The Tribune ran a strong editorial today pushing Warren’s neighborhood groups to step up and demand that Mayor Franklin and City Council do more to relieve blight, fix streets and upgrade parks. It’s hard to argue with any of that, but I do disagree on the argument made in the piece that they dragged the Mayor and City Council into the Ohio Attorney General’s Moving Ohio Forward grant program for demolishing houses against their will.
The work the neighborhood groups did was absolutely essential but this opportunity had strong support from many Council people from the beginning, and while the Mayor was not out in front of the parade waving the battle flag of freedom, he never did anything publicly that I am aware of other than support the idea and promise to do everything in his power to participate.
Anyone who knows anything about the city’s finances has to know that raising a spare half million dollars took a little effort, and the Mayor came through with that amount which leveraged into $1.2 million with matching funds — very close to the maximum possible. I think the Mayor deserves more credit on this one.