Watch Meetings
Find My Ward

        Akron City Council

        Weekly Legislative Spotlight

From the Desk of the Council President

Hello Joan,

Welcome our new subscribers. We are so excited that you have decided to join us! To our regular subscribers, thank you for continuing to read Council's Legislative Spotlight.

We share highlights from Council's legislative agenda from the previous Monday's Committee and Council meetings each week. Definitions and information about commonly used terms and council-related facts are also featured.

Please stay connected and abreast of the legislative agenda of Akron City Council.

The information shared in each week's Legislative Spotlight will continue to educate, empower and liberate you to become increasingly engaged with your City Council in making Akron a better place for all its residents.


                                                             Margo Sommerville 

                                 Council President

                                                   Ward 3 Council Member

Legislative Highlights From Monday, May 15, 2023

ORDINANCE NO. 131-2023 authorizing the Mayor to accept the Continuum of Care Planning Grant funds with assurances and certifications with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development; authorizing the Director of Planning and Urban Development to enter into all necessary contracts for the operation and term of the programs; and declaring an emergency.

ORDINANCE NO. 140-2023 amending/supplementing Title 15, Chapter 153, “Zoning Code”, Article 8 “On-Premises Exterior Signs” and Article 11 “Board of Zoning Appeals” regarding ground signs in residential areas; and declaring an emergency.

This change allows community institutions such as schools, parks, churches, and neighborhood community centers located in residential districts to install modestly sized ground signs in their front yards. Under the current Zoning Code, ground signs for non-dwelling uses in residential districts are only allowed behind the building line. Locating a ground sign behind the building line can often be impractical for a church, school, or park, for example, because it does not allow for enough visibility of the sign. As a result, these institutions often request a variance to locate the sign within the front yard setback. The text changes align the requirements for community institutions with the requirements that apply to establishments in business districts. Ground signs will still be restricted in height and located a minimum distance from the right-of-way so as not to obstruct the necessary view of traffic on the street. In addition, the text change slightly increases the allowable area for a non-dwelling sign in a residential district. The proposed change increases the allowable sign size from thirty square feet to thirty-two square feet. Thirty-two square feet is the typical four-foot by eight-foot size of many signage panel materials used by sign fabricators.

View more information about the Zoning Division here.

ORDINANCE NO. 142-2023 authorizing the Director of Finance, or his designee, to enter into a contract or contracts with the Summit County Historical Society for the City of Akron to provide $100,000.00 in financial assistance for improvements to the John Brown House campus; and declaring an emergency. View more information about the John Brown House here.

ORDINANCE NO. 144-2023 authorizing the Mayor, or his designee, to file an application for and, if awarded, accept and expend grant funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Charging and Fueling Infrastructure Grant Opportunity; and declaring an emergency. If awarded, this grant funding will be used to develop an expansive electric vehicle charging station network that provides equitable access to the benefits of such a network. View the information presented during the Public Utilities & Green Committee meeting here.

ORDINANCE NO. 146-2023 authorizing the Mayor or his designee to enter into a contract or contracts with Akron Parks Collaborative for professional and supplemental services related to the improvements of certain parks in the City of Akron; and declaring an emergency. Akron Parks Collaborative will work with the City of Akron to choose 1-2 city parks per year that will be improved and activated through collaboration, community engagement and thoughtful design, reflecting the neighborhood's personality and desires.

Each of these Ordinances passed with a vote of Ayes: 10, Nays: 0

(Holland, Kammer, and Sommerville were absent)



You can see all the legislation discussed during the meeting at:

Check out the calendar on Council's website for

 upcoming ward meetings.

East Market Street Resurfacing

Upcoming Project Information

Public comments are requested by

June 19, 2023.



The City of Akron will be conducting resurfacing for 3.5 miles along East Market Street, between High Street and the I76 westbound ramp, as well as incorporating a lane reduction between East Buchtel Avenue and Case Avenue as well as between Innovation Way and I76. Construction is expected to occur in 2024. The deteriorated asphalt roadway pavement will be resurfaced within the project limits. Utility castings in the road will be adjusted to better match the pavement surface elevation for a smoother riding surface. Curb ramps will be constructed where missing and those in poor condition or not ADA-compliant will be replaced.


Lane Reduction:

A review of traffic accident data showed a total of 238 accidents from 2018 to current on East Market Street between East Buchtel Avenue and Case Avenue. Traffic accidents from 2018 to current total 131 on East Market between Innovation Way and I76. Many of these accidents are contributed to rear-end collisions when vehicles are stopping or slowing down in a travel lane. Sideswipe accidents from changing lanes make up 66 of the crashes. These types of accidents may be reduced by changing the roadway striping from two travel lanes in each direction to one travel lane in each direction with a two-way left turn lane in the middle of the roadway. The reduction in travel lanes affects East Buchtel Avenue to I76 and is not expected to have any detrimental effects on travel time.

This type of resurfacing is recognized as a proven safety countermeasure by the Federal Highway Administration. Studies demonstrate that it can reduce vehicle-to-vehicle crashes and lower vehicle speeds through the corridor.


Questions, comments, and concerns may be sent by June 19, 2023, via email to [email protected] or they can be mailed to:

Akron Engineering Bureau

166 South High Street

Design Division Room 701

Akron, Ohio 44308

Attn: Matthew Neff

Akron Safe Pledge Program

Akron City Council has launched the Akron Safe Pledge Program to provide funding for creating a safe dining experience during a rise in COVID-19 cases this season. 

For more information on how to apply, visit:

Akron City Council Announces $250,000 Akron Safe Pledge Program | Akron City Council.

Rule 2.7 Presiding Officer

Unless otherwise prescribed by these Rules, the President is the presiding officer of the Council. In the President's absence, the Vice-President shall preside; in the absence of both the President and Vice-President, the President Pro-Tem shall preside. In the absence of all of these officers, Council shall choose a temporary presiding officer.

You can view the Rules of Procedure for Akron City Council here.

Upcoming Open Comment Public Hearings

Notices are posted on our website at least 15 days prior to the meeting date. These notices are also advertised in the Akron Beacon Journal at least 15 days prior to the meeting date.

If the Ordinance is a Conditional Use (Zoning measure), a notice is also mailed to the owners and residents of property within, contiguous to, and directly across the street from the property involved in the Ordinance (per Charter Section 34).

You do not need to fill out any forms to participate. You may attend in person in Council Chambers or remotely via videoconference. Those wishing to attend remotely need to notify the Clerk of Council as outlined in the meeting notice in order to receive the information to join remotely.

Are You a New Subscriber?

You can see past issues of the Legislative Spotlight

on our website.

 Akron City Council

Margo Sommerville, President

166 S. High Street, 3rd Floor

Akron, OH 44308

(330) 375 - 2256

Contact Us
Twitter  YouTube