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Sam Allard

Scene’s owner begs readers for subscriptions of up to $500 a year while completely distorting its founding history under Rich Kabat

CLEVELAND, OH – Nothing could be further from the truth that “since its founding in 1970, the Cleveland Scene has been dedicated to providing fearless, high-quality local journalism, especially in times of crisis.”  That’s the first sentence in the weekly publication’s request for subscription support from its readers.

The first sentence in this description of Scene’s history is a complete lie. Scene has not been dedicated to providing fearless, high-quality journalism since Rich Kabat started publishing it in 1970.

This is what happens when publishers like Andrew Zelman don’t appreciate the history of a business someone else started that they purchased.  Scene employs the only writer, Sam Allard, who has ever fabricated words I didn’t say at a Cleveland mayoral debate in 2017 and assigned them to me as a direct quote in the story he wrote afterwards.  It’s also the only publication to create a MySpace page using my picture and a derogatory biography one of its reporters created then quoted from as if it was mine.

Had Zelman’s editorial writers bothered to research a February 24, 2014 story Michael Roberts wrote about Kabat for Cleveland Magazine they would have found the following words.

In 1970 in Cleveland, a former service station owner named Rich Kabat started Scene, a weekly paper devoted to rock music, fledgling clubs, the sexual revolution and aging hippies. Kabat is a smart man who preferred good cash flow to good journalism. I remember arguing the merits of truth, justice and the First Amendment with him in shabby Ontario Street bars. He would remind me that those were thoughtful considerations, but they couldn’t pay for the beer.

The truth would have even been told about the origins of Kabat’s newspaper had the writer who shared the lie visited Scene’s archives and read an interview one its former writers, Eric Burnett, did with its founder as published on June 29, 2005.  During the interview Kabat said he didn’t “often” read the newspaper he founded anymore.  Below are Rich’s words in praise of his decision to make Jim Girard his editor.

“He was the first person that wanted to write about what our audience wanted to read about,” Kabat says. Burnett added that “as a bonus, rock clubs, concert promoters, and record labels suddenly were throwing cash at the paper. Boone’s Farm, the wonderfully cheap elixir of the era, signed on to run full-page ads. It was the best of all possible worlds.”

Kabat started publishing Cleveland Scene magazine in 1970 while I was still attending Shaw High School.  I published my first newspaper at the age of 26 in December 1979 after Kabat had been in business for 9 years.  Six months after I first published Clique another newspaper publisher hit the market.  Ulyssess Glenn and his partner attorney James Hardiman.  They published Ascensions.  It’s today East Side News.

Scene’s 1st edition in 1970. It wasn’t founded to deliver “high quality journalism” in a “crisis.” LOL.

Prior to publishing Clique I was hired by Call & Post Publisher & Editor William Otis Walker in 1978 to work in his production department.   That experience connected me to publishers like Lee Batdorf and Cindy Barber who operated the Express in Cleveland Heights off Coventry.  Cindy later edited Free Times. Charles Huffman published the Community News.  The Call & Post printed their newspapers and those for other publishers.  Madelyn Blunt was the publisher of Clubdate magazine.  For some of my readers this is “memory lane.”

I joined the Cleveland Press as a reporter in 1981 after deciding I wanted to go inside a daily newspaper to learn its operation.  I returned to publishing when I created The Urban News in 1983 for the Council of Economic Opportunities of Greater Cleveland while Lem Roberson served as the board’s director.

Cleveland had three dailies with the Plain Dealer, Cleveland Press and Daily Legal News when I entered the newspaper publishing competition in 1979. Literally every suburb had its own weekly or biweekly newspaper.  The Plain Dealer or Advance Communications back then did not own the Sun Newspapers.

Cleveland in the 1970’s was still relatively stable with a population of around 700,000.  We were living in the remnants of segregation which meant the neighborhoods, businesses and institutions were broken up along balkanized ethnic lines.  Busing to segregate the city’s schools began in 1977.  This place is more Eastern European than most and “balkanization” is a “don’t come into our neighborhood” concept embedded in Eastern European culture.

Kabat’s Scene was in competition with a lot of other publishers so he carved out a Rock n’ Roll or entertainment niche that worked for him and paid his bills.  We talked when our paths crossed.  Back then publishers were always in the streets either selling advertising or finding new stores to carry our newspapers.  Promoting newspapers back then was like campaigning for a political office.

Kabat stayed out of the “news” business unless it was related to entertainment; and focused on selling advertisements to a cadre of Caucasian ethnic owners of bars restaurants, nite clubs, record stores, gentlemen’s clubs and adult book stores.  Scene promoted bands, shows, movies, plays, concerts,  music, theater, radio, television, dining and escorts.  His “stories” promoted the ventures of his advertisers. It got and kept him “paid.”

