Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Solon Issues

Solon finally posted a link to the text of the issues on it's home page:

Issue 87 - full text here - Charter Amendment to allow Zoning changes as an emergency but still requires a vote.
The current GE issue is an example of why this was proposed, with early voting, and the requirement for 3 readings and a public hearing, zoning changes need to be prepared well in advance of the election to get on the ballot.

Issue 88 - full text here - Nominating Petitions Deadline
This issue was requested by the BOE from over a dozen cities.

Issue 89 - full text here - Allow Pet stores in Uptown Solon

Uptown Solon is one of several "restricted retail" zoning designations.  This would remove that restriction.

Issue 90 - full text here - Amend restricted retail zoning

Enterprise Parkway is one of several "restricted retail" zoning designations.  This would remove that restriction.

Issue 91 - full text not on Solon's site -  GetGo Liqour license, local issue in Ward 6B only


Issue for next time - Rezone 2.5 acres between GE and Carrington Court Senior housing to Office.

The PD has a voters guide here and their endorsements are here.

Judicial Ratings can be found here.

Note:  Shirley Strickland Saffold while endorsed by the Democratic Party but was caught by the PD using social media during trials before her, this has caused ALL bar associations to rank her as NOT RECOMMENDED for a score of 0.0.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Council Oct 15

Live update, Click refresh

Last Update:  10/16/12 3:00 pm   Updates in blue.

At caucus

GetGo discussion on pump advertising, Mooney asked why the restriction, Frankland said zoning,  Mooney wondered aloud why every gas station in Solon ignores that.

A link to the text for Solon issues is on the Solon home page on the right side.  Also see this post.

The purpose of caucus is to review the Agenda thus removing confusion during the meeting.  But it is becoming more of a trend to rush through the agenda so they can start the meeting early and then go into executive session BEFORE the scheduled 7:30 start time and then typically starting the meeting late while the public waits.  This has several negative consequences

  1. No chance for constituents to discuss an issue BEFORE the council meeting
  2. Agenda Confusion 

At this meeting Agenda Confusion occurred several times

  1. xx

Executive Session, Late Start (as has become the norm)

At mtg

Paulson blasts SOM Bridge msg board project, both on distraction and expense.

Item 1 Solid fence to reestablish privacy removed by Pettibone Rd project.

Police chief withdrew safety concerns. Resident spoke. Council let valences stand.

Item 3/2  GetGo var discussed. Some confusion on handling the agenda.

Bollards replaced with planters and smaller bollards (because of zero curbing).

Wing walls to hide outside vending for propane and ice.

Mooney used to work at BP and things planters collect trash, prefers shorter, fewer bollards. Russo concerned about maintaing plants. Toni supports this.

This smaller location not likely to be 24/7 unless traffic warranted

Variance allowed to stand without objection.

Site plan w revised planter/bollards approved 5-2 with Mooney & Russo voting NO.

 Item 2 old bollard plan removed 7-0.

Item 11  Rescheduled public hearing on zoning of land between GE and Carrinngton Court

First developer asked for time and to delay rezoning to office. Has option to buy.

Three legal issues
  • Moratorium
  • Emergency zoning
  • Rezoning

Gross builders (Senior Center) talked in supporting rezoning to office. They have homes very close the parcel. Noise, hours, smells.

Pelunis agrees with developer.

Meany said it should go to voters.

MasterPlan and zoning recommendation to rezone back to office

Mooney thinks office unlikely small on such a small parcel.

No action can occur until at least Jan 25? Or longer depending on issue 87.

More agenda confusion.

Mooney motioned to move to ballot 5-2. Kraus & Pelunis voted against it.

Item 13 Referred to planning.

Item 14 New rules on city easements passed as an emergency.

At roundtable

Bell thanked passage of item 14 to make it clearer.

Mayor had 6 announcements
  • Mail-in ballots require 65 cents postage.
Leaf pickup, not in street, see web.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Message Board

Here are some suggestions for the electronic message boards proposed from the forum:

“If you have time to read this message, it means you’re stuck in traffic “

“I went Tijuana and all I got was this lousy message board”

“Look at our million dollar gazebo up ahead! Your tax dollars at work”

“See that building over there? Subsidized opera inside.”

