Readers who wish to read…just the facts, this synopses may help.

The Rotten Tomato Award - Joe Cimperman -  the Trans fat debate  The Community Hero Award - Maryanne Petranek - for her steadfast, on going, work getting the traffic camera issue before the voters where do Council members stand - with the common people or the power elite? Issue 12 past tense issues centered attention on concerns within the minds of thousands of citizens citywide. Now the concerns center on Council member involvement in improving civic conditions within the ward. councilman for Ward 3 Joe Cimperman responded A review of issues 1 to 4 and Council members - If I was councilman, this is what I would have written (on each issue) in an email to the citizens in my ward.  


Open Letter No. 22 in the series, "Election 2013: A Betrayal of the Public Trust...will be titled again if..." 

February 13, 2012

To the Citizens of Cleveland,

Members of Cleveland City Council,

Mayor Frank Jackson,

The Rotten Tomato Award for the year 2011 goes to  Joe Cimperman. (other recipients )

The Community Hero Award for the year 2011 goes to - Maryanne Petranek (other recipients )

He is deserving of the award for his anti-democracy decision on banning trans fat as part of the Healthy Cleveland program. 18 councilpersons that voted for the legislation need to REALLY THINK before acting, they are all deserving of the award. Phyllis Cleveland was the only wise leader who did not step on democracy when she voted against the measure. But in a surprise reversal changed direction (read PD article below). A full explanation against the ban can be read by clicking on the Open Letter

An update on the trans fat controversy. I’ll let the PD tell the story…

"Cleveland files in court to keep its ban on trans fats"

Published: Tuesday, January 03, 2012

City Hall needs to go for the Ohio legislators "Jugular". The bolsters need to file suit in Ohio Supreme Court with a firm decision to "withdraw from the union (leave Ohio)" Home Rule is causing too many problems for local politicians and really…end the squabbles, and become independent. Rule with an iron fist, and watch the exodus of citizens and businesses leave Cleveland for better living conditions elsewhere…in Ohio…where they can eat McDonald's French fries without the horrible fear of consuming trans fat.

The Community Hero Award goes to Maryanne Petranek, the organizer of the petition drive to remove the traffic cameras from Cleveland streets.

Although the petition drive had not as yet gathered enough signatures of registered voters to place the issue on the ballad for a public vote the campaign was and still is a success. I have talked to many people who would have liked to sign the petition but did not have a chance to. And not having the opportunity to do so (dare I say thousands of voters), is a money-boost for the government.

Ms Petranek and many other citizens, who helped her in getting out the petitions for people to sign, deserve special attention. Because through their efforts, thousands of citizens were able, in signature form, say to all councilmen, issues such as the traffic camera one should be debated among voters. And allowed the collective intellect vote of yea or nay to be announced on Election Day. Yes I said intellect, are any of these citizens that are upholding democracy by signing the petitions, doing the same against the State of Ohio’s traffic laws?

Ms Petranek deserves The Community Hero Award on another front. She did what many fine upstanding citizens, people who uphold democracy, but apprehensive (meaning the opposition is an uphill battle) about doing something to keep the ideal strong in government. She put aside all the oppositions for a foreseeable victorious fight against, and became a candidate for Council more than two years ago for the Ward 18 seat, the seat Martin Sweeney now holds. Well, if you asked about how she feels about being the looser, be prepared to hear all about the reasons she feels "victorious".

Now if she decides to try again to bounce Sweeney from his "comfy" seat, the lady in waiting, just might have a strong hold Sweeney cannot buy with a bottle of beer or for that matter, an endorsement from the power elite at the Plain Dealer. No, the beer and PD propaganda did not do much good in swaying voters against voting for the lady the first time. And didn’t do too much good in swaying 9,703 non-voters to vote for Sweeney. Now if…and only if the lady again decides to talk over Sweeney’s jeeberjabber, she may have a mighty force in voters who already trusts her. And I feel they are willing to spread the confidence among the 9,703 non-voters.

But I wonder…I wonder how many of the 9,703 citizens signed the traffic camera petitions, and now feel the lady will do more for democracy in the community if elected. Sweeney is setting in Council to basically enrich the government which is "basically" governed by the power elite who (not all) agree in… keeping the traffic cameras in place, is kinda like prostituting the red lights, all for the glory of the green. Am I wrong Sweeney? He won’t answer, doesn't have the courage, his tongue has been silenced by people in high places.