Kabat, as I recall, published weekly full page ads for Recordland and Record Revolution.  I think he also had Record Rendezvous and Record Exchange as advertisers.

Kabat largely stayed out of the affairs of Cleveland’s American Negro community except to distribute Scene in stores that would send potential customers to his advertisers.   No one on Kabat’s small 20 person editorial, sales and distribution team was American Negro and it was okay.  The Call & Post employed 110 American Negroes across the state, no Caucasians; and had accumulated the majority of advertising targeted towards our community under Mr. Walker as publisher.

When Scene did appear in stores owned by American Negroes and non-advertisers who were competing with his advertisers, the owners were asked by publishers  like me if they wanted their customers reading that one of their competitors was undercutting their prices.  Copies of Scene would go in the trash or be returned; and distributors told not to return.

Charles E. Bibb, Sr. owned record stores in East Cleveland and was my first advertiser in 1979.  When give a choice of distributing 100 copies of Clique with his ad in it or 100 copies of Scene with his competitors’ ads in it which newspaper do you think was on his counter?

Kabat’s paper did not feature any significant presence of American Negro advertisers or artists whose interests conflicted with his Rock n’ Roll audience.  And when we “crossed the color line” to enter some of the nite clubs he promoted I remember American Negro men being told we had to show a driver’s license and a major credit card to enter.  Newspapers then were geared along ethnic lines.  Occasionally he covered American Negro artists like the O’Jays, but the majority of Scene’s editorial coverage was about Caucasian Rock n’ Roll acts and music.

Even got Rich Kabat’s story right that Scene’s focus when he founded it was on entertainment and not “high quality journalism, especially in times of crisis.”  Kabat is in the man in the middle.

Kabat kept his newspaper out of politics which largely explains why people like me with long memories are still pissed off about the newspaper’s editorial distortions after he sold it in 1998.  I hated the “Hit man for hire” story its last owner let Erick Trickey write about me in 2001.   Allard redeemed the newspaper with the glowing piece he wrote about my published EJBNEWS.  He should stay away from tweeting.  Ken Johnson’s federal indictment doesn’t make Mark Naymik “right” if it contains the lie that Cleveland city council’s $1200 monthly expense account is paid with funds from the United States Department of Housing & Urban Development.

Like Kabat said in 2005 when he was interviewed by a Scene writer and told him I don’t “often” read Scene.  I don’t either.  I know about the subscription request because someone sent me a link to an article and it popped up.  I shook my head at the first sentence and wondered if Zelman’s writers ever do any homework.

I don’t know Zelman.  I didn’t know he owned Scene until I searched for the owner’s name.  When I looked him up I saw the WAGS video and observed that Scene was given an award at an event he judged that dealt with finding homes for dogs needing adoption.

I know now why Scene is begging for paid subscribers.  Zelman is into dogs and Kabat was into making money off entertainment.  Kabat was interested in making friends.  Zelman’s editorial focus has to been to piss people off with “fearless, high-quality local journalism, especially in times of crisis.”

Every word written by Scene’s Sam Allard about my Cleveland mayoral debate presentation at the Lee Harvard Community Services Center in 2017 was crap he made up. Instead of printing a “correction” he made the adjustment after I got in his azz, publicly, with an “author’s note.” Instead of simply repeating what I’d said verbatim, Allard offered his worthless opinion. Rich Kabat took ads from politicians. He didn’t offer commentary about their races. Scene under Andrew Zelman creates lies about politicians who have chosen not to advertise. Now he’s begging readers for “subscription” money for a “free” newspaper that was built to earn money off advertising.  I should have sued their asses for defamation and took a quick $25,000 out of Zelman’s pockets and made him spend money for Allard’s lies.

If Kabat was still publishing Scene I’d probably be writing about his success in keeping the newspaper alive for the last 51 years. I respected his commitment to his mission.  He also would have known better than to piss me off by writing some lying azzed shit about me.  Now Zelman’s publication is lying about its founder’s reason for publishing.

I knew a Lou Zelman who once worked for MCA records.  I wonder if the two Zelman’s are related. I asked Lou for a job promoting records.  He declined and I thanked him.  It was in his office at 17th and Superior that I made the commitment to stick with news.

We ran into each other at a Spyro Gyra concert a year later when I was publishing Clique.  I was covering recording artists but not his. Donna Summers was on my first cover.  The Dazz Band and Narada Michael Walden were on my third.  Kabat’s Scene wasn’t into Chique, Roy Ayers, Tyrone Davis, Robert Lockwood, Jr. or the Delltones.  I was.

Kabat had his niche and I had mine.  Peaceful co-existence.

