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Speak Out

The place to speak your mind on everything from politics to potholes.

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Paul April 10, 2014 at 03:46 PM
Ok I'll bite. What is a spouse subsidy? I'm assuming this is a health care subsidy? Barb has every Read Moreright to speak her mind just as citizens have the right to discuss and mail out information. She can not dispute the facts she can only try to discredit the messenger.
Joseph Smith April 10, 2014 at 10:54 PM
Paul - The spouses of teachers get paid up to $175 PER MONTH to pay for healthcare through theirRead Moreemp loyer. Bay Village has a similar policy and the maximum payment is $75 per month. There are several major issues with this policy. 1st, why is Westlake paying so much more, especially with a higher average salary. 2nd, since the board is demanding more money why are they agreeing to increase this subsidy that is already overly generous at $150 per month.
Jim Jones April 13, 2014 at 02:36 PM
Paul, Barb L does have a right to speak her mind and I hope that our citizens exercise their rightRead Moret o give her feedback. There is a time and place for comments like that. Instead of fanning the flame of discord, maybe she could have saved her holier than thou attitude for later. It gives the impression that the mailers were responsible for Keenan's departure. If that is the case, it is a pretty sad reflection on Mr. Keenan and the Board, since they are really the ones who created this maelstrom.
Jim Jones February 05, 2014 at 03:49 PM
Hey GotFreedom, check out the Common Core piece today on the Daily Caller website. Hard to believe Read Morethat propaganda is so obviously a part of the "curriculum" - no shame whatsoever.
GotFreedom February 05, 2014 at 04:25 PM
Thanks Mr. Jones--we did see that this morning--and we find the comments after the article just asRead Moree nlightening--here's hoping more and more parents WAKE UP and start speaking out against this horrific (IMO) education agenda--or will they--are they too busy/in their own little worlds to actually learn about what is going on in their child/children's school(s)? Appreciate you thinking of us--have a good day, regards, GF :)
Briana Imwalle February 09, 2014 at 11:07 AM
GotFreedom can you contact me at bsearles68@gmail.com? I wanted to ask your thoughts on a fewRead Moreideas . I don't seem to have much support with myself as a Westlake parent who has woke up to this situation. I am trying to make changed but I need some help!
MamaBear January 27, 2014 at 10:28 AM
Well it seems that someone in the Service Dept must read "The Patch" because since ourRead Moreori ginal post--our street has been plowed 3x (so that would be 3x from Saturday evening through this morning Monday)--thank you Service Department!
Joseph Smith February 11, 2014 at 09:44 AM
Lori, you stated “we, the people, have common interests in these public schools and haveRead Moreevery reason to be forthcoming with both our positions on the issues and in the community.” I, and others, have answered the questions. In contrast, you are silent with regards to our questions. I do not share the position of the district and their supporters have threatened to inflict physical harm to us. With that how can you question our anonymity? You asked why I send my kids to these schools that I fund via my taxes (thousands of dollars annually). I answered your questions. Do you believe that every Westlake citizen can afford to send their child(ren) to private schools? If no, how can you ask why I send my kids to these schools? These are reasonable and non-threatening questions; however, you are silent. You and the district share this trait. You and the district fail to answer questions, side with those who threaten us, and then claim that you have a “common interest”. We have acted like adults and posed reasonable questions. It is time for you, the board, and administration to follow suit and provide reasonable answers.
Paul February 26, 2014 at 09:00 PM
Busing returns after another windfall of money falls from the sky? Who is playing games here? ThisRead Morei s just politics by the board and administration. Time for answers to simple questions and time to stop playing games with our kids and working families of Westlake.
Joseph Smith February 27, 2014 at 01:36 PM
At Keenan's direction, the board cuts busing which jeopardizes the safety of our kids during theRead Moremos t bitterly cold winter in the past 10 years and hurts parents. Why? To cause PAIN so that the people of Westlake will dare not disobey them at the polls again. Now, like a magic unicorn, the city finds an extra $1-$2 million which solves the problem, in the short-term as Keenan says. Never mind that the busing cut only saved $125,000. Never mind that the district was asking for $8,000,000 more every year. Never mind that busing will not be restored until after winter. Now Keenan wants to do what is best for the kids. Never mind that this restoration could be guaranteed through next school year (Keenan's words). Keenan wants to be able to lord this over the heads of every parent in August or November. Westlake, dare not disobey me again. For I am dictator Danny and I have the power to make your kids walk 2 miles in the snow and ice next year. Now give me $8,000,000 more so that my minions can get paid $85,000 on average not the mere $75,000 that they get today.
