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Old March 9th, 2008, 11:50 PM   #1601
cjfjapan
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What's the status of city-county consolidation for Toledo-Lucas County? At least half of Lucas County is urban; is there any precedent in Ohio for this kind of merger? It seems to have worked well for Indianapolis, Nashville, Jacksonville and Lexington (and now, Louisville?) - how about for Toledo? Do the local governance laws here preclude combination of government entities?

With consolidation, Toledo's population would jump to about 450,000 - stemming the steep hemmorage of people, and putting T-town in the same league as Cleveland, New Orleans and Sacramento. T-town would also have one of the highest city pop:metro pop ratios. Thoughts?
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Old March 10th, 2008, 02:01 AM   #1602
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Yup.. Its cartys fault we got the GM expansion and why jeep is still in Toledo..... Fifth Third Field.... fifth third bank in the OI.... The skate park at Highand Park i asked for when i was little?? Carty did that too... So let me ask ya Paddington or wutever........ Who would have done a better job with Toledo?I think we're doin damn good compared to what we were before cartys first term started
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Old March 10th, 2008, 06:42 AM   #1603
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Originally Posted by Mudhen419 View Post
Yup.. Its cartys fault we got the GM expansion and why jeep is still in Toledo..... Fifth Third Field.... fifth third bank in the OI.... The skate park at Highand Park i asked for when i was little?? Carty did that too... So let me ask ya Paddington or wutever........ Who would have done a better job with Toledo?I think we're doin damn good compared to what we were before cartys first term started
Paddington is certainly far off in saying that all of our ill's occurred because of Carty. For the record, OI was in the process of moving out of Toledo on Jack Ford's watch.

Certainly, Toledo really hasn't progressed incredibly with Carty, either. Taxes need to be lower, government interference needs to stop, and both Carty and Toledo council need to show some more maturity, as the constant bickering and back rooms deals don't cut it with citizen's and small businesses here.

Anyways, back on topic to economic development, anyone hear anything about the building on the corner of Ontario and Monroe (*I think*)? It was for sale and I just saw the SOLD sign tonight while driving around.
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Old March 10th, 2008, 01:35 PM   #1604
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Originally Posted by Paddington View Post
One would hope the mayor loves the city, though it's scary if that's the only qualification it takes to become mayor in Toledo.

Objectively, Finkbeiner's tenure has been terrible. Forget the gaffes. Forget the assaults. Forget the bad publicity. He's presided over the loss of tens of thousands of residents and tens of thousands of jobs. Toledo's lost Fortune 500 companies and shopping malls during his tenure. You can blame the "evil suburbs" or GWB or Hitler or whoever, but ultimately the buck stops with Finkbeiner.
How can you be "objective" when you back it up with ignorant and baseless statements?

Loss of tens of thousands of residents and tens of thousands of jobs have been happening since the late 70s and it's happening across the Great Lakes region. If you pay attention to this thread, this region has been investing billions of dollars in alternative energy and diversifying its economy away from the automotive industries in the last ten years.

Toledo's loss of a Fortune 500 company was Owens-Illinois decision to build their headquarters on the land they've owned for the past 40 years versus renewing a premiere lease at the One Seagate Towner. Owens-Illinois have been struggling for years and it made sense to cut back the leasing expenditure, so it was strictly a business move not a Carty nor J'Fo move.

So I suggest you stop hijacking in this thread with your ignorant comments and if you can't be constructive about it, then don't let the door hit you on your way out.
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Old March 10th, 2008, 01:40 PM   #1605
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cjfjapan View Post
What's the status of city-county consolidation for Toledo-Lucas County? At least half of Lucas County is urban; is there any precedent in Ohio for this kind of merger? It seems to have worked well for Indianapolis, Nashville, Jacksonville and Lexington (and now, Louisville?) - how about for Toledo? Do the local governance laws here preclude combination of government entities?

With consolidation, Toledo's population would jump to about 450,000 - stemming the steep hemmorage of people, and putting T-town in the same league as Cleveland, New Orleans and Sacramento. T-town would also have one of the highest city pop:metro pop ratios. Thoughts?


There has been a lot of discussions in city-county consolidation during the J'Fo's tenure, and right now Ben Konop is the only elected official in this region to be "discussing" regionalism.

