Opinion

State Lawmakers Propose Relief Bills To Help Ohioans

Since the start of the Coronavirus crisis here in the United States, Ohio’s state legislators have been hard at work crafting solutions to problems created by the public health crisis caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. As the number of infected patients have grown, members of the Ohio House Democratic Caucus, including Parma’s Rep. Jeff Crossman, have been proposing legislation to help every day Ohioans through this crisis. Legislators plan on taking up this legislation when the Ohio General Assembly returns to Columbus.

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 2:47 PM, 04.01.2020

Fifty Years Ago This Month A Movement Was Begun That Changed The World

I was a 21 year old student majoring in biology at Kent State University in the fall of 1969 when one of my professors mentioned a new event the following spring. He was talking about the first Earth Day scheduled nationwide on April 22 1970 that was to focus attention to the degradation of our planet’s environment. The Apollo moon landings focused attention to our own planet and what mankind was doing to it.

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 2:46 PM, 04.01.2020

Asset Corner #124

SHOW KIDS YOU CARE:  HELP THEM LEARN SOMETHING NEW. APRIL’s Asset Category: EMPOWERMENT.

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 2:46 PM, 04.01.2020

Support Our Local Businesses!

Every year Parma actively supports Shop Small. Shop Small Saturday this year is November 28th. The City of Parma does this because they know how important these small businesses are to our community. One study found that for every $100 spent at a local small business, $68 of it stayed in the local economy. Whereas that same $100 spent at a large business, only $43 stayed local. 

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 2:46 PM, 04.01.2020

Rep. Crossman Introduces Bill To Give Local Citizens Voice In Location Of Residential Treatment Facilities

Bill strengthens home rule in Ohio communities. For most people, their house is their single largest investment.  Beyond that, your house is a home where you go to find respite at the end of each day. You want your family to feel safe and secure in their home each day. As a City Councilman, Rep. Crossman heard from residents that had their daily lives disrupted when treatment centers opened in their residential neighborhood without any local input. Rep. Crossman aims to change that with House Bill 505 filed on February 12th.

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Volume 12, Issue 3, Posted 11:18 PM, 03.01.2020

Snatching Defeat From The Jaws Of Victory

The Democratic party is great at shooting themselves in the foot. This year they are on verge of blowing an election that was theirs to win. President Donald Trump has never polled above 50% approval since he took office and many voters are fed up with his antics. Yet the Democratic party is blowing a great opportunity by rushing to nominate Bernie Sanders as their presidential candidate.

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Volume 12, Issue 3, Posted 11:17 PM, 03.01.2020

Asset Corner #123

SHOW KIDS YOU CARE:  VISIT THEIR SCHOOLS. March’s Asset Category: Social Competencies

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Volume 12, Issue 3, Posted 11:17 PM, 03.01.2020

Parma Dad Running For US House Of Representatives

A few weeks ago a woman knocked on my door for the "Karpus for Congress" campaign, it was freezing, so she stepped inside. Standing in my foyer she began telling me about Ronald Karpus III a congressional candidate. She told me he was born and raised in Parma, a graduate of Parma Senior High School, and that he was a husband and they had 6 kids. My mouth about hit the floor as I repeated "did you say 6 kids?" the woman laughed and nodded. She further explained he was a member of the Democratic party and a blue collar worker.

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Volume 12, Issue 2, Posted 9:30 PM, 02.02.2020

State Rep. Jeffrey Crossman Asks You To Support This Years Census.

Welcome to 2020-- a new decade begins and, with that, the U.S. Constitution requires the government conduct another count of all of its citizens. The efforts to complete this extremely important count are now underway and each time the Census occurs there are always questions. We answer the most common questions related to the count below and we strongly encourage everyone to support the Census this year so we can maximize the investment we receive in our community! 

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Volume 12, Issue 2, Posted 9:30 PM, 02.02.2020

Asset Corner #122

February’s Asset Category: Positive Values. You are what you believe. Values shape young people’s relationships, behaviors, choices, and sense of who they are. Although positive values help young people avoid risky behavior, they also help guide their day-to-day actions and interactions. Thus, values inspire, not just prohibit. Young people who have positive values are more likely to listen to their conscience, help others, be independent, tell right from wrong, and feel happy. Ultimately, positive values help young people make their own decisions rather than imitate friends or follow trends.Search Institutehas identified these six assets in the Positive Value category that are crucial for helping young people: 

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Volume 12, Issue 2, Posted 9:29 PM, 02.02.2020

What A Year It Was, Part Two

Last month I wrote a column with a trip back to a pivotal year in history, exactly 100 years ago. After a break, let’s go to Sherman and Peabody’s “way back” machine again to 1920. I believe that I was mentioning the world of sports in 1920 when we left. Here we go.

