Sommerville reappointed to 4th term as Joint Board of Review chairman

January 19, 2010

Akron City Council President and Ward 3 Councilman Marco Sommerville has been reappointed as chairman of Akron's Joint Board of Review, the body that oversees Akron Public Schools' $900 million city-wide Community Learning Center construction project.

Sommerville was the first chairman appointed to the post in 2004. The Joint Board was officially established in 2003 to work with the Akron Board of Education and the city on the 15-year plan, which includes site selection, design and construction of new Community Learning Centers (CLCs), as well as any enhancements and changes to the district's Master Facilities Plan.

The CLCs are Akron public schools that have been converted to modern school buildings that are also accessible to communities beyond school hours. Since the Joint Board was established, 17 CLCs have been completed throughout the city and eight schools are planned for construction this year.

"It's vitally important that Akron schools are ready today to prepare our city's leaders of tomorrow," Sommerville said. "Modern, state-of-the-art school facilities are the first line of defense in making sure our children are prepared to compete in a 21st-century economy. I am so proud to be a part of this effort by serving on the Joint Board of Review."

The Joint Board of Review is composed of 10 members: five appointed by the Board of Education and five by the city. A new chair person is elected by the Joint Board every year, rotating between a city official and a school board official.

Traditionally, Council's Budget and Finance Committee Chair also serves on the Joint Board. Budget and Finance Committee chair Tina Merlitti (Ward 7) is serving a third term on the Joint Board.

Other members appointed to the Joint Board by the city are Deputy Mayor for Intergovernmental Relations Laraine Duncan, Service Director Richard Merolla and Finance Director Diane Miller-Dawson. Akron Board of Education appointees are: Rev. Dr. Curtis T. Walker, Vice Chairman; Paul Flesher; Jason Haas; James Hardy; and Rhonda Porter.