by Natalie Krebs
28 days ago
Posted In: News
at 09:59 AM | Permalink
Council finally approves streetcar operating budget; Rep. Driehaus upset with Hamilton County's poop problem; former Speaker Boehner says what he really thinks of the GOP presidential candidates
Big things happened at Wednesday's City Council meeting. Council finally voted to approve the streetcar's operating budget for the first year after spending the last month squabbling and kicking it back and forth between council and committee. The budget just barely passed in a vote of 5-3, with council members Kevin Flynn, Christopher Smitherman and Charlie Winburn voting against it. Councilwoman Amy Murray was absent from the meeting. Mayor John Cranley, who previously said he would veto any operating budget that didn't get at least six votes, appears to have had enough of this streetcar drama. The mayor decided recently not to veto the budget even if it passed with a mere five votes.Council also voted to approve a wage hike for city government workers, passing a bill that would raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour for full-time workers and to $10.10 an hour for part-time and seasonal workers. The increase will affect about one out of every five city workers, or about 1,166 workers. Cranley, who introduced the ordinance last month, called council's decision "morally right" and hopes the state will follow suit.• Students at Northern Kentucky University will see a slight increase in their tuition next year. The NKU Board of Regents voted to pass a 3 percent increase in undergraduate tuition on Wednesday to keep up with rising costs at the university and a decrease in funding from the state. Next year, Kentucky residents can expect to pay an average of $130 more per semester while Cincinnati residents will shell out an extra $200 per semester and nonresidents will pay an extra $260. • State Rep. Denise Driehaus is upset with the closure of the Little Miami Incinerator. The incinerator was closed temporarily earlier this month after it was determined that it does not meet federal pollution standards. It served as one of two ways that Hamilton County disposes of human waste, and it's unclear when, or if, it will reopen. Driehaus, who is currently running for Hamilton County commissioner in the upcoming November election, released a statement Thursday morning condemning county for allowing the closure that she saw as avoidable and called for new leadership to better address the issue. "This could have and should have been resolved." Driehaus says in the statement. "We need leadership on the County Commission that will roll up their sleeves and work to resolve challenging issues instead of being content to play the blame game when something goes wrong." • Since former Speaker of the House John Boehner resigned from his post last October, it seems he feels more free to express his true feelings about the GOP presidential candidates. At an event at Stanford University on Wednesday, Boehner called Texas Sen. Ted Cruz a "miserable son of a bitch." Boehner also disclosed that he and GOP frontrunner Donald Trump are "texting buddies" and that he is also friends with Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who is currently running way behind Trump and Cruz in the election. However, it seems he and Kasich aren't quite BFFs as he also said that their friendship "requires more effort."• In other election news, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz announced yesterday that former Hewitt-Packard CEO and GOP presidential candidate Carly Fiorina will be his running mate. Fiorina was one of the first GOP candidates to drop out of the race and endorsed Cruz in early March. Cruz is the first of any presidential candidate to announce a running mate and his announcement comes a day after as frontrunner Trump just declared victory in five states' Tuesday primaries, bringing the real estate tycoon even closer to securing the GOP nomination.Stay dry, Cincy! And send any news tips here.
by Natalie Krebs
51 days ago
Posted In: News
at 10:08 AM | Permalink
Construction set to begin on former Baldwin Piano Co. site; some Avondale residents to get free Wi-Fi; Trump explains how he will make Mexico pay for border wall
Hello all, here's the news today.A few hundred Avondale residents will soon be getting free Wi-Fi. The Avondale Comprehensive Development Corporation announced yesterday that it will partner with telecom company Powernet, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and developer The Community Builders, Inc. to offer Wi-Fi to residents living on Reading Road from Blair Avenue to South Fred Shuttlesworth Circle. The project is funded as part of the Choice Neighborhoods Grant from HUD, which was given to The Community Builders, Inc. in 2012. Powernet will install 15 access points along Reading Road that will give 250 families and businesses access to the network. The plan is part of the larger push for the revitalization of Avondale, one of the city's largest low-income neighborhoods. • Cincinnati is getting younger, better-educated and more economically stable, according to the biannual economic report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. The report, which provides a quick look into the greater Cincinnati economy, found Cincinnati's average age is 37.3, just slightly under the national average of 37.9. It also found the local economy has better recovered from the great recession than the nation as a whole. It is 2 percent above its level before the recession while the nation's economy, on average, is still struggling to get back to its pre-recession level. Also, more of Cincy's adults now hold undergrad