Berding resigned from Cincinnati City Council in March, after he
butted heads with his fellow Democrats in council chambers and berated
them on WLW (700 AM). After Jeff lost support from the police and
firefighter unions for his flip-flop on layoffs, his last bastion of
support evaporated. Berding retired to the comfort of his office at Paul
Westboro Baptist Church came to town
today to protest at Oak Hills High School and Miami University over
“what the queers are doing to our soil.” When asked to comment on how
exactly homosexuals have ruined the soil around any large U.S. city with
a big underground homosexual population, a Westboro representative said
the queers are in it with the aliens building landing strips for gay
martians and then got really frustrated trying to explain how burrow
owls live in the ground.
It’s a coincidence of timing that this issue of CityBeat contains a news article about a recent panel discussion on “the vanishing middle class.” People familiar with the topic probably already know one of the article’s salient points: Although worker productivity has increased significantly since the mid-1970s, wages for many workers have remained flat or even dropped in inflation-adjusted dollars. The people benefiting from the increased productivity are the wealthiest one-fifth of Americans, who saw their share of income increase. Most of us are working harder but we’re not reaping the fruits of our labor.
How a person reacts in adversity reveals a lot about his or her character. In a move reminiscent of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Cincinnati City Councilman Jeff Berding announced last week that he was resigning soon, despite having another year left on his term. As the reason for his departure, Berding said he needed to focus on his day job as sales and marketing director for the Cincinnati Bengals. Berding’s given reason probably is true, but it’s only part of the story.
Last week's extended soap opera at City Hall about how to fill a $54.7 million deficit in the budget ended anti-climatically, with differing City Council factions temporarily solving the dilemma by resorting to the same sort of tricks they did last year — instead of showing leadership or political courage, the mayor and nine elected council members decided to use $27 million in one-time sources of cash to patch over the immediate problem and approve studies into possible changes that could yield the rest of the savings.
Even as Cincinnati officials grapple with what cuts to make to avoid a $54 million deficit — cuts that might include laying off more than 100 cops — the city's arrogant, clueless police chief Tom Streicher spent money from the CPD budget for an extravagant, unnecessary junket to Las Vegas.
Anyone familiar with the political career of Cincinnati City Councilman Jeff Berding probably isn't too surprised that some local groups are accusing him of being “two-faced” and reneging on a promise he allegedly made behind closed doors. The groups say Berding told Cincinnati's police union that he would only support the city's proposed streetcar system if it was fully funded by federal grants.
As Cincinnati City Council frets about how to close a $62 million budget deficit, some local activists are asking officials to consider repealing an ordinance they say isn't enforced evenly and wastes taxpayers' money. Critics allege that city's Anti-Marijuana Ordinance is being used to target specific races and is adding to the city's crippling budget deficit.
Watching Hamilton County Auditor Dusty Rhodes squirm and contort the reasoning about his double-dipping plans during the past week has been supremely entertaining to anyone who's followed his political career closely. A former radio disc jockey, Rhodes has always had a flair for showmanship.
With local streetcar funding and support increasing like the value of property along the proposed route, it's no wonder that some East-siders are wondering what's up with a proposed rail project that would link the eastern suburbs to the city.