Virtual News Conference
Toledo Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz held a virtual news conference today, which can be downloaded at this link until May 27.
Among the announcements made by the mayor were the creation of a new, “one stop shop” for event permits at toledo.oh.gov/special-event; that the approved work on Summit Street downtown will begin tomorrow; and that dates and times for children to be served lunch in five city parks has been scheduled through the summer.
Regarding special events permits: the City of Toledo will assist residents with the necessary permits. A special event permit is for public property events, not for private property events. In accordance with Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine's order, the City of Toledo will not grant permits for events with more than 10 people through the end of May. After May 29, the city will continue to follow guidance from the state on permissible gathering size. The number is expected to stay less than 100 people through the end of August.
Regarding the summer lunch program for children: food will be provided from June 1 to Aug. 14 through a partnership with the Children’s Hunger Alliance for the City of Toledo’s Children Feeding Program. Children’s Hunger Alliance staff will be at the following parks, Monday through Friday:
- Wilson Park, 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.
- Navarre Park, 12:15 p.m. to 1 p.m.
- Savage Park, 1:30 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.
- Walbridge Park, 2:45 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.
The City of Toledo Human Relations Commission will serve shelf-stable meals from 12:15 p.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Friday, at Ottawa Park, underneath the open air shelter.
Founded in 1970, Children’s Hunger Alliance is a statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to ending childhood hunger in Ohio. Through their work, Children’s Hunger Alliance provides healthy meals and snacks to food-insecure children, advocates for legislation to improve the welfare of Ohio’s youngest citizens, and teaches nutrition and physical education to those they serve.
Regarding Summit Street: the street will be closed between Lafayette Street and Monroe Street, May 22 to Aug. 20, the mayor said.
The mayor also announced several economic development updates:
- Several major automotive employers in the city restarted operations on Monday, bringing thousands of employees back to work.
- Fiat Chrysler Automobiles - Toledo Assembly Complex
- General Motors - Toledo Transmission Plant
- Dana (Overland) – Toledo Driveline Facility
- Detroit Manufacturing Systems (Overland)
- Amazon received its final approval last week from the Toledo Plan Commission for its project at the former Southwyck Shopping Center site. “I am excited to share that we intend to close on the sale of the property within the next few weeks,” Mayor Kapszukiewicz said. “Amazon will begin construction shortly thereafter to adhere to its aggressive construction timeline. The company plans to be in the building by fall.”
- Work at the new Cleveland Cliffs facility in East Toledo is set to resume. The $700 million project is under construction and expected to be complete later this year. 130 new jobs will be created as a result of this project, in addition to the hundreds of construction jobs that have been created to construct this new facility.
- Another exciting project is moving toward completion in the Junction Neighborhood. “In 2019, my administration was pleased to announce Brenntag was investing more than $15 million in a new operation on Campbell Street. The company will create 45 new jobs as a result of this project,” Mayor Kapszukiewicz said.
- The new $50 million mixed-use Marina Lofts development in East Toledo is nearly complete. Construction is still underway on two out of the four apartment buildings. However, 70 residents now call Marina Lofts home and a new restaurant called Old Bag of Nails Pub has officially opened. Construction continues on the new multi-million dollar Glass City Metropark. Phase 1 of that project is expected to be completed this fall.
- A few weeks ago, the Village on the Green project was announced for the Uptown Neighborhood. The project will create 125 new apartment units adjacent to the Uptown Green Park. The project will be heard by the Toledo Plan Commission in the coming months and is expected to start construction later this year.
- The new $10 million, 280-seat KeyBank Discovery Theater at Imagination Station is nearly complete.
- The city is still accepting applications for its Emergency Microenterprise Recovery Grant (EMRG) Program. The city created the EMRG program to help microenterprises negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. “I strongly encourage microenterprises to apply by the deadline of Sunday, May 24. To date, we have received more than 185 applications,” the mayor said. “More information about the EMRG program and application can be found at toledo.oh.gov/emrgrant.
- JobsOhio, one of the city’s economic development partners, announced last week a one-time Liquor Rebate Program to help Ohio bars and restaurants as they navigate reopening in the coming weeks. Eligible permit holders can receive a $500 rebate to purchase high proof spirituous liquor at their assigned wholesale Contract Liquor Agency. More information can be found at wholesale.ohlq.com.
The mayor today also thanked Toledo Finance Director Thomas Skrobola, who announced this week he would resign his position.
The Kapszukiewicz Administration established the goal in 2017 of achieving a general fund rainy day balance of $40 million. “We anticipated accomplishing this in another five years,” the mayor said. “On the strength of strong revenue flows and outstanding fiscal management with Tom’s help, this goal was accomplished by 2019. Tom is highly qualified and was extremely communicative with everyone in the administration and City Council.”
As finance director, Mr. Skrobola constructed the first 10-year fiscal model for the city’s general fund, CIP Fund, and SCMR Fund.
Regarding restaurants and bars, the mayor reminded the public that today is the first day they may open for inside, sit-down business.
“When you go to restaurants, you may see barriers, tables placed six feet apart, no self-serve areas, all employees wearing face coverings, and none of the extras like billiards, darts, dancing, and arcade games,” Mayor Kapszukiewicz said. “This is the first day so please be patient with servers. To go and curbside pickup is still available in many places. The Ohio investigative unit will be in Toledo working with Toledo Police starting tonight and through the weekend. That team, and a health department restaurant inspector, will be looking at restaurants and bars to make sure they are compliant. They will be doing spot-checking and following up on reports. This team will be working here every Thursday through Monday.”
The mayor also lauded Neighborhood Health Association for its work with vulnerable populations.
“Governor DeWine said cities should place an emphasis on testing the most vulnerable in our communities for COVID-19,” he said. “I am pleased to say that in Toledo, we have been doing that already for weeks. The city, county, and local health department, under Eric Zgodzinski’s leadership, has already partnered for more than a month with Neighborhood Health Association, under the leadership of Doni Miller, to test at sites in East Toledo and near downtown. They have had mobile sites, tested the homeless, and more. The tests are free and available for anyone. To get a test, call 419-214-5700.”
The news conference was streamed live on the city’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/cityoftoledo/.
A recording can be downloaded until May 27, 2020 at this link: https://wetransfer.com/downloads/7771104a9b45adf142563cb66b359c3720200521153102/a36564e728e5906de252b4985448b5c320200521153102/bcb5c5
The city of Toledo has compiled a list of services affected by COVID-19, and available resources, which can be found at this link: https://toledo.oh.gov/news/update-from-the-city-of-toledo-mayor/.
For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.LucasCountyHealth.com. The Lucas County Community COVID-19 call linenumbers are 419-251-4000 (English only) and 419-291-5355 (multilingual). The public is asked to refrain from calling 911 unless it is a true emergency. Call 419-213-4161, press 4, and leave a message to report COVID-19 related matters. The Ohio Department of Health COVID-19 website is www.Coronavirus.Ohio.Gov and the Ohio Department of Health hotline is 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634).