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Every Monday -- News from GCP

Hot topics for the C-suite: Cyber security, export readiness
and talent management

Please mark your calendar and plan to join us at the 2016 Greater Cleveland Middle-Market Forum on Thursday, May 12 from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Corporate College East.

Our program will feature expert insights into cyber security, export readiness and attracting top talent management—three top-of-mind topics for many C-suite executives and their direct reports.

Attendees will have the opportunity join the conversation during the Q&A sessions after each presentation.

Don’t wait! Click to register now and take advantage of the GCP-member discount of $99 per person available through April 12.

Our presenters will include:

Cyber Security

Export Readiness

Ganpat V. Wagh
Supervisory Special Agent
FBI Cleveland

Amy Liu
Vice President and Director
Metropolitan Policy Program
Brookings Institution

Howard Forman
Senior Vice President
Product Group Manager
PNC Bank

Oded Shenkar, Ph.D.
Academic Director
National Center for the Middle Market
The Ohio State University
Fisher College of Business

Ralph Greco
Director, Business Analytics Initiative
The Risk Institute
The Ohio State University
Fisher College of Business


We’ll announce speakers for the “Attracting Top Management Talent” panel and the rest of the program line-up in the next few weeks.

Thanks to our Middle-Market Initiative sponsors:

The Health and Human Services levy needs your support!

The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) is urging passage of the Cuyahoga County Health and Human Services Levy, which is Issue 23 on the March 15th county-wide ballot.

The 4.8 mill levy—which is not a tax increase—is a crucial source of funding in Cuyahoga County for children, the elderly and families in need or in crises.

“This levy supports many critical health and human services activities that are vital to the well-being of our community including MetroHealth and services for seniors, children and families,” said GCP President and CEO Joe Roman.

“This eight-year renewal is longer than prior renewals, meaning the “no tax increase” rate is locked in for a longer period of time and fewer campaigns are needed to maintain the services.”

To learn more, please visit the campaign website.

Early voting deadline is today

The postmark deadline is today to return your ballot by mail to the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections, 2925 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44115. In addition, a ballot returned by mail must be received by the Board of Elections no later than 10 days after the election.

If you’re voting in person, polls will be open tomorrow from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Supporting the GCP PAC helps ensure your voice is heard

While you may have believe your individual voice is not heard throughout the process, there are concrete actions you can take as a member of the business community to help ensure we help elect state and local candidates who support your work.

The Greater Cleveland Partnership Political Action Committee (GCP PAC) is nonpartisan and serves as the respected, unified voice for businesses of all sizes and industries in our region.

Its role is to provide you with a vehicle for concerted political action and GCP PAC provides an opportunity to educate key decision makers on the issues that are important to you. The dollars contributed through GCP PAC are used to provide support for state and local governmental leaders campaigning for election who share your interests.
  • YES: I want to make a personal contribution to GCP PAC prior to the Ohio Primary Election, so we can continue to lead the conversation in the development of common sense economic policy and regulatory reform.
The GCP, the Council of Smaller Enterprises (COSE), and our partners advocate on your behalf, for your public policy priorities, and on a daily basis while you focus on achieving success for your company.

The key ingredient to our success, however, is your participation. We hope you will consider contributing to GCP PAC today.

Do you have questions about the GCP PAC? What can we be doing better to serve your advocacy interests? Tell us at

Please note: Individuals, limited liability companies (LLCs), partnerships and sole proprietorships can legally make contributions to a PAC. Contributions must include itemized allocations by partners in partnerships or members of a LLC. Ohio law prohibits other corporate political contributions.

Your participation in the GCP PAC is completely voluntary. Donations are not tax-deductible and will be used for political purposes. An individual may contribute up to $12,532 annually to an Ohio Political Action Committee. You may choose not to participate without fear of reprisal. You will not be favored or disadvantaged by reason of the amount of your contribution or decision not to contribute.

Acquire valuable inclusion data to support
your business strategies

There’s still time to participate in the Commission on Economic Inclusion’s 2015 Employers Survey on Diversity™

By contributing your company’s data to the aggregate report on diversity metrics in the region, you will:
  • Acquire valuable data that can be incorporated into your growth and talent acquisition strategies
  • Receive a valuable confidential scorecard to compare the diversity and inclusion progress of your company or organization with your peers
  • Be eligible for the prestigious Commission 50 and Best-in-Class recognition.
Your data also will help in the overall assessment of our region’s progress in workplace diversity and inclusion.