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Volume 12, Issue 2, Posted 9:29 PM, 02.02.2020

Asset Corneer #121

SHOW KIDS YOU CARE:  RESPECT THEM. Help young people bring out their best
The way people feel about themselves can fluctuate with circumstances. Depending on what’s happening, you may feel confident or unsure, optimistic or pessimistic, in control or not in control. What’s important is what a person’s identity is like most of the time. People who have a strong, positive sense of self maintain these qualities even when difficulties arise. They continue to be hopeful and optimistic, and believe they can make a difference.

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Volume 12, Issue 1, Posted 1:50 PM, 01.01.2020

What A Year It Was

As the world flips the calendar over to a new year, we are also entering a new decade as well. Therefore, I feel it is appropriate to go back and review another year in history. Like the old Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon show with Sherman and his genius dog Peabody, let’s enter their “way back” machine and take a trip way back to another year in our history. Let’s go back 100 years ago to the year 1920.

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Volume 12, Issue 1, Posted 1:50 PM, 01.01.2020

Let's Plant Trees In Parma—There Are Excellent Economic Benefits

When I first moved to Parma, one of the first things I did was plant three trees in my front yard. This choice wasn't environmentally motivated. I'd simply grown up around trees and missed the greenery. Eight years later my Red Maple has doubled in size and offers enough shade to picnic with my kids on the lawn. The two cherry blossoms on the treelawn flower each year with beautiful white and pink petals, before quietly shedding their spring coat and switching to photosynthesis full-time. To me this is relief. My road, Maplecrest, is curiously short of maples. It's short of trees, period.

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Volume 11, Issue 12, Posted 2:02 PM, 11.30.2019

Asset Corner #120

December’s Asset Category: CONSTRUCTIVE USE OF TIME. All work and no play can be boring and stressful. The pace of everyday life varies depending on the activities young people participate in. These fluctuations are normal, even healthy. As long as young people don’t consistently have too much to do or not enough to do, they’re right on track. Problems arise when the balance begins to tip too far to one side or the other. Too much involvement can lead to stress or anxiety. Too little involvement can be a sign of depression or isolation. Ensure that young people constructively use their time for both fun and learning.

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Volume 11, Issue 12, Posted 2:02 PM, 11.30.2019

Culture Wars And Christmas

Much has been said in the media over the past decades about the “culture wars” in the United States. I believe that this is a bogus issue. The United States is a nation composed of many different cultures from all over the world. It was recently reported that there are more than 300 different languages spoken in the United States. Many are obscure native American languages only spoken by a few tribes, but practically every language in the world may be spoken in the United States.

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Volume 11, Issue 12, Posted 2:02 PM, 11.30.2019

Asset Corner #119

October’s Asset Category: Empowerment. Young people are empowered when they feel valued, valuable and safe. They need to believe that adults like and respect them. Finally, they need plenty of opportunities to contribute to their communities through volunteering, working in paid jobs and sharing their ideas, knowledge and creativity. One of these days, the young people in your home, school, neighborhood and workplace will be in charge – in charge of their own lives and in charge of the world. You can help young people get ready for their future role by empowering them now. This month’s column will focus on Asset #10 – Safety: Combating fear, and growing up safe in an unsafe world

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Volume 11, Issue 11, Posted 8:50 AM, 11.01.2019

Loyalty, Courage And Cowardice

One of the points in the Boy Scout law is that a scout is loyal. Loyalty is a key virtue and essential for the success of any business and the nation. However blind loyalty can be a danger as well as false loyalty. It is expected that employees of a company or elected official will be loyal and support the organization. However, it is important to realize that loyalty is also a two way street. If an employee or partner is loyal to one person; the other person should be loyal in return. That means that an employee should be free to disagree with their supervisor or manager in a civil manner without fear of retaliation. At the same time, it should be expected that a loyal employee should also report wrongdoing or any violation of ethics without retaliation as well. This keeps a company and government running in an honest and efficient manner.

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Volume 11, Issue 11, Posted 8:50 AM, 11.01.2019

Add A Redwood To Parma

Perhaps you are a Parma homeowner looking to add a large, unique tree specimen not only for your own sake, but for your neighbors and future generations alike. The Dawn Redwood, with the scientific name Metasequioa glyptostroboides, could fill that void along with including a unique historical perspective. I have not noticed any in Parma but have seen some in the Brecksville Reservation of the Cleveland Metroparks.

