The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled against a gaming company’s attempt to get signatures for a rival company’s casino ballot measure thrown out. The Ohio Supreme Court ruled Friday that it would not require Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner to conduct an investigation or invalidate signatures the rival company says are fraudulent.

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Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner said Tuesday that backers of a $1 billion proposal to build casinos at four Ohio cities collected enough valid signatures to put the measure before voters in November. Just how many of those signatures could be thrown out in the future will be taken up before the Ohio Supreme Court.

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Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory today said his trip to Portland for a look at that Oregon city’s streetcar system convinced him that a streetcar proposal is right and necessary for Cincinnati. Mallory led a local delegation to Portland, where it met with the mayor, transit staff, developers and business leaders. He said the streetcar system has produced great economic benefits along and near the route.

Akron, Ohio mayor Don Plusquellic, who has been in office for over two decades, survived a recall election last month by a wide margin. Recall supporters had accused the mayor of playing fast and loose with the taxpayers’ money, ethics violations, and questionable campaign financing amongst other things.

The Cuyahoga County Board of Elections on Monday determined county residents will have the opportunity to vote on a reform measure on the November ballot. The elections board determined supporters of the reform proposal turned in enough valid signatures to put the issue on the ballot.

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State officials began tallying signatures yesterday on a petition to bring casinos to Ohio’s four largest cities, but the effort could face legal challenges even if it meets the 402,275-signature minimum. Opponents of the casino effort — led by a rival gambling company — are sharpening their pens for a possible lawsuit alleging that the petition process was marred by numerous irregularities, including felons gathering signatures, signatures submitted from deceased people and petition circulators telling lies.

Voters in the Columbiana County General Health District can expect a .2-mill, 10-year replacement levy on the November ballot for the continued funding of the department’s cancer detection clinics. If approved, the tax levy will replace the current .2-mill levy being collected for the cancer clinics and generate an estimated additional $48,900 per year since it will be based on today’s home values instead of the values from 10 years ago.

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It looks like a proposal to change the structure of Cuyahoga County government will be on the November ballot. Reform backers turned in petitions just after 1 p.m. Friday at the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections. They need about 46,000 names and the filing deadline is Monday, Jul 13. They turned in petitions with more than 75,000 names. The petitions were circulated by paid workers and volunteers.

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What's On the Ballot?

Fri, Jul 10 2009 by Staff

For many it seems as though 2008’s historic election season has barely just wrapped up. Not so for ballot initiative proponents who are already looking ahead to the next election. Already there are citizen sponsored initiatives on the ballot in three states: Ohio, Maine, and Washington. Numerous other efforts are going on all over the country to collect signatures in the hopes of qualifying for the ballot.

Current Ballot Initiatives

Fri, Jul 10 by Anonymous

Measures on the ballot for November 2009

Maine -

  • Excise Tax Repeal - November 3rd
  • Act to Promote Tax Relief - November 3rd
  • Medical Marijuana Initiative - November 3rd
  • Act to Repeal School District Consolidation Laws - November 3rd

Ohio -

  • Ohio Casino Initiative (pending) - November 3rd
  • Ohio Livestock Care Standards Amendment (Legislative Referral) - November 3rd

Washington -

The self-appointed, bi-partisan committee spearheading the effort only has until Monday to turn in more than 45 thousand petition signatures needed to qualify their charter proposal to appear on the November ballot.  The plan - if it gets on the ballot and passes. - would scrap the current three-member board of County Commissioners, and replace it with one elected county executive who would have considerable authority, including the power to appoint almost all department heads.  The executive would share power with an eleven-member part-time county council.

Voters will decide the fight over a proposed streetcar system for Cincinnati, said opponents of the measure. Opponents said they have gathered enough signatures on a petition to place the measure on November’s ballot, and they plan to make a formal announcement Wednesday. Supporters said the streetcars would create jobs, but the plan’s detractors said it would create a mess.

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The group “9 is Fine” has submitted enough valid signatures to get an amendment on the ballot, but former Councilman Rob Ludeman, who seeks a return to council, argued that both the language and the timing of the referendum conflict with the Toledo City Charter.

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Former Columbus Mayor Dana G. “Buck” Rinehart said today that he supports the Aug. 4 ballot proposal to raise the city income tax. Rinehart is the first high-profile Republican to come out in favor of the tax increase.

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The school board will hold a work session on Aug. 5 to decide on a measure for the November ballot. The work session will come one day after district residents vote on an emergency levy renewal, which will not seek new money. The existing property tax raises $291,000 annually for district operations, Superintendent David Stubblebine said.

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