Ward 14 City Club Debate

Submitted by lmcshane on Sat, 08/01/2009 - 18:59.
08/27/2009 - 11:00
08/27/2009 - 13:00
Etc/GMT-4

Henry Gomez today announced the date of the Cleveland City Club debate for Ward 14 and the mayoral debate.

It will be interesting to see, which generates more interest.  I would also like to see the Ward 8 candidates face off. 

Meanwhile, the City Club's website is down now.

Check back later for more details here.
http://www.cityclub.org

 

Location

850 Euclid Ave
Cleveland , OH 44114
United States
Phone: (216) 621-0082
( categories: )

Ward 14 Debate Questions...Request for Input from Real Neo

Let us share our top questions for all the candidates and come up with the top 10 or so...to submit to the City Club for the debate! 

1) How will the candidates spend the CDBG funds? 

2) What is their plan for their 4 year term?

3) Will they use our CDBG Funds in other CDC areas? 

It's only a 2 hour debate time with 7 candidates... by the time that they outline the specifics, share the public info and then start to finish...won't we be down to like ridiculously low amounts of time to allow answers from each candidate, let alone for more questions to follow from the public? 

How does this City Club Debate protocol normally work? 

Are we, the people, allowed to attend and ask questions?

Who will be the people asking the questions of the candidates? 

Please share any input that would make empower us through objective and realistic terms.

 

How it works

Open to the public.  I believe Norm said he could get free entry for someone representing realneo but be prepared to pay for parking.  Two people with microphones cover the room, taking questioners at random.  Chances of getting called on are iffy.  Usually the moderator is someone from NRP.  We could contact them with our issues since they also ask a few questions.  We might also ask City Club to lower ticket price (doubtful) so people in neighborhood could afford to attend. kd

City Club participation by our residents...Ward 14

Excellent... could someone call and proceed with asking about that and the possibility of getting parking waivers? I can list a bunch of folks who'd be interested in seeking their teeth into the candidates...and I know that they wouldn't miss this debate for the world! 

I am willing to make a list of questions, print out that list and pass it out to the residents who are interested in participating so that we are ahead of the game and working collectively to get our questions answered.... I think that would be outstanding! 

NRP moderator...should we speak up if we find that the moderator is biased with our resident questions before they are able to play underhanded politics on us? 

Thanks for the help! Let's get our residents active... I'll paint a sign on my wall and clean up the old one to notify our residents about the City Club Debate!!! Will it also be broadcast? Please forward all relevant details so that I can post it on the wall for our residents to see... particularly the ones who don't use computers!!! 

It's time to quit protecting these candidates...let's put them in the hot seat...and then let's hold them accountable? 

Council Debate this Thursday

  A lot of folks will be at work--but please make the effort to be at the debate this Thursday, if possible.  Send representatives.  The price is right--$10.00.  And you have to eat lunch, right!??  Any questions--call 216.621.0082. 

Support the City Club of Cleveland--one of the few open forums of its kind, preserving democracy in America.
 

Free Speach but to hear it you must pay $10

Sorry, but I don't think people should have to pay to hear what the candidates for council have to say.  Besides, I have already mailed in my ballot for the primary. 

And I don't spend $10 for lunch on my budget.  I hope those who do attend will post the highlights of the debate here.

opps, I meant to write

opps, I meant to write speech, not speach....I know how to spell.  lol

Edit your comment...

You can edit and fix your comment instead of posting an additional one.

podcasts

  The podcasts will be available :) 

Nothing in life is FREE--democracy does come with a price...we are lucky to have the citadel of free speech provided by the City Club.
 

Podcasts will be great. 

Podcasts will be great.  Could offering space be civic duty also? 

I think charging people is just a way to keep those who are on the bottom rung of our society out of the room.  And many Ward 14 residents are in that category according to the stats. 

But, this is just my opinion.  I could be wrong...it just doesn't sound right to me to charge residents to listen to the candidates for council express their views about how they plan to lead the ward.

(I have to leave now to attend a football game that my grandson is playing...and lucky for me senior citizens don't have to pay for it...so I guess something is FREE. 

 

free lunch

The City Club charges for its events, and they have invited the candidates to be part of this one.

I agree that the electorate might be better served if the candidates chose a closer and more affordable venue, though the City Club provides a good deal in terms of resources, publicity, profile, infrastructure, audience...

