Juan Collado, of Ward 11, asked for clarification and enforcement of the rules for balloon releases in the City of Cleveland. Collado said he was told by police they can’t do anything unless it is happening at that very moment and police are there. Collado said he has video evidence of balloon releases and wants to see the legislation enforced.
Juan Molina Crespo, of Ward 12, thanked Jasmin Santana and other members of council for their support of the new CentroVilla25 project, which will bring a marketplace and business center to the Clark-Fulton neighborhood. The market will feature kiosk-style spaces for retail, a commercial kitchen, office space for Latino and neighborhood organizations, a restaurant, and a community gathering area.