Archive for June, 2015
Still stuck in 1991 –
I didn’t know whether to laugh out loud or cry when I read what I had said in 1991 . I loved living in an “urban setting” where the homes in the neighborhood were not the typical slab homes or the new cookie cutter neighborhoods of the USA.
Maybe because I had lived in a London suburb where I would daily walk to the tube station , shop on the local high street, attend functions within the community- all without that car. I was used to that way of living . How bloody naïve was I to think I was going to find that continuing in Lorain on Broadway.
BUT we, the Charleston Village idiots ( as we had been called on more that one occasion) thought we could help bring back that feeling of Broadway that had been lost .
I was told Broadway in Lorain was at one time reminiscent of the “High Streets” from whence I came.
In 1991 I could do quite a few of those errands- I can no longer do most of them – can’t go to the drug store, shopping????? Luckily I can still go to the Palace- although I have to say the last time I went, Saturday the 20th, upon exiting, we were met by a drunk slumped in a doorway- such a friendly welcoming ambiance.
By 1990 we were “INVOLVED WITH BROADWAY” The City Of Lorain recognized a healthy safe neighborhood brought foot traffic downtown- They held yet another meeting , to which the Village Idiots were invited
We went and the upshot of those meetings as featured in our May 1990 Newsletter
“Community should have a clear vision of what it wants to become”
I am not sure our “current downtown buildings” fit the vision we had.
But we tried, we got on the bandwagon – after all a bad downtown reflects negatively on the neighborhood and vice versa.
“We’re also excited over the Charleston Village’s grass roots organization which is banding homeowners together to improve the community-
Yes, even the Morning Journal got involved and would feature a home in Charleston Village every week in its real-estate section:
Oh we tried – Charleston Village reached out and we opened our homes for a the Ohio Preservation Statewide Preservation Conference ( a progressive dinner in each home). They came they saw and they were impressed.
I doubt they would have the same thoughts now a quarter of a century later. That lovely Renaissance Inn mentioned in their articles – look at it now
I could go on.
Downtown Lorain Growth Association – became Mainstreet Lorain 1995/6 ( not then affiliated with the Main Street Program- that came later). Charleston Village was one of the founding members of that new organization and had a seat on its board. Later Mainstreet Lorain did become a MAIN STEET Organization the first in Northern Ohio ( 2000)
Yours truly, ( when times got tough and we didn’t have enough in the kitty to pay for a Director) was the “volunteer” Director for 7 months of Mainstreet Lorain until we saved enough with memberships and grants to pay for another Director. It was during that time (2002) Mainstreet Lorain did not have its contract renewed with the Main Street program. We eventually changed the name to Lorain Growth Corporation http://www.loraingrowth.com/
which is still part of the downtown today.
Oh we cleaned Broadway with the Lorain Litter Council, started the Lorain Arts Council, promoted its events, decorated windows of terrible eyesores of buildings, actually charged people to join us in searching for the Black Pearl as we searched along Broadway and each merchant’s premises , had car shows on Thursday nights- ending up at Scorchers. We worked with the Port and the usage of the land given ( now known as Black River Landing), yes and so much more !
Yes! we have been around the Broadway block for decades and watched the “vision” go “dark”
“60 percent of downtown Lorain empty; hopes of rezoning as entertainment district to breathe new life”
‘It looks like a ghost town’
I admit not having given completely up on Broadway , as a blogger, I have had my say of late.
That particular post brought me into combative mode with a member of the Downtown Review Board – remember the one that was put in place to promote preservation in 1987 OH! yes we were there too.
Yes, Cathy Dye – a whole series on my blog where she was the subject matter – the mother of the owner of 418 Broadway which has its problems
It is my opinion( based upon her emails etc. ) that Mrs. Dye tried to use coercion and intimidation of City of Lorain officials in order to get what she wanted re her son’s building via her position of the Design Review Board , took vindictive action using the Design Review Board moniker and the Lorain Building Dept. It is also my opinion her son’s building, which has been well documented as to its problems, IS one of the problem buildings on Broadway.
