Not All In

We join Greater Cleveland Congregations and Oppose the Q Renovation Deal #NOTALLIN

Late last year, it was announced that the Quicken Loans Arena would be seeking public funds to upgrade their facility. This renovation will likely cost, including interest, $282 million, with $160 million coming from public sources. The proposed rehab of the Q is an opportunity for the people of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County to end their silence and start to be citizens instead of spectators to the decisions impacting their communities.

This is an opportunity to break with a past where such projects are routinely rubber stamped. When RTA is facing more rate hikes and service cuts, the City of Cleveland just raised income tax to make payroll, and many neighborhoods around the county are still in decline… We deem this renovation to be a breach of public trust and a gross misuse of public funds. We will not stand by while those elected to lead us redefine progress as working people subsidizing billionaires.

We are actively organizing to prevent this deal and would like to encourage everyone to join us at the next County Council meeting, Tuesday, February 14th (2079 E 9th St @5pm.) While we are #ALLIN and support our champions, the Cleveland Cavaliers, we are NOT ALL IN when it comes to backroom deals to spend down Northeast Ohio’s future. Please, contact your County Council person and relay your concern about this deal.

Cuyahoga County Council Contact Information:

District 3: Dan Brady, President (216) 698-2014 

District 8: Pernel Jones, Jr., Vice-President (216) 698-2019 

District 1: Nan Baker  (216) 698-2047

District 2: Dale Miller (216) 698-2011

District 4: Scott Tuma (216) 698-2013

District 5: Michael J. Gallagher (216) 698-2015

District 6: Jack Schron (216) 698-2016

District 7: Yvonne M. Conwell (216) 698-2017

District 9: Shontel Brown (216) 698-2023

District 10: Anthony T. Hairston (216) 698-2022

District 11: Sunny M. Simon (216) 698-2035

For more information, visit our Website or call Steve Holecko @ 440-220-1874

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  • Tristan Rader
    published this page 2017-07-12 21:18:59 -0400
  • Mariann Offtermatt
    commented 2017-03-27 00:14:45 -0400
    Mr. Kuhns, I neglected to mention in my last response that I truly appreciate your honest, straightforward and respectful comments in this exchange. Thank you!
  • Mariann Offtermatt
    commented 2017-03-27 00:13:06 -0400
    Mr. Kuhns, by chance, have you attended hearings on the financing for this project? Have you listened to the positions of the area merchants, restauranteurs, contractors, and laborers for whom these facilities provide livelihood? My comment was not to point out the results of any vested interest studies but to share the amazing changes and improvements that have taken place in Cleveland over the past 20 years. The growth of tourism has a direct relation to the sports facilities and the businesses that have grown around these facilities. I don’t need a study to show me the improvements and the possibility that come from these entertainment venues. I don’t need a study to show me that thousands of people make their livings working in these facilities and the neighboring businesses. I don’t need a study to show me that the public supports them by attending events and gatherings. I don’t need a study to show me that the facilities need to be kept current and vital. I see these needs everyday in business and entertainment and everyday living – the demands of the constant shifts of technology implore us all to be current. Additionally, my comment about ‘spin’ was in reference to your final statement in your original post that indicates an ‘alleged obligation to maintain’ and the publics meaningless ‘owning’ of these facilities. It is clear that we do not agree on this issue and will most probably not change each others minds and I respect your right to have your own opinion. I first posted on this position because as a member of CCPC I felt it was important to state that some of us are not in sync with CCPC on this issue.
  • Matthew Kuhns
    commented 2017-03-26 19:41:27 -0400
    Ms. Offtermatt, I was not claiming that this proposal involves Sin Tax money; I was pointing out that the opposite is true. You wrote “The citizens voted to provide these tax funds specifically for the purposes of maintaining the sports facilities in Cleveland.” On what basis, and with what purpose, did you post this remark on a page about “the Q Transformation” if you weren’t implying (incorrectly) that some component of this proposal had the authority of a public vote behind it? As for the claims of economic benefit, you may be satisfied with a study, privately commissioned by a professional sports team with a vested interest in the outcome, from an organization that is owned by other professional sports teams, and which has a demonstrated track record of exaggerating the economic benefit of sports arenas. (Yes, I can provide examples.) I hope that you can extend the courtesy of respecting my own skepticism of such a study, rather than accusing me of “spin.”
  • Mariann Offtermatt
    commented 2017-03-26 19:18:14 -0400
    Ken. Your hypothetical analysis is so full of holes I can’t even begin to discuss them with you. If you have points to make, in a legitimate discussion format, that do not run to the level of hyperbole we can certainly discuss.
  • Mariann Offtermatt
    commented 2017-03-26 19:11:47 -0400
    Matthew Kuhns – the monies that are earmarked for these improvements are not the ‘sin tax’ monies. They are other arena events related taxes (earmarked for the facilities improvements) and tourism taxes that are collected specifically for tourism related purposes. No matter how you might like to spin this issue it is a fact that the buildings are publicly owned, that their existence is a benefit to the city in tourism, employment, and support of the area businesses which surround them – these are only a few of the benefits to the community.
  • Ken Fisler
    commented 2017-03-25 08:35:05 -0400
    Here’s my proposal: The county builds a nice house for me, provides in that house all the latest technology and sterling accouterments, maintains it, keeps it clean, and occasionally upgrades it. I live there for free, but during the summer have volleyball games in the big backyard. I charge fees for people to watch the volleyball games and I get to keep that money. The county benefits because all the construction and re-construction on my house creates construction jobs and because after the games everybody goes to bars and restaurants in the neighborhood, and people can be proud of and cheer for the volleyball team which, by the way, I’ll own.

