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Rep. Brent releases statement about the Cleveland Innovation District announcement

January 25, 2021
Juanita O. Brent News

State Rep. Juanita Brent (D-Cleveland) released the following statement after today’s press conference with state and local leaders announcing the creation of the Cleveland Innovation District.

“The investment into the Cleveland Innovation District is necessary,” said Representative Brent. “With this $565 million investment I hope some of the research efforts will be directed toward maternal/infant mortality and lead poisoning. Cuyahoga County is the 2nd worst of Ohio’s 88 counties in regards to infant mortality. We need investment in the right-sizing services and research to prevent these deaths. Cleveland has lead poisoning levels as high as those in Flint, Michigan. With all of the expected job development from the Cleveland Innovation District, increased investment in public transit is vital. Ohio is 45th in the nation in state funding for public transportation, but 14th when it comes to ridership.

With the median income in Cleveland below the poverty line at just $23,000 per year, I hope this partnership makes serious investments, not just in the businesses here, but in the people who live here. This includes hiring local Clevelanders and creating training opportunities to ensure they are ready for hire for the 20,000 jobs the Cleveland Innovation District hopes to bring. Ohio has to be in the business of taking care of its people. People in Ohio are really struggling right now. I hope that of the several hundred million dollars being invested in this project it makes real investments directly into changing the lives of the people of Cleveland.”