Legal counsel Christopher M. DeVito along with client, Lakewood resident and taxpayer Edward Graham, announced that a letter has been sent to City of Lakewood Law Director Kevin Butler calling on him to file a lawsuit on or before May 1,2015 to “…preserve and ensure the continued operation of Lakewood Hospital for the benefit of the Lakewood community.”
DeVito said that in the event the City fails to file a lawsuit by the May 1st deadline, he will file a lawsuit on behalf of the residents and taxpayers of the City of Lakewood to enforce the City’s contractual rights and hold the Cleveland Clinic accountable for its obligations to operate Lakewood Hospital through the term of the Lease until 2026 for the benefit of the community.
The taxpayer demand letter seeks three determinations under the Ohio Revised Code and the Charter of the City of Lakewood including:
1) an injunction to block the abuse of the corporate power of Lakewood and to ensure the continued operation of Lakewood Hospital;
2) specific performance of the Lease among the City of Lakewood, Lakewood Hospital Association, and the Cleveland Clinic; and 3) a Court Order to compel the City of Lakewood Officials, including the Mayor and City Council, to perform their duties as required by the City Charter and Ordinances to ensure the continued operation of Lakewood Hospital.
The Letter sent to the City states that the taxpayers are holding the Mayor and City Council, Lakewood Hospital Association, Lakewood Hospital Foundation, and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation responsible and accountable for their actions and omissions in managing Lakewood Hospital and failure in being good stewards of these valuable assets in our community. The City should be acting only to protect these assets and manage them in the best interests of the health and welfare of the citizens of the City of Lakewood. The City needs to ignore the strategic plan of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and begin to focus on the economic and healthcare interests of its residents.