Basheer Jones didn’t fight for his rights when he was arrested by East Cleveland cops in 2019 for handling a semi-automatic weapon

CLEVELAND, OH – An elected “law maker” who is too afraid to fight for his own Constitutional and legal rights is not going to fight for anyone else’s.  It’s especially true for a politician with a lot of undercover shit to hide.

Basheer Jones was arrested by East Cleveland police on April 19, 2019.  Time.  11:07.  a.m.

The citation code is a 5294.  Improperly handling firearm in a motor vehicle.  The narrative describes the Cleveland councilman as a “suspect” of something who was found to have a loaded firearm.  It defeats the purpose of having a firearm to travel with an unloaded one.

Right off the “rip” I have a problem with the “narrative.”  No probable cause.  I also know John E. Hartman and Michael Woodside were impersonating law enforcement officers as the city’s former mayor.

Their Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy credentials are fraudulent. They weren’t hired through the Civil Service process.  They have no oaths of office on file with the Clerk of Council.  If they accessed the FBI’s NCIC criminal records history database by running his plates they violated state and federal criminal laws.

As it appears Jones was not told what he was “suspected” of doing as the basis for the stop, he should have Facebooked live the entire incident for his social media page like he did his trip to Egypt.

The reviewing supervisor is “Dominique King.”  No OPOTA certifications.  No civil service test.  No oath of office filed with the Clerk of Council.

The police chief is unauthorized to even be a cop, Scott Gardner, with two felony indictments that were pleaded to misdemeanors.  Jones sabotaged the late American Negro attorney and federal prosecutor Annette Butler’s campaign for Cuyahoga County Prosecuting Attorney to help Michael O’Malley.  He could have took the facts above to his “boy” and and looked like a hero.

More specifically, Jones has a right to bear arms pursuant to the 2nd Amendment of the United States Constitution.  The “improperly handling firearm in a motor vehicle” is a local ordinance superseded by Section 9.68 of Ohio’s Revised Code.  The state embedded the 2nd Amendment’s unrestricted right to bear arms in R.C. 9.68.

City councils can’t enact any local gun ordinances.  Police can’t enforce a local gun ordinance. R.C. 9.68 gives every Ohioan the right to wear weapons like back in the cowboy days.

Jones had the power to file a civil claim against East Cleveland for the stop.  Had he read the United States Department of Justice’s investigations and conclusions about Cleveland’s constitutionally non-complaint police, he would have read a letter informing the city that a weapon should be seen as no different than a cell phone.  This “kid” ain’t ready for prime time.  The law below is what he did not use to defend his own rights.  It’s been in effect since March 14, 2007.

9.68 Right to bear arms – challenge to law.  (A) The individual right to keep and bear arms, being a fundamental individual right that predates the United States Constitution and Ohio Constitution, and being a constitutionally protected right in every part of Ohio, the general assembly finds the need to provide uniform laws throughout the state regulating the ownership, possession, purchase, other acquisition, transport, storage, carrying, sale, other transfer, manufacture, taxation, keeping, and reporting of loss or theft of firearms, their components, and their ammunition. The general assembly also finds and declares that it is proper for law-abiding people to protect themselves, their families, and others from intruders and attackers without fear of prosecution or civil action for acting in defense of themselves or others. Except as specifically provided by the United States Constitution, Ohio Constitution, state law, or federal law, a person, without further license, permission, restriction, delay, or process, including by any ordinance, rule, regulation, resolution, practice, or other action or any threat of citation, prosecution, or other legal process, may own, possess, purchase, acquire, transport, store, carry, sell, transfer, manufacture, or keep any firearm, part of a firearm, its components, and its ammunition. Any such further license, permission, restriction, delay, or process interferes with the fundamental individual right described in this division and unduly inhibits law-abiding people from protecting themselves, their families, and others from intruders and attackers and from other legitimate uses of constitutionally protected firearms, including hunting and sporting activities, and the state by this section preempts, supersedes, and declares null and void any such further license, permission, restriction, delay, or process.

(B) A person, group, or entity adversely affected by any manner of ordinance, rule, regulation, resolution, practice, or other action enacted or enforced by a political subdivision in conflict with division (A) of this section may bring a civil action against the political subdivision seeking damages from the political subdivision, declaratory relief, injunctive relief, or a combination of those remedies. Any damages awarded shall be awarded against, and paid by, the political subdivision. In addition to any actual damages awarded against the political subdivision and other relief provided with respect to such an action, the court shall award reasonable expenses to any person, group, or entity that brings the action, to be paid by the political subdivision, if either of the following applies:

(1) The person, group, or entity prevails in a challenge to the ordinance, rule, regulation, resolution, practice, or action as being in conflict with division (A) of this section.

(2) The ordinance, rule, regulation, resolution, practice, or action or the manner of its enforcement is repealed or rescinded after the civil action was filed but prior to a final court determination of the action.

