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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Bay Village City Council, Ward 2

Term: 2 yearsSalary: $8,807Two newcomers, Lydia DeGeorge and Dave Barker, are vying for this seat. The incumbent, Paul W. Vincent, is not running.
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    Dave Barker Candidate, Bay Village City Council

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    Lydia DeGeorge

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Biographical Information

What improvements would you recommend in your ward, give its unique characteristics?

Bay Village has a new Master Plan. What priorities would you work to implement first?

What current issues facing the city do you feel require the most attention?

When and where is it appropriate to use public dollars to support private business ventures in the community?

Are you in favor of diversifying the housing stock in the city, and what ideas do you have to implement this?

What is your vision of what Bay Village will be like in 10 years?

Age 47
Current occupation My background is managing Maintenance Departments. I am accountable for creating and meeting budgets, personnel, physical property, capital expenditures, and project management with 25 years’ experience.
Qualifications for office As an active Bay resident, I have volunteered as the Cub Scout Pack 729 Den leader, Bay Recreation soccer, Basketball Coach, Bay Boat Club, Fields Director for Bay Soccer, and Bay Challenge cup tournament.
Campaign Phone (440) 263-4617
Email address dbarker71@att.net
Improvements to Ward 2 would start with the infrastructure. We need to improve the sewers and electric grid. We have sustained flooding and frequent power outages at the expense of the homeowners. I will use my mechanical experience in both of these areas to determine what preventative measures can be taken and find a permanent solution to this problem. They need updating. Our unique business district should have some changes made in regards to parking along Wolf Rd. The safety of our residents is very important to me. I want to earn your trust back in city government.
Priorities in the Masterplan for me would be to see the Dover Junction Development and the Village center transformation both of which are ward 2. Once this transformation is complete it will show a dedication to the masterplan and it raise the level of expectation we need to carry throughout this city. This along with the new library will show Bay Village can change in a way that enhances our charm. By using the implementation tables develop city forums and adhoc committees, along with open discussions with citizens, we can to gain their valuable input.
Current issues facing the city are an aged underground utility system that was installed during a time when it was more than sufficient. We need to continue to analyze these utilities and develop a plan to start a replacement program. We need to regain control of the rental homes, determine where they are and start the inspection process and revenue generating rental registration program. We also need to not allow larger houses than our neighborhoods can support.
Public dollars spent for private ventures come in different forms such as tax breaks for companies investing in our city, I would only support those if it was a sustainable and profitable for the city while strictly adhering to our zoning and supported by voters. Purchasing condemned or blighted homes and buildings to ensure the safety of the citizens. I realize city government is not in the real estate business. Bay Village has very few opportunities for this to happen, our commercial space is limited and I will do everything to keep it.
Diversifying the housing stock in Bay Village is difficult. We are a unique in what and who we are. People come here to raise a family because of the school system, the lake, parks, safety and security. We have a sense of community and our proud of our bedroom charm. The masterplan asks for inlaw suites which most lots can’t support, townhomes currently in negotiations, and cottage or cluster homes. Mixed use for commercial and residential would be the one I would support. The caveat to all that is, it’s what the voters want not me personally.
Bay Village in 10 years will still have the charm, and the “Cahoon Will”, but it will also have started the repair to the infrastructure needs and a sustainable plan to continue to make repairs. It will still have great safety and security forces along with a new fire station. I see in 10 years we will have more bike lanes and safer street crossings, and a lake front park for Bay residents separate from the Metroparks. Our school system will continue to draw new families to the city, and multipurpose sport venues will allow play on Sundays.
Age 62
Current occupation I’m a 30-year Bay resident with experience in retail district management and child care. I supervised merchandising, and operations, wrote training manuals, and facilitated seminars.
Qualifications for office Through the last four years of attending council meetings, I’ve stimulated civic awareness and engagement and furthered communications. Most importantly, I’ve helped residents navigate city procedures. My community involvement is directly relevant to council duties.
Campaign Phone (440) 227-3543
Email address degeorgelydia@gmail.com
For years residents and council have said that Bay Village’s only asset is our housing stock. I disagree. Ward 2 is unique because we are the home of Bay’s business district. Our retail environment has different needs compared with destination shopping in neighboring communities. The city and Westshore Chamber of Commerce do not offer support specific to demands our business leaders face. I recommend implementing a Commercial Development Team to guide those interested in filling empty stores/offices, spotlight improvements, add variety and events, and create viable business networks. The result is a prosperous business district that increases our tax base.

Infrastructure is number 1. However, amending ordinances or an Architectural Board to curtail the overdevelopment of lots, “review residential construction”, and “work within neighborhood context” are critical. "Keep Bay dollars in Bay" is another important message from the Master Plan. Clague Parkway is an area yet to reach its potential. I see an attractive location, mid-rise buildings that do not neighbor single family homes, and easy highway access. Living spaces above offices/shops, restaurants, a courtyard, and we'll have multiple new revenue sources. Imagine visiting Reese Park with the kids, walking to get refreshments, and relaxing as Sperry Creek drifts by.

Finances. Grants and incentives must be systematically sought and applied for. Acquiring funding and generating revenue are the only ways to accelerate infrastructure repair. Costly engineering (a 2015 sewer plan proposal was $1 million), city services, and other infrastructure projects need simultaneous financing on a $27 million annual budget. In one neighborhood the infrastructure repair discussion has dragged on for 35 years. Timely execution of projects and action on city-wide engineering plans saves money. It's time for a thorough cost/benefit review of outsourcing engineering services and the Building Department. We must also assure funds are allocated to departments as promised.

To repair or enhance infrastructure in our business district is an appropriate use of public funds. Infrastructure improvement is a benefit to all residents. Tax abatements for luxury housing is an inappropriate use of public funds. Because council adopted a resolution in 2013 with guidelines for evaluating tax abatements and tax increment funding, it is the duty of council and administration to listen to and evaluate all proposals. However, the decision regarding those proposals should be based on public input and the wellbeing of the residents.

I am in favor of diversified housing stock but not overdevelopment that could alter the city’s appeal. Townhouses and condos should remain amid businesses and outlying areas with designs that respect and do not infringe on single family homes. In addition to revitalizing Clague Parkway, diversified housing has many definitions. For example; residents approached me with an idea: identify clusters of one-story homes and rentals, renovate them and create naturally occurring retirement communities. I will research the concept and existing programs from surrounding cities and seek support from the administration, city council and community services to launch age-in-place programs.

I envision traveling on bike lanes and smooth roads through friendly neighborhoods with quaint streetscapes, more charm, and fewer deer. I pedal past Bay’s eclectic businesses and expanded recreation options. Cahoon Park is flawless. Lake Erie is healthier as Bay leads environmentally conscious lakefront communities. Our property values are enviable. I arrive at City Hall for an interactive council meeting where residents can participate from their houses. Another storm brews but no worries: sewer repairs are complete, power outages rare. I reflect how far we’ve come in ten years and that transparent, cooperative government helped us arrive.

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