“We would have gotten the two million dollar message board, but we had to give a million to Nestles”

“Drive safe: No texting- it makes you take your eyes off the road”

“Only 180 shopping days to Home days”

“Thunderstorms and fireworks tonight”

"Avert eyes, CVS building ahead."

"Can't sleep at night?? Try counting bollards."

"Day Glo Eagle thanks you for obeying the speed limit."

"It's called Western Reserve. And we own it."

A cartoon of Stryker walks across the screen, and he says: "Got drugs?? I'll get YOU!!!"

"Now Playing at the SCA: "Don SolonJoe3"

"Welcome to Tree City USA ... except for the Bainbridge Road part."

"FOR SALE: Lightly used million dollar message board"

"NOTICE: All signage must comply with our zoning ordinances"

"Don't blame city hall! You elected us" 

Don't Blame Us For That Ugly Vacant Gas Station ... We Wanted A Double DriveThru McDonald's

Please Double Flush in Solon . . . Our Sewer Rates Depend On YOU!!!!

Need a Driveway Variance??? Take a Hike!!!!

Earn Rewards. Report Outlaw Treehouses.

An e-picture cartoon of SolonJoe3 appears, being chased by an empty pair of pants: "Approach with Caution. Phone City Hall if Sighted."

Is there such a thing as a "Western Reserve" font?

"If you like this sign, thank a Taxpayer, if you don't, blame those people over there"

"Welcome to Solon, this way to the Giant Egress"

"You are here ↓"

"Aurora Rd - 0.1 Miles ahead - 15Min"

Question? Are these the same people who wouldn't let Walgreens get an electronic sign a couple years ago because it would be too much of a distraction to drivers and pose a major safety issue???

"Variance? We don't need no variance. We don't have to apply for no steeenking variance!"


Choice 2012

You can watch the debates, but for an interesting insight that won't be in the debate, watch the PBS Frontline special.

Watch The Choice 2012 on PBS. See more from FRONTLINE.
Click here for the full video.

Trouble with Elections in America

DRAFT, Check Back

Last Updated 10/16/12 12:10 AM

I'll have some comments, but I wanted to get this video list out...

Practical Problems

Voting Block Party Platform Voting

Systemic Problems

As if all the practical problems aren't bad enough, our election system, when you view just the facts has many problems, so many problems, there's a YouTube Channel for it, that I highly recommend...   CGPGrey  He does other interesting videos too, but here are the ones related to election processes.

See these videos:

The Problems with First Past the Post Voting Explained
Our method is closest to this, but its main problem is it devolves to a two party system with many voters not happy with either party causing an alternating power between the tow parties with neither one being liked by most people.

The Alternative Vote Explained
This method makes a slight improvement to the past first post method in that a third party can actually gain power without becoming a spoiler, thus allowing for productive evolution of politics beyond the two party system.

Mixed-Member Proportional Representation Explained 
This is an interesting method that allows parties to be properly represented to overcome spoiler voting.

Gerry Mandering is a century old way that we have corrupted the election process.  See the following videos.
Gerrymandering Explained 

Multiple Party Gerrymandering

The Shortest-Splitline Algorithm: a Gerrymandering Solution

Tne following videos show how our antiquated system with its bizarre oddities can deprive the public of the will of the majority.

Primary Elections Explained

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Safety Oct 10

Live blogging... Hit refresh to get latest updates.

Last update: 10/10/12 10:40 PM

Bells mic is off for the whole meeting.

Item #4 Kruse drive signal is "unwarranted" so ODOT regulations require that it be taken down or paid for.  An agreement was made that the shopping center will pay for it.

Item #5 Russo introduced the item as URS (external traffic engineer) will not get an automatic renewal as they did last year.  Everyone was quick to point out that nothing is wrong with URS, its just that we should have a competitive bid.

Item #6 BB Rd sign, engineering asked for sign, police chief doesn't know why. There was a sign. Since chief was not for it and asst Eng didn't know, delayed until next time. 

After the meeting one lone citizen clarified the issue for the asst city engineer, traffic engineer, committee chair and Mayor.  There has always been a sign there, previously it had words, during construction it was the new pictogram sign and now that BB Rd is "done" it was removed.

