Small Business Give Cincinnati an F
By Lisa Benson Managing Editor for the Cincinnati Business Courier
"Small and local businesses are the lifeblood of Cincinnati communities. As an owner of one myself, The Wegman Company in East Price Hill, I can represent the concerns of them better than a career person. That's why I never associate myself with the "politician" title. I am a business woman and I am invested in the prosperity of Cincinnati."
Being 4th generation Cincinnatian means your family has pretty much seen it all, and in this instant its my grandmother and her being alive to see the first Cincinnati street car back in 1889.
Back then it was considered a nuisance: it ran late, schedules went haywire and were never reliable and sometimes they could be downright dangerous (my grandmother was hit by one). They finally deactivated when transportation evolved as the car became available. Yet now we want to bring back this dinosaur method of travel?
Not to mention what people don't realize is that its going to cost the city, and YOU, at least 33 million dollars a mile. The revenue generated from this endeavor is unknown by the current council and the city. The only projection made has been that 3000 people will ride it daily. Ask yourself honestly: will you be one of these 3,000? My grandmother's sentiments on the issue were: "It was a lark then, and its a lark now." I agree.
Its always a good idea to mix the campaign with good food and fun. Over the past week I was able to get the chance to talk to the new Ohio Black Republican Party Regional Director, Ron Mosby and Amy Searchy. We were blown away by the support of our community and fellow Westsiders. Together we can make a difference and start to turn Cincinnati in the right direction. Remember: YOUR VOTE. YOUR VOICE. A huge tank you to all those that came out and special thanks to Julie Raleigh and Jennifer Hoinke for chairing the event.
The Neighbor Everyone Needs.
I moved to Cincinnati in the mid 1980s as a young employee of Procter & Gamble. What struck me the most about this city was the way people went about their business. With a smile. A warm "hello". Eye contact.
I have to say, that wasn't how it was done in my hometown of Chicago.
Chicago is a city full of sparkle, and overflowing with sizzle. Famous restaurants, striking architecture and soaring lakefront property. Beautiful clothes, expensive cars . . .and people unwilling to look you in the eye.
Now we see that Chicago is a city with serious challenges. A city with streets so unsafe children cannot walk to school. A city with parking costs so high residents call it extortion. A city with so much debt it cannot meet its pension obligations.
Chicago is a city stuck with bad political deals made years ago, by leaders long gone.
Cincinnati isn't Chicago . . . yet. But we need to vote as if we care. We need to consider, as we elect our leaders, the consequence of the promises they make. We must be conscious of the sparkle, and distrustful of the sizzle.
We need to know who deserves our vote. We need to know they will consider our values, our promises, and all our neighborhoods as they represent us.
Melissa Wegman is such a candidate. She lives and works in some of our most challenged neighborhoods.She is a . . .
Fourth generation Cincinnatian and West Sider.
Second generation local business owner, responsible for the payroll of more than 50 people in the West End. She knows the economic and fiscal decisions we face first hand!
Committed community advocate as the President of the East Price Hill Economic Development Council.
Melissa understands the challenges our city faces, and will navigate those challenges with skill, experience and the trust of the neighborhoods - businesses and people, alike.
Melissa with Amy Searcy (left) and Ron Mosby (right).
The city of Cincinnati is in debt and has been for years. City council plans to continue spending money we just don't have especially for projects such as the streetcar. Plans to cut funding for police and fire departments have already been laid out and the council has sold the city's parking meters to outside investors.
These choices will not help Cincinnati out of her debt problem. Chicago has shown that selling meters is a poor decision. That it leads towards bankruptcy and higher levels of debt. We don't want Cincinnati following in the same path.
As a Westsider I know crime is personal, I have experienced it up close and personal. Thats why I know, as an issue, safety can't be defined by a statistic on a piece of paper. I need your support to help direct this City in the direction we need to go - prosperity.
Giving back to the Community
Melissa and Wegman Company are large supporters of community committees and events. Everyone is considered family. At the Mother of Mercy Golf Outing, Melissa came out again by co-chairing the event with her sister Jennifer Wegman Smith, both alumnae, to raise money for educational tuition grants to deserving student-athletes attending Mother of Mercy.