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GCP president elected chairman of international chamber group

Montreal -- Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) President and CEO Joe Roman has been elected chairman of the international Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE). The group serves 7,000 leaders from 1,300 chambers of commerce.

Roman - who will continue to lead the GCP – said he is honored to serve as ACCE chairman.

He said the new position will allow him to learn about municipal issues from other chamber executives and will also give him a substantial platform from which to share the story of Cleveland’s multi-billion dollar revitalization. Read more.

GCP opposes marijuana legalization

Concerned with impact on workplaces, businesses

Cleveland, Ohio The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) today announced its opposition to the ResponsibleOhio effort to legalize marijuana use in the state of Ohio, as well as  its support of a constitutional amendment limiting monopolies.

Following a lengthy review, GCP concluded the ResponsibleOhio proposal to permit marijuana use for both recreational and medical purposes could negatively impact workplaces and burden small businesses in Ohio.

GCP members are concerned about issues including: difficulty in recruiting drug-free employees; implications for workplace safety; impact on workforce productivity, quality and costs and the resulting effect on employer liability. Read more.

Opportunity Corridor’s Steering Committee names Eddie Taylor, Michael Taylor as co-chairs

Cleveland, Ohio—The steering committee that provides crucial guidance and oversight of the Opportunity Corridor project in Cleveland has appointed two new co-chairs to assist in ensuring that the new roadway maximizes its potential to become a job-producing, economic development catalyst:

Eddie Taylor, Jr., (photo left) president of Taylor Oswald, an insurance brokerage firm partnered with Oswald Companies and headquartered in downtown Cleveland and Michael Taylor, (photo right) senior vice president at PNC, where he is responsible for community and economic development activities in Northern Ohio and five other states. Read more.

GCP opposes HB 180 and SB 152

GCP asks General Assembly to vote “no” on bills, which interfere with home rule

Cleveland, Ohio – The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) and the Commission on Economic Inclusion joined the City of Cleveland in opposing two bills in the Ohio legislature that would eliminate local governments’ ability to ensure that construction projects in the region benefit the local workforce.

House Bill 180 and Senate Bill 152 would prohibit local governments from requiring contractors to employ a given number of residents within a geographic area for construction or improvement projects.

In a letter to Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger and Ohio Senate President Keith Faber, GCP President and CEO Joe Roman said the proposed legislation threatens the successful Community Benefit Agreements (CBAs) in place throughout Northeast Ohio. CBAs are important tools for regional and local governments to ensure that public expenditures result in real community gains, such as an inclusive workforce, apprentice opportunities, minority contracting and local hiring. Read more.

GCP endorses renewal of existing cigarette tax for arts and culture

Cleveland, Ohio - The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) Board of Directors voted to support passage of a November ballot issue calling for the renewal of an existing cigarette tax in Cuyahoga County that generates support for arts and culture.

The renewal would extend for 10 years the current tax of 1.5 cents per cigarette sold in Cuyahoga County. The ballot issue is not a tax increase.

The tax generates more than $15 million annually. Since its inception in 2006, tax proceeds have been used to invest more than $125 million in 300 arts and cultural organizations in Cuyahoga County.

Read more

GCP highlights economic progress spurred by public-private partnerships

“Meet the Press” Moderator Chuck Todd delivers Annual Meeting keynote

Cleveland, Ohio—Optimism about Cleveland’s future is well-grounded in reality and results, even while challenges remain.

The Greater Cleveland Partnership’s Annual Meeting today highlighted many of the successes that have added to the community’s positive momentum as well as the work that’s yet to be done for sustainable economic progress.

GCP Board Chair Beth Mooney, chairman and CEO of KeyCorp, noted that the city is moving forward propelled by a strong collaboration among stakeholders in the private and public sectors.

Said Mooney: “I’ve been very impressed with what seems to me to be a rising tide of involvement and enthusiasm, not just from the GCP’s more than 10,000 members, but from across our local spectrum—the business community, the political community, the philanthropic community and the public at large.”

Read more.

$50M federal award to CDA to spur economic growth in city by attracting private investment

CLEVELAND – Cleveland’s renaissance got a $50 million federal infusion that will be leveraged to help develop new projects in the city estimated to be valued at hundreds of millions of dollars.

The award of federal New Market Tax Credits to Cleveland Development Advisors (CDA) – an affiliate of the Greater Cleveland Partnership – is an invaluable leveraging tool in advancing the city’s revitalization.

The tax credits are often used to fill financing gaps but also attract large amounts of private investment. CDA had previously been awarded a total of $105 million from this program that has been used to spur more than $660 million in investment in Cleveland.

Business groups release study, call for major changes in Governor’s budget tax proposal

Organizations oppose raising CAT rate, expanding sales tax to more businesses

Columbus - The Ohio Metro Chambers Coalition, which is comprised of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce and eight of Ohio’s largest metropolitan chambers of commerce, have concerns with Governor John Kasich's state budget proposal.

The Coalition sent the Governor a letter expressing its concerns last week, indicating it does not believe the proposal in its current form will achieve the shared vision “to boost economic competitiveness of Ohio.” Read more.

Milestone public-private agreement expands construction career opportunities for Max Hayes students

Cleveland — The City of Cleveland, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD), union representatives and the private sector today signed a milestone collaboration agreement aimed at increasing the number of diverse and City of Cleveland residents working on Greater Cleveland construction projects and facilitating a construction career path for students at the CMSD’s Max Hayes High School. The signing was held at the offices of the Greater Cleveland Partnership. Read more.

GCP joins more than 250 chambers urging Congress to fund transportation

Cleveland, Ohio—The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) has joined more than 250 local, regional and state chambers of commerce urging Congress to resolve the impending insolvency of the federal Highway Trust Fund and to pass a long term federal transportation authorization bill.

“A sustained investment in infrastructure is vital to our economy,” said GCP President and CEO Joe Roman. “A reliable and resilient transportation network is essential to continue driving the positive momentum we’ve worked so hard for here in Northeast Ohio." Read more.

Click to read the Chambers for U.S. Infrastructure investment letter to Congress.

Traffic and bus changes during Public Square renovation announced

Downtown Cleveland -- Downtown Cleveland partners involved in the renovation of Public Square have announced the maintenance of traffic plan that outlines changes to traffic and transit routes during construction of the square, which will begin March 9. Read more.

Click here for the Public Square construction traffic information sheet and FAQ for more details.

GCP disappointed in disbanding of commercial court docket

CLEVELAND – The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) is disappointed that the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court recently disbanded its commercial court docket.

The commercial docket was created to resolve business related disputes in a more efficient and consistent manner. The GCP supported the creation and renewal of the commercial docket.

“The commercial court docket made our region a friendlier place to do business,” said GCP President and CEO Joe Roman “Disbanding this docket, especially without a debate on the merits, is a step in the wrong direction. We hope the distinguished judges will reconsider.”

GCP releases new Public Policy Agenda; outlines government advocacy focus for next two years

CLEVELAND – The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) today released its new Public Policy Agenda that outlines areas where it will focus its attention on current and developing issues at the local, state and federal levels during the next two years.

The GCP drafts a new Public Policy Agenda at the beginning of each new congressional and state General Assembly cycle. The document, which has been months in the making, details a diverse list of objectives and areas of focus that all share the common goal of growing Greater Cleveland’s economy.

“The Public Policy Agenda highlights the goals and objectives our members deem to be most vital to pursue during the next two years,” said GCP President and CEO Joe Roman. “This is a carefully drafted document that had the benefit of an extraordinary amount of input from many very bright people who want to see Cleveland continue to move forward.” Click to view or download.