(C) As used in this section:

(1) The possession, transporting, or carrying of firearms, their components, or their ammunition include, but are not limited to, the possession, transporting, or carrying, openly or concealed on a person’s person or concealed ready at hand, of firearms, their components, or their ammunition.

(2) “Firearm” has the same meaning as in section 2923.11 of the Revised Code.

(3) “Reasonable expenses” include, but are not limited to, reasonable attorney’s fees, court costs, expert witness fees, and compensation for loss of income.

(D) This section does not apply to either of the following:

(1) A zoning ordinance that regulates or prohibits the commercial sale of firearms, firearm components, or ammunition for firearms in areas zoned for residential or agricultural uses;

(2) A zoning ordinance that specifies the hours of operation or the geographic areas where the commercial sale of firearms, firearm components, or ammunition for firearms may occur, provided that the zoning ordinance is consistent with zoning ordinances for other retail establishments in the same geographic area and does not result in a de facto prohibition of the commercial sale of firearms, firearm components, or ammunition for firearms in areas zoned for commercial, retail, or industrial uses.  Amended by 132nd General Assembly File No. TBD, HB 228, §1, eff. 12/28/2019.  Effective Date: 03-14-2007.

Had Jones spent more time in our two Constitutions, Federal laws, State laws and Cleveland’s ordinances instead of in India and Egypt hanging out with Communists and ex-patriates, he might have fought for his own rights instead of hiding like a coward.  The fight in East Cleveland should have been one he took to Cleveland city council to ensure that all its unconstitutional and civil rights violating gun ordinances were repealed.

Dancing and singing in Egypt during the coronavirus instead of studying and improving the lives of Clevelanders on city council. Basheer Jones’ reminds me of Kwame Kilpatrick, Gary Norton, Jeffrey Johnson, Joe Jones and a whole bunch of other politicians who got caught lying and stealing.

Think about it. The effective date of R.C. 9.68 is March 14, 2007.  It was in effect 7 years before Tamir Rice was gunned down by Fred Loehman on November 22, 2014.  It was in effect 12 years later when Jones was arrested by East Cleveland police on April 19, 2019.

Here’s Jones’ reason for hestitancy in being a warrior and the reason he’s politically ineffective.  The incident report confirms “residency” crimes he’s committed against the City of Cleveland as a non-resident when he campaigned in 2017.  It also reveals issues with his Ohio Drivers License. Too much to hide on top of the campaign finance law violations I pointed out in 2018; as Sam Allard of Cleveland Scene recently confirmed he’s still violating.

Jones purchased a home at 1898 E. 66th Street in Cleveland on March 5, 2020.  The address on the Ohio motor vehicle license he supplied to East Cleveland police is 1383 E. 94th Street in Cleveland.  The Ross family or Generational Wealth Management Group LLC owns it.  The Ross’ appear to have owned the 1383 E. 94th Street home in some way or the other since January 1, 1975.

Basheer Jones’ drivers license listed 1383 E. 94th Street as his place of residence in Cleveland during his time on city council while he was living in South Euclid and Cleveland Heights with his family. No one on the street has seen Jones’ Jaguar and his wife’s Mercedes SUV parked in the driveway since he claimed to live in this ‘hood instead of his suburban ‘hoods.

Jones lived with his family at 1670 Belvoir Road in South Euclid when he campaigned for the seat on Ward 7 city council in 2017 and used the address at 1383 E. 94th Street.  He relocated to 3936 Orchard Avenue in Cleveland Heights in 2018.  Jones purchased the home on E. 66th Street in March 2020.  He did not relocate his family into it until renovations were completed in December.

He was required under the state’s motor vehicle laws to maintain a drivers license at his actual place of residence.  The address to East Cleveland police and the court is not where he received his mail or paid his utilities.  He produced a drivers license with the 1383 E. 94th Street address to officials of the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections when his address was challenged in 2017 by incumbent Ward 7 Councilman TJ Dow.

Instead of leading a civil rights campaign against the corrupt East Cleveland police impersonators, and filing a complaint with his political friend, Cuyahoga County Prosecuting Attorney Michael O’Malley, Jones allegedly begged not to be embarrassed.   He didn’t want to see the back of the jail.  Please, oh please, hide this incident report.  Well.  It ain’t hidden.

Y’all got a good one Ward 7.  The only person I know who is “really” in Jones’ corner is Mansfield Frazier.  The guy who sold Jones his house for $39,000 and some change.  He owns Neighborhood Solutions Inc.

If you got a sucker you keep him.  I understand … Mansfield.  Do your thang.

