By Joshua Benton
Blade Staff Writer
Canton, Cooperstown … Toledo?
Mayor Carty Finkbeiner thinks civic leaders should be honored in a hall of fame, and he’s started a new city committee to choose its members.
“There are not many other cities or states that do this,” Mr. Finkbeiner said. “I think it’s something that is long overdue.”
At today’s 4 p.m. council meeting, Mr. Finkbeiner will announce his intention to open a Toledo Civic Leader Hall of Fame. A nine-member Toledo Civic Leader Committee will be in charge of its progress.
Council will likely not approve the mayor’s proposed appointees at the meeting, postponing action until members can learn more about the nominees – three of whom don’t live in the city.
Members were not provided with the mayor’s rationale for the appointments, and council member Jeanine Perry said she will wait for that information before voting on any nominees.
“I’m sure there are good reasons for these people to be named, but I would just like to know what they’ve done for the community,” she said.
The three noncity residents – civil rights lawyer Robert Kaplan, Toledo Sports Arena owner Tim Gladieux, and United Auto Workers regional director Jack Sizemore – would have to be given a special exemption under city law if they are to serve.
The other six nominees: Pat Nicholson, CEO of N-Viro International Corp.; Sandra Stewart, publisher of the Toledo Journal; Lucas County Juvenile Court Judge Joseph Flores; Kathy Steadman, former president of Neighborhoods in Partnership; former Lucas County Common Pleas Court Judge Robert Franklin; and Robert Anderson, retired head of engineering for The Andersons, Inc.
In addition to selecting the honorees, the commission will identify a location and a funding source for the hall of fame. Mr. Finkbeiner has tabbed Mr. Nichol son to serve as committee chairman.
The said he expects to see the first inductions – complete with busts – in late 1998.
Today’s 4 p.m. meeting will also be the last for retiring council president Gene Cook and for District 1 council member June Boyd.
In other action, council will consider:
* Changing the way the Toledo fire department charges for fire inspections.
Currently, property owners are charged $25 for each address of a building they own. But apartment complex owners had complained that opened them up to exorbitant charges, sometimes over $1,500, for a full inspection because they assigned addresses to small sections of their buildings.
The ordinance would allow complex owners to be charged at an hourly rate of $25.
* Lowering the speed limit on Heatherdowns Boulevard between Schneider and Byrne roads from 35 to 30 mph. That section is considered a through street under current law, a designation that would be removed by the ordinance to be considered today.
* Authorizing a $250,000 economic development loan to High Tech Packaging, Inc. The funds would be used to build a 200,000-square-foot facility. The company says the growth will create at least 150 new jobs.
Council will also consider spending $150,000 in capital improvement program funds to improve utility lines at the site.
In this year’s mayoral race, High Tech owner Robert Hadley donated $5,000 to Mr. Finkbeiner’s re-election bid, finance reports show.
* Installing traffic signals outside Maumee Valley Country Day School at Glendale Avenue and a Wendy’s restaurant on Monroe Street near Talmadge Road.
* Receiving a $52,745 grant from the Ohio Supreme Court for the Mediation Institutionalization Project, whose purpose is to thin out court dockets by reaching settlements in lawsuits before they reach trial.
* A proposed settlement between Chrysler and the city on their liability in cleaning up three local landfills.
The agreement would dismiss Toledo’s lawsuit against the automaker over the cleanup of the Dura landfill, in exchange for a $750,000 payment. Chrysler would also take over all of the city’s cleanup responsibilities at the North Cove landfill at a cost to the city of $250,000. The city would also buy Chrysler’s property at the Stick ney landfill for $1 million.
The agreement is part of the city’s development agreement with Chrysler for the new Jeep plant.