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Volume 11, Issue 11, Posted 8:50 AM, 11.01.2019

Asset Corner #118

October’s Asset Category:  SUPPORT.  Supportive, healthy relationships make a big difference

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Volume 11, Issue 10, Posted 7:57 AM, 10.03.2019

Fixing And Improving The ACA Is A Winning Strategy

The Affordable Care Act or Obamacare will be ten years old next spring. Since the act was signed into law on March 23 2010, millions of Americans have become insured who would have previously been uninsured. But the act has been controversial and the Republican party has made repealing and replacing the ACA its top priority. But despite more than 60 votes in the House of Representatives to repeal the act and even with the election of Donald Trump on a promise to “repeal and replace” the act, it still stands.

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Volume 11, Issue 10, Posted 7:57 AM, 10.03.2019

How To Lose An Election

As the year 2019 winds down toward the next year and the 2020 presidential election; Democrats are in an excellent position to win the Presidency as well as retake control of the Senate and strengthen its majority in the House. It seems that as the year winds down, the Trump presidency is unraveling in front of the nation and world. Polls are now showing that the top Democratic candidates for President soundly defeating Donald Trump if the election were held now.

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Volume 11, Issue 9, Posted 2:14 PM, 09.02.2019

Venezuela: A Nation Rich In TurmOIL

To fully comprehend the gravity of the nation of Venezuela and its immense fabric of complexity today, one must at once endeavor first to better understand the lasting effects of its Middle Ages monarchal rule under the crowns of both Spain and the Napoleonic Empire of France.  

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Volume 11, Issue 8, Posted 3:14 PM, 08.01.2019

Asset Corner #116

SHOW KIDS YOU CARE:  Let Them Make Mistakes. August’s Asset Category: CONSTRUCTIVE USE OF TIME

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Volume 11, Issue 8, Posted 3:14 PM, 08.01.2019

Remembering A Memorable Summer Fifty Years Ago

I am old enough to clearly remember that memorable summer of 1969. Like Sherman and his dog Peabody from the old Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon show would say, let’s go into the way back machine to that summer of 1969.

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Volume 11, Issue 8, Posted 3:14 PM, 08.01.2019

From Pittsburgh To Parma: One YPís Thoughts On Moving To The Flamingo City

“Why would you want to move to Cleveland?” is a question I’ve been asked in the last year more times than I can count since finding out I was transferring. I’ve been asked by friends, co-workers, neighbors and even strangers. To be honest, I would have asked myself the same questions 10 years ago. 

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Volume 11, Issue 8, Posted 3:14 PM, 08.01.2019

Parma Police Chief Recognized By NOPEC

Since 2016, NOPEC has instituted a recognition program to identify exemplary employees in cities throughout the Greater Cleveland Area. This year our Chief of Police Joseph M. Bobak had the honor of being singled out for this special recognition. As a lifetime resident of Parma, am I pleased and proud to learn that this has occurred? You bet. Am I surprised? Not even one little tiny bit. For even the casual observer, it is quite apparent that our police department is a top-notch organization, and our tremendous statistics making us one of the safest cities in Ohio and the nation is proof positive that the citizens of Parma enjoy a special relationship with their police department that people in other cities hope and wish they had. Our police officers are part of a highly functioning department that consistently achieves excellent results with what can only be described as limited resources for a city of 80,000 people, the 7th largest city in Ohio. A good part of the reason for that is the relentless training that is always ongoing, along with the prime effective leadership that is present from the top all the way down. Make no mistake- the performance of our police department here in Parma plays a major role in making our city a desirable place to live. Congratulations Chief Bobak.

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Volume 11, Issue 7, Posted 10:27 AM, 07.02.2019

When America Was Great

I was very impressed watching the celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the D Day Normandy invasion during the Second World War. The courage and dedication of those men as well as the entire country during that war was remarkable. The entire nation was united in a common cause.

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Volume 11, Issue 7, Posted 10:28 AM, 07.02.2019

Asset Corner #115

SHOW KIDS YOU CARE:  DELIGHT IN THEIR UNIQUENESS.. July’s Asset Category: CONSTRUCTIVE USE OF TIME

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Volume 11, Issue 7, Posted 10:28 AM, 07.02.2019

Parma Rocks July 4th - Party In The Park

Hello there Tri-City area friends. Many of you will recall when the 4th of July gave rise to a grand celebration for the Tri-City area while being dismayed and saddened when that ended due to financial / logistical issues.
There is GOOD news. For the past few years I have been speaking with Mayor DeGeeter , Mickey Vittardi and other leaders about doing something at Anthony Zielinski Park after the Parade ends at the Shoppes Of Parma about 11:30 AM. They all agreed it was a great idea but the City wasn't in the position to or really shouldn't bear the responsibility for organizing it. As a musician who is also involved in the business side of the industry I finally decided to take this on by hosting our first Parma Rocks Party In the Park featuring Live Entertainment and some Recorded music 
Details TBA The party will begin at Noon on July 4th and last until a time TBD. The entertainment will be using the Pavilion closest to the Splash Pad and Roycroft at Anthony Zielinski Park. We hope you will join us for what we would like to see become an Annual event. Look for Updates and Event Flyers to be available soon along with Social Media posts. Remember PARMA ROCKS !

