To the Editor - The Press

Mayor’s Column for December 21, 2016

December is a time for reflection of what has transpired in the past 12 months. Avon Lake has experienced a solid year financially as the increase in the number of employees at the Ford Ohio Assembly Plant grew to over 1,800 as a result of additional product lines being manufactured at the plant, which straddles Avon Lake, Sheffield Lake and Sheffield Village. On a smaller scale, the popular food truck Krav, has opened a restaurant on Walker Road next to Dairy Queen. Krav Street Food features innovative Mediterranean cuisine with Latin and Korean accents. Fluid Mechanics, a subsidiary of Rolls Royce, is leasing a portion of the former Danco building on Moore Road. They service fuel injection systems for large boats with 25 employees currently working at the plant. In addition, several other businesses have expressed interest in Avon Lake. More information will be released when it becomes available.

While many businesses in the community experienced steady growth this past year, there was one notable loss. Earlier this year Catamaran was acquired by OptumRx (a member of UnitedHealth Group). While we were optimistic they would continue operations as usual, they chose to close the facility after only a short time. We are currently pursuing several leads and we are confident the space will be occupied again in the near future.

As mayor, I am grateful for the many residents who are generous with their time by responding to the needs of others through various organizations such as Smiles for Sophie, Prayers from Maria, and Camp Imagine just to name a few. Thank you also to those who support our local social services agency, CRS, which offers assistance in times of financial and social distress.

Volunteers make a huge difference to those in need and strengthen our community in countless ways.

Recently ASSIST Communities held a countywide holiday drive to collect and distribute personal care items for residents of recovery centers in Lorain County. The objective of the drive was to help give residents back a piece of their dignity as they walk the difficult road to recovery from alcohol and opiate addiction. Thank you to all who contributed to this successful event. We are proud of the work of ASSIST and its members, especially residents Jim Coyne, Lisa Goodwin, Marne Butler and Jim Schaeper, who have assumed this enormous task.

I am pleased to report that in November, the City of Avon Lake approved Issue 35 by 600 votes. Ultimately, Issue 35 failed countywide, but Avon Lake and Oberlin were the two communities that supported the five year levy that would have provided education and support for those families and individuals in need of recovery services. The affirmative vote in our city is evidence that our efforts over the past three years have been effective in recognizing the struggle many continue to face.

Have a joyous holiday season and a prosperous new year!

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