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Neighborhood News, Week of February 16th
A Service of NeighborhoodLink, www.nhlink.net
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Neighborhood News is online at (http://www.nhlink.net/newsletters/)!


In this Edition:

- State of the City Address, 2/18
- 2005 Cleveland Mortgage Bulletin
- Neighborhood Connections Deadline, 2/18

- Kirtland Park Master Planning Meeting, 2/23
- Giving Circle Meeting, 2/16
- Youth Poetry Slam, 2/18

- Free Tax Preparation Assistance
- IRS Advocate Tax Assistance
- Predatory Lending Article

- New Fairfax Renaissance CDC website
- Innerbelt Plan Meeting, 2/24
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State of the City Address, 2/18

This Friday, February 18th at 11:30am, Mayor Campbell will be delivering her 2005 State of the City Address, which will focus upon both issues and accomplishments in the city and its neighborhoods.  The mayor's address will be broadcast on WCPN 90.3 FM and televised on WKYC Channel 3.
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2005 Cleveland Mortgage Bulletin

Every year, the Living in Cleveland Center publishes a fantastic comprehensive guidebook that includes information about why to live in Cleveland, ways to find a home in the city, the role of a realtor in the homebuying process, the importance of house inspections, and insurance.  The bulletin also has GREAT information about Cleveland's neighborhoods and community development corporations.  Download the 2005 Cleveland Mortgage Bulletin at (http://www.livingincleveland.org/), or stop by the Living in Cleveland Center in the Kies Murfey House at 4208 Prospect Avenue!
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Neighborhood Connections Deadline

Just a reminder!  The deadline to submit your proposal for the Neighborhood Connections program is this Friday, February 18th at 5pm.  Complete guidelines are available on the programs website at (http://www.neighborhoodgrants.org/).

Neighborhood Connections is a program of the Cleveland Foundation that allocates small grants to community groups for neighborhood improvement projects.  For more info, please visit (http://www.neighborhoodgrants.org/) or call (216) 861-3810.
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Kirtland Park Master Planning Meeting

Come help plan for the future of Kirtland Park!  The Friends of Kirtland Park and St. Clair Superior Development Corporation will be holding a master planning community meeting Wednesday, February 23rd from 7-9pm at the North Presbyterian Church, 4001 Superior Avenue.  Dinner will be served.

This meeting will be the first in a series of community meetings to develop a park master plan for Kirtland Park, which is located on South Marginal Road at East 49th Street, with the technical expertise of ParkWorks and landscape architect, Jim McKnight.  Additionally, this process will provide an opportunity to develop programming ideas for the park.  Please bring your children, neighbors, and friends!  For more information, please call the St. Clair Superior Development Corporation at (216) 881-0644.
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Giving Circle Meeting

On Wednesday, February 16th at 6pm, the Cleveland Giving Circle will be meeting to discuss various business regarding the establishment of a "colectivo" in the Cleveland area.  The idea behind a giving circle or colectivo is essentially compassionate redistribution: a group of interested persons become members, and make a donation that goes into a pool.  Then, each colectivo member/donor votes on which proposed community projects receives funding.  Giving circles have been successful in other places like the Twin Cities of Minnesota.  Want to attend tonight's meeting or become involved with this grassroots effort?  Please send an email Walter Wright at (wrightww@hotmail.com)!
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Youth Poetry Slam

Come support the children of the Cleveland Muncipal School District as they present their poems in The Ultimate Poetry Slam Contest Friday, February 18th at Lucky's Cafe, 777 Starkweather Avenue in Tremont.

Students in the Cleveland Municipal School District (CMSD) can win a cash prize of $150 and a chance to represent Cleveland at the National Youth Poetry Slam in San Francisco this summer!  Given the recent troubles of the CMSD, including a failed levy, mushrooming budget deficit, outdated textbooks, increased class sizes, and teacher layoffs, students will have the opportunity to sound off in a positive, creative environment about how these challenges have affected their educational experience.  At least one of the three poems written and performed by the students must be about how the lack of school funding has impacted urban education, and must reflect their understanding of 1) Why the Ohio Supreme Court has ruled the funding of schools unconstitutional, 2) How urban school students and their schools are affected, and 3) What should be done about it.

Sponsored by Catalyst Cleveland, in partnership with Playhouse Square and the Classic Cleveland Poetry Slam.  For more info, please contact Daniel Gray-Kontar, former national poetry slam champion and founder of the Classic Cleveland Poetry Slam, at (216) 623-6322 or email (gray-kontar@catalyst-cleveland.org).
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Free Tax Preparation Assistance

From February 1st through April 15th each year, the AARP Tax-Aide program offers free one-on-one counselling, as well as assistance on the telephone and internet to help individuals prepare basic tax forms, including the 1040, 1040A, 1040EZ and other standard schedules.  Many, many locations throughout Cleveland, including CPL branches and neighborhood agencies, will be hosting this service.  To find out the closest locations to you, visit the AARP website at (https://wpp.aarp.org/vmis/sites/tax_aide_locator_adv.jsp).
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IRS Advocate Tax Assistance

There is good news for people struggling with tough tax problems.  The Taxpayer Advocate Service, an independent branch within the IRS, offers free, personal help for individuals with unresolved tax issues or who may be experiencing economic hardship.

The Taxpayer Advocate Service is the best kept secret within the IRS.  They have been able to help taxpayers by expediting refunds, untangling on-going tax problems, stopping collection actions, and ensuring the proper amount of Earned Income Tax Credit is received.

To find out if you are qualified to receive free assistance call TAS toll free at 1-877-ASK-TAS1 or visit their website at (http://www.irs.gov/advocate/).
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New Fairfax Renaissance CDC website

The Fairfax Renaissance Development Corporation has recently launched a new website with information about its organization, the Fairfax neighborhood master plan, current development projects, news, and much more.  Check out Fairfax Renaissance CDC's new website at (http://www.fairfaxrenaissance.org/).
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Innerbelt Plan Meeting, 2/24

The Ohio Department of Transportation invites you to attend a public open house to review the feasible Innerbelt alternatives that are being carrierd forward for further engineering.  ODOT officials and their consultants will be available to answer questions.  This meeting will be held on Thursday, February 24th from 4:30-8:30pm at the Visiting Nurse Association Community Room, 2500 East 22nd Street.  Free parking is available.  For more information, please contact ODOT at (216) 584-2007, or visit (http://www.innerbelt.org/).
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Neighborhood News is now on the web at (http://www.nhlink.net/newsletters/)!  Submit news or events, read past editions, and more!
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Neighborhood News is brought to you by NeighborhoodLink (www.nhlink.net), a service of the Center for Neighborhood Development, Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University


DISCLAIMER: The information provided in this message and the opinions expressed by readers do not necessarily reflect those views of the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs and/or Cleveland State University.
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Neighborhood News - A Service of NeighborhoodLink, www.nhlink.net
Center for Neighborhood Development
Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs
Cleveland State University - Cleveland, Ohio