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Issues Rundown: Cuyahoga County voters pass Issue 6 for sheriff charter change; Cleveland Heights to elect mayor starting in 2021

Voters also passed Issue 3 to fund Cuyahoga Community College, while Issues 20-22 in the city of Cleveland were also approved.

CLEVELAND — Voters in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County decisively passed several key issues on Tuesday that will provide transparency to several areas of local and county government. You can see full Election 2019 results here. 

Cuyahoga County Issue 6

There will be changes as to how Cuyahoga County selects its sheriff, how that person will be able to appoint their staff, including at the jail, and procedures by which the sheriff can be removed after Issue 6 was overwhelmingly approved by voters, 75%-25%.

Cuyahoga County Council will now confirm the county executive's appointment to sheriff. The sheriff will also will have redefined powers and duties, including the ability to appoint staff at the Cuyahoga County Jail. The sheriff cannot be removed without the approval of at least eight of the 11 members of county council. 

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Cuyahoga County Community College Issue 3

Voters in Cuyahoga County also approved a property tax renewal and increase to fund Cuyahoga Community College District. The increase of 0.4 mill would raise the rate from 19 to 23 cents for every $100 of assessed property value. The tax increase would go into effect in 2020 and expire 10 years later.

RELATED: Willoughby-Eastlake, Euclid, Chardon, North Ridgeville among school levies that were defeated in Election 2019

Cleveland Issues 20-22

If you want to run for a political office in Cleveland, you must now be an elector in Cleveland for a minimum of 12 months, must file nominating petitions at least 90 days before the primary election and must use standard forms of the Secretary of State, after Issue 20 passed by a 76%-24% margin.

The rules for appointing or promoting a member of the Cleveland city administration will be changing with the passage of Issue 22. It lays out specific language "relative to classification, assessment, eligibility, and/or rejection of candidates for appointments and/or promotions in the classified service of the city." Issue 22 passed by a 77%-23% majority. 

Cleveland Heights Issue 26

For the first time in more than a century, the city of Cleveland Heights will elect a mayor to lead its residents. Voters passed Issue 26 by a 64%-36% margin, calling for the first election of a mayor to a four-year term in Cleveland Heights to be held in 2021. Issue 26 also creates the position of the City Administrator, appointed by the mayor and subject to council approval, "who shall be responsible for assisting the Mayor in overseeing the administrative functions of the City."

Previously, a part-time mayor and city manager were appointed by Cleveland Heights City Council. 

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Outside of Cuyahoga County

In Amherst, Issue 20 was narrowly defeated by voters. The measure called for the decriminalization of misdemeanor marijuana penalties, reducing them to $0 in a new city ordinance. Late last week, the Amherst Police Department came out against the ordinance on Facebook, saying it "simply does not make sense."

The unofficial final tally of the vote was 1304 against to 1194 for the issue.

In Lake County, Issue 2 was approved by a 58%-42% threshold. It calls for a one-quarter of 1 percent sales tax levy to sustain Laketran’s door-to-door Dial-a-Ride service and improve transit services to key job corridors.

“We are humbled and grateful by the enormous support our community gave to this issue,” said Ben Capelle, Laketran CEO said in a statement. “We work hard to earn the trust of our community in both our service delivery and use of the taxpayers’ dollars and with these new funds we will be able to meet the growing needs of our residents and businesses here in Lake County.”

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