NewsLocal NewsCuyahoga County

Actions

Beachwood's mayor apologizes, but denies allegations of misconduct during special meeting

Posted at 10:45 PM, Oct 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-30 23:21:06-04

BEACHWOOD, Ohio — Beachwood Mayor Martin Horwitz apologized to residents and city leaders, but denied allegations of misconduct outlined in report presented during packed special meeting at city hall.

Horwitz said he was sorry for any comments he made to city employees they believe were inappropriate.

“I did not intend this, and I apologize for hurting you or causing you embarrassment,” Horwitz said.

“To the city employees who found my words offensive in any way, I am deeply sorry.”

Allegations of misconduct were revealed to citizens in the report compiled by attorneys Carole Rendon and Carrie Valdez who were hired by Beachwood City Council.

Rendon said the report was collected over a two month period and included interviews with 11 current and former Beachwood city employees.

Rendon said the report found 14 out of the 24 allegations were inconsistent with the city’s expectations of workplace conduct.

“Statements that were made in the presence of multiple individuals over a period of 18 months demonstrated a pattern of conduct by Mayor Horowitz,” Rendon said.

Rendon referenced one employee outlining the Mayor's comments while he was standing in between two female candidates running for Cuyahoga County Judge.

"Mayor Horwitz allegedly told an employee that quote, 'This is the first time that I’ve been between two women before, and even though this a complete fantasy of mine, I don’t know who to back,'” Rendon said.

Attorney Carrie Valdez quoted other allegations made by city employees the report deemed as substantiated or highly creditable.

“Mayor Horwitz allegedly told a city employee that his wife was going out of town, and that he was excited for the next four days of hookers and heroine,” Valdez said.

“Mayor Horwitz admitted that during a meeting attended by several city employees from different departments he said to a visibly pregnant city employee, 'You’ve really let yourself go.'”

The vast majority of Beachwood residents showed support for Horwitz during the two hour meeting.

Some residents believed the report and the meeting had a political agenda and were upset that the report could cost taxpayers up to $30,000.

In the end, city council showed its unanimous support, voting 7-0 in favor of not perusing disciplinary action against the Mayor.

Horwitz has agreed to seek additional leadership sensitivity training.

RELATED: Beachwood mayor under investigation for alleged inappropriate comments