Shalira Taylor is running for council in Cleveland Ward 12 and is asking how Kelley got them a raise and suppressed the vote to reduce council during a federal election

CLEVELAND, OH – Fresh off a campaign to represent the 11th Congressional District in the United States Congress, Shalira Taylor has set her sights on acquiring a seat on Cleveland city council in Ward 12 in 2021.  Slavic Village is not majority Slavic anymore.  It is majority American Negro.  Like Murray Hill and North Collinwood, the Eastern European immigrants from Russia, Poland, Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia and Hungary who populated Ward 12 or Slavic Village violently resisted the word “integration.” Today they have no choice but to live in an integrated ward.

Before he died in 1980, Call & Post Publisher & Editor William O. Walker told me during an interview that five Cleveland wards with seats occupied by Caucasian candidates could be acquired by American Negroes.  He criticized council reduction plans as way to suppress the city’s growing American Negro majority population.

The real American Negro census of Cleveland is 60 percent of 390,000.  That’s 244,000.  German Americans are 2nd at 9.9 percent.  Irish Americans – Protestant and Catholic – are 8.8 percent.  Every other ethnic group is a tiny minority.  An American Negro candidate can win in all 17 of the city’s wards.  Information like this has never been shared this way by the Russian owners of the Plain Dealer and

What Mr. Walker lamented in our discussion in 1980, as the last journalist to inteview him before his death, was that the American Negroes he saw entering council from the late 1970’s and 1980 would not seek to increase “Black” representation as none had a background in “civil rights.”  Taylor appears to be the first in Ward 12.

In studying the Revised Code of Ohio, Cleveland’s charter, ordinances, budgets and audits to learn the statuory duties of a member of council, Taylor said she like other Clevelanders questioned how voters who wanted to vote yes or no on reducing the body and shrinking the pay ended up with “that” vote “suppressed,” and the charter change tying council’s percentage increases to the highest percentage they vote to give a public employee union was approved.  

She knew Cleveland residents had successfully gathered the 22,000 signatures needed to put the charter reduction and pay raise on the ballot; and that they were delivered to the Clerk of  Council and validated by the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections.  What she doesn’t and wants to know is how the charter change was removed from the ballot after the circulator admitted he missed the statutory withdrawal deadline.

Last February 11, 2020, Cuyahoga County Board of Elections official Mike West released a “Media Advisory” that the unit of state government organized under Title 35 of the Revised Code of Ohio had received “official notification” that the two Cleveland charter amendments have been withdraw [sic].”  He misspelled the word “withdrawn.”

The letterhead identified the members of the board as Jeff Hastings, Inajo Davis Chappell, Robert S. Frost and David Wondolowski.  Anthony Perlatti was and is the director. Shantiel H. Soeder is the deputy director.  The announcement intended to withdraw Issues 3 and 4 from the March 17, 2020 federal primary election in which locally voters were asking for a special election to seeking to reduce Cleveland city council from 17 to 9 and cutting the public office’s pay.

If Tony George and William Ritter were questioned by United States Department of Justice prosecutors and Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the two will explain their discussions with Cleveland council president Kevin Kelley.  West will explain how the information was delivered to him for publication as a media advisory. 

What Taylor and other Clevelanders know from past experiences with Kelley’s obstruction of the Quicken Loans Arena referendum know is the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections did not have the legal authority to remove the charter changes from the ballot.  What Taylor and other Clevelanders are questioning is how?

Pursuant to R.C. 3519.08(A), Ritter had to ask the Secretary of State and not Cleveland city council or the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections to withdraw the petition.  Ritter had already publicly-admitted that he missed the deadline for personal reasons. 

“Notwithstanding division (I)(2) of section 3501.38 of the Revised Code, at any time prior to the seventieth day before the day of an election at which an initiative or referendum is scheduled to appear on the ballot, a majority of the members of the committee named to represent the petitioners in the petition proposing that initiative or referendum under section 3519.02 of the Revised Code may withdraw the petition by giving written notice of the withdrawal to the secretary of state.

Ritter failed to give written notice to the Secretary of State prior to the 70th day before the March 17, 2020 primary election.  Had Ritter intended to comply with R.C. 3519.08(A) he would have withdrawn with a written request to the Secretary of State prior to January 7, 2020 as required by general election laws for municipal corporations found in R.C. 731. 

Section 15 of Cleveland’s charter clearly affirms that in addition to its instructions, the general laws of the state apply when it comes to local elections. Two sections of Ohio law guide municipal elections.  R.C. 731 and Title 35.

Section 15 of Cleveland’s charter language is below and readers should observe the last sentence’s instructions to council is to enact ordinances “against corrupt practices.”