Jim Jones January 19, 2014 at 08:54 PM
On a separate topic, i was reading a bit about a new book on Common Core. A professor namedRead MoreTerenc e Moore has written "The story-Killers: a common sense case against the common core". The excerpt that I read was very thoughtful and well written. I know you are interested in this topic GotFreedom, and wanted to let you know about it. Jim Jones
GotFreedom January 19, 2014 at 10:29 PM
Thank you Mr. Jones--I will most definitely check it out. I see that he's a professor at Hillsdale Read MoreCollege--that and being opposed to CC are 2 attributes in his favor that I like so far--much appreciated :)
Briana Imwalle February 01, 2014 at 09:09 AM
Today, I am sending ALL the board members an email regarding the 5:30 p.m. time of the boardRead Moremeeting and request it be moved to 7:30 p.m. I wish you all would do the same. I will be at the meeting and WILL be addressing the school board about negotiating teacher salaries. Can you all be there to support me? I am very worried about the scrutiny I will be under and the criticism I am GOING to endure but it would help if I had some support so Dr. Keenan does not look at me again and say "Well Im sorry, but I don't believe most taxpayers in Westlake feel the way you do" and then start his lecture about different funds going to different expenses.
Jake Nabookney January 14, 2014 at 05:22 PM
Cindy - It is not a matter of the mayors not being unable to get along. The problem stems from the Read Morecost of the water from Cleveland, the lack of investment in Westlake's water mains by Cleveland over the past decade AND new revenue demands from Cleveland. Not only does Cleveland's water (from Lake Erie) cost substantially more than water in Phoenix, Arizona (located in a dessert); Cleveland has been demanding tax revenue sharing from businesses that relocate in Westlake. Thanks to Cleveland's revenue sharing demands, the status quo is not possible. Jake
Joseph Smith January 14, 2014 at 05:51 PM
Well said Jake. The odd thing is that Westlake hasn't left anything. In order to properlyRead Moreevaluate the options available to Westlake, the Mayor and Council must explore all of the costs. This includes having discussions with alternate suppliers and any possible costs that the city would incur by switching.
Paul January 16, 2014 at 08:55 AM
The Cleveland Water Department was broken for many years and that refers to more than just theRead Morepipes . Their follow up to billing issues, service issues was awful. I for one was put on hold for hours after calling about a water leak on the tree lawn. Recently things are improving but the mayor of Westlake has/had every right to look into alternate sources of water. Cleveland water uses the suburbs as an ATM.
MamaBear January 27, 2014 at 10:43 AM
After reading this post/links--we too have attempted to contact Mr. Renacci's office to ask whoRead Moredoes he stand with--political contributions or his constituents and just like you GF--no reply--what is Mr. Renacci afraid of--why doesn't he respond to you/me--it's a simple question and in light of his recent votes--especially his vote for the Omnibus spending bill that took away Veteran's pay (did he even read it before he voted for it or does he subscribe to the Nancy Pelosi theory of passing it first to learn what's in it or is he simply following blindly along with House leadership, who in our opinion are part of the problem--establishment elite RINOS)--Mr. Renacci has some explaining to do in our opinion. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.
Jim Jones December 25, 2013 at 11:23 AM
Merry Christmas to LO, Jake, Brenda, Roger, Joseph, James Rogers and GotFreedom. Jim Jones
Briana Imwalle January 15, 2014 at 01:02 PM
WHEN they ask for another levy and THEY WILL, are we going to ask them to readjust teacherRead Moresalaries? I am okay with them laying off librarians, aides, and a few teachers, now that they have taken something from me. I have friends getting laid off. I do not expect a step increase of any salary increase as a nurse this year, the hospitals have sent their message with lay offs, new pay scales for entering managers and allied health professionals (LOWER). The BOE claims they have to be competitive with RIVER and BAY, give me a break a teachers just wants a job with benefits now! And what about the high earners taking 2-3% reductions like Cleveland firefighters to help their "friends" not get laid off? We have to start asking these questions, I cannot run for BOE but I am willing to be in a group of concerned citizens asking for these things....
