West Side News & Notes

Mayor of Fairlawn retires

FAIRLAWN — Fairlawn Mayor William Roth Jr. announced his resignation. His last day in office was November 30th.
Fairlawn City Council President Russell Sharnsky, 67, will become mayor after Roth’s retirement and fill the term. He must run in the November 2023 general election to retain the seat for a full four-year term. Council Vice-President Barbara Potts (District 2) takes over as Council Chair.
Roth, 64, whose current term expires on December 31, 2023, first took office in 1996. He explained that his wife Jolene retired two years ago and he wanted to retire as long as he was healthy enough to enjoy retirement. He added he plans to remain in Fairlawn and run his law practice part-time.
“I have decided, after careful consideration, that now is a good time to step down as mayor,” he said. “It has been a great privilege and honor to serve the people and businesses of Fairlawn for the past 27 years.”
He added that he’s been “fortunate enough to have been mayor for as long as I have.”
“The transition will be seamless,” he said of the Sharnsky acquisition. “I have full confidence in his abilities and if I didn’t think he could handle the job I wouldn’t voluntarily resign at this point.”
During his 27 years as mayor, Roth oversaw: the construction of a new service center and police department building, and the renovation of City Hall; the founding of municipal broadband provider FairlawnGig; the creation of the Fairlawn Soccer Park and Community Garden; Participated in the formation of a government council to build and operate a joint emergency response center with Summit County and the cities of Stow, Tallmadge and Cuyahoga Falls; and forming a government council with Summit County to build a Tier 4 data center and fiber optic ring connecting all 31 Summit County communities.
Roth pointed out that Fairlawn’s progress and success was due to teamwork and collaboration.
“I’ve had the privilege of leading great department heads and staff over the years, and I’ve been blessed to work with City Council members who have worked with me to move the city forward and make it better,” he said.

The Arrive Alive program will be offered from November 23rd to 25th

SUMMIT COUNTY — The Summit County Attorney’s Office, along with the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, is restarting the Arrive Alive program to keep drunk drivers off the streets during the Thanksgiving holiday.
According to prosecution officials, ridesharing service LYFT is offering free and discounted rides to any Summit County residence from 6 p.m. Up to 400 rides with code SUMMITTHANKS22 for up to $20 in LYFT ride credit are available.
“I don’t want tragedy to interfere with a family’s holiday season,” said prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh. “If you plan to drink alcohol, don’t get behind the wheel. Use Arrie Alive to get home safely.”
More than 2,000 people have used the Arrive Alive service since prosecutors launched the program during the holiday on July 4, 2018, officials added.

Applications for the American Municipal Power Scholarship Program are open

CUYAHOGA FALLS – Applications for the 2023 American Municipal Power (AMP) Scholarship Program are now being accepted.
According to city officials, this scholarship program encourages high school students in AMP member communities to continue their education in the field of municipal electric power.
The Cuyahoga Falls Electric System may nominate a candidate for the Lyle B. Wright Fellowship and the Richard H. Gorsuch Fellowship, each offering $3,000. Spring high school seniors who graduate from high school, have met all of the basic requirements for college or technical school, and have an unweighted GPA of 3.0 or better are encouraged to apply for nomination.
Students must complete the local nominee application form and submit it, along with a letter of recommendation and an official high school transcript, to the Cuyahoga Falls Electric System office at 2550 Bailey Road by December 9 at 5:00 p.m.
Nomination application packages can be picked up at the Cuyahoga Falls Electric System office and at www.cityofcf.com/services/amp-scholarship.
For more information, call the Cuyahoga Falls Electric System at 330-971-8060.

The new CCAG program focuses on health disparities

AKRON – Cleveland Clinic Akron General’s (CCAG) neighbor-to-neighbor campaign now includes the ICARE (Integrating Clinical and Resource Evaluations) program, which focuses on health disparities in Summit County.
Hospital officials said the ICARE program, funded entirely through philanthropy, is providing a clinical nurse specialist to meet with patients who were readmitted from the six zip codes around the hospital in the past year. The nurse also meets with some patients at their first admission to Akron General.
dr Brian Harte, President of Akron General and an internist who oversees hospital patients for a week each month, developed the program after observing that patients from neighborhoods near the hospital were being re-hospitalized at a disproportionately higher rate than other patients.
Officials said Julie Imani, MSN, APRN-CNS, leads ICARE and meets with patients while they are in hospital and connects them with a GP and social workers to address challenges including housing, food insecurity and transportation. Once a patient is home, Imani contacts them and ensures they can access these resources and come to their follow-up appointments.
“You can’t worry about coming to your doctor’s appointments if you’re worried about food, shelter and other necessities,” Imani said. “We can be that bridge to offer a holistic approach.”
Hospital officials said Imani had met 33 patients in the first few months of the program and found that 42% were food insecure, 39% had no transportation, 33% had received utility shutdown notices, 27% reported housing insecurity, and 39% needed assistance Reading hospital materials and 33% report loneliness. In four months, ICARE reduced readmissions of patients discharged to homes in surrounding hospital zip codes by nearly 9%.
Officials added that census data shows people living near the hospital have a life expectancy of 65 years — much less than residents living west of Market Street, where life expectancy was 81 years.

Grant the creation of a shelter for battered women

SUMMIT COUNTY – RedRover has awarded the Battered Women’s Shelter of Summit and Medina Counties (BWS) a $60,000 Safe Housing/Purple Leash Project grant to help the agency build a new safe haven for survivors’ pets to support.
According to animal shelter officials, Safe Housing grants allow domestic violence shelters to make room on and off-site to house survivors’ pets. The Purple Leash Project grants are an extension of the RedRover Safe Housing Grants funded by Purina. RedRover has awarded more than $3 million for safe housing since its inception in 2012.
BWS officials said the Hope & Healing Pet Shelter will be an enclosed, heated structure attached to the emergency shelter and will house six dog kennels and four cat rooms. In addition, the funds are used to buy consumables and the necessary veterinary care for the animals. When the shelter is at full capacity, BWS will work with partner organizations, including the Humane Society of Summit County, and volunteers to safely care for animals that need a safe place outside of the shelter.
“Providing a safe and secure home for the pets of the families we serve who are fleeing unsafe homes is a game changer,” said Teresa Stafford, CEO of BWS. “Thanks to this grant, we’re removing another barrier preventing people from entering a shelter when they’re ready to begin their healing journey with BWS.”


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