degrees. That number has risen 2.9 percent since 2009 and is now at 31.4 percent, which again is higher than the national average of 30.1 percent. • A new Kentucky law expected to be signed by Gov. Matt Bevin will allow bourbon makers to sell their drinks "by the glass." Under the previous law, the bourbon makers were only able to offer tastes of their product to people who had purchased full tour tickets for their distilleries. Now they're able to offer cash bars for small samplings. Kentucky breweries will also benefit as they'll be allowed to sell at smaller events, like farmer's markets, without going through a distributor. • Wisconsinites head to the polls today in what will surely add more fuel to the more recent heated round of this presidential nomination period. Wisconsin republicans will get to choose between Donald Trump, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who is still in the race despite recent complaints from Trump and Cruz that he should drop out. Kasich told a crowd of about 300 supporters at a town hall yesterday in Long Island, N.Y., that despite the bullying from his opponents, he's not going anywhere. Kasich, who is currently in a distant third, says he thinks he's the only candidate who has a shot at beating Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton in the general election. Clinton is also campaigning hard in Wisconsin, where polls are showing it could be a tight race against Democratic rival Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. • You know how many are skeptical of Trump's plan to build a border wall and make Mexico pay for it? Well, he finally said how he's going to do it. Trump sent a two-page memo to the Washington Post saying he plans to cut off the estimated $25 billion Mexican immigrants send home yearly to attempt to force Mexico to give in and pay for the wall. Not surprisingly, economists and policy experts have had some reservations about the possible legal and political feasibility of the plan, which would put a large amount of executive pressure on one of the U.S.'s key diplomatic allies.
by Nick Swartsell
Posted In: News
at 09:23 AM | Permalink
DOJ will jump in on Ohio early voting; Cincinnati tops for design; race for governor heats up
Good morning all. I may be writing this news rundown from my porch at home, enjoying the amazing weather and eating Graeter’s black cherry ice cream for breakfast, but that doesn’t mean I’m not real, real serious about the news. Let’s do this.As we reported yesterday, the Obama administration is expected to jump into the fight over early voting in Ohio. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder made remarks, released yesterday, indicating that the Justice Department will file with the Ohio ACLU and other civil rights organizations already fighting reductions to early voting in the state. The administration has made voting rights a key issue following last year’s Supreme Court decision that rolled back certain sections of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.• The head of Cincinnati Metro resigned yesterday, according to a press release by the Southern Ohio Regional Transit Authority. Metro’s CEO Terry Garcia Crews will step down immediately and will be temporarily replaced by Darryl Haley, who was Metro’s executive director of development. Metro will conduct a national search for her permanent replacement. In the press release, Crews says she’s leaving to focus on her family, including her parents, who live out of town, and to continue her transportation consulting business. “I have great confidence in the leadership and the team at Metro and community leaders to carry forth the discussion and implementation of expanding public transportation in this community,” Garcia Crews said. Metro gives about 17 million individual rides each year. Its role looks to grow as transit needs in the city expand and the streetcar comes online next year.• There was some drama in Over-the-Rhine last night, though the actual situation was not quite as intense as initial reports made it out to be. Police entered a building at 13th and Walnut to do an inspection at the request of the building’s owner. They came upon a man who fled from them. As he fled, a gun the man was carrying went off. Multiple news outlets reported the officers had been fired upon and that a standoff situation was developing. In reality, the gun accidentally went off as the man attempted to hide it in his pants. Which, yeah, probably not a great idea, but there you have it. The man fled to another building, threw the gun out a window and hid. He was arrested a short time later and faces multiple charges today. Still a scary scenario, but, you know, not exactly a police shootout. • A list put together by CityLab shows that Cincinnati is among the top cities in the country when it comes to design. While we all know the Queen City has some great graphic design and marketing talent, it’s surprising to see the city also ranks impressively high for industrial design. Our fair city is well-represented in nearly every category measured, which is pretty cool.• Remember that guy who threatened to shoot down a helicopter a couple days ago? Yeah, a judge told him today to cool it with the guns for a while, and required him to turn over his firearms to authorities. I’m sure there are some hardcore gun rights activists out there fuming about how the government is infringing on his 1st Amendment right to express displeasure with helicopters and his 2nd Amendment right to bear arms, but me, I’m perfectly OK with it in this particular case. At least he didn't try hiding them in his pants.