To the Editor - The Press

Mayor’s Column for September 7, 2016

We are pleased and proud that the Ford Ohio Assembly Plant has continued its expansion of production of trucks in the plant that straddles Avon Lake, Sheffield Village and Sheffield Lake. Last August, the production of the F-650 and F-750 trucks began with a great deal of fanfare, as it increased the number of employees at the plant to 1,400. Two weeks ago, the production of the F-350, F-450 and F-550 trucks officially began with a smaller ceremony that included plant officials, union leaders, employees and a few elected officials. We were pleased to learn that Ford has added an additional 300 employees. We appreciate the positive relationship with Ford officials and the United Auto Workers, and we are committed to providing a positive environment for businesses to expand in Avon Lake.

Unfortunately, on the down side of an ever-changing economy, OptumRX formerly known as Catamaran, announced it was eliminating 115 positions at its facility on Walker Road. The company was recently purchased by UnitedHealth and the mechanics of the merger caused the loss of jobs. We don’t know what the future will bring at the location under the new name but we are hoping that more jobs will be created. This is no consolation for the hardworking employees who have been caught up in the flux of the market. We regret the loss of jobs for people in our area.

The residents and business owners in our community are very caring and generous. Their acts of kindness were demonstrated once again this year by supporting the city’s annual Americans with Disabilities Picnic which was held on August 14th at the American Legion Hall. Our ADA coordinator Tom Carleton, Liz Carey, Anne Heczko and other members of the building department once again organized the event and solicited donations for those in attendance. You can find a list of donors and other helpers in the August 24th edition of The Press. We salute them all for their generosity and community spirit.

We hope you enjoyed the concert series this year and welcome your input. Five concerts were held on Sunday evenings throughout the summer at Miller Road Park. An estimated 500 people enjoyed the final concert of the summer performed by Revolution Pie, a Beatles tribute band. Concerts on the shores of beautiful Lake Erie, another example of why life is better on the lake! Revolution Pie will be back next year as the recreation department is planning a special June event with a classic car show and more.

Despite the gloomy weather forecast all day and eventually a heavy rainfall, the Avon Lake WaterFest was an enjoyable and educational experience. The staff from Ohio State’s Stone Laboratory educated us about snakes and their habitat. Those who were brave had a snake draped around their shoulders during the demonstration! In addition, the Lorain County Metro Parks enthralled children and adults with a session about raptors and then brought out an owl bearing large talons and a sharp beak. It was both beautiful and a bit frightening. Thank you to Elana West (Avon Lake Regional Water), the Parks and Recreation Department, and the Public Works Department for all their hard work in making this a memorable event.

Enjoy the last remaining days of summer!

Upcoming events:

Love a Stray Big Splash Dog Swim on September 10 at the Ellen Trivanovich Aquatic Center:  Noon-5:00 pm

Big Trucks on September 17th at the Safety Center: 10:00 am–2:00 pm

Homecoming weekend October 7 – 9th

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