Who do you recommend foots the bill?  Maybe the candidates should use their campaign funds?

Would you like to go?

  I may have an extra ticket Jeff--call me at work.  I am going to bed now :)
 

Santiago could use his discretionary funds...

 he seems to have extra laying around.

it does appear to exclude those who can't afford - one to take off work and two $10 for lunch. it necessarily ensures a limited audience.

i understand some like a little pomp with their circumstance (even in these dire economic times) but maybe they could throw together a real public debate - in the evening without attendance fees.

free speech

the $10 really isn't for the debate. I will just listen on the radio or catch it later on wviz.  Maybe after the primary is over (can't come soon enough) there will be a debate in the ward itself. 

Let's go together

  Hey Angel--I am going to put in for some vacation time...let's go together.  I should know by Monday, if I am ok'd.  We can bring the little angel, too.  On me :) 
 

LMcShane...Sounds good..

Sounds good, I will look forward to meeting! I will talk to you soon! Have a fab day! 

 

Is Brian Cummins good for Ward 14?

Brian Cummins is characterized by the Plain Dealer as “pedantic.” The word usually describes a personal attitude toward others.

Let’s see how the dictionary defines “pedantic” and let’s see if Brain Cummins attitude will work with the residents of Ward 14.
 
First definition of “pedantic”:characterized by or given to pretentious or conspicuous show in an attempt to impress others. (Ward 14 residents don’t need that)
 
Second definition of “pedantic”: a person who adheres rigidly to book knowledge without regard to common sense.
(Ward 14 residents don’t need a councilman without common sense)
 
Sorry Cummins … The Plain Dealer and the Dictionary say you ARE NO GOOD FOR WARD 14.

brian cummings

what else did the article say? I am betting more words that "pedantic" were used. 

Cummings-Pedantic

That's a big handicap for someone who wants to be a councilman in one of the poorest areas of the City of Cleveland.

Not my Conscience

NOTE: if this NOT Consciencious is a real poster, as opposed to a malevolent alias, then please take my comments below  with a bit of salt.  The web site lmcshane has connected to for the user appears to be legit, and Latin, and I respect anyone who is bi-lingual or who is working in America with English as a second language. I wish I were multi lingual!

___________

Obviously you're not Ivy or Oxford English trained.  (they are expensive, I know)

 

Because you are showing what's missing in your deck.
 
Perhaps those who have had that Ivy and/or Oxford training could give you a little tip: "Pedantic" has a primary meaning of "teaching". 
 
If you object to a City Councilor who makes an effort to "teach", because teaching may seem arrogant to you,  then you should be running for office as the local  cognoscenti.
 
But then you couldn’t run for office anonymously, could you?  Lack of self confidence?
 
Or perhaps some other legacy record issue?
 
I know that  I learn a lot everyday from the most unusual interactions.   
 
I search out the pedantic.   Especially when I don’t have to pay tuition.
 
Best, jeffb

 

 

 

Hugo Urizar

  Jeff--don't make it personal.  "Your Conscience" is Hugo Urizar. He made no attempt to conceal his identity.  You can click on his profile.  Eternity, Quest etc. use screen names, but you can easily figure them out.  It seems he is a Moises Torres supporter, which he has every right to be, but I don't think he can actually vote in this election.  Also, it would be best if Moises Torres represented himself here...with all due respect, Mr. Urizar.  Thank you for joining REALNEO.
 

Another outsider who claims to speak for the minions of Hispanic

 

We should listen to the people who live in Ward 14 Cleveland. It is pretty clear that the So-called Hispanic leadership that do not live in Cleveand or Ward 14 are becoming desperate. I think it is clear who are the two front runners in this race. Cummins and Nagin. Two people who were willing to listen and not let ego get in the way.

Lets not let people from Chagrin Falls, Berea, Westlake or Bay Village influence Ward 14 voters. Ward 14 voters need to look at the records and platforms of the people running.

Thanks Lmcshane for pulling me back

Yes, lmcshane, you are right.  I got a little out ahead of myself - perhaps because of "Lost in Translation" issues.

I concur, Sr. Urizar, Gracias por venir a Realneo!

classical education

Then there is always Wikipedia (but be careful of accepting it hook, line, and whatever).

We really don't know if this guy is Hugo. His profile says that, but we really don't know for sure. 

