Critics earlier this year alleged that Bernie Fiedeldey, a Colerain Township trustee, violated state ethics laws by hiring his grandchildren as township park employees for the last few years. He tried to deflect blame by saying he wouldn't seek a third term as a trustee. Now, however, he's telling supporters he might run again after all. Say it ain't so.
CITY ONLINE HELP: The city of Cincinnati has started a Web site with a simple online form so residents can report problems and request services. Among its various uses are letting the city know about street lights needing new bulbs, pot holes, illegal trash dumping, bed bug infestations and more.
THE ENQUIRER: Admittedly, we have a history of questioning the actions of The Cincinnati Enquirer, but we’ll give them a shout out this week. Editor & Publisher has listed The Enquirer as one of “10 That Do it Right” in 2009.
COAST: The Coalition Opposed to Additional Spending and Taxes (COAST) usually has a sympathetic ear with The Cincinnati Enquirer’s editorial page. After all, the paper shares the group’s “less government is good” creed. Now, however, even The Enquirer is criticizing COAST’s latest ballot referendum.
The Hamilton County Parks District recently bought 184 acres of land in Colerain Township from the Rumpke waste removal and landfill companies. Located next to the Oak Glen Nature Preserve, the site will be preserved as greenspace and was purchased for $1.1 million, with most of the money coming from a Clean Ohio Conservation Grant. We like the smell of that.
WINNERS: Since Hamilton County began its prescription drug discount program in January, 2,694 residents have enrolled. On average, they've saved 20.6 percent on their medications — or $9.51 per purchase. Some skeptics last winter said the program would have little impact.
BLOGGERS: The Illinois-based Save-A-Life Foundation voluntarily dropped its lawsuit this month against local blogger Jason Haap, a.k.a. “The Dean of Cincinnati.” Haap wrote a well-sourced online article alleging the group taught a discredited technique to help drowning victims and misled donors about its finances.
Financially troubled Antioch College in Yellow Springs is getting a new lease on life. The campus, closed since last year, is being bought by a group of alumni for $6 million. The group plans to reopen the school in about two years as an independent college unrelated to Antioch's campuses in Los Angeles, Seattle, Santa Barbara, Calif., and New Hampshire.
Gov. Ted Strickland proposed an additional 50 percent cut in the state's Public Library Fund, the primary funding source for libraries. If approved by lawmakers, the local results would be catastrophic for Hamilton County.
Cincinnati actually got some positive national press about its police for a change. The New Yorker did a glowing article about the Cincinnati Initiative to Reduce Violence (C.I.R.V.), the program begun in July 2007 that targets gang members for intervention and helps them get jobs. This is what happens when the department opens itself to new ideas.