General Policy Board Resolutions & Intergovernmental Review

Intergovernmental Review was created by Executive Order 12372 to foster partnership by relying on state and local processes to review and coordinate proposals seeking federal funding. The Order allows each state to designate an entity to perform this function. Eastgate is the designated clearinghouse for Ashtabula, Mahoning, and Trumbull counties. Organizations required to undergo this process as part of their request for federal and/or state funds may submit their proposal information to Eastgate to initiate a review. Once received, Eastgate will issue a letter of confirmation that the process is underway, which shall suffice for any grant application requiring intergovernmental review. Following submission and the letter of confirmation, a resolution will be passed by the Technical Advisory Committee on the first Thursday of the month, excluding August.


For more information on the intergovernmental review process, please contact Sara Wenger at or at 234.354.1505

Technical Advisory Committee (TAC)

September 2017 Notes

September 7, 2017 10:00 AM

Members/Alternatives Present

Blasco, Kim - Cioffi, Tara *Terreri, Faith - Ginnetti, Pat*Durbin, Bob - Hess, Mark - Migliozzi, Frank
Nuskievicz,Trish*Burkholder, Shane - Olmi, Kristen - Picuri, John*Rebillot, Steven
Princic, Kurt*Billett, Pat - Rodriguez, Judy - Shaffer, Gary – Chair - Shasho, Chuck*Bhide, Kedar
Svette, Zachary - Wittman, Don 
Others Present

Bakalar, Dave-Thomas Fok & Associates - Buchenic, Mark-Prime AE Group
Gerberry, Steven-Trumbull County Engineer’s office - Gillespie, Ryan-GPD Group
Hughes, Brian-MS Consultants - Klecha, Dan-GPD Group - Likavec, Tom-LJB Inc.
Maki, George-E.L. Robinson Engineers - McMurray, Marnie-Thomas Fok & Associates
Medina, Jesenia-DLZ - Melfi, Jim-City of Girard - Robertson, Kevin-City of Niles - Schram, Tim
Stewart, Matt-MCRPC/SVATS MPO - Tolnar, Chris-GPD Group - Wollet, Joanne-Poland Township

Members Absent
Mahoning Co. Planning Commission - Makosky, Paul - Warino, Joe

Eastgate Staff Present
Davis, Ed - Dyer, Stephanie - Esenwein, Joann - Gollner, Jeffrey - Kinnick, Jim - Mondok, Justin
Pompeo, Lisa - Reyes-Chapman, Mirta - Sympson, Ken - Wenger, Sara - Zook, Kathy - Zubyk, Stephen

Approval of the Minutes

Gary Shaffer called the meeting to order and entertained a motion for approval of the minutes of the Technical Advisory Committee meeting held on July 6, 2017. Motion was made by Zachary Svette. Seconded by Shane Burkholder. Motion carried unanimously.

District 6 Public Works Integrating Committee
Ed Davis notified the committee that 45 preapplications were submitted for the latest round of OPWC, with a requested grant total of $8.6 million, and a requested loan total of $1.9 million.  The initial spreadsheet with all the projects was completed and emailed to the committee and local communities, and project packets for committee members were available for pick up. The next meeting is on September 19th in the basement of the City Centre One building, and a notice will be sent out prior to the meeting.  

Functional Classification
Ed Davis reported that FHWA approved the Ohio Highway Functional Classification in February 2017, and in August, FHWA approved the National Highway System.  This finalizes the Federal Aid System until the next Census.  Eastgate will prepare a resolution and present it to TAC in October adopting the roadway classifications.  Only a few changes were made from the previous Functional Class system. If any community would like an individual Functional Class map, please send requests to Ken Sympson.

Jeffrey Gollner reminded those in attendance of the importance of participating in the LUCA program in advance of the 2020 census, and directed the group to the Eastgate website for further information.
LUCA Information

Appalachian Regional Commission – Congressional Legislation Update and Grant Program Update
Kathy Zook gave an overview and update of the ARC State and Federal funding allocations, the full application workshop on September 15, 2017, and that applications are due on October 12, 2017. Also discussed was the health disparities handout.
Health Disparities and Bright Spots of Appalachia
Health Disparities: Key Findings

Clean Ohio Program – Round 12 Program Discussion
Stephanie Dyer reported that the actual allocation for Round 12 is $712,363.00, and reminded those in attendance that Round 11 was a competitive round where the District saw more projects than funding allocated, and at that time the NRAC elected to draw money from Round 12’s allocation to fund all of Round 11’s projects, which explained why the actual allocation is less than the total allocation amount for Round 12. She also reported that pre-applications are now available. Those in attendance were also shown a presentation on Clean Ohio Fund information now available on Eastgate’s website includes the District’s calendar, applications and instructions, and Scoring Methodology. All Clean Ohio Program information in on Eastgate’s website under the Environmental Program.

