Appeals Court refuses stay in parking lease case
The Ohio First District Court of Appeals has refused to issue a stay in its decision on the Cincinnati parking lease case, possibly clearing the way for the city administration to move forward with the controversial plan.
But Curt Hartman, a lawyer for the plaintiffs who brought the original lawsuit against the parking lease ordinance passed by council in March, says they will ask the Ohio Supreme Court to hear the case "as soon as possible."
Last Wednesday, a three-judge panel of the appeals court ruled that the ordinances passed with an emergency clause, such as the parking lease agreement, are not subject to referendum by the voters.
A group of citizens had gathered enough signatures to put a referendum on the ordinance on the November ballot.
After the appeals court decision, five council members signed a motion asking that the ordinance be repealed; and a sixth council member asked that it be re-negotiated. But Mayor Mark Mallory has said he will refuse to bring an ordinance to repeal the agreement before council.
Leasing the parking system to the Port Authority, which would hire private companies to run it, would mean a $92 million up front payment to the city.