Copping an Attitude

Letters published July 20-26,2000

What Lies Beneath Dreamworks
Live -- and learn -- in the city you serve: The nerve of all these city employees -- who knew the law when they applied for the police department, water department, and fire department -- forming a movement to live outside of Cleveland ["Cop Land No More?", July 6]. Like Mike Polensek said, If you feel it's a detriment working for the city -- you can leave.

Because all these city workers want it both ways -- to keep their wonderful jobs and pensions, but not live here -- they actually want us residents and homeowners to change the law to suit them and instantly take a huge financial hit to our real estate and tax base? (Mike Dolan said it nicer.) I don't think so!

The housing and school situation would have never gotten to the stage it's in if the residency rule hadn't been dropped for a few years in the 1970s in the first place. This coalition movement definitely illustrates that they really don't give a damn about Cleveland; they just want to take the money and run. Voters, though, have already decided they need to stay here and make it better.

Sam DeVito gave up his basic right to decide where to live when he became a Cleveland firefighter. And he made that choice freely.

The glaring question is, why are so many city employees who came on since 1982 already breaking the law and living outside Cleveland and getting away with it? Get their kids' school records, and you'll know where they really live. Kudos to Mike Tobin for such a revealing article.
Name withheld upon request

We're Americans first, Clevelanders second: Thank you for your attention to the residency issue in "Cop Land No More?" In response to councilmen Dolan and Polensek, the fundamental issue with regard to residency is an individual's basic human rights. We want the freedom to choose where we reside and raise our families. This country is based upon the freedom to choose. We recognize that the charter amendment from 1982 mandates that we reside in the city limits of Cleveland. However, our rights as United States citizens should supersede that regulation. One would hope that the councilmen would want the best employees for the city and its constituents -- not just the ones who feel they have "a ball and chain."

Sam DeVito

ClevelandA little manual labor never killed anybody: Regarding the story about Linda Thompson's efforts to keep the city's juvies off the poisoned land at East 93rd and Quincy ["NIMBY, NIMBY, NIMBY," June 29], here's what I have to say:

Hey! There's a great, vacant building right on the west side of a great, healthy garden -- right there along the Euclid Corridor. Showcase possibilities, in this great city, a-shinin' by the lake. Secure the building against unwanted egress, fit it out as a temporary camp, contract with the trade unions to work with the kids rehabbing the place, teach 'em something to take with 'em when they hit the streets -- 'stead of the same old bad habits.

Contract with Botanical Gardens and Extension Service to teach 'em edible landscaping and CSA (community supported agriculture). Help 'em build a brighter day, come what may.
Hayes Rowan

Save the wails, one family member says: A lot of people seem to think that the Prevo family think themselves better than others ["Hough Huff," June 29]. As a member of the family, here is my response:

My family has always been a hard-working family. We have had our trials and tribulations; what family hasn't? The difference is this family does not wallow in our setbacks. For some people, such as Kenneth Phillips, I say, pull your head out of your anus, clear the excrement from your eyes, and look around. In professional capacities, a large number of my family are in civil or government service.

As divisive as this issue seems to be, there are two things that the residents of Redell should remember: The first is that my family did not go out seeking this. This is something that was presented to our family and is an idea we support. It is an honor we feel our loved ones deserve. We support this as much as our family has always supported this community.

The second point is this: Ms. Putre reports that the esteemed Fannie Lewis has told my family one thing and the street club of Redell the exact opposite. I have little, if any, use for politicians. Why I am not surprised at Ms. Lewis's actions should be obvious: She is playing with the emotions of my family and her constituents. Ms. Lewis should be doubly ashamed and embarrassed at her actions.

The "mob" hasn't moved in. The Prevo family has been here for over 45 years. We truly have tried to make our corner of the world a better place. I'm sorry if the rest of the residents of Redell want to fight over this. I have no time for that.
Anthony C. Prevo Jr.
East Cleveland

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