Unfortunately the person who needed to hear it (Police Chief), had left immediately from the meeting.

Item #7 Resident suggested 2nd right turn at Nestle. Eng agrees it's a problem, but believe 2nd lane would be abused.

Item #8 Mayor, electronic msg boards on SOM bridge. She sent a memo to council covering this item. This will complete the center of town master plan.

Retaining wall $175K
Bridge $675K
Msg Boards 2 x $50K

Still must get RR approval

City community signs 4 x $15K

Mayor wants to pass this to finance and budget for next year.  Mayor can't wait for RR to do it, they plan 50-100yr not 5-10yr as city's do.

Kraus very supportive, Bell ditto, right time to do it, Russo ditto? , in keeping with new development. Russo not sure if community signs fitting in, ie. coming in E on Aurora, shocked at bridge cost.

Kraus recommended, but mayor back pedaled, she wasn't asking for a recommendation  just for budget only, so Kraus modified his motion.  Russo is on finance and safety, other finance members are Mooney (fiscal conservative) and Meany (favors administration).

Interesting that the Mayor is bringing this item forward rather than Frankland and that Frankland did was not there to support the Mayor's request.

Solon Patch covered this here.


Friday, October 5, 2012

US Military Role in the World

What is the purpose of the US military?

To protect its citizens?
To defend against Communism?
To protect national interests (oil)?  
To spread democracy?

With the recent failures of communism we've moved to policing the world.

Did our founding fathers envision this as a suitable pursuit?

Is it patriotic to pursue being the world's policeman, or is it arrogant?

Mitt said he'd increase the military by $2 T without them asking.  This will surely ring well with certain crowds who feed on patriotic machismo and bravado  and it will be great news to defense contractors everywhere, but is it the right priority for limited resources?

Besides the bills and dead citizens, what rewards are there for being the world's police?  Do we get a break on oil prices for saving Kuwait facilitating a near eutopian society that has no taxes, free education to PhD level, free health care, etc. ?  No, we don't even get their oil exploration contracts that they've mainly awarded to China.

Check out an interesting film on this very topic.



Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Death of SolonBiker

5636. The Death of SolonBiker
by SolonHiker, 10/04/12 7:16 PM

Marymount Hospital. Internet Chat Forum Character Ward.

Cynical: Well, it’s not looking good for Biker.

SolonPol: Look at how pale he is, like he’s just fading away.

Bystander: Hey, Biker, get with it!!!! Where does it hurt??

Biker: Well, my foot feels kind of weird.

Cynical notes that Biker’s foot has disappeared.

Biker: And my right arm doesn’t feel quite right.

SolonPol notes that Biker’s right arm is missing.

Biker: And my ____ doesn’t feel quite right either.

Solon Forum gasps in horror.

Bystander: Well, umm, hang in there buddy.

Walley walks in with five dogs, which immediately jump up on Biker.

Walley: Hey, get down, boys … oh, gosh, they’ve eaten half of Biker.

Cynical: Not the dogs.

Walley: What’s going on here???

Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager walks in.

CCIM: Well, it looks grim, it’s time to put him out of his misery.

SolonPol: Wait, what are you talking about???

CCIM: Look, he’s too much trouble, he’s taking up valuable time. He keeps disappearing and coming back, disappearing and coming back. We’ve got better stuff to do. Besides, his health insurance is awful, and we’ve tapped it out.

Biker: That’s OK, I understand. It’s a far, far better place I go to than I have ever been. It’s a far . . .

SolonJoe3 walks in.

Joe: Hey, everyone, what’s up???

SolonPol: They’re going to put Biker down.

Joe: Oh, gosh, that’s not right. Hey, get him a beer first.

CCIM: We don’t allow beer in here.

Joe: I didn’t know the Mormons run this place.

Biker: That’s OK, I think my mouth is disappearing anyway.

Joe: Hey, have you voted yet???

Biker: . . .what???

Joe: Oh, forget it. Hey, since you’re not going to need those pants anymore . . .

SolonBiker dies.

CCIM: Well, thank you for coming, gentlemen. Now, who gets the bill???