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 4:52 PM, 06.03.2019

Asset Corner # 114

June’s Asset Category:  BOUNDARIES and EXPECTATIONS: Boundaries are important to young people because they give clear messages about what’s expected, what is approved and celebrated, and what deserves censure. By the same token, caring adults who expect young people to do their best help them to learn good judgment. Every day young people face many options and choices. Boundaries and expectations provide young people with the support they need to choose wisely. Today, we’re going to be focusing attention on Asset # 11, Family Boundaries.

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 4:53 PM, 06.03.2019

We Must Never Forget Them

On May 10 2019 I attended the dedication ceremony for a Vietnam Veterans Memorial at Valley Forge High School. The ceremony was very moving and impressive as the community honored those 15 young men who gave their lives during the Vietnam War. Four of the men honored were from my class of 1966 and I knew three of them. Two I knew from my homeroom and one lived in my neighborhood and we grew up together at Ridge Brook Elementary School. That ceremony and memorial made me proud to be an alumnus of Valley Forge High School. It certainly epitomized the meaning of “Patriot Pride.”

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 4:52 PM, 06.03.2019

The Parma Rib N' Rock: A Summer Tradition

If there’s one thing that defines the beginning of summer in Parma to me, it’s not the end of school or the increasing temperatures, it’s the Parma Rib ‘N Rock. Growing up, it was the perfect foray into summer vacation, going from the final days of school to a weekend of entertainment, rides, and of course, lots of food. The event started off at what was then Parmatown Mall, where for $4.00 you could partake in the festivities throughout the weekend. Yes, the price of admission is actually a dollar lower than it was back in the 90s. Now in its fourth year at Cuyahoga Community College’s Western Campus, it has continued to grow with its new location into the event we know today.

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 4:53 PM, 06.03.2019

A Subtle Golden Hue

Many property lots in Parma are of a small size which creates difficulties in choosing appropriate sized trees. While most lot sizes in northern Parma are in the 40-foot wide range, those in the more southern area of Parma may have a little more room to work with. Colorado Blue Spruces (Picea pungens) and Norway Spruce (Picea abies ) are two evergreens that are easy to obtain but can grow extremely large in both height and diameter.  As a matter of fact, in the wild both of these trees can grow over 100 -150 feet tall, although that height will most likely not be reached in an urban area.

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 7:36 AM, 05.01.2019

A Closed Mouth Gathers No Feet

I am old enough to remember some great speeches by national and world leaders. I remember President John F Kennedy’s inaugural address on January 20, 1961, when he began “Let the word go forth that the torch has been passed to a new generation” and concluded with “Ask not what your country could do for you, but what you could do for your country.” His strong words inspired a generation.

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 7:35 AM, 05.01.2019

Asset Corner #113

May’s Asset Category:  COMMITMENT TO LEARNING These five assets have dual power: they are crucial in the long run for vocational success and engaged citizenship and they also play a prevention role, inhibiting some forms of health-compromising behavior. Commitment to learning has a number of sources in the journey through childhood and adolescents. Parental attitudes, encouragements, involvement, and modeling are all important. The quality of schooling – through its formal and informal curricula - also matters. Norms that encourage high attention to educational tasks, on the part of the peer group and community, are also instrumental and important. This column’s focus will be on…..Asset #22 – School Engagement

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 7:35 AM, 05.01.2019

Leading Animal Law Expert: Repeal Parmaís Breed-Specific Pit Bull Ban, Adopt Breed-Neutral Dog Control Law Instead

Cities are trending towards humane, more effective solutions dealing with aggressive dogs. The purpose of this article outlines reasons to repeal Parma’s existing pit bull ban at the polls on May 7. It’s also a rebuttal to the article “Your Neighbor Was Attacked” in last month’s edition of Parma Observer. Rather than denying the pain and suffering described in the dog attack from last month’s article, residents should consider that repealing the existing pit bull ban would actually make way for a safer, more comprehensive ordinance.

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Volume 11, Issue 5, Posted 7:35 AM, 05.01.2019

Asset Corner #112

April’s Asset Category: EMPOWERMENT. Young people are empowered when they feel valued, valuable and safe. They need to believe that adults like and respect them. Finally, they need plenty of opportunities to contribute to their communities through volunteering, working in paid jobs and sharing their ideas, knowledge and creativity. One of these days, the young people in your home, school, neighborhood and workplace will be in charge – in charge of their own lives and in charge of the world. You can help young people get ready for their future role by empowering them now.

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Volume 11, Issue 4, Posted 10:33 AM, 04.01.2019