Priorities for the new Regional Planning Director.

Priorities for the new Regional Planning Director.

Civic Cynthia
on Jan 14, 2011

A conversation with blogger George Lichman of about the news that Cuyahoga County's new county executive has named a Director of Regional Collaboration. Lichman is a police officer in Rocky River.

Participants (4)

What do you think?

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Dan Moulthrop
on Jan 14, 2011 - 12:18 pm

This was a really interesting conversation. Like many of us, George was really interested in the news that Ed Jerse was named Cuyahoga County's new Regional Planning Director--a brand new position for a brand new county. I read the story in the print version of the PD but can't seem to find it on

As a police officer and interested citizen, George has a really interesting point of view. He's in favor of collaboration and consolidation of services, to a point. That point is somewhere around where it might cut into the department he works for. Still, I was struck by how interested he is in what's best for the region and the community, not just the police.

btw, George blogs at



Kevin Leeson
on Jan 14, 2011

Ed Jerse is the county's new regional collaboration director. Here's the press release. There is an article at, but it doesn't say very much.

Anastasia Pantsios
on Jan 14, 2011

Kevin, what bodes really ill for any kind of civil discourse on the county's planning future or in fact its future in any area is the responses to that article on, which like you said doesn't say very much. There is no curiosity to know more. There are no helpful suggestions or ideas. There are no questions. It's an endless stream of vitriol, calling Jerse and the other three appointees mentioned in the story "hacks" and "crooks" and "the same old faces" and suggesting they should all be in prison. Yet it appears that none of these posters actually knows anything about these people, other than the brief list of their credentials in the article. Yet a narrative has been established that "anyone who has ever done any public service is unqualified and/or a crook." That's unhelpful in the extreme. It's saying that education, knowledge, skills, and past accomplishments should just be discarded out of hand, and we should be hiring a raft of "fresh faces" who don't have the background for the jobs. When did we get to the point that a person's accomplishments aren't worth anything?

Kevin Leeson
on Jan 17, 2011

I agree that the commenters are dispiriting, but I hesitate to associate their attitudes with the broader public mindset. The comments section at has long been a toxic environment unconducive to any sort of productive conversation, and the complete lack of civility there has driven away those seeking meaningful conversations. I hope that Civic Commons can provide that forum.

George Lichman
on Jan 15, 2011

Thanks for the conversation! I have finally posted about it on The Thirty Year Itch.

I hope our new government can help our county with this and many other problems!

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Dan Moulthrop
on Jan 14, 2011 - 11:12 am