“All elections provided for by this Charter, whether for the choice of officers or the submission of questions to the voters, shall be conducted by the election authorities prescribed by general law of the State; and the provisions of the general election laws of the State shall apply to all the elections except as provision is otherwise made by this Charter, and except further that the Council may, by ordinance, provide measures to promote and insure the purity and integrity of the ballot, and against corrupt practices in elections. (Effective November 4, 2008) “

A story written by Cleveland Scene’s Sam Allard reveals Ritter appears to have learned he’d failed to perform the duties of a petition circulator when he missed the prior to the 70th day before the election withdrawal deadline by 24 days.  Instead of living within the limits of R.C. 3519.08(A), Ritter appears to have held secret meetings with Kelly and others to concoct a scheme to obstruct it.

The only official Bill Ritter can ask to withdraw the petitions to shrink council is the Secretary of State.

On February 7, 2020, Kelly introduced Resolution 197-2020 as an “emergency ordinance” to “repeal Ord. No. 41-2020 passed January 6, 2020 authorizing submission to the electors of the City of Cleveland of an initiative petition proposing to amend the Charter of the City of Cleveland by amending Section 27, relating to salary and attendance of Council members; and to repeal Ordinance No. 42-2020, passed January 6, 2020, authorizing the submission to the electors of the City of Cleveland of an initiative petition proposing to amend the Charter of the City of Cleveland by amending Sections 25 and 25-1, relating to dividing the City into wards and reapportionment of wards.” 

The problems with Kelly’s “single emergency ordinance” are numerous.  He should have enacted two separate ordinances to deal with each charter issue as “one subject” separate.  This derelict act on Kelley’s part violated R.C. 731.19.  “Subject and admendments of bylaws, ordinances and resolutions.”  

“No ordinance, resolution, or bylaw shall contain more than one subject, which shall be clearly expressed in its title. No bylaw or ordinance, or section thereof, shall be revived or amended, unless the new bylaw or ordinance contains the entire bylaw, ordinance, or section revived or amended, and the bylaw, ordinance, or section so amended shall be repealed. Each such bylaw, resolution, and ordinance shall be adopted or passed by a separate vote of the legislative authority of a municipal corporation and the yeas and nays shall be entered upon the journal.”

This omission is just further evidence of a corrupt practice in violation of Section 15 of the Charter.  It also dragged election board officials into felony “Misconduct” violations of R.C. 3599.16.

Misconduct of member, director, or employee of board of elections – dismissal.  No member, director, or employee of a board of elections shall:  (A) Willfully or negligently violate or neglect to perform any duty imposed upon him by law, or willfully perform or neglect to perform it in such a way as to hinder the objects of the law, or willfully disobey any law incumbent upon him so to do;  (B) Willfully or knowingly report as genuine a false or fraudulent signature on a petition or registration form, or willfully or knowingly report as false or fraudulent any such genuine signature;  (C) Willfully add to or subtract from the votes actually cast at an election in any official returns, or add to or take away or attempt to add to or take away any ballot from those legally polled at such election;  (D) Carry away, destroy, or mutilate any registration cards or forms, pollbooks, or other records of any election;  (E) Act as an election official in any capacity in an election, except as specifically authorized in his official capacity;  (F) In any other way willfully and knowingly or unlawfully violate or seek to prevent the enforcement of any other provisions of the election laws.  Whoever violates this section shall be dismissed from his position as a member or employee of the board and is guilty of a felony of the fourth degree.  Effective Date: 01-01-1983 .

Investigators will see further evidence of Kelly misusing the authority of the council president to introduce his emergency ordinance as a special privilege to Ritter’s unlawful and obstructive request to the legislative authority instead of the Secretary of State on February 7, 2020.  Was he told that Frank LaRose would not question the local obstruction to his authority?  Did LaRose even know?   The City Record of Cleveland council’s did not show it being passed on February 7th.  West’s announcement from a “statutory elections authority under Ohio laws” is dated February 11th. 

Cleveland city council did not have a “regular” meeting scheduled for February 17, 2020.  The election board’s next meeting was February 19, 2020.  The board did meet on January 22, 2020; but it came nine days before Ritter’s withdrawal request announcement.  

So there was no “official communication” Kelley could have delivered to the elections board in the form of an agenda and minutes about a resolution that had not been voted on by Cleveland city council.  Kelley seeking to enact his “election obstructing” resolution as an “emergency” is another act of voter suppression. 

All ordinances and resolutions of council are subject to a referendum of the city’s voters if petitions are delivered challenging any that has been enacted within that time period.  Kelley’s use of the “emergency” enactment procedure on all legislation is tautological and illegal.

