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Mayor Summers Joins FitzGerald on Anti-Poaching Measure

Mayor Michael Summers said County Executive Ed FitzGerald's proposal will lead to "better regional cooperation and advancement."

Mayor Michael Summers will jump on board with County Executive Ed FitzGerald's anti-poaching agreement, he said at Monday’s meeting.

“The elements of this agreement lay the foundation for better regional cooperation and advancement in a more equitable manner,” Summers said.

FitzGerald proposed the “Business Attraction and Anti-Poaching Protocol” this summer as part of his plan to breathe economic life into the county. It asks leaders of the 59 communities to not "poach," or entice, businesses from other cities and towns in the county by offering tax incentives.

If the business instigates relocation talks, under the agreement community leaders would agree to contact the business’ home community and discuss possible revenue-sharing, unless the business asks for confidentiality.

“True economic development means expanding existing businesses and attracting new ones, not simply moving a business from one community to another within the county,” FitzGerald said in an Oct. 15 column in the Plain Dealer.

The agreement has the support of Cleveland’s Chamber of Commerce, known as The Greater Cleveland Partnership.

Council voted Monday to file Summers' communication and send the agreement to the economic development committee for approval.

Summers said the agreement is the first step to bringing Cuyahoga County communities together.

"I've grown to appreciate that Lakewood and all Cuyahoga County communities need to transcend from viewing ourselves as being a community that is in Cuyahoga County, towards a community that is part of Cuyahoga County," he said.

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