Solon Forum Crew quickly disappear into the night.

5640. SolonBiker's Funeral (Part 1)
by SolonHiker, 10/05/12 1:19 PM

Mt. Olive. Early October, 2012. A grey, brooding and blustery day.

SolonPol: We have gathered here to pay our final respects to SolonBiker. He was taken from us too soon. Not by a texting teen in a SUV. Not by a nasty dog and a lousy invisible fence. Not by a side swiping deer/bike collision . . .

Pettiboner: KILL ALL THE DEER!!!!

SolonPol: Please sit back down . . . this is a funeral, not a Council meeting!!! As I was saying, he was taken out by the anonymous Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager . . . and I’d just like to say that I think that’s . . .

Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager cuts in.

CCIM: May I remind you that there are restrictions here, and that any one of you may be deleted, with cause or without, at my sole discretion. SolonBiker was ambitious, and has violated our rules by re-posting deleted posts again and again. He had become an annoyance to us, hence his deletion. I shall leave you here, then, to say a few words about your deleted and departed friend.

Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager exits.

SolonPol: Well, I believe Bystander wants to say a few words.


Friends, Solonites, fellow Forum Characters
Lend me your ears!!!!
I come to bury Biker, not to praise him;
The evil that men do lives after them,
The good is oft interred with their bones (and their bikes),
So let it be with Biker … The noble Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager
Hath told you Biker was ambitious:
If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
And grievously hath Biker answered it …
Here, under leave of Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager and the rest,
(For Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager is an honourable man;
So are they all; all honourable men)

Come I to speak in Biker’s funeral …
He was my friend, faithful and just to me:
But Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager says he was ambitious;
And Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager is an honourable man….

He hath brought many posts to our Forum,
Whose humor did the hours fill:
Did this in Biker seem ambitious?
When that the poor have had need of healthcare, Biker hath wept:
Ambition should be made of sterner stuff:
Yet Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager says he was ambitious;
And Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager is an honourable man.

You all did see that at Home Days
I thrice presented him a kingly carbon fiber steed,
Which he did thrice refuse: was this ambition?
Yet Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager says he was ambitious;
And, sure, he is an honourable man.

I speak not to disprove what Cleveland.com Interactivity Manager spoke,
(As speech hath never been a great friend of his)
But here I am to speak what I do know.
You all did love him once, not without cause:
What cause withholds you then to mourn for him?
O judgement! thou art fled to brutish beasts,
And men have lost their reason…. Bear with me;
My heart is in the coffin there with Biker,
And I must pause till it come back to me.

5640.1. SolonBiker's Funeral (Part 2)
by SolonHiker, 10/05/12 1:23 PM
Re: SolonBiker's Funeral (Part 1) by SolonHiker, 10/05/12 1:23 PM
Bystander finishes speech, and sits back down.

SolonPol: Thank you Bystander. That was moving . . . and a little long.

SolonJoe3: I’d like to say a few words.

SolonPol: Sure, sure, go right ahead.

Joe opens his coat, revealing a six pack of Miller High Life, he takes a couple gulps and starts.

SolonJoe3: Well, for a lefty, Commie, Socialist, Muslim Apologist Defeatnik, Biker was an OK guy. I drink to Biker!!!

Solon Forum Gang all reach into their jackets and pull out beers to toast Biker.

SolonPol: Well, now we have a few religious words to say about Biker.

Priest: In the name of the Father, and the Son . . .

Bystander: He wasn’t a Christian!!!

Rabbi: God full of mercy . . .

SolonPol: He wasn’t Jewish.

Imam: In the name of Allah . . .

SolonJoe: He wasn’t a Muslim. Wait a minute, I’m not so sure about that one.

A fleet of black limos and SUVs drives in. Out pops Mitt Romney.

SolonPol: You’ve got to be kidding me.

Mitt Romney: I’d like to say a few words.

SolonPol: I don’t think that . . .

Solon Forum Gang drowns out SolonPol: Boo, Boo, let him speak, let him speak!!!

Mitt Romney: As a Mormon Elder (aka Bishop) of long standing, I come here today to bless this marriage and join SolonBiker to SolonSue . . . and to ChagrinFallsChrissy . . . and to BedfordBetty . . . and to TwinsburgTammy . . .and to . . .

