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Every Monday -- News from GCP

GCP advocacy efforts impact funding, protection for Great Lakes

Maintaining the quality of the Great Lakes and maximizing their economic impact continue to be top priorities for the Greater Cleveland Partnership.

Recently, the organization has engaged in key advocacy and community initiatives to advance efforts to protect this valuable resource to the region and state.

Federal funding to protect Great Lakes secured through September

Congress recently passed its omnibus spending bill that will fund the federal government through September 30, 2017. Funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative was maintained at current levels in the bill. The GCP was actively engaged in advocacy efforts to urge federal leaders to protect this critical program.

In a press release, the GCP along with the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority and the Cleveland Water Alliance stated:

“We stand in strong support of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI). Our lake—Lake Erie—is a treasured asset and the most vulnerable of the five Great Lakes.

“It accounts for $10.7 billion in economic impact and roughly 30 percent of all tourism dollars that come to our state. This economic impact trickles into nearly every aspect of our community.”

GCP testimony urges stronger state policies to protect Lake Erie

At the state level, the GCP continues advocacy efforts to support Senate Bill 2, legislation championed by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency that seeks to strengthen policies and regulations that will protect the quality of Lake Erie and other water channels throughout the state.

The bill has passed the Senate and is now being heard in the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee. The GCP submitted written testimony that can be read in full here.

GCP supports tech-driven competition to address Lake Erie’s challenges

The GCP also supported the Erie Hack, hosted by the Cleveland Water Alliance. Erie Hack is a tech-driven water innovation competition and accelerator program that brings together a host of tech experts and water professionals to generate creative solutions to Lake Erie’s challenges.

Click here for a list of winners
and more information on the event.

Workers' Comp safety, wellness programming to be enhanced as part of latest “billion back”

The Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) has announced a $44 million investment in workplace safety, health, and wellness, which will extend the existing $15 million Safety Intervention Grant program another two years.

An additional part of the $44 million would provide $6 million per year for a health and wellness program for workers at businesses with 50 or fewer employees. BWC will contract with a third-party vendor to provide services including smoking cessation, health coaching and chronic disease management.

The initiative is part of the “Billion Back” rebate plan proposed by Governor Kasich and recently approved by the BWC's Board of Directors. A BWC budget bill (HB 27) is expected to be approved by the Ohio legislature by the end of June.

Private employers are reportedly due $967 million and public employers $133 million, including $92 million to local governments and $41 million to school districts. Eligible employers will begin receiving checks in July totaling 66 percent of premiums for the policy year that ended June 30, 2016.

To be eligible for the rebate, employers should ensure their policies are active and in good standing with BWC. Lapses in coverage or outstanding balances might affect rebate eligibility.

Employers in the COSE/GCP Group Rating and Group Retrospective Rating Plans would still be eligible for rebates.

CDA invests New Markets Tax Credits in Charter Steel expansion

Charter Steel has closed on financing for its $153 million expansion project in Cuyahoga Heights. Cleveland Development Advisors (CDA), an affiliate of the Greater Cleveland Partnership, provided $10 million of New Markets Tax Credit allocation.

Charter Steel, a division of Charter Manufacturing, is a leading American supplier and manufacturer of carbon and alloy steel bar, rod and wire products. The project will expand its wire rod production facility, helping the company to stay competitive in the U.S. steel industry.

Specifically, the project will invest in the “cut-to-length” bar market to further diversify its business. This significant investment will retain and create jobs and position the company for future growth.

Additional allocation was provided by Ohio Community Development Finance Fund, Northeast Ohio Development Fund, and Chase that also served as the investor.

The project also received support by the Village of Cuyahoga Heights, Cuyahoga County, the State of Ohio and the Cleveland–Cuyahoga County Port Authority.

Volunteers needed: Help high school educators learn to teach computer science

Have you heard about the Microsoft TEALS (computer science in every high school) program?

The program is seeking business volunteers from Northeast Ohio to bring real-world, industry experience into classrooms in the region to help educators learn to teach computer science independently and confidently.

An information session for potential volunteers will be held Thursday, May 11, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Speakeasy, 1948 West 25th Street in Ohio City.

Click to register.

Help CMSD eighth-graders set goals for career success

Recognizing that career readiness starts early, an innovative program—True2U—a collaboration between the Cleveland Foundation’s youth development program, My Com, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD), the Greater Cleveland Partnership and Neighborhood Leadership Institute—provides CMSD eighth-graders with support to explore their purpose, identify their strengths and set goals for success.

Business professionals are invited to volunteer as True2U mentors for the program for the 2017-2018 school year. This career exploration and mentoring program focuses on raising career awareness for CMSD students on the cusp of entering high school.

Mentors will be trained on a structured curriculum and work in teams of two or three mentors with small groups of students once a month, for the duration of the school year, and will be supported by a CMSD teacher once a month.

Click here for more information about True2U.

If you have questions, or want to sign up as a mentor, please contact Angela Finding at afinding@gcpartnership.com or 216.592.2385.

Could your summer internship program connect 
to Cleveland students?

It’s well-established that internships and jobs for youth during the summer can have an immediate economic impact for a student on a tight budget and the experience can benefit both the intern and the employer for many years afterward. 

The Greater Cleveland Partnership’s own annual Cleveland Internship Summit continues to highlight how many business professionals look back to summer internships and other structured experiential learning experiences as being extremely beneficial to their careers.

There is always a need for more of these impactful opportunities, particularly for students in more distressed Cleveland neighborhoods. 

If you have an interest in learning more about how your summer internship program could potentially connect to these students this summer or in the future, please contact Shana Marbury at smarbury@gcpartnership.com or 216.592.2249.

Cleveland Chain Reaction seeking local entrepreneurs; application deadline extended

Cleveland Chain Reaction, an economic development project aimed at bringing jobs and additional economic activity to the city, is currently accepting applications from entrepreneurs who are interested in being considered to work with investors to grow their business in the Slavic Village neighborhood.

The application deadline has been extended to Monday, May 29.

Click for details about how to apply.

Visit the website for more information about Cleveland Chain Reaction.

Cleveland Chain Reaction is produced by:

Share the positive: Pass the Plus!

Keep up with the good news from around the Cleveland Plus region, which you can find in the “Pass the Plus” e-newsletter.

This month’s stories include a look at how area companies are collaborating with Northeast Ohio’s renowned healthcare institutions to drive innovation.

Click to read more.

“Pass the Plus” is a Cleveland Plus/Team NEO free monthly e-newsletter that provides informative news and information related to the many positive developments shaping Northeast Ohio.

Click to subscribe and start sharing our region’s good news with your networks of colleagues, friends and family.

Cleveland Plus and Team NEO are part of the regional economic development system that the Greater Cleveland Partnership helped to create and continues to support.