This is not an endorsement for the lady. She does not need my writing put on her excellent record of city wide works.

Citizens should not confuse the Community Hero Award with the PD’s plural Heroes Award. Lets just say I’m adding something of interest toward citizens who are rarely noticed by the paper.

Council members are midway between terms. And this series of writings centered on their work ethics FOR THE PEOPLE (meaning for the voter/ constituents), and all citizens (many very poor) who in some way pay taxes to the government in Cleveland. So when citizens pay out money, they expect something in return. Well, the "pay out" is not voluntary, so the "return" at best is services citizens are now rightfully complaining about. And in too many cases it does not matter to the politician (not all) what the public thinks.

They may even be thinking out of hearing range, {complain all you want, [I got your money and when Election Day rolls around, well if I want to keep the money flowing my way…gotta!..all those bill I made…sure I can get a job but not as lucrative, I may have to lie-a-bit on the campaign trail, but that’s not really bad, people do it every day…sometimes twice. Well, it doesn’t matter what the public thinks; it’s what people in high places think. Hey!, I don’t want to brag but I even get a $1,000 extra bucks every month…for business expenses. Yea, I don’t want to boast but, but that’s more money than some people in the community get a month. But gotta keep the $1,000 on the QT, citizen’s think I’m already making too much money. Hell why should I worry, my name will get me a lot of votes; it may even scare citizens away from trying to beat me. The PD endorsements have been great contributions to the campaigns. I’m a good servant to the power elite, would the PD endorse me otherwise? But still…}

Nothing is for sure. The above scramble of thoughts plus others that may pulsate through the mind of politicians to the point of ending in migraine headaches, is simply put, "nothing is for sure". And what makes those four words profound when it comes from citizens around the city ready to share information concerning the inactive work ethic of Council members (not all) in the wards. And ever since this WebSite was raised in 2001, I have embraced the echoes heard, sometimes for years, waiting for the right passage to include those concerns on the pages of this site. Two years ago, I decided to do something different with some of citizen concerns written about in seasons past. I placed them in issue form, 12 to date, questioned Council members and expected answers to be relayed to readers. Based on the feedback, which did enlighten some readers, to others not surprising when, the answers of silence came back. But silence has an open ended message to think whatever…

The eleven issues deal with concerns that are on the minds of citizens in all 19 wards. The topic of silence that tops all other responses reveals attitudes in leaders that citizens should really think about, especially when it comes to civic concerns in the community (the reverse of citywide issues already addressed).

What has a councilman done "civic concerns" to improve conditions in a ward? An example: What had a councilperson done to improve school conditions etc. Issue No.12 centers attention on these "civic concerns". And if leaders put aside the response of silence, the information provided can become boosters when campaigns for re-election comes around. This is what voters are looking for, not what they get in PD endorsements which amounts to a hill of beans. Issue 12 is broken down into two parts, years 2010 and 2011. The following email was sent out, with responses placed below it.

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Issue No 12. This issue is in two parts. Past tense issues centered attention on concerns within the minds of thousands of citizens citywide. Now the concerns center on your involvement in improving civic conditions within the ward. Part one focuses in on improvements you made in the year 2010. What can you share (civic works) with citizens in your ward?


Civic works shared with citizens can become important boosts in an election where candidates will most assuredly, challenge your integrity to voters in all parts of the neighborhood. And it’s foolish to assume candidates will not rise up and challenge your work record.

Kind regards…Len

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18 members remained silent. PLEASE NOTE. The question I asked, centers on civic concerns citizens have which differ in each of the wards. The silence in return should come to conclusions in the minds of citizens as answers to the "concerns".

Joe Cimperman did answer, after the third reminder. His comments were…

January 19, 2012

Mr. Hough:

Thank you for your inquiry regarding civic improvements I have been involved
with recently. I apologize for the untimely response. I have been on
paternity leave to enjoy much needed family time with my wife, daughter, and
newborn son.

The completion of civic improvements is an important indicator of holding
elected officials accountable to their constituents. The City of Cleveland
is dedicated to improving the quality of life for its residents regardless
of race, color, ethnicity or religion.

Great things are happening in the City of Cleveland and exciting times are
upon us, as well as ahead of us. With help from Ohio City Incorporated and
the City of Cleveland Department of Economic Development, I was able to
recruit a local ice cream manufacture to purchase vacant commercial space in
the Ohio City neighborhood, helping to eliminate blight and bring new jobs
to Ward 3.