I think Toledo-Lucas County should merge by giving suburbs and townships a voice and representation in the government so they do not lose their identity. It makes much sense for consolidation in order to reduce the redundancy and duplications of services which would lower taxes across the board.
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Old March 10th, 2008, 01:42 PM   #1606
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Anyways, back on topic to economic development, anyone hear anything about the building on the corner of Ontario and Monroe (*I think*)? It was for sale and I just saw the SOLD sign tonight while driving around.
I mentioned this in previous (about a month ago) post about the sale of the property on Monroe/Ontario where the former Arbuckle Building used to stand. The property was bought by Rumpf Development and there has been no announcement of any sort. Stay tune......
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Old March 10th, 2008, 02:12 PM   #1607
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I mentioned this in previous (about a month ago) post about the sale of the property on Monroe/Ontario where the former Arbuckle Building used to stand. The property was bought by Rumpf Development and there has been no announcement of any sort. Stay tune......
No No, not the lot across the street. I'm talking about the building on the same side as the Blarney and Toledo Free Press. I remember the post in regards to the lot that was sold to Rumpf Development, but this is a building I've been lobbying my employer to look in purchasing. I'll look today again on my way to work, but I believe its' the next building over from the Toledo Free Press building (it has a small parking lot that separates the two) and is on the corner of Ontario and Monore.
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Old March 10th, 2008, 03:26 PM   #1608
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No No, not the lot across the street. I'm talking about the building on the same side as the Blarney and Toledo Free Press. I remember the post in regards to the lot that was sold to Rumpf Development, but this is a building I've been lobbying my employer to look in purchasing. I'll look today again on my way to work, but I believe its' the next building over from the Toledo Free Press building (it has a small parking lot that separates the two) and is on the corner of Ontario and Monore.

Oooooooooh another sale???? I did some research via Lucas County Auditor's real estate report. There is a transaction at 619 Monroe Street which is located at the corner of Monroe & Erie Streets, the previous owner sold it to Hannon's Block LLC on 3/4/2008 for $144,500. This building is on the same block as The Blarney's, Toledo Free Press, Gilbert, and a small deli/cheese store. I suppose this is what you are talking about?

You should look at the building at 610 Monroe Street that is for sale which was last bought in year 2000 for $110K. It shares the same block with AT&T offices and this building has beautiful windows and great storefront feel to it.
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Old March 10th, 2008, 06:56 PM   #1609
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Oooooooooh another sale???? I did some research via Lucas County Auditor's real estate report. There is a transaction at 619 Monroe Street which is located at the corner of Monroe & Erie Streets, the previous owner sold it to Hannon's Block LLC on 3/4/2008 for $144,500. This building is on the same block as The Blarney's, Toledo Free Press, Gilbert, and a small deli/cheese store. I suppose this is what you are talking about?

You should look at the building at 610 Monroe Street that is for sale which was last bought in year 2000 for $110K. It shares the same block with AT&T offices and this building has beautiful windows and great storefront feel to it.
Yep. The Monore & Erie St. had to have been the one, and its' a recent sale so that definitely had to have been it. I'll certainly take a look at the one near the AT&T offices (not that I have a say in it). I'd like to stay as close to the core as possible, but I think right now the prime candidate is a building on Monore and Collingwood, or maybe a block from Collingwood heading toward Summit. Its' an empty building on the right hand side if your driving from the Museum to Summit St. I think the prime reason for that is it comes with parking.
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Old March 11th, 2008, 04:45 AM   #1610
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High Speed Rail Project, et al.

I wanted to copy a story from the Toledo Business Journal to this thread, but I can't find it on their website. Anyways, Cleveland-Sandusky-Toledo-Detroit line is being further considered for a high speed rail line. Even before this story I had hear word of this, I think from this thread. I wrote Marcy Kaptur about obtaining further information, but I haven't heard back yet. Will post whatever response I receive. This would be great for the region.

My co-worker is constantly talking about what a brilliant idea a high speed rail line to Ann Arbor would be, and I can't agree more. The cost of living in Ann Arbor is pretty high, and many people who have to live 20 minutes drive away would prefer to live in a city. If we had a high speed line from Toledo to AA, people could commute there and back in 30 minutes or so. I think this would be a fantastic development proposal for this city. If I had the capital and know-how I would spearhead the project myself!

Carty has definitely done some really good things, and I don't altogether dislike him as a mayor, but IMO Toledo has been cursed with mere mediocre leadership at the top position. Although it could definitely be worse, we really need a solidly good mayor, not even a fantastic mayor, just a mayor who has the vision to push us over the post-industrial hump we're still trying to overcome. I think we're going to have some great candidates next time around. However, it is completely ridiculous to blame one man for a regional problem that has been ongoing for the past 40 years. We do need more agrressive tax incentives, and we desparately need uni-gov. Even Fort Wayne has uni-gov now!

I also wanted to thank 4silverrings for that submission, it looks great! Despite what that fool on ToledoTalk thinks, aesthetics DO matter, and Sim City is not reality!
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Old March 11th, 2008, 04:46 AM   #1611
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Monroe and Erie

My girlfriend suggested that that building might be the future home of the new Arnie's Downtown, but that's just a theory.
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Old March 11th, 2008, 06:20 AM   #1612
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Originally Posted by rustbeltrevival View Post
I wanted to copy a story from the Toledo Business Journal to this thread, but I can't find it on their website. Anyways, Cleveland-Sandusky-Toledo-Detroit line is being further considered for a high speed rail line. Even before this story I had hear word of this, I think from this thread. I wrote Marcy Kaptur about obtaining further information, but I haven't heard back yet. Will post whatever response I receive. This would be great for the region.