• The race for Ohio governor is getting interesting. Democratic contender Ed FitzGerald’s campaign is citing polls that show him neck and neck with incumbent Gov. John Kasich, though, as with any poll that a campaign is excited about, it’s probably best to be wary. The poll was paid for by the Ohio Democratic Party and echoes another recent Democrat-funded poll showing FitzGerald within striking distance. However, both of these polls contradict earlier independent polling done this spring showing Kasich ahead by as many as 15 points. FitzGerald’s campaign is getting proactive, though, dropping its first TV ad today. In the ad, FitzGerald implies that Gov. Kasich is all about the 1 percenters. “Who is the promise of Ohio meant for?” FitzGerald asks in the 30 second spot. “Just the wealthy and well-connected?” FitzGerald gives a shout out to “Ohioans who get up early and get it done every day,” which made me kind of feel bad about working from home while eating ice cream. He goes on to promise support for the state’s middle class, including more funding for teachers, police and firefighters. Though he never mentions Kasich by name, he hits on the idea that the current administration favors the wealthy again at the end of the ad. Meanwhile, an attack site paid for by the Ohio Republican Party against the challenger called fitzgeraldforohio.com just sprung up. The site mostly attacks FitzGerald on his first choice of running mate, former lieutenant governor candidate Eric Kearney. Kearney quit the ticket in December last year after it was revealed he owed a large amount in back taxes. The site also features an ad linking FitzGerald to former Gov. Ted Strickland, who has endorsed FitzGerald. The ad argues that Strickland was bad for Ohio and FitzGerald would be, too. In a kind of strange twist, however, the ad seems to blame Strickland for many ills Ohio faced due to the great recession, including spiking unemployment and budget overruns. As if those same dynamics weren’t happening in nearly every state around the country during Strickland’s term from 2007 to 2011, when the recession was at its worst. The candidates’ next filing deadline is just a couple weeks away, and it will be interesting to see if either grab more big bucks. Stay tuned.
0 Comments · Tuesday, July 1, 2014
City Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld and other
Democrats held an event June 27 near the University of Cincinnati
criticizing Gov. John Kasich and the Ohio legislature for the low level
of funding available for higher education in the state.
0 Comments · Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Ohio Democrat gubernatorial candidate Ed FitzGerald is coming to Northside for the annual Fourth of July Parade.
by Rachel Podnar
Gubernatorial candidate follows former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' appearance last year
Ohio Democrat gubernatorial candidate Ed FitzGerald is coming to Northside for the
Fourth of July Parade.
will walk in the parade, but will not hold a speaking event. The parade will be
his only public appearance while he is in Cincinnati.
knows it’s a great celebration for the 4th of July and he enjoys the
Cincinnati area,” campaign press secretary Lauren Hitt says. “He’s excited to get out and see some folks there.”
Cuyahoga County executive and democratic nominee will face incumbent Republican
Gov. John Kasich this November. FitzGerald recently signed on for five
debates — Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Sandusky and Zanesville — against Kasich.
past weekend FitzGerald walked in the Columbus Pride Parade, in line with his
support of same-sex marriage.
year, Gabrielle Gifford’s appeared in Northside’s annual community parade and held a rally on gun
control before the parade.
of parade committee Ollie Kroner said the parade organizers typically invite city
politicians, but FitzGerald reached out to the parade.
just think the parade has a reputation beyond our side and beyond the city,”
Kroner says. “When politicians want to come and get a taste for local flair the
parade is a great venue for that.”
parade will take place at noon on July 4 and travel south on Hamilton Avenue
through the Northside business district. It is part of the three-day Northside Rock
n’ Roll Carnival.
0 Comments · Tuesday, June 3, 2014
Gov. John Kasich says he’ll sign a bill
that would freeze the state’s renewable energy and energy efficiency
standards for two years and weaken them after that.
Ohio leaders push back against Kasich-planned tax cuts for the wealthy
0 Comments · Wednesday, April 9, 2014
City Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld helped
coordinate a contingent of bipartisan, elected officials to testify at a
House Finance Committee meeting last week against Gov. John Kasich’s
proposed across-the-board income tax cuts, which Sittenfeld connects to a
decline in important public services around Cincinnati.
Inmates told CityBeat about violence, staff ineptitude and unsanitary conditions inside Ohio’s private prison. Then came the surprise inspections.
0 Comments · Wednesday, May 29, 2013
has obtained letters and emails from two prisoners and their families
confirming fights, lockdowns and unsanitary conditions at the Lake Erie
prison in northeastern Ohio, which became the first state prison to be
sold to a private company.
0 Comments · Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear is moving the state forward
with its revisions to statewide science education standards, which will
focus more heavily on evolution and climate change, despite opposition
from a state legislative committee; some Republicans are worried
teaching evolution could result in “the promotion of socialism and
resulting genocide and murder.” WORLD +1