SolonPol: This is a funeral, not a wedding.

MittRomney: Oh, yeah, right. Well, in that case, we gather here to posthumously baptize the heathen heretofore known as SolonBiker so that he can join Joseph Smith and our Mormon community in the one true heaven.

Rabbi glares at Mitt Romney, and SolonForum Gang scratch their heads as Mitt Romney drives away in his limo.

SolonPol: Well, what do we do now??? This isn’t going well.

Walley steps up.

Walley: Well, I made some calls and pulled some strings, and they’ll take him.

SolonPol: What are you talking about???

Walley: I got him into Dog Heaven.

Solon Forum Gang sighs in relief.

SolonPol: Well, that concludes our ceremony today, may Biker rest in . . .

A thunderous noise overtakes the proceedings . . . suddenly a team of black helicopters appears over the trees, with the lead chopper landing at Mt. Olive.

Bystander: Is that . . .???

SolonMoreCynical (aka Dick Cheney) steps down from the lead helicopter, wearing a bomber jacket with dark sunglasses . . . and speaks into a Walkie Talkie.

Cynical: OK, team, lower it now.

A large object slowly descends from the rear helicopter over Biker’s grave, revealing a bollard as Biker’s gravestone.

SolonPol: Are you kidding me??? Where did you get that thing from???

SolonJoe3: We bought that bollard. We the taxpayers!!! We bought all of them!!!! Do you know how much we paid for those things??? $500 a pop!!!! For a bollard!!! And we bought 200 of them!!!!

Cynical: OK, Joe, we get the idea. Now finish this thing up so we can go get some beers. Cynical points to a formation of Marines standing ready to deliver a 21 gun salute.

SolonJoe3: FIRE THEM ALL!!!!!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Council 10/1/12

Live blogging... Hit refresh to get latest updates.

Last update: 10/1/12 11:20 PM

In caucus

Item 1 - Echo NOT present to discuss bollards.

Item 4 removed from consent. Fence issue for more privacy doesn't meet see-through zoning requirements. Russo concerned about precedent. Mooney wants Police Chief review. Drucker n Bell agree it's needed for privacy of hot tub.

Russo has conflict with item 8.

On the floor

Item 2 - Nestle here in force (6) to present their new R&D building.

Variances needed because of MetroPark Req to have no buildings within 300 ft. Very heavy buffering at park and Cannon. Trees on 5 ft mound

Room for expansion. 150K 3 story glass/steel building. Reiterated that a gate separates RD from factory.

Grass height var to allow high natural grass behind screening.

No objections to var, so they stand. Site plan approved by counsel w contingencies.

Item 12 Neptune Plat on 2nd reading, people have come to speak against it.

It was handled like a second public hearing. [This is unusual, but its the higher level of resident concern with the support of their councilwoman, that gave them this extra opportunity to voice their concerns.]

Resident voiced objections, and questioned who would be responsible. Two residents spoke, of the 4 present.  The suggestion that the city should be held responsible was met with silence.  The developer committed to being responsible and is putting up a bond.

The developer countered that he is not a "hit and run" developer   He's been doing this for 30 yrs and lives in his own development.

Busch spoke of water issues. Busch wants to take more swags through the development away from Cleveland Sewer.

Kraus discussed the need to approve this peliminary plat to move forward and the future hurdles the developer would need to navigate.

Nancy continued to express concerns. Kraus appreciates concerns and said this has been an "exhaustive review". Mooney ready to move. Bell agrees with Kraus. Pelunis said "We've heard enough."  Toni made motion to approve, passed 6-1, Meany opposed.

Item 13 Rezoning of 2 acres near GE will get another public hearing.

Item 14 Chicago Deli is applying for a Liquor permit. No hearing requested. Russo abstained. No hint on their plans.

Item 17 Deer Mgt Program $40 / hr not to exceed 200 hrs ($8000). Passed 7-0 under suspension.

During round table

All 5 unions reached agreement w/ o outside counsel. This was pushed by Mayor.

Mayor relayed a success story with MRI Software and a job creation grant for about 240 jobs and they now have employed over 300 people.