Whether you are a current Commission member who has not yet completed the survey, or if your company would like to participate for the first time, we encourage you to be part of this process.

For more information or assistance, please contact Scott Harrington at 216.592.2213 or

The Commission on Economic Inclusion is a program of the Greater Cleveland Partnership.

Exploring Ohio’s key role in presidential politics

The “Politically Speaking Series: Presidential Politics in the State of Ohio” will continue with a discussion of the presidential primary process by Amy Walter, national editor of "The Cook Political Report," at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 31, at John Carroll University in University Heights. The program will be held in Donahue Auditorium at the Dolan Center for Science & Technology.

Walter provides analyses of issues, trends and events that shape the political environment. Her weekly column appears on She is also an exclusive panelist on NBC’s "Meet the Press" and a regular panelist on PBS’ "Washington Week" with Gwen Ifill and Fox News’ "Special Report with Bret Baier."

The “Politically Speaking” series is sponsored by Baldwin Wallace University, Cleveland State University, Cuyahoga Community College, Kent State University and John Carroll University. It offers a unique, Buckeye State-centric examination of the presidential election process in the lead up to Cleveland hosting the 2016 Republican National Convention in July.

Future programs will address “Why Polling Data Still Matters” (sponsored by Kent State in April) and “The Economic Impact of National Political Conventions” (sponsored by Tri-C in June).

The event is free and open to the public; registration is required.

Click to register.

RTA holding public meetings on proposed fare increases,
service modifications

The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) begins a series of public meetings on Monday, March 21 to gather comments about proposed fare increases for buses, trains and Paratransit, as well as proposed service modifications.

RTA CEO and General Manager Joe Calabrese has said that RTA needs to close a $7 million gap in the 2016 operating budget, passed by the RTA Board in December. Part of the problem is caused by weak transit funding by the State.

At the public meetings, customers will be asked to comment on modifications to a number of routes being considered for full or partial cuts. RTA’s goal is to impact the least number of customers. Modifications to these routes will impact less than 2 percent of RTA’s current customers.
Staff will also present several options for a bus/train fare increase. Fares have not been increased in seven years. More information about proposed fare increases can be found on the RTA website.

“These proposals will affect every customer, and we want to hear from you,” said Calabrese. “By law, we must balance our budget. To be good stewards of public money, we must look at all possible alternatives.

“Your comments will help guide our final decision, which will be made April 26 by the Board of Trustees.”

Irish Town Bend stabilization presents opportunity to safeguard jobs, development and amenities

The need to stabilize Irishtown Bend remains a critical infrastructure issue for Cleveland. The section of riverbank along the Cuyahoga River threatens to collapse into the navigation channel, jeopardizing thousands of jobs in maritime-dependent industries, multi-million dollar developments, and plans for a transformative riverfront trail.

With 18,000 maritime-related jobs in Cleveland, Irish Town Bend’s instability poses a major threat to the local economy. Of particular concern are the 2,000+ jobs upstream of the site at ArcelorMittal Cleveland’s steel mill. A collapse would directly impact the mill, which needs access to key natural resources that can only be shipped efficiently by water.

Planned and in process development in nearby Ohio City could also be harmed by a collapse including the West 25th Street Lofts and the Snavely Group’s planned development for the intersection of West 25th and Detroit.

Tom McNair, executive director of Ohio City, Inc., said Irish Town Bend’s instability is a critical neighborhood issue, complicating future development in the area. But stabilizing the hillside also presents an opportunity to create a new waterfront and active living amenity.

Also, Irish Town Bend’s instability is currently holding up completion of the Cleveland Foundation Centennial Trail, which will connect Wendy Park to the 110-mile Towpath Trail National Park System along the Cuyahoga. That unified trail will serve as another key tourist attraction while also providing recreation and waterfront access for residents.

A Port of Cleveland-commissioned study has determined a reasonable, cost-effective solution to stabilize the bank and the Port is currently working to secure funds to put the fix into action. That includes a request for $4 million from the State of Ohio’s biennial capital budget. Those public infrastructure dollars would kick start efforts to energize additional public-private funds.

Local partners such as the Greater Cleveland Partnership has voiced support for the Port’s capital budget request, and The Plain Dealer editorial board also recently agreed on the need for public dollars to be involved.

Those interested in finding out more about this issue or attending the hearing can contact Jade Davis, Port VP of External Affairs at