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All Sides Agree to Mediation in Regional Sewer Dispute


Media Contacts:
Nicole Dailey Jones, 216-263-4602 or 216-338-0863; ndjones@cuyahogacounty.us
John Kohlstrand, 216-698-2099; jkohlstrand@cuyahogacounty.us  

CLEVELAND – For the first time since the beginning of the litigation surrounding the proposed increase in storm water fees, all sides have agreed to participate in mediation.

Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald facilitated a meeting today between suburban mayors, representatives from school districts and private industry, as well as representatives from the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, which resulted in all parties agreeing to participate in mediation.

The local governments and other entities are currently in a legal dispute with the sewer district over fees that have been set by the district to manage area storm water.  A trial between the cities and sewer district is set for July in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.

“I am so pleased with the results of today’s meeting with the Mayors and the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District,” said FitzGerald.  “One of the expectations of the new government is to try to bring people together.  The meter is running on lawyers' bills.  Today, by agreeing to mediation, both sides are showing a good faith effort in moving forward towards a resolution on this issue.”

Until today, neither side had participated in substantive talks on this issue.  The result of the meeting was that the County Executive will select the mediator from a list created by both the local governments and other entities and the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District.