    Sounds like a good deal? Sounds like the kind of deal everybody would go for. Yeah, but sorry, citizens. You get a sweet deal like that only if you can buy politicians and media and stooges to support you and push it through an election (preferably an off-year, non-presidential election when hardly anyone votes… so mostly just those who’ll reap the financial benefits).

    The way to decide the real-life but equally absurd legislation before us, and any legislation of this kind which costs us money, is to closely examine all the costs and the financial returns. We should insist on a verifiable and concrete accounting of these numbers and all these numbers, clearly explained and stipulated, should be written into the legislation. And here’s a novel thought: How about if the taxpayers actually turned a net profit on this deal?

    Charity is wonderful… for people who need food, clothing, housing, education, transportation and healthcare. And needs in these areas are certainly dire. Taxpayers and residents (and voters and activists) should wonder, though, whether we need, and can afford, to be charitable to millionaires.
  • Matthew Kuhns
    commented 2017-03-15 16:01:23 -0400
    It is not true that “The citizens voted to provide these tax funds specifically for the purposes of maintaining the sports facilities in Cleveland.” Voters approved a renewal of the “Sin Tax,” to pay for maintenance of Cleveland arenas.

    The “Q Transformation” nonetheless asks for more public money completely separate from Sin Tax revenue, on the grounds that Quicken Loans Arena will supposedly become unviable without renovations—despite all of the Sin Tax campaign’s promises.

    The public has already met any obligation we allegedly have to maintain these arenas, which we “own” only in a meaningless formal sense.
  • Mariann Offtermatt
    commented 2017-02-13 18:41:23 -0500
    This is a position I have a hard time understanding. The citizens voted to provide these tax funds specifically for the purposes of maintaining the sports facilities in Cleveland. How do we expect Cleveland to be promoted as the wonderful place it is with vibrant community engagement, a beautiful downtown with recreational and entertainment activities if we are unwilling to support the needs of the infrastructure that provides these things. The re-energizing of Cleveland comes partly from the existence of these facilities – which the public owns and has an obligation to maintain. If you own a home you need to attend to the needs of the home. We own these like we own our own homes! After 20 plus years they need maintenance.