Issue 64 locks out Cleveland Clinic competitors from land that we own—good for the Clinic but bad for us.

While the former hospital site remains Lakewood’s property, the deal bans competing hospital managers from this land.

No part of this arrangement benefits Lakewood. Fair market competition, which improves services and lowers prices for consumers, is restrained. Meanwhile officials claim an accomplishment in securing the hospital property and building—all of which Lakewood already owned, anyway—yet they have prohibited using it for its most realistic purpose, healthcare.

The only up side for Lakewood is, in fact, that the noncompete clause emphasizes that other organizations are interested in providing health care services in Lakewood. There would be no need for an agreement to block them, otherwise.

This is one more reason to act against 64 in November, and be confident that others recognize the same potential in Lakewood that we do. When we defeat the noncompete, we’ll reopen Lakewood to investment, jobs and important services.