0 Comments · Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Nobody stood up for fracking in a July 31
City Council committee meeting that saw dozens of people urge council
to pass an ordinance banning injection wells within Cincinnati.
by Andy Brownfield
Wording tries to skirt ODNR oversight
Nobody stood up for fracking in today's City Council
committee meeting that saw dozens of people urge council to pass an
ordinance banning injection wells within Cincinnati.
All members of the Strategic Growth Committee voted in
favor of the proposed ordinance, with the exception of Councilman Chris
Seelbach, who was recovering after allegedly being assaulted in downtown Monday night.
If approved, the ordinance would prohibit injections wells
— which inject wastewater underground — from being allowed within city
limits. It now goes before the full council.
The practice is commonly associated with hydraulic
fracturing – or “fracking” — which uses chemical-laced water to drill
for oil and gas. Fracking fluid injected underground has been tied to a
dozen earthquakes in northeastern Ohio.
A 2004 Ohio law puts regulation of oil and gas drilling
under the state’s purview, preventing municipalities from regulating the
The wording of the proposed Cincinnati ordinance doesn’t
mention oil or gas drilling, which proponents say they hope will keep it
from clashing with the state law if it passes.
Ohio Department of Natural Resources spokeswoman Heidi Hetzel-Evans tells CityBeat that injection wells also fall under ODNR’s purview.
She says she isn’t sure if the proposed Cincinnati ordinance would conflict with the state law.
“It’s very hard for ODNR to speculate on what might
happen,” she says, adding that there aren’t any injection wells or
applications for them in the Cincinnati area. “This may not be an issue
that’s ever tested.”
That didn’t stop the dozens of people who spoke in favor
of the ordinance at the committee meeting from erupting into applause
once the ordinance was approved.
Barbara Wolf, a documentarian who has made a video about
Cincinnati’s Water Works, said that the city has some of the cleanest
water in the world, and chemicals from hydraulic fracturing could
“We are studied by other countries,” Wolf said. “If it
(fracking fluid) goes into the Ohio River, we don’t know what the
chemicals are. It’s very hard to clean up chemicals if you don’t know
what they are. And that’s one of the things we do really well: clean up
City Council to determine which proposal for four-year terms voters will see in November
1 Comment · Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Cincinnati voters will decide in November
whether their City Council members will serve four-year terms instead of
the current two-year ones — councilors just haven’t decided which
proposal to send to voters.
0 Comments · Wednesday, June 27, 2012
Advocates of converting into a bike trail
the space on the long-vacated Wasson Way railroad tracks that snake
through several healthy residential and business districts gleamed new
hope Tuesday when Cincinnati City Council’s Livable Communities
Committee passed a resolution to approve the space to be preserved for a
public hike-bike path.
by Danny Cross
City Council is expected to vote this morning to divert
the $4 million for the City Hall atrium project to jumpstart the Music
Hall renovation, which has brought the city and arts supporters
interested in owning and operating the historic venue closer to a
compromise. Council could vote on the renegotiated deal later Wednesday,
though details of the lease agreement have yet to be released.
Council is also expected to approve a property tax
increase of $10 per $100,000 in valuation to fund capital projects such
as a new West Side police station and additional road paving.
Today’s Hamilton County Transportation Improvement
District meeting will include a presentation about the Brent Spence
Bridge that will probably include polls.
Gov. John Kasich today will sign a human trafficking bill
that makes the crime a first-degree felony rather than second-degree and
includes funding to help victims.
The ACLU will represent the Ku Klux Klan in a legal fight involving Georgia’s highway cleanup program and a pending First Amendment lawsuit.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday will rule on President Obama’s health care law.
Obama and Biden are still jamming Romney up on his outsourcing history.
A Walgreens store and other pharmacies in Washington, D.C. are offering free HIV
tests to make diagnosing the disease more convenient and to increase
College football has approved a four-team playoff to
determine its national championship rather than the computer-human
two-team plan that has faced scrutiny over the years. The new format
will start in the 2014-15 season.
by Danny Cross
A local developer has offered to build a new jail adjacent
to the Justice Center, a cost of $65 million, in return for the county
leasing it for 30 years at $10 million a year, according to The
Enquirer. The developer, Rob Smyjunas, said the offer isn’t about making a profit, just making the county better for his and other families.