Briana Imwalle February 01, 2014 at 09:12 AM
Today, I am sending ALL the board members an email regarding the 5:30 p.m. time of the boardRead Moremeeting and request it be moved to 7:30 p.m. I wish you all would do the same. I will be at the meeting and WILL be addressing the school board about negotiating teacher salaries. Can you all be there to support me? I am very worried about the scrutiny I will be under and the criticism I am GOING to endure but it would help if I had some support so Dr. Keenan does not look at me again and say "Well Im sorry, but I don't believe most taxpayers in Westlake feel the way you do" and then start his lecture about different funds going to different expenses.
Paul November 10, 2013 at 07:56 PM
The water issue is in good hands because we have a mayor with a great track record. That is theRead Moresepa ration between the issues of school financing and water rates. The management of Westlake and it's books are transparent. Nothing hidden
Vasalia Peach November 11, 2013 at 05:46 AM
I am not doubting the Mayor's good intentions, however, the city of Cleveland might be taking hisRead More'l et this serve as a final notice' letter and holding it over his head. We are not out of this yet. It could get ugly.
Joseph Smith November 11, 2013 at 08:19 AM
I have to agree with Vasalia. There is little doubt that the Mayor will work on behalf of theRead Morepeopl e of Westlake; however, Cleveland isn’t known for playing “nice”. The easy fix appeared to be the retraction of the original letter. Clough did exactly that and the Cleveland reneged on their position. My hope is for an easy and quick solution, but it certainly could get ugly.
Jim Jones December 13, 2013 at 09:14 AM
LO, I agree with your comments on society in general. My wife watches a show called House HuntersRead More- where people are looking for homes - mostly young people who don't have a great deal of money. Every single time, these kids want the granite counters, the upgraded appliances, nice flooring etc. There is rarely a case where people really want a starter house and work on it themselves, thus saving money. Kids expect iphones (not my grandkids), and all sorts of gadgets. I think that people under say 55 (generation just after the boomers) have lost the ability to save money and to delay gratification. That applies to this current Board and many parents in our community - hence the outrageous High School. But, there is also this Nanny State mentality. A large group of people seem very happy to pay higher taxes and have the government decide how to spend their money - in the process, they give up the ability to provide input. Let's face it, most people who supported the levy and this Board/Mr. Keenan - "trust" them - like Mr. Falcone. This is OUR money - we certainly have a right to know how it's spent and it is our duty to make sure it is spent on things that will - wait for it Concerned Citizen... actually improve EDUCATION for our kids. A new high school, or Dover School will NOT improve education for our kids - period. There is absolutely no way someone will ever get me to believe that they could not have salvaged the buildings and saved money in the process. It goes back to House Hunters; the parents and the Board simply wanted fancy new buildings because there are a lot of fancy new buildings in Westlake. It was not so very long ago that someone on this site actually came out and said that exact thing - Butterfly2000. No to the nanny state where preschool is covered for low income families - recent studies on that show that any advantage is lost after first grade. Let them pay for it out of their own pockets - just like most people do. No to schools spending more than 50 million per year to educate 4,000 students. No to Board members who "trust" instead of verify information by the Mr. Keenan and Mr. Pepara. No to teacher's union who are responsible for our pathetic showing in the international arena (27th in the world for math scores!!!). No to more fancy school buildings in Westlake. Let's come up with a plan for a common sense approach to spending this vast sum of money to get the best return in terms of education/scores.
LO December 13, 2013 at 09:47 AM
CC : Concerned for what ? Entitlements , new buildings , :-). Try being concerned for theRead Moreresident s of Westlake like us who pay all the taxes for everything . whether we want to or not. Those days are over . No more human ATMS . No more cash cow here. It's about time that the Westlake residents have spoken out and started a trend that will continue .. NO MORE TAX INCREASES OR LEVIES PASSED PERIOD !
Jim Jones December 19, 2013 at 07:47 AM
I hope that everyone who thinks westlake can trim costs by cutting busing to children who go toRead Morepriv ate school takes the time to read the article above regarding Rocky River.