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CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) – The newly formed group called Cleveland First has so far gathered close to 3,000 of the 6,000 signatures needed to put two issues on the ballot.

Cleveland First wants voters to choose whether or not the number of city council members should shrink from 17 to nine, and whether the salary for a Cleveland City council member should be reduced from just over $80,000 dollars a year to $58,000 a year.

Cleveland Businessman Tony George is providing the financial backing to get the issues on the ballot.

“I think when you have smaller government, it’s easier to get things done,” said Tony George, the owner of several Cleveland-area restaurants.

George says Cleveland City Council is too big, and the salaries the current city council members take home is too high for a city of Cleveland’s size.

“We need to streamline government, and with less councilmen, I think you’ll see new faces. We also need fresh blood as well. A lot of these councilmen — I know most of them — have been there for a long time. We need fresh ideas and that’s why these guys came to me,” said George.



Article Courtesy of WOIO Cleveland 19 News

First Picture Courtesy of Jeff Stephens and Getty Images

Second Picture Courtesy of Patricia Toth McCormick and Getty Images

Tweet and Third Picture Courtesy of Twitter and WOIO Cleveland 19 News

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