Transit Program Updates – Urban Transit Program, Elderly & Disabled Fare Assistance, OTPPP, and Diesel Emission Reduction Grant Information
Mirta Reyes-Chapman reported that transit agencies in urbanized areas with populations of 50,000 or greater can apply for the Urban Transit Program funding grant program, and that this is important to our urban area because the Western Reserve Transit Authority (WRTA) is listed as a “Category IV-Intermediate Bus Systems” and Trumbull Transit System (TTS) is listed as a Category V-Small Bus System,” and the TTS received $52,363 dollars and the WRTA received $247,000. The next discussion was the Elderly & Disabled Transit Fare Assistance Program which provides financial assistance to ODOT eligible public transportation systems who offer reduced fares to the elderly and people with disabilities. At this time, ODOT’s disbursement of E&D funding for our transit agencies is still pending. An overview of the OTPPP was discussed next with applications due on September 15, 2017 in ODOT’s Black Cat software program. Priority will be given to agencies requesting vehicle replacement. Lastly, the DERG grant program for transit agencies and WRTA’s Free for All Day were discussed. The deadline for the DERG program is September 15, 2017, and more information can be found on the Ohio EPA’s website, and WRTA’s website for the Free for All Day.
SFY 2018 Urban Transit Program

Traffic Counting Program – New Counter Info/Demo
Jeffrey Gollner showed the group the newly purchased traffic counters and described their capabilities.

2040 Metropolitan Transportation Plan Update– Implementation & Monitoring Strategy; Funding
Sara Wenger provided information on the 2040 MTP Update, overviewing funding for the fiscally-constrained project list and implementation tools such as performance-based planning and performance measures.

Fiscal Year 2018-2021 TIP- Update Through GPB Resolution #023-2017
Stephen Zubyk presented the committee with GPB Resolution #023-2017, explaining that all of the projects listed in the Resolution are existing projects, and either need identified in the TIP, a new funding source identified in the TIP, or some additional funding on a currently programmed phase.  

Transportation Alternatives Program – List of Projects Submitted and Selection Committee Update
Stephen Zubyk presented the committee with a list of twelve projects that were submitted for the latest TAP funding round, and explained who the selection committee consisted of and will notify them in the future of what projects are being recommended for funding.

Director’s Report
Jim Kinnick discussed the free Performance Based Practical Design seminar that will be held in conjunction with the October 5th TAC meeting, and a handout was distributed with the details of the event.  He also requested that any community that has a project that may not involve Eastgate, to please let Eastgate know about the project so staff can support the project when asked. Steve Rebillot and Stephanie Dyer echoed that request.

GPB Resolutions for Passage

GPB Resolution #022-2017, IGR Log #17-006
Resolution supporting through the Intergovernmental Review Process an application to the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Assistance to Coal Communities (ACC) Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) Program for the Youngstown State University Excellence Training Center, an Advanced Manufacturing Education and Training Center ($2,000,000). A motion was made by Kristen Olmi and seconded by Zachary Svette.  Motion carried unanimously.

GPB Resolution #023-2017
Resolution Amending the FY2018–2021 Transportation Improvement Program of the Eastgate Regional Council of Governments to add new projects and additional funding to the Bedford Road Widening Project. A motion was made by Zachary Svette and seconded by Bob Durbin.  Motion carried unanimously.

GPB Resolution #024-2017, IGR Log #17-007
Resolution supporting through the Intergovernmental Review Process an application to the Ohio Development Services Agency’s Office of Community Development, for a Community Development Block Grant Program Year 2017 Critical Infrastructure Program ($300,000). A motion was made by Zachary Svette and seconded by Mark Hess.  Motion carried unanimously.

GPB Resolution #025-2017, IGR Log #17-008
Resolution supporting through the Intergovernmental Review Process an application to the Ohio Development Services Agency’s Office of Community Development, for a Community Development Block Grant Program Year 2017 Community Development Program ($535,000). A motion was made by Zachary Svette and seconded by Shane Burkholder.

GPB Resolution #026-2017, IGR Log #17-009
Resolution supporting through the Intergovernmental Review Process an application to the Ohio Development Services Agency’s Office of Community Development, Community Development Block Grant Program Year 2017 Critical Infrastructure Program ($58,000). A motion was made by Zachary Svette and seconded by Bob Durbin.  Motion carried unanimously.


Justin Mondok showed those in attendance some of the new additions to Eastgate’s updated website, including the Top News and Events Calendar. Ken Sympson reported that six CMAQ applications were submitted and scoring will take place at the end of September. He will provide an update at the October TAC meeting.   

Gary Shaffer entertained a motion for adjournment. A motion was made by Mark Hess and seconded by Zachary Svette.  Motion carried unanimously.