A Morning Journal article recently had some quotes as to what was needed on Broadway :
ERRRRRRRRR where have I heard this before –
Lorain also has a neighborhood of single-family houses immediately west of downtown, so incentives and training could help residents living just a few blocks from Broadway.
• Enforce property and zoning codes.
When run-down properties hurt the values of nearby properties, cities have to force property owners to act, Siegler said.
OH yes! I remember same thing they said in the LAST CENTURY and to add insult to injury Cathy Dye is quoted :
Dye said Lorain should require Broadway building owners to keep the historic and picturesque facades, but give them more freedom to modify the interiors and rear sections of buildings to create usable spaces
ED NOTE– sorry but patience has worn thin – a quarter of century of the same rhetoric becomes numbing!!!
Lorain and other cities need a shared vision and a process of gradual action to implement that, Brachman said. She called the approach “strategic incrementalism.”
Revitalization “isn’t going to happen overnight,” she said. “It’s an incremental process.”
OVERNIGHT??????? we have been waiting and working on this for decades! Same old clap trap and so much yada yada yada and regurgitated ideas. And the newspaper decided to go to the “problem people” for the solutions …..now that at least was a was a novel approach………………
So Charleston Village how did we do when it comes down to revitalizing Broadway ?
a resounding FAIL!!!!
Twenty eight years- what I could have accomplished in twenty – eight years, time energy money spent elsewhere– I could’ve moved- walked away- from this house I call home.
I could have spent my energy nagging my husband to take those other job offers out of Ohio, even out of the country. I didn’t – I loved this house, although now in hindsight, I am sure I would have found something elsewhere that I would have loved. It didn’t happen because I, and a few others, have clung onto the fact that a neighborhood could be saved – these old houses by Ohio history standards are worthy .
Looking at the early records of this Charleston Village Society – I realized we are failures! We have been flogging that dead horse to no avail. Twenty eight years and the mission statement decided upon so naively as to the doable of just a few blocks . So much talk …………
Our mission , was to preserve the neighborhood, promote the history , to make this Lorain’s oldest neighborhood one of pride, to hold landlords and out of town landlords accountable- to toughen up the accountability with regard to building inspections.
We started with committee meetings, talking to City Council and Administrations , Community Development – and Mayor Olejko:
Ah the way back machine ..
“Residents last night (10/1/91) told a committee , which is formulating a model on how to spend federal and state housing funds….” Morning Journal
and a quarter century later –
1991– Morning Journal 24 years earlier
But Several Landlords said not all landlords are out of town hustlers looking to hold onto dilapidated housing for profit….
That statement is certainly correct….some of those landlords held on to those dilapidated properties were Lorainites… and old slum lords never die their properties just fade away OR DO THEY??
Landlords, they pretty much own the housing stock in this Ward 2 of Lorain and yes they are making money what was known as Section 8 housing now known as a much more affable name – Housing Choice ( Vouchers)
“housing choice vouchers alone pump 1.4 MILLION A MONTH
into Lorain County but The City of Lorain gets 64% of that money EVERY MONTH or approximately $900,000.00 PER MONTH COMES INTO THE CITY OF LORAIN-!!!
How about that BIG Business for you – lucrative one would say and that is just the “private” landlords and LLC’s .
Vouchers Per Zip Code
Amherst 44001 1.1%
Avon 44011 4.0%
Avon Lake 44012 0.6%
Col Station 44028 0.1%
Elyria 44035 23.2%
N Ridgeville 44039 1.1%
Grafton 44044 0.2%
LaGrange 44050 0.3%
Lorain 44052 32.5%
Lorain 44053 10.4%
Lorain 44055 21.3%
Sheffield 44054 1.5%
Oberlin 44074 1.5%
Vermilion 44089 1.3%
Wellington 44090 0.9%
but The City of Lorain gets 64% of that money EVERY MONTH or approximately $900,000.00 PER MONTH COMES INTO THE CITY OF LORAIN-!!!
THAT was just 10 months ago!
“”Right now ( 1991) you’re giving Lorain away a house at a time , a piece at a time and no one seems to care”
well some of us did care – for all the good it seems to have done ! We have failed in our mission for owner occupied homes and landlord accountability .. these were the stats two years ago and they have changed because we know have South Carolina on the list… more about that later
** All data gathered from Lorain County Auditors site, Ohio Secretary of State June 29th 2013 “Clarification” the only LLC shown below are those that are not under known names – such as Spitzer, Veard, religious communities, funeral homes etc.