 

I was not pretending to be your conscience

Jeff: My name is Hugo Urizar, I leave in Westlake, and I have made no attempt to conceal my identity.  Yes, I am supporting Moises Torres because I think he is the best candidate for Ward 14. He is honest, sincere, hard working and intelligent. He understands the issues affecting Ward 14, he was born there. He worked for the Mayor's Office of Equal Opportunity (City of Cleveland), and he understands the politic between City Hall-City Council. I believe that he can work with other councilmen to improve the conditions in Ward 14. Working with other councilmen is essential to achieve improvements in that ward. He is a team player. I will ask Moises to engage people on this forum. I was not pretending to be your conscience.

Welcome Moises Torres supporters

  Sr. Urizar, my apologies.  
Realneo is here to welcome all views, all participants,  in every discussion.  Without exception.
I went off half cocked – not recognizing who you are – a legit user – and that was a mistake (thanks Lmcshane for smartening me up).
May the best man win.
NB I am not a voter in Ward 14. But I am adamant in my desire to improve Cleveland. 
Please feel free to use this site with posts in Spanish - They will not be removed.  I spent some time in Argentina - so I could use a refresher!

Thank you/Gracias Jeff

Jeff: No tienes de qué disculparte. Tenemos el mismo objetivo, tratar de mejorar las condiciones de vida en Cleveland. No trato de demeritar a ningún candidato, solamente enfatizar en las diferencias que existen entre los candidatos en beneficio de las personas que necesitan de un liderazgo eficaz, como por ejemplo en Ward 14.

Gracias por dar la bienvenida a los que apoyamos a Moisés Torres.
Saludos,
Hugo Urizar

Please interpret

If you would be so kind, can you also give us this in Engish.  I took a few classes in Spanish but I have to admit I could not read what was written.  I don't learn new languages easily. 

For the record...I received a paper today at my home, El Sol, and there was an article about Moises Torres in it.  The paper was bilingual so I was able to read it. 

 

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Here is the translation

Ward14resident: Here is the translation of the above text:

Jeff: You have nothing to apologize about. We share the same objective, to try to improve the quality of life in Cleveland. I am not trying to discredit any of the candidates; I only want to emphasize their differences for the benefit of those groups of people that need real leadership, as in the case of Ward 14.

Thank you for welcoming Moises Torres Supporters.

Regards,

 

Thank you YourConscience. 

Thank you YourConscience.  Much appreciated.

handicaps

There are a lot of handicaps that all of the candidates are carrying and this is one that I can't see as being that big of a deal. But that is decision to make if you live in the ward.

What else did the article say about Cummings? 

handicap

If one cannot communicate effectively with people, that's a big handicap. 

Best Choice

....were some of the other words, Debbie.  Who do you s'pose YourConscience represents?  Kate

The Cleveland Portal

 "Your Conscience" appears to be based in Westlake.  Nonetheless, Brian Cummins (note: there is no "g" in his name) has to live with his conscience and so do the rest of the candidates in Ward 14. 

This ward is pivotal to the City of Cleveland, because it represents the portal, if you will between suburban/outside and monied/non-monied interests. Those interests use Ward 14 as their middle ground.

It is interesting to see that a local writer has characterized NEO in science fiction/fantasy terms.   See S. Andrew Swann's Dragons and Dwarves.  The reality is less so everyday.

Clark-Fulton Ward 14

 I am actually jealous.  Clark Metro aka Clark Fulton warrants a photo gallery at Urban Ohio --

No such luck for Brooklyn Centre.  Hey Jeff Sugalski! Can you help us out here :)

Interesting: the rumor mill item has Joe Cimperman appointed to some one's state senator seat...who would that be?

StateSenate Seat

Mike Skindell (spelling?)  My wild guess, without researching.  kd

I don't have the answer to

I don't have the answer to your question.  I don't even know where Brooklyn Centre ends and Clark Metro begins. What areas will be called Ward 14 with the redistricting?  How many separate areas will the councilperson have to represent? 

The photos were nice ones of the Clark Metro area.  But....I was wondering about the description of the area according to Urban Ohio; the area was described as being a Puerto Rican and other Hispanic area now, but no mention of the other nationalities that live here.  The area is more diverse than Urban Ohio's description of it. 

ward 14 question

The wards do no impact the "neighborhoods" designed artifically by the City. However, go to http://www.nhlink.net/spa/spa.htm and you may have some of your questions answered.