Citizens Advisory Board (CAB)

September 2017 Notes

September 7, 2017

Members Present

Jim Pirko, Chairman - Genevieve Germaniuk - John Getchey - Fred Hanley - Gerald Hurayt - Keven Kern 
Don Rex - RP Samulka


Phil Kidd

Eastgate Staff

Justin Mondok - Sara Wenger

Call to Order

Chairman Pirko called the meeting to order at 6:06 P.M.

Approval of the Minutes

Mr. Hanley made a motion to approve the July 6th, 2017 CAB meeting minutes. The motion was seconded by Mr. Getchey. The motion passed unanimously.

Guest Speaker

Mr. Mondok, Transportation Planner at Eastgate reviewed the MPO’s involvement in air quality, looking at local as well as national issues regarding ozone and particulates. Mr. Mondok provided an overview of best practices for lowering risks through efficiency and travel demand. The CAB received a demonstration on Gohio, a platform for carsharing as well as vanpools, transit, walking, biking, and driving. Mr. Mondok answered questions presented by the CAB.

Technical Advisory Committee

Ms. Wenger reported on the TAC meeting held at 10 AM this morning, September 7th, 2017.

Ad Hoc Committees Report

Ms. Wenger and Mr. Mondok reported on Grow Mahoning Valley, Digital Literacy Working Group, and the Mahoning River Corridor Initiative.


General Policy Report

Mr. Samulka reported on the speakers at the July 31st, 2017 GPB.

Old Business


New Business

Mr. Samulka made a motion to appoint Gerald Hurayt to the Transportation Alternatives Scoring Committee. Mr. Hanley seconded. The motion passed unanimously. Mr. Hanley made  motion to appoint Mr. Samulka to the Moving Communities Forward FY18 Planning Grant Scoring Committee. Mr. Hurayt seconded. The motion passed unanimously. Members asked questions to the staff about the planning grant. Ms. Wenger reported on the renovation of conference room and staff changes. Mr. Mondok presented Eastgate’s updated website to membership.


Ms. Wenger requested considered a consent agenda to limit the amount of time spent reading aloud each of the resolutions. Membership disagreed with the request.


Prior to adjournment a motion was made by Mr. Hurayt, seconded by Mr. Hanley. The motion passed unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 7:16 PM.

October 2017 Notes

October 5, 2017

Members Present

Jim Pirko, Chairman - Genevieve Germaniuk - John Getchey - Gerald Hurayt - Keven Kern - Don Rex -
RP Samulka


Alex Czayka

Eastgate Staff

Sara Wenger

  1. Call to Order Chairman Pirko called the meeting to order at 6:06 P.M.
  2. Approval of the Minutes The minutes were tabled for the November meeting.
  3. Guest Speaker Alex Czayka, Eastern Field Director for the Western Reserve Land Conservancy provided an overview of the mission and work of the Conservancy, which includes land conservation and restoration. Mr. Czayka reviewed urban revitalization efforts, as well as basic land protection tools that include conservation easements, land acquisition for public parks, and the conservation buyer program. Mr. Czayka also provided information on Clean Ohio projects in Ashtabula, Mahoning, and Trumbull counties including the Eqypt Swamp, Sugar Island, and McKelvey Lake.
  4. Technical Advisory Committee Report Ms. Wenger reported on the TAC meeting held at 10 AM this morning, providing updates on the District 6 Public Works Integrating Committee, Clean Ohio Program, Ohio Statewide Urban CM/AQ Committee, and the FY2017 Program Summary Report.
  5. Ad Hoc Committees Report No Update
  6. General Policy Board Report The next General Policy Board is October 30th, John Boccieri is the guest speaker.
  7. Old Business Mr. Hurayt reported on the Transportation Alternatives Scoring Committee projects. Members discussed parking in Warren.
  8. New Business Mr. Hurayt recommended nominations for Chairman and Vice Chair for the upcoming year. In November members will nominate and self-nominate and voting will take place in December.
  9. General Policy Board Resolutions
  10. Announcements Ms. Wenger announced that Genna Petrolla joined Eastgate staff as Economic Development Planner. The Planner position will be announced soon to the public. Eastgate is currently seeking an accountant. She also made reference to the Warren address where Eastgate will have a satellite office and that Eastgate will be applying to U.S. DOT for a competitive grant.
  11. Adjournment Prior to adjournment a motion was made by Mr. Hurayt, seconded by Mr. Samulka. The motion passed unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 7.34 PM.