The number of LLC’s tracked totaled “197” OWNING PROPERTY IN LORAIN.
THEY OWN APPROXIMATELY 2,289 PROPERTIES / PARCELS BETWEEN THEM
” 193” TRACKED BACK TO “OWNER PLACE OF RESIDENCE”
“146” OUTSIDE LORAIN LLC. ETC OR “75.64 %” percent of ownership is outside Lorain
47 LORAIN OWNED LLC ETC. or 24.35 %
******Breakdown is as follows (OUTSIDE OWNERSHIP) PROPERTIES CAN RANGE FROM 1 PARCEL TO over 100 AT THE TOP END)
AMHERST = 30 REG. LLC = 15.5 %
ELYRIA = 12 REG. LLC = 6.2 5%
WESTLAKE = 11 REG. LLC = 5.7%
AVON = 10 REG. LLC = 5.2 %
AVON LAKE =7 REG.LLC= 3.6 %
NORTH RIDGEVILLE = 7 REG.LLC=3.6 %
SHEFFILED LAKE/VILLAGE= 6 REG.LLC= 3.1%
CLEVELAND = 5 REG.LLC= 2.5%
VERMILION = 5 REG.LLC =2.5%
COLUMBUS = 3 REG.LLC = 1.55%
CALIFORNIA= 3 REG.LLC= 1.55% NOTE AT LEAST ONE CALIFORNIA OWNER HAS 58 PROPERTIES
PENNSYLVANIA= 3 REG.LLC = 1.55%
HURON- 2 REG.LLC = 1.03 %
WELLINGTON= 2 REG.LLC = 1.03%
LAKEWOOD= 2 REG LLC. = 1.03 %
FLORIDA = 2 REG.LLC= 1.03%
BEECHWOOD= 2 REG LLC= 1.03%
NORTH OLMSTEAD = 2 REG.LLC = 1.03%
MEDINA= 2 REG.LLC = 1.03%
GRAFTON= 2 REG.LLC = 1.035
AURORA= 2 REG.LLC= 1.03%
BAYVILLAGE= 2 REG.LLC= 1.03%
CANADA = 2 REG. LLC =1.03% (NOTE: ONE IS FOR A TRAILER PARK)
BRECKSVILLE, COLORADO, TEXAS, AKRON, ARIZONA , TOLEDO, KENT, UNION TOWN, CHAGRIN FALLS, MARSHALVILLE, ROCKY RIVER, MILAN, NORTH ROYALTON, AKEMAN, CHAGRIN FALLS, NEWARK OH, LICHFIELD , STONGSVILLE, SEVEN HILLS, BRUNSWICK , ST. MARY’S, OBERLIN 1 REG LLC
To be continued……………..
This is a guest blog post by my wonderful friend – Paula Tobias- Paula has been fighting her own battle with Ovarian Cancer –
How are the Department of Defense and Ovarian Cancer connected?
When I read this yesterday I was in one of many daily Pain moments; you know, on the scale of 1 – 10 (10 being the worst) I was a 9. The weather and more importantly the surgery, chemo and subsequent meds, tests, x-rays and PET/CT scans I believe have something to do with the agony dealt with on a daily basis.
The Department of Defense has funded innovative biomedical research programs for years that impact troop readiness. The Ovarian Cancer Research Program was added in 1997 and has since been funding research primarily aimed at finding an early detection test and better treatments for ovarian cancer.
Finding an early detection test for ovarian cancer is of critical importance to the military. Currently, any active duty military woman with a suspected case of ovarian cancer must receive her treatment in the United States (due to the availability of specialists here), so correctly identifying women that either do or do not have ovarian cancer is of critical importance to the military. Over the last five years alone, over 2,600 military women have had a suspected case of ovarian cancer. “
Senator John McCain will be adding an amendment to a bill in the Senate that would strip many of the research programs run by the Department of Defense, including the $20 million for the Ovarian Cancer Research Program(OCRP). The OCRP funds $20 million in innovative, high-risk, high-reward ovarian cancer research each year.