I live in the statistical planning area of Ohio City. Currently, 3 council reps  have a piece of OC: ward 13, 14, and 15 

Debbie

Thank you Debbie.  I took a

Thank you Debbie.  I took a look at the site you linked me to and I am now more than ever convinced that the councilperson who is elected to Ward 14 has a big job.  No wonder the wards needed to be reduced and redistricting was needed.  Too many people in charge of one Ward doesn't sound good to me.  No wonder nothing much is getting done in Ward 14.  Wouldn't it be better to have just one Community Development Center for the entire Ward?   And one strategic planning area for the entire ward? 

 

ward reduction

Ward14resident: a neighborhood is not a ward. A statistical planning area is not a ward (nor a neighborhood). I believe that the reduction in council was a big mistake, and spreads our representatives out even more. Take a look at Ciperman's current ward and wonder how does he even have time to eat?

We have one CDC per statiscal planning area (or did). Those are going to be consolidated in the near future as funding dries up and the census shows a decline in poplulation. I believe that a CDC and the ward council rep should be kept as far apart as possible. 

Ward 14 has gotten the royal shaft in how it was divided up. 

Debbie

Debbie, I really don't

Debbie, I really don't understand what constitutes a neighborhood and I have no clue what a statistical planning area is.  I am sure I am not the only one in the 'community' that doesn't know what all this means.  I used to think that redistricting and reducing the number of council members was not a good thing.  But, now I am having a change of mind.  Having a ward too divided into segments based on I don't know what, perhaps locality, may not be in the best interest of the entire community.  I know that the Clark Metro area has been lost in the process as I look around and see very little has been done over the years to make that area a better place to live.  I have heard it said that all the money went to the Tremont area and none to the Clark Metro area, except for perhaps the improvements on Clark Avenue, which used to be a very bad area when I first moved here.  But, what about the rest of the area between Clark Avenue and Denison Ave?  Why is that area so neglected? 

a statistical planning area

 is a subset of geographical region as recognized by the federal government.

there are several - for example - in Ohio City where some here live.

the statistical planning area is a defined by geography (somewhat population based) and effects funding from things as large as CDBG grants and as small Neighborhood Connection Grants - just two examples of how those numbers are used. 

 

 

clark.denison

 the clark-fulton-dension area has been long neglected. Even something as simple as trees on the cemented trees lawns on clark between fulton to w. 25th would make a huge difference in that area. There are still a number of small business people in the c/f/d area that sure good use a hand.

A CDC is not going to be able to make a huge difference in its self and the wards are going to only become geographically larger with both the redistricting now and again in a couple of years. Fewer council reps=larger areas= multiple neighborhoods. Because our city's population had declined, and is less dense, the wards have to be spread out to cover 25,000 per ward.

That is the result of the reduction of council, and we have to live with that.

debbie

The PLAN

  Thanks Kate--Mike Skindell--Democrat, who will be term limited..

I am so tired of being played on this game board...

So, is this the plan for Joe Cimperman ? He gets to appoint someone to Ward 13 and Skindell appoints him to his seat?  What about Brady? 

Moisés Torres

Moisés Torres running for Councilman Ward 14

Dear REALNEO bloggers:

Some of you have requested the participation of ALL the candidates running for Councilman in Ward 14. I have taken a few minutes from my busy schedule (after all we are 19 days to primary day) to write a few lines and respond to your requests. As you very well know time is of the essence. At this point in the race every minute counts! Thus I hope no one is utterly offended if this is my first and last blog. We have a site where you can contact my executive assistant Ángeles, my wife Marilyn or me; and we will respond within a 48 hrs period. I thank all those interested in our campaign and look forward to meeting you, especially if you are a Ward 14 resident. I have enclosed some of the focal points of my campaign and provided additional information (links) where to get familiarized with who I am and what I stand for. Once again thank you for your interest.   

Moisés

Employment

Lack of jobs Ward 14 lost many businesses such as Epco Sales and Kenco Product on Sackett Ave. that employed residents of Ward 14 for many years. We must look for creative ways to attract new and retain businesses in Ward 14. We must use our natural resources such as our water and wind to generate electricity to entice employers to return to Cleveland and Ward 14. I will push for these kinds of employment initiative and will work closely with Council and the Mayor to create new businesses and support local businesses. Training services are critical for residents of Ward 14. I will look for ways to improve access for residents to access new and existing programs. I will aggressively fight for jobs for our residents.