November 2017 Notes

November 2, 2017

Members Present

Jim Pirko, Chairman - Robert Faulkner - John Getchey - Gerald Hurayt - Keven Kern - Jerome Parm -
Don Rex - RP Samulka


Dionne Dowdy - Janet Hazlette - Lauren Johnson - Terry Thomas - Chris Tavers

Eastgate Staff

Joann Esenwein - Sara Wenger

  1. Call to Order Chairman Pirko called the meeting to order at 6:03 P.M.
  2. Approval of the Minutes Mr. Samulka made a motion to approve the September 7th and October 5th CAB meeting minutes. The motion was seconded by Mr. Getchey. The motion passed unanimously.
  3. Guest Speaker Ms. Johnson, 422 Corridor and Mahoning County Business Development Representative for the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber provided an overview of the 422 Corridor Redevelopment project. Ms. Johnson reviewed the objectives of the planning process, the outcomes of the plan, and what has been implemented from the plan including roadway improvements, landscaping, and funding to remove gas tanks.
  4. Technical Advisory Committee Report Ms. Wenger reported on the TAC meeting held at 10 AM this morning, providing updates on the District 6 Public Works Integrating Committee, Clean Ohio Program, Mahoning River Restoration, Moving the Community Forward Planning Grant, Safety, and other topics.
  5. Ad Hoc Committees Report Ms. Wenger reported that the Digital Literacy Working group, Regional Economic Development Committee, and Grow Mahoning Valley will be meeting in November.
  6. General Policy Board Report Mr. Samulka reported on the GPB, held on October 30th.
  7. Old Business Mr. Hurayt nominated Mr. Samulka as Chair and Mr. Pirko as Vice Chair. Voting will take place in December. Eastgate staff was reminded to print on both sides.
  8. New Business Ms. Wenger described recent activity at the agency, including the submission of a Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant to the U.S. Department of Transportation, the City of Youngstown receiving an ODNR Clean Ohio Fund Recreational Trails grant, the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC) Conference, Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO) Conference, and adding Grant Taylor to the staff. Topics of discussion included televising the CAB presentations.
  9. General Policy Board Resolutions

    GPB RESOLUTION #38-2017

    Resolution of the Eastgate Regional Council of Governments supporting the MAP-21/FAST Act Safety Performance Management Targets

    A motion was made by Mr. Hurayt and seconded by Mr. Samulka. The motion passed unanimously.

  10. Announcements Ms. Johnson was recognized for her work in securing funding for the Trumbull County Land Bank. Mr. Hess was recognized for his years of service.
  11. Adjournment Prior to adjournment a motion was made by Mr. Hurayt, seconded by Mr. Samulka. The motion passed unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 7.13 PM.

December 2017 Notes

December 7, 2017

Members Present

Jim Pirko, Chairman - Genevieve Germaniuk - Fred Hanley - Gerald Hurayt - RP Samulka


Ira Cross

Eastgate Staff

Ken Sympson - Genna Petrolla


Call to Order Chairman Pirko called the meeting to order (time not recorded).

Approval of the Minutes Mr. Samulka made a motion to approve the November 2nd CAB meeting minutes. The motion was seconded by Mr. Hanley. The motion passed unanimously.

Guest Speaker Mr. Sympson, Director of Transportation, provided an overview of the 2040 Metropolitan Transportation Update including demographic changes, reauthorization changes, and the project list. Public comment of the draft will talk place after the new year.

Technical Advisory Committee Report Mr. Sympson reported on the TAC meeting held at 10 AM this morning, providing updates on the Census workshop and new Appalachian Regional Commission funding.

Ad Hoc Committees Report Mr. Sympson reported that the Mahoning River Corridor Initiative will be meeting on December 18th. Membership expressed interest in more information and updates from the Mahoning River Corridor Initiative. Mr. Hurayt provided an update from reviewing the Transportation Alternatives applications.

General Policy Board Report No report.  

Old Business Mr. Hanley made a motion to approve Mr. Samulka as Chair and Mr. Pirko as Vice Chair for the 2018 Calendar Year. The motion was seconded by Mr. Hurayt. The motion passed unanimously. A second motion was made by Mr. Hanley to approve Mr. Samulka at the Mahoning County representative and Mr. Pirko as the Trumbull County representative to the General Policy Board. The motion was seconded by Mr. Samulka. The motion passed unanimously.

New Business Ms. Petrolla introduced herself to membership and provided information on the upcoming Innovations Conference.

General Policy Board Resolutions None.

Announcements Ms. Germaniuk announced that the Holiday Concert at Stambaugh Auditorium on December 17th will benefit the Second Harvest Food Bank.

Adjournment Prior to adjournment a motion was made by Mr. Hanley, seconded by Mr. Hurayt. The motion passed unanimously. The meeting adjourned (time not recorded).