“Emergency Measures.  An emergency measure is an ordinance or resolution for the immediate preservation of the public peace, property, health, or safety, or providing for the usual daily operation of a Municipal department, in which the emergency is set forth and defined in a preamble. … no measure making a grant, renewal or extension of a franchise or other special privilege, or regulating the rate to be charged for its services by any public utility, shall ever be so passed. (Effective November 4, 2008)”

There is no discussion in any public record associated with Ritter’s request, and Kelley’s seek to enact it as an “emergency,” that would give Cleveland electors “a meaningful opportunity to determine” whether “their representatives did have valid reasons for the necessity of declaring that the ordinance was an emergency.” State ex rel. Moore v. Abrams, 62 Ohio St.3d 130, 580 N.E.2d 11 (1991), 

Kevin Kelley obstructed Clerk of Council Patricia Britt from accepting 22,000 signatures from registered Cleveland voters who wanted to decide yes or no on the $88 million he had enacted an “emergency” ordinance to give Dan Gilbert to renovate the Quicken Loans Arena. Standing next to him are two American Negro members of council. Phyllis Cleveland and former member Terrell Pruitt. Pruitt was Nina Turner’s choice to lead Ward 1 after she left for the Ohio Senate. Imagine a U.S. soldier and an American Negro standing silently by while an Irish Catholic anarchist obstructs hard fought for civil voting rights for American Negroes. Cleveland is an attorney. Disgraceful.

It’s already been well-settled by the Supreme Court of Ohio that, “Section 7, Article XVIII of the Ohio Constitution authorizes municipal corporations to adopt and amend a homerule charter.   Sections 8 and 9 of Article XVIII prescribe the procedures for adopting and amending a charter. State ex rel. Semik v. Cuyahoga Cty. Bd. of Elections (1993), 67 Ohio St.3d 334, 336, 617 N.E.2d 1120, 1122.”

It is clear from the plain words of the Constitution, the cases applying the Constitution, and the statutes that the policy of the law is to favor the right of citizens to amend the charters of the municipalities in which they live. For that reason, the law does not, among other things, give a city council the right to act as a quasi-judicial body and substantively attack citizens’ rights to place charter amendments on the ballot.

On petition of ten percent of the electors, the legislative authority of the city must “forthwith” authorize by ordinance an election on the proposed charter amendment. In a unanimous opinion we recently followed well-established law and held that the authority of a city council in determining the sufficiency of a petition is limited to the form of the petition and does not include substantive matters. Morris v. Macedonia City Council (1994), 71 Ohio St.3d 52, 641 N.E.2d 1075; see State ex rel. Polcyn v. Burkhart (1973), 33 Ohio St.2d 7, 62 O.O.2d 202, 292 N.E.2d 883.”

West’s “news release” identifies acts of “neglect of duty, malfeasance, misfeance, or nonfeasonce in office, on the part of the board and its employees; and it identifies willful violations of Title 35.  Pursuant to R.C. 3501.16 on the surface of his news release alone, and the implications of criminal acts it reveals, the Secretary of State may remove or suspend “any member of the board of elections, the director, deputy director, or any other employee of the board” for what it clearly affirms are Title 35 violations of law.

“The secretary of state may summarily remove or suspend any member of a board of elections, or the director, deputy director, or any other employee of the board, for neglect of duty, malfeasance, misfeasance, or nonfeasance in office, for any willful violation of Title XXXV of the Revised Code, or for any other good and sufficient cause. Except as otherwise provided in section 3501.161 of the Revised Code, vacancies in the office of chairperson, director, or deputy director shall be filled in the same manner as original selections are made, from persons belonging to the same political party as that to which the outgoing officer belonged. If those vacancies cannot be filled in that manner, they shall be filled by the secretary of state.”

What neither Kelly nor the board can do is identify the specific section of Cleveland’s Charter or Title 35 of Ohio’s Revised Code that authorizes the legislative authority of a municipal corporation, and not the Secretary of State, to remove the two issues from the ballot and using a statutory “emergency ordinance enactment” process to do so.  The board can’t cite a section of Title 35 that authorized them to accept the withdrawal and to comply with Kelley’s vote suppressing acts during a federal election.

Shalira Taylor says the voters of Cleveland deserve answers.

George’s puppet says he missed deadline to withdraw petitions for personal reasons


CLEVELAND, OH – The 70 day statutory deadline Bill Ritter missed on January 7th to withdraw the Cleveland city council reduction petitions he suckered 22,000 Cleveland registered voters into signing as a high pressure scheme he concocted with Tony George to intimidate city council was for good “personal reasons.”  Ritter’s “personal reasons” weren’t identified in a story Cleveland Scene’s Sam Allard wrote after interviewing him to learn why the petitions were being pulled.   

What Westlake George’s Cleveland puppet admitted to Allard is that his lawyers have acknowledged the flaw in the timing of his petition withdrawal and are seeking a way around Section 35109.08(A) of the Ohio Revised Code.  Under the state’s general election law George’s boy was required to submit his request in writing to the Secretary of State 70 days before the March 17, 2020 primary election.  Ritter calls George “Mister.”

