County Council supports upcoming social service levies
Summit County Council
By Kathleen Folkerth
DOWNTOWN AKRON — Summit County Council put its weight behind the Summit County Children Services (SCCS) levy and also approved a new member for its board during the Sept. 10 meeting.
The meeting took place a half hour later than usual so that Council members could attend the kickoff for the levy campaign, which was held at the East Akron Community House.
“It was very moving to see everyone coming together for a common goal,” said Council President Nick Kostandaras during the meeting. “It’s important for Council to be on board for this issue.”
Legislation was introduced at the meeting that stated Council’s support of Issue No. 21, a 2.25-mill levy that voters will decide in the Nov. 6 General Election. Council unanimously adopted the legislation on first reading.
Council also adopted a motion naming Susan Tucker to the SCCS board to replace Jerry Holland. Tucker is the community outreach director in the Summit County Court of Common Pleas Domestic Relations Division.
Also during the meeting, Council adopted on first reading legislation that states Council’s support of Issue No. 20, the 2.95-mill levy for the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Board. That also will be before voters in November.
Council also unanimously adopted legislation that allows the county executive’s office to move forward on bringing the Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) Program to the county through the Summit County Prosecutor’s Office. The GREAT Program is a school-based, law enforcement officer-instructed classroom curriculum.
According to its Web site, GREAT lessons focus on providing life skills to students to help them avoid using delinquent behavior and violence to solve problems. The program, which is used nationally, consists of four components: a 13-session middle school curriculum, an elementary school curriculum, a summer program and training for families.
Among the new pieces of legislation introduced to Council were:
a resolution authorizing the county executive’s office to execute a new 10-year lease agreement with the Summit County Agricultural Society to replace the current agreement on the operation and lease of the arena and other facilities at the Summit County Fairgrounds in Tallmadge. The new agreement proposed will require the society to cooperate with the Ohio State University Extension Service and participate in reviews conducted by the county’s internal auditors. The society’s participation in the agreement will result in a reduction of its debt to the county by one-tenth each year; and
two pieces of legislation regarding legal fees for the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Mark McCullaugh against Summit County Sheriff’s Office deputies and medical and psychiatric personnel responsible for him while he was in custody in August 2006. McCullaugh’s family contends he was beaten to death. The lawsuit is in the U.S. District Court of Northern Ohio. The contracts are with Cleary and Associates for $60,000 and R. David Briggs for $50,000.
Summit County Council is scheduled to meet for committee meetings Sept. 17 at 4:30 p.m. in Council Chambers on the seventh floor of the Ohio Building, 175 S. Main St.