By Victor Milani
My motto in life has been don’t dwell on the past. I will, however, hark back on some of the events that made 2017 yet another controversial year in Nordonia Hills.
Macedonia has some changes on City Council. Dave Engle decided he had enough, and Macedonia residents decided that they needed a change from Sylvia Hannaken. Incumbent Jan Tulley got another four-year term. The two Councilors were replaced by Vini Ventura and Jessica Brandt, who seem to be more in tune with what Mayor Migliorini’s agenda is, and that of the other three members of Council. Let’s hope that unity and working toward a better Macedonia is in everyone’s best interest. The Service Department, Police and Fire departments continue to shine as Macedonia continues to give the public great community services.
Fire Chief Tim Black and his staff pulled off an almost Houdini like feat when they combined fire services with both Northfield Center and Sagamore Hills. This was done in a relatively short time, with shorter response times, and a lower ISO rating just a few indicators that this is working!
Northfield Center replaced John Romanik with Russ Mazzola as a Trustee. Paul Buescher was able to maintain his seat with a close victory over Marc Pepara. This should result in some unique votes with Rich Reville as the incumbent, as a key sway vote on many issues in Northfield Center.
Sagamore Hills and Northfield Village were happy with status quo with their public officials as all got another term without opposition. Sagamore Hills did get a fire levy passed, despite the opposition of resident Km Griner, and a small vocal group.
Macedonia was fortunate to have a levy passed to maintain the Recreation Center and much-needed road improvements. Residents did come out in full force against any further development in back of the First Watch strip mall, citing traffic, noise and garbage issues at the current site. DDR also put off the sales block the Macedonia Commons. Rumor of a possible sale never materialized as of now. New business such as Planet Fitness was met with much fanfare and anticipation. The new KFC (at Rt 8 and Highland) plans were met with much less approval from the public. Mayor Migliorini, citing the success of the joint Fire effort with Northfield Center and Sagamore Hills, is looking to expand the joint services arrangement with surrounding communities. Northfield Village and Mayor Jesse Nehez hasn’t been receptive to Migliorini’s combined services conversation. Northfield, flush with at least $7 million dollars more in their coffers due to the Hard Rock success, has held firm in their “we are doing fine on our own“ mantra. Northfield Village has always had mutual aid agreements with surrounding communities if the need for help arises. Northfield also banned the medicinal marijuana dispensary proposed for the village on Route 8, while Macedonia was receptive to a growing facility with strict guidelines. The longtime Northfield (Summit) Plaza tenant, the Dolphin Restaurant, closed its doors with a dispute with the landlord. A Hookah theme Ultra Lounge that has been proposed for that location has been met with numerous questions from the Mayor and Council. A meeting with Council and the proposed owners is in the future. The appearance of the Plaza has continually been a sore spot with Mayor Nehez. A new strip mall has been also planned for Route 8 on top of Filly Lane and Route 8, which will bring in four new tenants.
Mother nature played havoc with Nordonia Hills and Northeast Ohio when epic wind damage occurred this fall. Power outages, some for days, and trees being snapped like twigs was prevalent. Service Departments in the area worked round the clock to remove debris, wood chip, and try to restore services back to residents. This effort took weeks, proof of the devastation in the wake of the storm.
Nordonia Hills has many positive plans for 2018. Let’s hope they all come to fruition!