Mayor Mallory didn’t answer The Enquirer’s questions about
the potential for a Council majority to block the property tax increase in
City Manager Milton Dohoney’s proposed budget. A Mallory spokesman says he’ll work
behind the scenes on a budget that will win a Council majority and
that he’s off to New Orleans for a conference on reclaiming vacant
An environmental summit in Rio de Janeiro kicked off on
Wednesday, with environmental groups and activists disappointed with the
Rio+20’s lack of progress on creating clear goals for sustainable
The Sanford, Fla., police chief who drew criticism for not investigating the shooting death of Trayvon Martin has been fired. Sanford
City Manager Norton Bonaparte said he relieved Bill Lee of his duties
because the police chief needs to have the trust and respect of the
A video of middle school kids in upstate New York bullying
a 68-year-old bus monitor has drawn international media attention. The
woman says the kids are all pretty much normal and are OK to deal with
The bullying continues unabated for about 10 minutes in
the video, reducing Klein to tears as a giggling student jabs her arm
with a book. Recorded by a student Monday with a cell phone camera, the
brazen example of bullying went viral and spurred international outrage.
A population of chinstrap penguins in Antarctica has declined by 36 percent due to melting sea ice.
"Actually, in the '90s it was thought that the climate
change would favor the chinstrap penguin, because this species prefers
sea waters without ice, unlike the Adelie penguin, which prefers the ice
pack," study researcher Andres Barbosa told LiveScience. He added that
at the time, chinstraps, named for the thin black facial line from cheek
to cheek, seemed to increase in numbers, with some new colonies being
established. The sea-ice decline in the winter, however, has become so
big that it is now impacting krill populations, said Barbosa, of the
National Museum of Natural Sciences in Madrid.
Researchers found evidence of ice on the moon.
A new study has found that eating disorders are common
among older women. Researchers say weight and eating concerns do not
discriminate based on age.College football BCS commissioners have endorsed a
four-team playoff format to determine college football’s national
champion instead of the current computer-human two-team system. The plan will go to the BCS presidential oversight committee
on June 26 for approval. LeBron James and the Miami Heat are one win away from winning the NBA championship after going up 3 games to 1 with a 104-98 win in Game 4 Tuesday.
by Danny Cross
The Ohio Supreme Court
late last week dismissed a legal challenge by the Campaign to Protect
Marriage, which had filed a motion challenging the attorney general’s
authority to verify a proposed constitutional amendment that would
allow same-sex marriage. The Freedom to Marry coalition is collecting
the necessary signatures to put a repeal of the state’s 2004
amendment that only recognizes marriage as between a man and a woman
on the ballot in 2013.
City Councilman Wendell
Young says there’s nothing secret about a plan to combine the
region’s water and sewer agencies even though most people assumed
to be needed for approval know little about it. The Enquirer today
detailed a plan to integrate the Metropolitan Sewer District,
Stormwater Management Utility and Greater Cincinnati Water Works,
potentially by September, in an attempt to save money. The plan will
reportedly be shared with Council June 20.
campaign plans to go after the stimulus, while Dems want to know why
he won’t renounce questions about Obama’s citizenship (maybe
because they came from Donald Trump?).
Seems like the John
Edwards trial is never going to end. Day seven of deliberations begins today.
The U.S. could be one
of the countries to benefit from the growth of natural gas use during
the next 20 years, potentially reducing the importance of Middle East
might help protect against skin cancer. Bring on the nonsteroidal
anti-inflammatory painkillers such as aspirin and ibuprofen!
There was a
face-chewing attack in Miami over the weekend. And the chewer was
Google Chrome was the
world’s top browser in May. Thought you knew.
If commercial space
flights are going to be basting up onto the moon, NASA says they’ll
have to stay off the spots where historical things happened.
by Danny Cross
The private group hoping to purchase
Music Hall for $1 is now asking for $10 million in city contributions
to its effort to update the historic building, double the initial $5
million it asked for. The Music Hall Revitalization Co. says failing
to strike a deal before June 1 will jeopardize the proposed $165
million renovation. Among the updates the city is being asked to fund
are $75,000 buffers to block noise from the streetcar and a $150,000
escrow account to pay for any future disruptions due to the
City Council yesterday spent some time
considering ways to fix the city's retirement fund deficit.
Cincinnati's retirement board wants the city to contribute $67
million to the pension system this year, though Council has
reportedly contributed only about half of that.
