John Cranley

Jay Hanselman

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley is holding a press briefing Wednesday afternoon  to highlight his first year in office.

In advance of meeting with reporters, the Mayor's office released a three-and-a-half page document that list highlights during Cranley's first year.  He took office on December 1, 2013.

Some of those highlights include a balanced budget, thousands of jobs and more cops on the street.

WVXU's political reporter Howard Wilkinson talked with Ann Thompson about the likely confirmation of Harry Black as Cincinnati's 15th city manager this week.

It appears that, eight months into his term as Cincinnati’s mayor, John Cranley has found his soul mate.

Amid a flurry of media interviews and press conferences this past week, Cranley introduced his choice to become the city’s next city manager – 51-year-old Harry E. Black, who, for the past two-and-a-half years, has been the finance director of the city of Baltimore.

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley said Friday he is behind his own schedule but he'll recommend a new city manager to city council by the first week of August.

In the meantime, Cranley has asked city council to allow interim city manager Scott Stiles to remain running the day-to-day operations of the city for another two months.

The mayor said his plan was to have recommended a permanent replacement for former city manager Milton Dohoney by now. Dohoney resigned shortly after Cranley was elected last November.

  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.

Jay Hanselman

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley said Friday discussions are still taking place on the future of the city's parking system.  He announced his plan earlier this week that would keep the city in charge, upgrade all meters and use the additional revenues for basic services.  

Cranley said the first step in the process is dropping or revising the previous parking lease agreement with the Greater Cincinnati Port Authority.

Howard Wilkinson

In an effort to stem the homicides that have plagued the city first the first of the year, Cincinnati police will increase police overtime, hire officers away from other departments, add a recruit class and revive a gang unit, Mayor Cranley and Police Chief Jeffrey Blackwell said this morning.

“We want people of this city to know that help is on the way,’’ Cranley said at a city hall press conference packed with neighborhood and community leaders, council members and police officers.

Update 12/18/13 @ 9:30 PM: 

Cincinnati Council will likely vote Thursday on whether the city's controversial streetcar project will continue. 

Construction has been on hold since December 4th.  Now the group will decide whether to let work resume or finally pull the plug on the plan. 

So far the city has spent $34 million on the streetcar project.  An independent audit firm reported Wednesday it will cost anywhere from $16 to $46 million to cancel the streetcar or about $69 million to complete it. 

Provided from City of Cincinnati

Federal transit officials Friday morning refused Mayor John Cranley's request to extend the Dec. 19 deadline for pulling $45 million in federal money from the streetcar project.

But the mayor's spokesman, Jay Kincaid, says Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff did agree to talk to pro-streetcar advocates to allow them to make a pitch for more time.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley, who campaigned and won on a promise to kill the $133 million streetcar project, cracked open to the door to a deal with streetcar supporters that could allow the project to go forward.

In a city hall press conference this morning, Cranley said he would work with streetcar supporters to find institutions or foundations in the private sector to pay the approximately $80 million it would take to maintain and operate the system.

It is not something the city can do without private help, Cranley said.

Cincinnati Parks Director Willie Carden has informed Mayor John Cranley he's withdrawing from consideration to be the next city manager, according to a statement from the Mayor's spokesman.

Jay Hanselman

Cincinnati Council will not vote Wednesday to confirm Willie Carden as the next city manager.

Mayor John Cranley announced the delay Tuesday just before Council's Rules Committee was scheduled to interview Carden and take a vote.

Cranley said he was delaying the vote because he did not realize some council members had not seen an ordinance that will exempt Carden from living in the city.

"To make sure that Council has time to digest the ordinances," Cranley said. "And that all of you have the opportunity to meet with Mr. Carden individually before taking a vote."

Jay Hanselman

Sunday was a day of celebration and promises of cooperation, as the new mayor, Democrat John Cranley, and nine city council members were sworn into office in dual ceremonies at City Hall and the National Underground Freedom Center.

Monday, the celebrating will be over and the spirit of cooperation that hung over Sunday’s event will be put to the test; as the new council confronts its most contentious issue – Cranley’s desire to stop the $133 million streetcar project.

It’s a truism in politics: Running for office is the relatively easy part; the governing part is where it gets a little tricky.

John Cranley, the Democrat and former councilman who is sworn into office as Cincinnati’s 69th mayor today, has been around long enough to know this.

He came out of the November 5 election with a big win – 16 percentage points over rival and fellow Democrat Roxanne Qualls.

And he came out like a ball of fire.

Scuttle the parking lease deal?

No problem.

Cincinnati  Mayor-elect John Cranley Friday released his list of city council committees and who will be the chairpersons of those committees.  The full Council could approve them Sunday. 

The new streetcar committee is scheduled to meet Monday at noon.  A press release said the group will "consider a proposal aimed at pausing streetcar spending and implementing a comprehensive, objective review of the project in order to determine the true cost of cancellation vs. continuation."