Mahoning River Corridor Initiative

December 2017 Notes

December 18, 2017


Sarah Lown-WRPA - Randy Partika-WRPA - Lauren Johnson-Regional Chamber -
Trish Nuskievicz-Trumbull County Planning Commission -
Nic Coggins-Trumbull County Planning Commission - Don Rex-Friends of the Mahoning River -
Pete Morabito-Friends of the Mahoning River - Zachary Svette-Trumbull County Metro Parks -
Justin Mondok-Eastgate - Joann Esenwein-Eastgate - Grant Taylor-Eastgate

Election of Chair

The first order of business was to elect a Chair and Vice Chair for the MRCI.  Mr. Svette was nominated as Chair and Ms. Lown Vice Chair, there was no other nominations.  Mr. Coggins made a motion to approve Mr. Svette as Chair and Ms. Lown as Vice Chair, Mr. Partika seconded, vote taken and approved.  Mr. Svette took over the running of the meeting.

Mahoning River Mayors’ meeting update

Ms. Lown and Mr. Partika gave an update of the Mayors of the Mahoning River meeting:  The meeting was held on December 1, 2017 in Girard.  The guest speaker was Mr. John Honek from the Greater Ohio Policy Center.  Mr. Honek spoke about Greater Ohio Policy Center’s attempt to revitalize the brownfield’s funds.  They are proposing to do this with State liquor taxes. Currently they have no legislative support. 

Mr. Covellio from the Youngstown/Warren Chamber spoke about their drive in/fly initiative.  The agenda will be driven by sponsors of the event, they will pick three issues to discuss. 

Representative Holmes also spoke, he discussed the budget and the proposed tax collection bill.

Ms. Esenwein updated the Mayors about the Clean Ohio application changes. 

Mahoning River Restoration and Dam Removal update

Ms. Esenwein gave an update on the Mahoning river.  Struthers received WRRSP funding and Eastgate is setting up a meeting with appropriate people to assure everything keeps moving and gets done according to the WRRSP process and schedule. 

Clean Ohio

Mr. Svette gave an update on the revised clean Ohio application.  The revisions will make Urban area projects more competitive when scored.  The application and revised scoring are on the Eastgate web page. 


Ms. Johnson provide information on her successful brownfields grant application for $100,000.  The abandoned gas station is now under the management of the

Trumbull County Land Bank and is looking to be cleaned up in 6 months.

Members updates 

Mr. Svette informed the committee the OEPA is doing soil sampling in the Trumbull County Parks. This information will be used to help determine cleanup standards for brownfields and other sites.

Mr. Coggins informed the committee the Trumbull county Planning Commission offers a revolving loan to encourage companies to move to Trumbull County. 

Ms. Nuskievicz mentioned the Trumbull County Planning Commission started work on the Trumbull County, county wide comprehensive plan.

Ms. Lown announce the WRPA is holding a community economic development tools workshop on Jan. 25, 2018 at TEBIC.   She also mentioned the Mayors’ annual policy update will be mid. Feb. 2018, this is when representatives give policy agenda updates to the Mayors. 

Open Discussion 

Names where put in the members spots for the MRCI committee based on the structure in the by-laws.

The committee members are:

  1. Dominic Marchionda representing Youngstown State University  
  2. Sarah Lown representing the Western Reserve Port Authority
  3. Lauren Johnson representing Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber
  4. Julie Green representing Trumbull County Commissioners  
  5. Trish Nuskievicz representing Trumbull County Planning Commission with Nick Coggins as alternate
  6. Anna DeAsentis representing Mahoning County Commissioners
  7. Justin Mondok representing Eastgate Regional Council of Governments with Grant Taylor as alternate
  8. Standing Chair representing Mahoning River Mayor’s Association  


    At-Large positions:

  9. Zach Svette representing Trumbull County Parks,
  10. Randy Partika representing the Mahoning River Mayors Association,
  11. Pete Morabito representing the Friends of the Mahoning River with Don Rex as alternate 

Follow-up action items for next meeting

Ms. Nuskievicz inquired about completing the Mahoning River watershed plan.  Ms. Esenwein stated she will talk to Ms. Dyer and Mr. Mondok about it.

The WRPA will work with Eastgate staff on site mapping. 

Next meeting date and agenda items 

Staying with quarterly meetings, the next meeting will be March 19, 2018 – 10am at Eastgate.  We will start to schedule every other meeting at TEBIC after March.

Possible agenda items:  Inviting the OEPA to provide an update on the Mahoning River study.

Update on the City of Struthers and Lowellville River restoration and dam removal projects.

Meet with the Girard Dam owners at an informational meeting to the property owners about the river restoration and dam removal projects.

