Public transportation
3:16 pm
Tue January 29, 2013

Cincinnati will extend SORTA funding for another month

The ongoing dispute between Cincinnati and the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority about the use of the city’s transit fund is still dragging on. 


Vice Mayor Roxanne Qualls spoke during a special Budget and Finance Committee meeting Tuesday.


"Members of the committee may remember that we passed a one-month budget for SORTA a number weeks ago," Qualls said.  "This is another one month budget for the period of February."


The city argues the fund can be used for any transit purpose. 


But the SORTA board says it's only for paying for Metro bus operations and has filed a lawsuit against the city.  That board also included a phrase the city opposes in an agreement necessary to spend federal grant money on streetcar construction. 


Qualls seemed to indicate this may be the last monthly budget as a solution to the issue could be coming soon. 


Council Member P.G. Sittenfeld voted against the item.


"I don't like this sort of lurching month-to-month," Sittenfeld said.  "It doesn't seem like it reflects good governance, so I appreciate your response very much and I do hopes it's the last time we need to sort of keep SORTA on a 30-day leash."


The full Council will vote on the issue Wednesday afternoon.