Safety

Safety  is a problem in Ward 14. We must work alongside our police by being the eyes and ears and take action without fear of retaliation. Residents of Ward 14 must take our streets back and work together to combat the crime problem. I have two ideas how to address this. First, support block clubs and crime watch programs by seeking grants to support the efforts of the auxiliary police. Secondly, establish a video surveillance program in our business district. Most crime occurs when no one is watching. Crime can be reduced by putting people to work and creating a opportunities for home ownership.

Housing

Ward 14 has a housing stock that can pave a path toward creating a sense of community unity. Houses and buildings that are nuisances must be abated. I propose that empty lots be made available to the adjoining property owner. I will work to create community gardens. Banks that have foreclosed properties must immediately remedy property violations. I plan to propose a program that purchases vacant or foreclosed homes and renovate them using the workforce from Ward 14. The home will then be sold to a resident of Ward 14.

Education

Education, training and skills is another challenge. The high school drop-out rate among Hispanics must be addressed. I will work with local groups and schools to engage parents and encourage them to participate in their children's live and education. I believe that education starts at home. I will encourage the creation of hobby centers and computer centers. I will collaborate to establish recreation opportunities for youths. I will meet with the Boys and Girls Scouts of America to begin new troops within Ward 14.

The links are:


Moises Torres - Thank you for your post

As a Ward 14 resident I am very carefully looking at the qualifications of the candidates for council in Ward 14. 

I appreciate that Moises Torres took time to post on this site. 

My biggest question to all the candidates is why, besdes the nice paycheck, do you want to take on the challenge of being the councilperson for Ward 14?  What, besides the money, motivates you to work with the people who reside in this area?

Mr. Torres communicates

Thanks for jumping in here on Realneo.  

Your public platform is appreciated.

Good Luck,

Jeffb

moises torres

I am glad that you came on and shared your platform and pointed us to you interview  at:

http://www.elsoldecleveland.com/news.php?

The last answer that you gave in the printed interview, though, does give me pause. This is the answer you gave:

"MT - I am a conservative Democrat. We should teach people to fish so that they can eat tomorrow. Government should serve the people. All Americans have the right to pursue freedom and happiness. . I am running as an independent."

 

Debbie

mosies torres

 conservative Democrat, running as an independent.

It looks like you are running in the primary as a Democrat. 

I have to say, that to me, a conservative Democrat, running in a majority Democrat city and county, is really a Republican, who if he wants a chance to ever win an office, must declare himself a Democrat.

Staffing at CDCs

As an example, take a look at the number of people employed at Detroit Shoreway Development Corporation.  Conservatively, the total salaries for these folks amount to at least one million dollars.  Now consider the number of CDCs operating in the City of Cleveland--see http://cndc2.org, when it is actually working...there are 49+ CDCs in Cleveland. 
 

staffing at cdc

I don't kow if DSCDC is an example of the norm. They also provide some services to Ohio City that OCNW doesn't do.  

Privitized Government with no record access

Imcshane,   49 CDC's are operating, disbursing millions of our tax dollars, without any ability to obtain reocords or democractically influence any one of them - our purported democracy is a sham.

The City Council has abdicated - and no one cares.

As I wrote earlier this week on realneo, the only task that the Council performs is to sign away on the public's tax money.  The 50 year long AMPOHIO coal contract is one perfect example. 

And the Cleveland Foundation is in bed with them.  Big Time.

Is it the new expression of racism?

Pathetic.

regardless of

regardless of the number of CDC's in the City, we can all think of ones that have outlived any purpose that they may have had and it is clear that CDC's serve the agendas established by the corporate powers that be. The Boards are top heavy with business people and residents are there only to feel slots dictated by by-laws.

The Cleveland Foundation has never been anything other than serving the corporate interest. The small grant from Neighborhood Connections is to pacify the "people". I would think of it as "guilt money" but that would imply a conscious.  The amounts of money are so small that they can not really impact much, the impact is really the residents working together, and the funding too often goes through the CDC's. The CDC's can, and do, hold up the funds or spend them in ways that the funds were not designated.  