Regional Economic Development Committee

January 2017 Notes

January 20, 2017

Members Present

Bert Cene - Julie Edwards - Lance Grahn - Mark Winchell - Mario Nero* - Mike Hripko


Frank Beck - Jonathon Fauvie - Sarah Lowry - Aaron Young - Krista Beniston - Stephanie Landis -   David Gemmel - Teresa Miller - Jason Loree - Phil Kidd - Jim Freeze - Grace Freeze

Eastgate Staff

Jeannie Donatelli - Joann Esenwein - Jim Kinnick - Sara Wenger

Approval of Minutes

A motion was made by Mark Winchell to approve the December 18 meeting minutes. Mike Hripko seconded the motion. 

Project & Initiative Update

Dominic Marchionda presented on projects and initiatives out of the Regional Economic Development Initiative at Youngstown State University.  He spoke of the current projects in the City of Youngstown and how they strategically align with the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS), as well as economic development in the city.  Mr. Marchionda talked about the INPLACE Project where five project teams were awarded: Solar Screen; Mahoning Avenue Archway; Wedge at Hazel Hill (green infrastructure approach); Shipping Container to Bus Shelter; and Light the Community (Phase 2 of the amphitheater/park project).  Projects are intended to be implemented by July 31st of this year.

Mr. Marchionda also talked about the City Center Design Guide which is a reverse engineering of the TIGER application and includes recommendations of the wayfinding signage plan. The guide will be utilized for five roadways that are expected to receive funds. The City of Youngstown will next be applying for a Center City to Mill Creek Metroparks Connector Project form the Clean Ohio Trail Fund through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. 

Indicators of Economic Competitiveness: Comparing Metros

Sara Wenger presented initial findings on peer metros to determine potential causes of population decline and gain. The presentation was created to answer some questions regarding the human capital statistics reviewed at the previous REDC meeting. Ms. Wenger reviewed population information for the Youngstown MSA including population loss due to migration, low international immigration, and poor health outcomes. She reviewed where migrants to and from the area are moving.

Ms. Wenger then reviewed work on comparing metros similar to Youngstown in size and economic composition. Over thirty MSA’s were compared and narrowed down to Canton, Ohio; Chattanooga, Tennessee; Davenport, Iowa; Flint, Michigan; Fort Wayne, Indiana; Hickory, North Carolina; Huntington, West Virginia; Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Peoria, Illinois; Reading, Pennsylvania; Scranton, Pennsylvania; Winston-Salem, North Carolina; and York, Pennsylvania. Out of these metros, Youngstown, Flint, Huntington, and Canton are projected to lose population. Over one hundred and fifty metrics were reviewed for each of the metros. Initial findings suggest that shrinking metros struggle with education attainment, business development, and innovation.

Ms. Wenger suggested a multi-pronged approach as outlined in the CEDS to address population decline. The first set of recommendations includes “fixing the basics” such as improving neighborhoods, education attainment, and new business starts. The second set of recommendations include embracing globalization through encouraging migration, capturing Youngstown State University as a driver of research, and branding and identifying competitive advantages.

Ms. Wenger will put a report together of the findings. The group discussed potential avenues for addressing the outcomes of the research. Recommendations from this discussion include better understanding of tradable clusters, growing YSU internationally, supporting new residents, finding capital for business expansion.

Old Business

Ms. Wenger reminded the Committee that the bylaws are in review and a chair will be determined at a later date.

Partner Updates & Discussion

Aaron Young noted that Mill Creek Park is working with the Regional Chamber on a procurement event to take place on Feb. 16th.  Jim Kinnick promoted Eastgate’s Annual Meeting on March 2nd at the DeBartolo Stadium Club at YSU. 

Adjourn – 11:30

No motion was made.

March 2017 Notes

March 17, 2017

Members Present

Sarah Boyarko - Julie Edwards - Lance Grahn - Mike Hripko - Mike Keys - Greg Myers - Mark Winchell -
Laura Tubo


John Bralich - Nick Cretien - Jeff Crowly - Sarah Lowry - Dominic Marchionda

Eastgate Staff

Jeannie Donatelli - Joann Esenwein - Sara Wenger

Approval of Minutes

A motion was made by Mr. Winchell to approve the January 20th, 2017 meeting minutes. Ms. Boyarko seconded the motion.

Approval of Bylaws

Ms. Wenger reviewed with the Committee changes to the bylaws, stating that 2017 is a year of transition and that the bylaws will not go into effect until January 2018. Mike Keys made a motion to approve the bylaws and Julie Edwards seconded.

Project & Initiative Update

Mr. Marchionda shared a video of the City of Youngstown’s application for ArtPlace that focuses on the Youngstown Playhouse. The City of Youngstown was successful in being awarded DollarWise – Mayors for Financial Literacy from The United States Conference of Mayors. The $10,000 grant will be used for a financial literacy program administered by the Community Initiative to Reduce Violence (C.I.R.V.). REDI is working on an application for the Department of Justice’s Second Chance Act for a Reentry Program that requires a number of partners and will include resources for substance abuse co-occurring disorders. On March 3rd, InPLACE held a public presentation on the five projects. Only one team has yet to seek approval from the Design Review Committee.