So instead of looking like a racist, ,Bill Ritters looks like Westlake resident Tony George’s fool.

There is no other statutory language for withdrawing initiative petitions than what’s written in plain English language in Title 35 of Ohio’s Revised Code no official of this state can change or choose not to enforce as written.  Section 3519.08(A) of Ohio’s Revised Code is in language Ritter, as an American, should be able to easily understand. 

Notwithstanding division (I)(2) of section 3501.38 of the Revised Code, at any time prior to the seventieth day before the day of an election at which an initiative or referendum is scheduled to appear on the ballot, a majority of the members of the committee named to represent the petitioners in the petition proposing that initiative or referendum under section 3519.02 of the Revised Code may withdraw the petition by giving written notice of the withdrawal to the secretary of state.

The use of the word “shall” in any law imposes “mandatory duties” on the official or individual being instructed by it.  The use of the word “may” is permissive in that it gives the official or individual an option.  In this case Ritter had the option of withdrawing the petitions but only if he did it “prior to the 70th day before” the day of the March 17, 2020 primary election. 

Bill Ritter said he met with Bratenahl resident Rev. E.T. Caviness and Garfield Heights resident Aaron Phillips who convinced him he’d be a racist if he tried to shrink Cleveland city council. Phillips can’t vote in Cleveland elections and what happens in the city he doesn’t live isn’t his business. Neither non-Cleveland residents speaks for the 22,000 Cleveland registered voters who signed the petitions Ritter circulated and then maliciously withdrew to deny their voting rights just like the racists did in the KKK south. Caviness and Phillips were trying to help council. Not Black people. The Black people who signed the petitions said they wanted to vote.

Had Ritter or his Westlake boss any knowledge of U.S. Supreme Court cases they’d know the two words “statutory construction” prevents Ritter’s request to the Cuyahoga  Elections board or Secretary of State to withdraw from going forward.  Anyone who’s written laws like this writer has knows well the two words all legislators should study before they enact them.

“We begin with the familiar canon of statutory construction that the starting point for interpreting a statute is the language of the statute itself. Absent a clearly expressed legislative intention to the contrary, that language must ordinarily be regarded as conclusive.:” Consumer Product Safety Commission et al. v. GTE Sylvania, Inc. et al.,447 U.S. 102 (1980). “[I]n interpreting a statute a court should always turn to one cardinal canon before all others. . . .[C]ourts must presume that a legislature says in a statute what it means and means in a statute what it says there.”

Ritter announced on January 31st that he was withdrawing petitions to shrink council he should have withdrawn by “giving written notice of the withdrawal to the secretary of state” on January 7th.  He missed the deadline by 24 days.  There is no language in Title 35 of Ohio’s Revised Code that falls within the date of Ritter’s act or his published reasons for it.   

Bill Ritter told Cleveland Scene’s Sam Allard he had “personal reasons” for missing the 70 day deadline to withdraw the petitions he circulated on Westlake resident Tony George’s money to reduce Cleveland city council’s size. A search of the Ohio Revised Code for the two words “personal reasons” don’t show them associated with “any” section of Title 35 that controls this state’s elections and processes. The words are associated with “employment.” This is the genius who thinks he knows how to solve Cleveland’s problems.

What Ritter appears to hope for is for the board to for added language through an interpretation by the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections.  The problem is those officials can’t insert themselves in an area where the General Assembly has reserved the right of the “office” to the secretary of state.  So Ritter’s only recourse is to ask the Secretary of State for withdrawal permission and to be told no.

It doesn’t matter as he told Cleveland Scene’s Sam Allard that preachers Aaron Phillips and E. Theophilis Caviness told him the campaign was racially-divisive.  Had he  known anything about the signers he’d know the majority of signers were not white. 

One media report described Garfield Heights resident Aaron Phillips as a prominent member of the clergy. If prominence means he knows how to sucker reporters into covering his bullshit then Phillips is prominent. But the little two-dollar, garage-sized church he preaches out of at 11302 Miles Avenue would violate occupancy ordinances if all 17 members of Cleveland city conucil and their aides showed up for a service.

What Ritter seems not to understand is that his decision to deprive 22,000 majority black signers of the right to exercise their vote at the election is vote suppressing racism.  It’s also racism to think two black people who don’t live in Cleveland can decide for black Clevelanders the outcome of a petition they signed in order to vote at an election. 

Phillips and Caviness speaks for themselves.  No one has appointed them to lead or speak for “the Black community” and Ritter is a foolish racist for even believing that their voices carry the thoughts of 230,000 Black Clevelanders out of 389,000 Clevelanders overall.

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