City council has been a rubber stamp for the administration for so long that I can not even remember it being different then it is now. I think that they no longer even pretend to be a independently elected body separate from the mayor's office. Can you, or anyone, remember when Cleveland City Council originated, as in it came from council and not the administration, any legislation of significance that made a difference in the City? One that stopped the give aways to the already rich? One that said to people who want to move into the city, welcome, join us, but you will pay property taxes? One that took on the Cleveland Clinic as a tax exempt non-profit and said we will challenge that status in court if you don't step up to the plate and give care to the low-income residents of the City? 

 

staffing at CDC's

could the http://cndc2.org site be any slower? Spare me, please, and tell me how you came up with 49+ CDC's? I am curious because there are not that many "neighborhoods" in the City, and not all CDC's are in operation. I tried the CNDC site but gave up. 

Last time I checked 49...give or take a few

  The CNDC site is up and running (if you can call it that) and now I see 44...copied here for future reference.  Colleen Gilson, formerly of Tremont West Development Corp. runs the big umbrella group...NEO loves umbrella groups see NPI/LISC/CHN/United Way etc...CNDC members, are groups, I presume, that receive CDBG funds to some extent and are listed as:
 

Bitmap
 
Bellaire Puritas Development Corp
Buckeye Area Development Corporation
Burten, Bell, Carr Development Corporation
Clark-Metro Development Corp.
Cleveland Habitat for Humanity
Cleveland Housing Network
Collinwood & Nottingham Villages
Community Housing Solutions 
Consortium for Economic and Com. Dev.
Cudell Improvement, Inc.
Cuyahoga Community Land Trust, Inc.
Detroit Shoreway Community Dev. Corp.
Downtown Cleveland Alliance
Eden,Inc.
Euclid St. Clair Dev. Corp.
Fairfax Renaissance Dev. Corp.
Famicos Foundation
Flats Oxbow Assoc.
Glenville Dev. Corp.
Historic Gateway Neighborhood Corp.
Historic Warehouse District Dev.
Kamm's Corners Dev. Corp.
Little Italy Redevelopment Corp.
Living In Cleveland Center
Maingate Business Development
Maximum Accessible Housing of Ohio 
Midtown Cleveland, Incorporated
Mt. Pleasant NOW Development Corp.
Neighborhood Housing Services
Northeast Shores Development Corp.
Ohio City Near West Dev. Corp.
Old Brooklyn Comm. Dev. Corp.
The Quadrangle, Inc.
Shaker Square Area Dev. Corp.
Shorebank Enterprise Group
Slavic Village Development
St. Clair Superior Neighborhood Dev. Assn.
Stockyard Redevelopment Org.
Tremont West Dev. Corp.
Union-Miles Dev. Organization
University Circle, Incorporated
Westown Comm. Dev. Corp.
WIRE-Net
W.E.C.O Fund, Inc.

Cleveland State University also has a listing that names 30...or so..

Regardless, the confusion is intentional and public dollars are squandered.  The City of Cleveland's Community Development department has abdicated our funds and our rights away and we have no recourse against these quasi-public groups by design.

49 or so.

 some of these are not cdc's, such as habitat for humanity, the land trust, etc.

on another site, I found 27, with not all in operation. I think that it is likely that the cndc list is a list of members, not cdc's.

of course, if the cndc site worked better, and faster, it would help. 

CNDC Voting Members

Yes, that [49] is the the list of CNDC Voting Members.

They have a page describing membership qualifications/requirements.

I find that these

I find that these organizations are nothing short of legalized organized crime.

Do you want CDCs?

  DWebb, my point would be the system is broken...Do you have accountability, services provided?  I just want my streets fixed, sewers cleaned, bridges built and maintained. Services the City of Cleveland used to provide.  Now, we milk the poor for everything.  It's killing us.
 

 

Do you want CDCs?

 McShane, I am not the enemy. My point is do we have any accurate account of the number of cdc's? No, we do not. And they are not going away. there will be fewer. and the poor will continue to get milked. 

streets, sewers, bridges......Rumor has it that the budget deficit in Cleveland is higher than Jackson is letting on, and that a while after the election, Jackson will announce a series of layoffs.

"Green" Machine

  I hope that this debate will be a BS-free zone today.  We have enough air pollution in NEO.