Ashtabula Best Practices – Succession Planning Initiative

Mr. Winchell began with a history of the 503 Corporation, which began in 1983 to provide gap financing when interest rates were high. The organization has modified its approach by seeking the needs of the business community through business retention and expansion visits. Mr. Winchell mentioned that he saw a trend in mid to late-career professionals getting involved in vineyards and wineries. He saw this as an opportunity for family-owned business owners who are near retirement may not have prepared their business for sale. AC503c and others are working on bringing in members of Ashtabula County Leadership to discuss entrepreneurship and work with older businesses on succession planning. It was described as creating a network for potential buyers and sellers of local businesses to get to know each other and work towards transactions to keep companies local.

Niles Planning Update

Mr. Bralich reviewed the partners and funding sources that made the City of Niles Housing Survey possible, which included the National Association of Realtors, Warren Area Board of Realtors, City of Niles, and Avenue & Main. In 2016 over sixty volunteers inventoried housing stock and sidewalk conditions that were used to design and target enforcement policies. The methodology for the survey was based on the Youngstown 2010 process. Seventy-three percent of occupied housing in Niles is rated “A.” The City of Niles will use the survey results to work with Trumbull Neighborhood Partnership to encourage young homeowners. Mr. Crowley described the creation of Project Hope. There was a discussion about mechanisms for selling houses through local banks, introducing employer subsidies, and expanding the Community Reinvestment Area (CRA).

2016 Recap

Ms. Wenger updated the group on the CEDS. An annual report will be sent to EDA this month and Ms. Wenger reviewed its contents. The report is available on Eastgate’s website. Ms. Wenger reviewed the performance metrics and received feedback on next steps such as better determining how our actions impact our outputs.

CEDS Discussion

The Committee had a discussion on how to better communicate the need for succession planning. Ms. Lowry mentioned the Ohio Employee Ownership Center at Kent State University. It was discussed that the best approach is peer to peer and through retention and expansion outreach. REDC/EAG may pursue identifying potential owners near retirement and mid-career entrepreneurs.

Partner Updates

Valley Growth Ventures LLC is looking for deals ranging from $500,000-$1,000,000. The Ohio Federal Research Network will host an event April 20th at YBI. Ms. Edwards will be leaving TCPC and Nick Coggins will assume her duties. Hubbard adopted its comprehensive plan and Girard and Warren are on schedule for completion. Mr. Humphries will retire at the end of 2017, Mr. Dignan will join June 1st.


Mr. Winchell made a motion to adjourn. Ms. Boyarko seconded.

May 2017 Notes

May 19, 2017

Members Present

Sarah Boyarko - Bert Cene - Nick Coggins - Mike Conway - Mike Hripko - Mike Garvey - Greg Myers - James Pirko - Anthony Trevena (Alt) - Sharon Woodberry


Kevin Alin - Daniel Bancroft - Guy Coviello - Mitchell Franko - Kevin Kern - Sarah Lowry -
Dominic Marchionda - Eric Romich

Eastgate Staff

Jeannie Donatelli - Joann Esenwein - Sara Wenger

Approval of Minutes

A motion was made by Mr. Cene to approve the March 17th, 2017 meeting minutes. Mr. Hripko seconded.

Project Presentation

Mr. Trevena presented to the Committee the potential for distributing cost-efficient energy for the central business district of Youngstown. The Western Reserve Port Authority is working with partners to determine the need and how to phase acquisition and expansion. Mr. Garvey presented a motion of support of the regional significance of this project and its need for financing. Mr. Conway seconded.

Introduction to Presenters

Ms. Wenger reviewed the “Building Sustainable Communities in Ohio’s Shale Region: Leveraging Manufacturing Clusters and Local Assets with Strategic Planning” project that looked at how regions can effectively manage the immediate impacts of shale development with long-term economic viability and sustainability. The project included an advanced industry cluster analysis and capacity assessment of jobs created. Regional growth in Transportation Equipment Manufacturing was the most pronounced. Ms. Wenger explained how the findings were incorporated into the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy.

Presentation & Discussion

Mr. Romich presented on research at the Ohio State University Extension since the conclusion of the partner study. The first study looked at a model to measure economic change in energy economies in metro and non-metro areas. The takeaways from this study are:

  • Comparing the job creation effects of energy shocks to equal-sized shocks in the rest of the economy, growth elsewhere in the economy generally had larger net positive spillovers, possibly because the energy sector imports many of their key inputs such as drilling equipment from elsewhere.
  • This is a reminder that balanced development of a mix of industries is more beneficial to local economies, as it is able to create more jobs and to avoid the so-called resource curse when overdependence on energy sector hampers long-term growth.

