Cincinnati parking

Update 6/17/13 9:50 PM:  Hamilton County Judge Robert Winkler signed an order Monday dissolving permanent injunction in the Cincinnati parking lease case.  Judge Winkler also entered a judgment in favor of the city and against the plaintiffs.  Costs to be paid by plaintiffs. With permanent injunction dissolved, city officials should have "green light" to sign the parking lease agreement with the Port Authority.

photo by Michael Keating

This week Howard Wilkinson talks about Council member Christopher Smitherman stepping down as NAACP President, and why Senator Mitch McConnell needs Rand Paul.

CORRECTION: Howard inadvertently said that Smitherman did not step down as NAACP president in the 2011 council election. He did step down.

Cincinnati's parking lease proposal is back in court this week.  Maryanne Zeleznik speaks with Jay Hanselman and Howard Wilkinson about what to expect.

Sarah Ramsey

Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory and other officials held a round table discussion with reporters Tuesday to talk about the benefits of the parking lease for the city.  

They talked about several things including rates, hours and enforcement.  But none of the information was new.  

Mallory was asked why he decided to hold the session now?  He says to get the facts out.

“Particularly when there’s so much misinformation out there about how this plan works,” Mallory said.  “So we can’t talk about the facts enough.”

A three judge panel of Ohio First District Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments Monday in a case concerning the city's parking lease.  

The city argues a Hamilton County Judge made an error when he declared all city ordinances are subject to referendum.  It also argues the plaintiffs who brought the case don't have standing to bring their claims.  

The lawyers who filed the lawsuit for the taxpayers submitted their brief to the appeals court Monday.  

Cincinnati lawyers are making two major arguments as the city appeal’s a judge’s decision that let opponents of the parking lease place the issue on the November ballot.  

In a brief filed Friday with the Ohio First District Court of Appeals city lawyers argued the trial court erred by declaring that all city ordinances are subject to referendum and that the plaintiffs have standing to bring their claims. 

Not surprisingly the attorneys who successfully challenged the Cincinnati parking lease in court are opposed to the city's request for a judge to stay his decision from last month.  

Lawyers Curt Hartman and Chris Finney filed a response in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Thursday.  

Cincinnati is asking a Hamilton County judge to stay his decision on the city's parking lease while the case is appealed.  

The city said the judge's decision has made it impossible for Council to pass a law that takes effect immediately.

The city argues the First District Court of Appeals has already ruled a stay in favor of the government applies even in referendum cases.  

Judge Robert Winkler issued an opinion two weeks ago barring the city from moving forward with the lease until residents get a chance to vote.

Ohio's 8th District Congressman and Speaker of the House, John Boehner had no competition last year, but in 2014 he will have Democratic opposition.  WVXU Political Reporter,  Howard Wilkinson talks with Maryanne Zeleznik about this new candidate.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Opponents of Cincinnati's parking lease deal turned in more than 19,000 petition signatures Thursday. That means it's likely the the issue will be on the November ballot. They need 8,522 valid signatures.

Former council woman Amy Murray thanked those who signed and circulated petitions.

"The people have the right to ask for this, to have a referendum," says Murray. "And it's something that people feel so passionate about. It will have a huge impact on our business districts."

An appeals court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on Cincinnati's parking lease May 6th. 

The First District Court of Appeals released a filing Wednesday with the schedule for the case.

The city will have to have submit its brief by April 19th and lawyers representing the residents who oppose the parking plan will have to respond by April 29th. 

The court also said those briefs could be no more than 20 pages long.  That split the difference between the two sides.  The city had suggested a 15 page limit and the opposing lawyers wanted 25. 

Sarah Ramsey

Cincinnati's Mayor and the five Council Members who voted for the controversial parking lease proposal are asking residents to get the facts before signing petitions to put the measure on the ballot.  

Cincinnati is asking the Ohio First District Court of Appeals to hear oral arguments concerning the city's parking lease plan on either April 18th or 22nd. 

The city would like a decision by May 1st. 

The city is proposing to file its brief with the court next Monday and for the opposing lawyers to provide their response by April 15th. 

A lawyer for the other side said in a filing they can agree with that time schedule although there is a disagreement about how long the briefs should be.  The city wants a 15 page limit, opposing attorneys are asking for 25 pages.

A Hamilton County judge is granting a permanent injunction stopping Cincinnati from moving ahead with its parking lease plan until voters have a chance to decide the issue. 

Judge Robert Winkler writes the essential issue in the case is whether the city's emergency clause in the lease ordinance precludes a referendum.  He concludes it does not.

A Hamilton County judge is extending a temporary restraining order (TRO) preventing Cincinnati officials from signing a proposal to lease most of the city's parking facilities to the Port Authority.  

Judge Robert Winkler issued the order Wednesday extending the TRO until April 3.