Downtown, the once fatal Ralph J. Perk Plaza received a much needed
makeover, creating a green urban oasis that is safe for all users. The
revitalized park ties nicely into the Euclid Corridor project that has been
extremely successful and has acted a national model for corridor
revitalization. Also downtown on the West Bank of the Flats, the Greater
Cleveland Aquarium recently opened. It includes forty tanks including an
exhibit devoted to Ohio lakes and rivers.

Currently, there are plans in the works to help combat chronic homelessness
within the City of Cleveland. We are having great success with some programs
currently in place and we would like to continue to add more to help this
in-need sector of our population that is often neglected.

These are just a few of the numerous great projects that have occurred and
will occur in the future in the City of Cleveland. I hope this answers you

Joe Cimperman
Ward 3 Councilman

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January 20,

Email to…

Councilman Cimperman,

Thank you for the response.

Issue No.12 comes in two parts but from the info in your memo, I get the
idea that it pertains to both 1210 and 1211 years. I need to know if this is
correct, so I do not send you part two of the issue.

Answering the question as stated is not for me say. Answering the question
is for citizens in Ward 3 to decide.

Congratulation on the new born. Having a son should certainly turn cloudy
days into sunny ones.

Kind regards...Len.
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The Following is a review of issues presented to Council members on this WebSite for the year 2010.


Issue No. 1 "Legal status of Traffic Cameras"

Majority silence prevailed on this issue. However, Ward 18 Councilman Martin Sweeney’s assistant provided indirect info. Click… and scan down to Index of Issues, click as directed to read her comments.


If I was councilman, this is what I would have written in an email to the citizens in my ward.

" If I was councilman years ago when the vote was cast, I would not have voted to raise the traffic cameras in Cleveland for two solid reasons. The first being, too many citizens in my ward already voted (vocal opinions) against raising them. And second also grounded in citizen understanding of Cleveland’s Home Rule in the Ohio constitution states, issues that conflict with state law (in this case traffic law) is not valid.

This ward has plenty of smart citizens, many of who have signed petitions to remove the cameras, but none that I know of care to sign petitions removing the Ohio’s traffic laws.

And once again, I wish to thank the people who came to my rescue when the heat of opposition among politicians was on. And the power elite who wished to trashed me because of my loyalty to democracy. Which in turn means the best in moral work ethics will always be served to citizens, politicians and the power elite".


Issue No. 2 Who ordered "hands off" the Cleveland Public Schools.

Majority silence prevailed on this issue. However, Ward 5 Councilman Kevin Kelley provided indirect info. Click… and scan down to Index of Issues, click as directed to read his comments.


If I was councilman, this is what I would have written in an email to the citizens in my ward.

" One of the top complaints from citizens in this ward is the schools. Now I don’t know who ordered "hands off" the Cleveland Public Schools. But if I was to speculate, past and present CEO’s of banks have some politicians in this town jumping through hoops…all for the glory of the green. But with me it’s "hands on" and the minute school officials talk down to me like they have done to some parents I know. That is when I’ll get my defense team together (parents, and concerned citizens) talk strategy and raise peaceful hell for the sake of youth in this ward."


Issue NO. 3. Are you having scheduled (Town Hall) meetings with citizens in the ward?

Majority silence prevailed on this issue. However, Ward 6 Councilwoman Mamie Mitchell provided readers with a schedule of three monthly meetings. Yet she did not send any further schedules. Why she stopped is not for me to speculate. Click…


If I was councilman, this is what I would have written in an email to the citizens in my ward.

" Holding Town Hall meetings is perhaps more important than being a member of a Council committee. A major concern I have with committees is signing paper work before citizens had a chance to review the issues. I am but one person and have no right acting on behalf of citizens whose rights too often had been removed by autocrats in this government. Am I considered a rebel? You bet, by some citizens who involuntarily pay my salary, but I’d like them to eventually think of my work is worth the income.

Town Hall meetings are so important I’d have them once a week, same time, same place. And if citizen’s voted against an issue presented in committees after a full review of the pros and cons, the concern does not get my signature. Am I a rebel, yes, but for good reasons. The gatherings are so important on another level. Citizens can feel they are a part of government by asking and expecting answers to civic concerns concerning the community or citywide concerns.