    The second study examined the relationship between energy sector expansion and small business entrepreneurship across counties. This study responds to the “big push” theory where resource-rich communities can have new long term growth through the accumulation of wealth that helps enhance agglomeration effects. The results of the research suggest that oil and gas sector expansion is associated with crowding-out of self-employment and entrepreneurship, which implies weaker long-term growth.

    Following the presentation the Committee made several comments that led to the following questions:

  • How can anchor employers be assisted in maintaining new and existing employees as people are pushed towards higher-wage short-term opportunities in oil and gas?
  • How can we as a region better communicate our resources and assets during mid and down-stream development? How can we maximize our growth from resource development?
  • What clusters in our region will benefit most from this fractionization?
  • How have other regions sourced materials for shale plays?
  • How can we cover ourselves on both ends of energy pricing?
  • Is there potential for any legacy fund creation?
  • How can we help individual companies better diversify?

Partner Updates

Mr. Marchionda presented on the INPLACE show that will be occurring in June at the McDonough Museum. Ms. Wenger announced that the Regional Innovation Strategies application round is open.


Mr. Hripko made a motion to adjourn. Ms. Woodberry seconded.

July 2017 Notes

July 21, 2017

Members Present

Terry Louk (Alt) - Genna Petrolla (Alt) - Anthony Trevena (Alt) - Mark Winchell


Corrie Adams - Daniel Bancroft - John Bralich - Leslie Brothers - Nick Chretian - Jonathon Fauvie -
Brian Friedman - Casey Krell - Sharon Letson - Dominic Marchionda - RJ Thompson - Charlie Nelson

Eastgate Staff

Jeannie Donatelli - Joann Esenwein - Celestia Hathhorn - Sara Wenger - Kathy Zook

Approval of Minutes

There wasn’t a quorum for approval.

Mercy Health Update – Healthcare in the Valley

Mr. Fauvie provided an overview of the hospital system’s mission. In 2016, the Mercy Health Foundation disbursed over $5 million with a community benefit of over $356 million. The Foundation’s 2017 priorities include opiates/human trafficking, behavioral health, and infant mortality. The Joanie Abdu Comprehensive Breast Care Center was voted the best comprehensive breast care center in the country. The Center is engaging more women than ever through the Mobile Mammovan. Recently Mercy launched a Navigator program to help those most frequently using the system. Mercy is a training ground for those that address human trafficking. Resource Mothers and Centering Pregnancy address infant mortality. A new program called Beds to Meds will give people the medication they need to recover. Mr. Fauvie reviewed several other community partnerships such as Invest Health, Iron Roots Farm, and YSUScape.

Unleashing the Power of Creative Placemaking and Arts-Based Economic Development

Mr. Friedman is providing technical assistance through the INPLACE project, his specialty is arts-based business and artists real estate. Mr. Friedman illustrated creative placemaking (artists involved through entire project development) through initiatives in Collinwood such as the Ballot Box Project, working with charrtr schools, workforce programs to retain music production with 3Cs, and a five-year commitment program for artists as tenants. Mr. Friedman advocates for small wins through projects such as murals, sculptures, popup galleries, oral stories, festivals, incubators, and other examples. Mr. Friedman expressed that artists are here but the ecosystem isn’t strong, need to work on critical mass. He also advocates for communities to make the permitting process simple or non-existent to attract artists from other communities.

Analysis of Business Owners’ Age in Mahoning and Trumbull Counties

Ms. Hathhorn provided an overview to a project where she combined demographic and business data. Nationally, 51.7% of businesses are owned by individuals 50-88 years of age. In Trumbull County over 54% of businesses are owned by individuals 56 and older. The average age is 58. In Mahoning County over 50% of businesses are owned by individuals 56 and older and the average age is also 58. The top industries for 18-35 years are services (54.5%) followed by retail (16.7%) and food/restaurant (9.8%). The top industries for 70-80 years is services (55.8%) followed by finance/real estate/trucking (12.8%) and retail (12.0%). Ms. Hathhorn recommends further investigation into the number of owners that live out of the state and father/son owners. The Committee discussed the need to better understand where owners live, as there is a perception that they live outside the community because of quality of life needs such as retail. Eastgate will continue to further develop this database to address succession planning needs.

Update on ARC & EDA Projects

Ms. Zook provided an overview of the ARC program, the types of grants available, and requirements for applying. Ms. Wenger gave an update on the Committee’s priority projects and available EDA funding.

Partner Updates

Mr. Bancroft informed the Committee that YSU REDI and Eastgate will be issuing a young professionals survey to understand how to retain and attract talent.


There wasn’t a quorum.