The mayor of a city can be considered its chief executive officer. But the power that office holds is determined by a city’s rules or charter, which defines what a mayor can, and cannot, do. Cincinnati adopted a “strong mayor” system of government 15 years ago. Now Cincinnati Councilman Christopher Smitherman is exploring another change, to what some call an “executive mayor” system.
Hamilton County Commissioners are officially asking a federal judge to intervene in their Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD) dispute with Cincinnati.
The board voted unanimously Wednesday to ask for a ruling on which body gets to set policies for the district.
The sewer district is owned by the county but operated by the city.
The sides have been at odds over hiring and procurement policies instituted by the city. County Commissioners argue the policies are unfair and in some cases illegal. City attorneys and a majority of council members disagree.
A Charter Review Task Force is being formed to do the first comprehensive review of Cincinnati’s city charter since it was adopted nearly 90 years ago.
Council member Kevin Flynn, who chairs council’s rules committee, put out the call Tuesday for people to volunteer to serve on the task force, which will be expected to meet regularly for six months to a year before recommending charter changes to city council.
Cincinnati has nearly seen the end of brownouts in fire stations, with the addition of 41 new fire recruits who graduated last week and a department overtime budget of $2.5 million, Mayor John Cranley said in a city hall press conference Monday.
The new recruits will reduce the number of brownouts of fire equipment from five per day to anywhere from two to zero per day.
But Cranley and Fire Chief Richard Braun said in a city hall press conference Monday that is not good enough.