Senate staffers are calling this the biggest threat to medical research in 20 years.
I immediately called my Senators and left voice mails with my history. It took a lot to maintain composure while doing this and as soon as I was done, Frank (my loving, caring, patient husband) came in from work and surprised me. Well I surprised him with a burst of tears and language a soldier would blush hearing. At the end of that tirade I said, “Do you think the Senator would be asking this if it were his testicles at stake?”
I support all battling their cancer diagnosis, patient or family. I volunteer at my Oncologists office to empathize with those. I try to offer hope and comfort.
• Click here to send your Senator an action alert email that will tell them to oppose the McCain Amendment.http://cqrcengage.com/ovarian/app/write-a-letter?0&engagementId=108520
• Call your Senators and tell them to oppose the McCain Amendment
Please help and pass along this information and if we (Frank is still my miracle -13 yr. Pancreatic Cancer Survivor) can help anyone with their Cancer Battle, contact Loraine and she’ll connect us. Paula Tobias
ED NOTE: Whilst looking for the date of the vote I came across the following – it seems McCain’s amendment will not only effect Ovarian Cancer funding but Prostate Cancer funding as well –
Senator McCain amendment might kill Prostate Cancer research funding
Again and again and again Senator McCain (R-AZ) has attacked the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP), which for PROSTATE CANCER has been among the most productive research vehicles we have to conquer PROSTATE CANCER.
It is beyond my understanding why he has taken up this vendetta. Every year he is our biggest enemy, trying his best to stop the great progress we have made. As usual, he is at it again!
Senator McCain is a major advocate for funding of the Defense Department, but he seems not to understand that the money that flows to the CDMRP does not take one dollar away from our defense budget. The money that flows to the CDMRP is over and above any budget dollar that will go to the Defense Department. So, why the vendetta against the CDMRP, I cannot explain it.
The mast from a minesweeper ( built-in Lorain) used to hold the flags of the United States and American Ship Yards (in front of the American Ship offices on Colorado Avenue) still stands at the Admiral King Tribute Site( 1st and Hamilton) as a testament to Lorain’s ship building past.
Just a very few people knew or know of Lorain’s wonderful early ship building history and the ships that came from her port to ply trade on the Inland Seas. That is about to be changed with a new book on Augustus Jones and his shipbuilding empire . The book written by
James H. Jones, Great, Great Grandson of Augustus and Lorain Historians Paula Shorf and Matthew Weisman sheds new light on Lorain’s maritime history.
“Jones was acknowledged to be one of the best, if not the best, shipbuilder of his time. All five of his sons became shipbuilders, and all owned yards. This one family had more influence on the era of wooden ships on the Great Lakes than any other individual or family, and together they built more vessels than any other family on the chain of lakes.” Dr. Richard J. Wright wrote this in his thesis, Adz, Caulk and Rivets.
Augustus Jones settled at the Mouth of the Black River in 1818 with his family from Essex, Connecticut. This new book helps tell the fabulous story of Augustus and his five sons and the vessels they built all over the Great Lakes.
You can meet the authors , see the displays at the ” Inaugural Book Signing and Reception ”
Sunday, June 21st, Noon to 4 PM
at Jackalope Lakeside- light refreshment served by Jim Andrews- the host for the afternoon.
301 Lakeside Ave
Lorain, Ohio 44053
Source – http://www.visitloraincounty.com/directory/jackalope-lakeside/
Matt Weisman co – author stated : This new 360 page book will be a wonderful addition for all Great Lakes fans, Lorain historians and every Boatnerds bookshelf
The place to be seen and to see – the tales of the Inland Seas Sunday – June 21st 12-4 pm.
We are the common man– we are the ones who pay our taxes, raise our children , try to do the right thing -if at all possible. We are, for the most part, ignored – except when it comes ( in a democracy) wanting our vote. We are not really important, unless they need our children, brothers, sisters, husbands and wives to fight a war, give money or put them in office.
We are well and truly “played ” for the most part in all walks of life and yet we are also blamed for our apathy when we don’t turn out in numbers to jump on the political bandwagon of the day!
