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Cleveland, OH

Community Forum of Citizens, Students and Policymakers in Cleveland, Ohio Ignites Debate About Regional Collaboration And State Legislation

Ohio House Speaker Promises to Look Into Merits of New Growth Tax Sharing

A standing-room only audience of citizens, public officials, and scholars attended the public forum "Regional Prosperity for Northeast Ohio: Growing Together" to talk about the region's future prosperity. Filmmaker Andrea Torrice opened the forum with clips from her movie The New Metropolis to launch the discussion. The forum was then followed by a panel of mayors who described the dire conditions of their communities and the need for tax structure reform, strategies for regional cooperation and strengthening city-suburban ties.

After the panel, citizens in the audience discussed with public officials in a round table setting a series of questions, focusing on regional collaboration already in place, what collaboration would be needed, and the role that tax revenue growth sharing could play in revitalizing the region. 

Newly elected Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives, William G. Batchelder then listened to the audience's suggestions on strategies for the prospects of regional collaboration and engaged in a vibrant exchange of ideas.

Batchelder, who often is on the other side of the issue, conceded that the dire state of Ohio's governments required the consideration of new strategies for collaboration, including tax revenue sharing. He invited members of the Northeast Ohio First Suburbs Alliance to bring him study their proposal and to immediately begin addressing legal issues currently hindering regional collaboration. 

The forum was sponsored by The Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University, together with Ideastream, the Civic Commons, Northeast Ohio First Suburbs Consortium, Torrice Productions, Greater Ohio, the Center for Community Solutions and the Regional Prosperity Initiative. 

Growing Together was held in tandem with the public television broadcasts of The New Metropolis in the Cleveland region. It is also part of a national series of The New Metropolis civic engagement dialogues now taking place across the country. 

To watch video excerpts of the forum, please view the video in the right sidebar.


  • Mayor Michael Lyons, Richfield, Ohio – Overview of Regional Prosperity Initiative and focus of 2011 priorities
  • Lavea Brachman, Executive Director, Greater Ohio Policy Center & Non-Resident Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program – State policy recommendations, incentives and barriers
  • Gary Norton, Mayor of East Cleveland – An inner-ring suburb’s perspective
  • Steve Hambley, Medina County Commissioner – A developing County’s perspective
  • Jason Segedy, Director of Akron Metropolitan Area Transportation Study (AMATS)
  • Dan Moulthrop, Civic Commons – Moderator
  • William G. Batchelder, Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives

This forum was part of The New Metropolis national civic engagement dialogue series on revitalizing America’s older communities. It was made possible through the generous support of the Ford and Surdna Foundations.

Educator’s Workshop held by WVIZ/Ideastream
in Cleveland, February 17th, 2011

Twenty-four educators and members of community groups came together at Cleveland’s PBS affiliate WVIZ/Ideastream in Cleveland, OH, to learn how to use The New Metropolis series to support their curriculums and activities in their communities and educational settings.

A wide range of organizations attended the workshop, including the region’s schools, universities, libraries, and community groups like FutureHeights, YWCA, the Cleveland Leadership Center, the Northeast Ohio Alliance for Hope, and Facing History and Ourselves.

Said one participant: “These films are a great and very useful. I will use them as a tool in the community and as a catalyst for conversation, and eventually to develop a campaign with other groups that addresses public policy.”

During the 3-hour workshop attendees developed and shared strategies to incorporate the film into their activities. Filmmaker Andrea Torrice answered participants’ questions via video conferencing. Jennifer Schwelik of WVIZ/Ideastream facilitated the workshop.

The workshop produced a number of concrete plans for community and classroom screenings. Participants shared their views and ideas with each other and recognized the benefits of coordinating their various efforts in the future. At the request of the group, WVIZ’s Jennifer Schwelik posted the discussion notes online for all participants to edit and use as a starting point for networking and collaboration.

Featured prominently was the newly released Educator’s Guide⁠, which was created in cooperation with WVIZ/Ideastream and Torrice Productions. Participants also had the opportunity to purchase discounted DVDs of The New Metropolis.

Download the Educator's Guide as a PDF...

Cleveland Archives

February 2011
January 2011

Video Excerpts from Cleveland

Photos from the Cleveland Forum

Broadcast Schedule

The New Metropolis on WVIZ/Ideastream,
Public Television Channel 25

Cleveland, Ohio

Episode 1: A Crack in the Pavement
Sunday, January 23, 4 pm
Friday, January 28, 10:30 pm

Episode 2: The New Neighbors
Sunday, January 30, 4 pm
Friday, February 4, 10:30 pm

Website Resources

Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs
Cleveland State University
The Civic Commons
Northeast Ohio First Suburbs Consortium
Torrice Productions
Greater Ohio

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