CVG today will unveil its updated
Concourse A, which has undergone a $36.5 million renovation. It is part of the
airports attempt to lure a low-cost airline to the hub that formerly
Cleveland is the first Ohio city to
open one of the state's four new casinos, drawing about 5,000 to a
grand opening last night. Cincinnati's casino is expected to be the
last of the four to open, with Hollywood casinos scheduled to open in
Toledo May 29 and in Columbus this fall. Cincinnati's' Horseshoe is
scheduled to open next year.
Barack Obama's Super PAC is airing TV
ads questioning Mitt Romney's business record, specifically his
commitment to workers.
Prosecutors today decided to bring
charges against former News of the World editor Rebekah
Brooks, who along with her husband and four others will be charged
with conspiring to pervert the course of justice. The alleged
incidents occurred in response the phone hacking allegations, and the
charges are apparently quite embarrassing to Rupert Murdoch and
British Prime Minister David Cameron.
JP Morgan today said, “Surprise! We
lost a bunch of money!” Two years after congress tightened
regulations on Wall Street, the industry now fears that regulators
will now listen to their fears even less as they enact stricter
Humans are consuming more resources
than the earth can replenish, according to the World Wildlife Fund's
Living Planet Report for 2012.
Lady Gaga yesterday cancelled a
cold-out Indonesia performance in response to conservative protests
over her clothing and dance moves.
National police spokesman Boy Rafli Amar, responding to the
pressure, said Tuesday that the permit for her June 3 "Born This
Way Ball" concert had been denied.
Indonesia, a nation of 240 million people, has more Muslims than
any other. Although it is secular and has a long history of religious
tolerance, a small extremist fringe has become more vocal in recent
Hard-liners have loudly criticized Lady Gaga, saying the
suggestive nature of her show threatened to undermine the country's
moral fiber. Some threatened to use physical force to prevent her
from stepping off the plane.
Lawmakers and religious leaders, too, have spoken out against her.
by Danny Cross
City Council on Wednesday
overwhelmingly passed a measure that will offer benefits to domestic
partners of city employees. The measure was introduced by Councilman Chris
Seelbach and passed 8-1, the lone “no” vote coming from Charlie
Winburn. Seelbach told The Enquirer that domestic partner benefits
not only affect same-sex couples, but are also applicable to
non-married partners, which is an added attraction to lure talented
employees to the city. Covington officials passed a similar
If you owe the city of Cincinnati any
parking fines, now would be a good time to pay them. Cincinnati
police are going to start hearing descriptions of vehicles with
multiple outstanding tickets during roll call and then head out to
find them during patrols.
Eric Deters wants to be a real lawyer
again. The attorney/radio personality/cage fighter says his current
predicament — Kentucky law license suspension — is mostly because
someone making the rulings “hates him” and is not due to the “ethical
lapses” that caused his original 61-day suspension. If Deters can't
get the Kentucky Supreme Court to help him out he'll have to go in
front of a Character and Fitness Committee and explain all the crazy
stuff he's done.
Gov. John Kasich is making changes to
the state's Medicaid program, which he and its officials say will save
money, though it will cause disruptions in the form of some
recipients needing to find new providers, many of which have less
access to medical advice and financial help. A similar program
implemented in Kentucky last year resulted in complaints that
patients couldn't get services authorized and providers didn't get
paid on time, according to The Enquirer.
New Osama bin Laden documents published
online by the U.S. Government show concern over Muslim distrust of
his organization before he was killed last May, and much of which was due to the high numbers of civilians it was responsible for killing.
It's not very fun to be John Edwards
these days. Already charged with using $1 million in campaign money
to hide a pregnant mistress, testimony in his case for violating
campaign finance laws has revealed that his mistress had a better
idea in response to the National Enquirer's report on the affair: She
wanted to say she was abducted by aliens.
Jobless-benefits claims were down last
week, and the reduction was the greatest in three months. And U.S.
stock futures rose in accordance.
Target is done selling Kindles, and
although it didn't give a reason analysts suspect it is in response
to Amazon's attempts to get retailers who see the products in a store
to then purchase them online. Amazone last holiday season indroduced
a Price Check app that offered in-store price comparisons and up to a
$15 discount online.
Retired NFL linebacker Junior Seau was
found dead at his home yesterday in an apparent suicide. Seau, who
played in the NFL for parts of 20 seasons, was found shot to death.
He was 43.
0 Comments · Wednesday, May 2, 2012
City Council was posed to approve extending insurance benefits to the
same-sex partners of city employees as this issue went to press. Council
was set to vote May 2 on the plan, which was pushed by Councilman
Chris Seelbach, the first openly gay person to serve on the group.