And, AND NOW, I am thinking about having a Happy Hour once a week for citizens who wish to join me in talks about happy things which does not include City Hall business or antics. Joe Cimperman gave me the idea when he got on the "Band Wagon" and howled against consuming the poisonous trans fat (like looking for a needle in a haystack) found in foods. But that’s his story and he is sticking to it…all the to the Ohio Supreme Court if needed.

The Happy Hour I’m thinking about must be family friendly. And McDonalds is just the place to meet, greet, talk, laugh and basically have a friendly hour where people can buy McDonalds…how did I state it on page one…oh " eat McDonald's French fries without the horrible fear of consuming trans fat.


Issue 4 "The Councilmen’s Newsletters to ward citizens was discontinued, why?

Silence on this issue prevailed over the majority of members but a few broke the pattern. They are Phyllis Cleveland, Mamie Mitchell, Michael Polensek, Martin J. Sweeney and Joe Cimperman.

Cimperman’s assistant responded but she did not provide a direct answer. Cimperman is responsible for data she places in emails. The data can be read by Clicking on… than go to Index of Issues.

Ward 6 Councilwoman Mamie Mitchell provided readers with a schedule of three monthly meetings. Yet she did not send any further schedules. Why she stopped is not for me to speculate. Click… and scan down to Index of Issues, click as directed to read her comments.


If I was councilman, this is what I would have written in an email to the citizens in my ward.

"The Council member Newsletters should become history and I will encourage my colleagues to replace them with web sites. The Internet is the way to go in getting out info on a weekly basis or whatever time frame members choose to have. The allocation of funds for the Newsletters was on a quarterly basis, but some members published less, others none at all. Last year the funding was reduced to two Newsletters a year. Communications with citizens in the wards is almost becoming mute and like the Town Hall meetings struggling to stay afloat. Web site can provide what the Newsletters now offer plus much more in what citizens would like to read. And done at a fraction of the cost Council now puts out for the Newsletters. And the best part of all, if open communication is a democracy passion among members, the echoes of citizens will than fill City Hall’s Council Chambers energetic give and take conversation, a definite sign the public is welcome. I will show my passion by raising a web site…and probably be cursed for doing so. But I don’t need the Plain Dealers endorsement…just from citizen’s who expect service from the man who services them."

The Four issues stated here is still open for Council members input. Citizens deserve answers and if leaders cannot be direct and to the point, the public is at least entitled to explanations…or when the election rolls around candidates may try to answer them.

When the candidates are known from all the wards, they will receive copies of the issues stated over a period of four years, with invitations to respond to all.

But beware if candidates remain silent, it may be a sign of what’s to come in the future. More silence could mean more isolation of wills between City Hall and the public. I will place them all on this WebSite as invitations to read what the Plain Dealer is lacking in the endorsements and what is absent when votes are cast for names alone.

February is Black History Month, which means the media, in specific the PD in remembering the people; local pioneers whom in various ways improved on the human condition. But what is most important in honoring them, is not just in the remembering, but in feeling the spirit of their passions. In carrying the emotions into the future, because if not, all that has been gained could be lost…lost because here in Cleveland, men of power are testing democracy. Remembering who came before, the black and white pioneers who gave us the freedom that only democracy can give, must be protected against men in waiting, waiting to tie our hands to the plow.

So far the PD has avoided honoring two men who was not popular in government circles for keeping open communication with the public. And in there own ways honored a passage in democracy that warned against silence to the people from ruling leaders.

The men of honor go to Dr. Edward Young and Dr. Frederick Holliday. I need not repeat what I already written. Go to…

But I feel the PD should do an analyses of Holliday’s last interview on WJMO Radio a few hours before his death. The news media squelched it at the time, perhaps not intentional, but the PD should now do what they did not do years ago. I gave a copy of the broadcast tape to Young. Some time after, he wanted me to collaborate with him on a book concerning the horrid time it was for many citizens concerning both men. I was engaged in others writings and did not have any breakaway time to give to the project. However, I hope in my writings here, I made up for lost time.


Open Letter No. 23

Election 2013: "A Betrayal of the Public Trust"...will be titled again if...

  (Information voters should know before casting votes in the next election. )

Index of All Open Letter Topics for 2010 & 11

The Rotten Tomato Award for the year 2011 goes to  Joe Cimperman. (other recipients )

The Community Hero Award for the year 2011 goes to - Maryanne Petranek (other recipients )