Every single day, this blog receives requests for some sort of help, why ? Maybe because yours truly has never been one to back down from a truth or because they hope by getting out the word through this blog ( which doesn’t have the restrictions of “other” media) , attention will be drawn to a situation and event.
I, for the most part, can no longer hold out any hope to those that write or call, I have discovered unless it falls in line with the “powers that be” in any situation you are ” spitting in the wind” – the “slobber” will only end back at you!
There are people in this town of Lorain– that decent folk ( and they are in the minority – socially and verbally speaking) would, in another day and age, would be ostracized -certainly not embraced and rewarded.
No longer the case , we, as a community- ( the vocal majority) embrace, classless
( Note two of the videos in this post were taken down by You tube – the failed stripper because it did not meet even YOU Tube’s community standards 😉
and criminal behavior.
The agendas and behaviors are swept under the political and media rug. It is not only tolerated but excused with ” Oh 2nd chances” etc. And so it evolves until the dirt under the rug finally destroys the fabric of civilized society.
There are those that have tried and found to their chagrin , the reality- no one wants to lift the rug- the dirt might start rubbing off on them.
This blog published one local instance – threats and coercion of elected officials ( in my opinion) in order to get their way.
……I know of several things if I spill the beans will cause a huge uproar in this city as well as a large number of law suits. I was previously asked to keep my mouth shut about all of it but my patience is running thin……..
I understand the mayor is planning to run again. Well after I start sending out my series of letters to all the tv stations, radio stations and newspapers I don’t think it will help his campaign. The ball is now in your hands. If things don’t straighten up immediately with my son and his building the letters will begin next week.
This individual, felt safe enough to put in writing her desires and “nothing- nada naught” ever came out of that little episode except the retaliation against me, the messenger! – What sort of a “community”-” system” countenances and rewards – let alone tolerates such blatant threatening behavior toward city officials???? ( see the whole email in the above link)
Apparently -Lorain does!!!! inclusive of politicians, businesses, media ( who were sent copies of the email – NOT BY ME I hasten to add- but a “credible source 😉 and legal eagles hmmm Is there something under that particular rug after all??? .
So, the people watch , listen and learn the sorry fact – to make waves ultimately means death by drowning. They start walking away from difficult situations, turning a blind eye , stop getting involved, realizing that to point out the situations only gets you grief. They leave if they can, only to find it is the same no matter where you go.
The latest big scandal, FIFA-
everyone has known for decades, football associations, countries, clubs, knew of the corruption. No one did anything. The most powerful nations on the planet turned a blind eye to the ongoing corruption but one man tried and tried – Andrew Jennings– but even with his track record it has taken decades ! Why?
“I’m a document hound. If I’ve got your documents, I know all about you,” he said. “This journalism business is easy, you know. You just find some disgraceful, disgustingly corrupt people and you work on it! You have to. That’s what we do. The rest of the media gets far too cozy with them. It’s wrong. Your mother told you what was wrong. You know what’s wrong. Our job is to investigate, acquire evidence.”
I get the mike and I said, ‘Herr Blatter, have you ever taken a bribe?’”
Talk about crashing the party,” Jennings recalled Tuesday. “Reporters are moving away from me as if I’ve just let out the biggest smell since bad food. Well, that’s what I wanted. Thank you, idiot reporters. The radar dish on top of my head is spinning around to all these blazers against the wall, saying, ‘Here I am. I’m your boy. I’m not impressed by these tossers. I know what they are. I’ve done it to the IOC, and I’ll do it to them.’”
You would think the first whiff of corruption would have sent the “red flags flying. No ! but finally it was another “power that be” -the United States got involved, and you have to question WHY and why now– well it suited them , let’s face it- it came down to money essentially, agendas , money , power and politics. Doesn’t it always ?
And so , I will receive more requests for help, that I can do nothing about because – scum rises to the top of the pond and they are enabled by media , politics, and a like-minded group supporting their rise …. and apathy is the least of Lorain’s worries……………as is the nations … and more and more decent thinking individuals find out hope of “the right thing” is just that a forlorn hope. “hope the other four letter word