My co-worker is constantly talking about what a brilliant idea a high speed rail line to Ann Arbor would be, and I can't agree more. The cost of living in Ann Arbor is pretty high, and many people who have to live 20 minutes drive away would prefer to live in a city. If we had a high speed line from Toledo to AA, people could commute there and back in 30 minutes or so. I think this would be a fantastic development proposal for this city. If I had the capital and know-how I would spearhead the project myself!

Carty has definitely done some really good things, and I don't altogether dislike him as a mayor, but IMO Toledo has been cursed with mere mediocre leadership at the top position. Although it could definitely be worse, we really need a solidly good mayor, not even a fantastic mayor, just a mayor who has the vision to push us over the post-industrial hump we're still trying to overcome. I think we're going to have some great candidates next time around. However, it is completely ridiculous to blame one man for a regional problem that has been ongoing for the past 40 years. We do need more agrressive tax incentives, and we desparately need uni-gov. Even Fort Wayne has uni-gov now!

I also wanted to thank 4silverrings for that submission, it looks great! Despite what that fool on ToledoTalk thinks, aesthetics DO matter, and Sim City is not reality!
Thanks RustBeltRevival! I sent the proposal and drawings to the mayors office, doubt I will get a response.

That was actually my first attempt in that type of proposal/design. I hope to have the time to work on more ideas and improvements. I do feel that some design/aesthetics/ergonomics can in fact help with some deficiencies in views and law.

My background is actually in mechanical engineering, industrial design, architecture, entrepreneurship, business plans, and building materials (family owns a certain building material supply company in NW Ohio). A good combination, I think.


Unfortunately certain Toledo companies don't feel keeping people such as myself in Toledo is a high priority, forcing me to take an engineering position with a Fortune 500 company in the Cleveland area.
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Old March 11th, 2008, 05:30 PM   #1613
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Solar Tech Boom Development Update

Follow-up story regarding to the former Delafoil building on Route 25 in Perrysburg.

New Solar Plant in Perrysburg
Will Locate in Former Delafoil Plant
Posted on WSPD Newsradio 1370AM website 2-10-2008


There's a new solar panel factory on the way in Perrysburg... Newstalk 1370 WSPD's Kevin Milliken has details. The Ohio EPA confirms a company known as the Willard and Kelsey Solar Group has filed a permit application to install a scrubber and other equipment at the old Delafoil plant along Route 25. The plant was recently sold for seven million dollars. No word on when the factory would open or how many people it would employ, but it would be Northwest Ohio's fourth solar company: joining First Solar, Xunlight, and Calyxo USA.


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Originally Posted by Bonjourtoledo View Post
Perrysburg Delafoil plant sold
By CHRIS MILLER Sentinel Staff Writer
Posted on BG Sentinel-Tribune website 2-29-2008


PERRYSBURG — Something is brewing at the old Delafoil manufacturing facility along Ohio 25, and it could be good news for Perrysburg and the region.
According to recent real estate transfers reported by the Wood County Real Estate Division, the Delafoil facility, a commercial property, has been sold for $7 million to Spring Grove Trading Company, LLC.

The real estate transfer was reported in the House & Home Section of Thursday’s Sentinel-Tribune.

According to the Ohio Secretary of State’s Office, the agent for Spring Grove Trading Company is Michael Cicak. He’s a Perrysburg Township resident and past president of Solar Cells, forerunner of the now-notable First Solar company which produces photovoltaic solar modules at its township plant in Cedar Business Park.

A phone message seeking comment on the recent Delafoil purchase was left at Cicak’s home this morning, but had not been returned by press time late this morning.

Perrysburg city officials acknowledge there is interest in the Delafoil facility, a sprawling 250,000 square-foot manufacturing and warehouse site located on the east side of Route 25, across from the new Harbor Town Place commercial development and about a mile south of Levis Commons. The address of the Delafoil facility is 1775 Progress Drive.

City officials are not commenting on the exact nature of the expected new business.

Will it be a new solar module manufacturing facility, further solidifying Wood County’s status as an emerging hotbed of alternative energy production and usage here in Ohio?

No one is saying publicly just yet.
Rick Thielen, the city’s planning, zoning and economic development administrator, earlier this month said he’s hopeful some “good news will break yet this year.”

Perrysburg Administrator John Alexander, contacted this morning, confirmed the city has been in contact with “representatives of the new owners” of the Delafoil facility.

“We’re not in a position to discuss the nature of those communications,” Alexander said. “But we believe the general outline, with their business plan, will be beneficial to the region.”

He said the city is “aware of the sale of the building and we’re very pleased it appears it will once again be occupied. We always recognized it as a versatile structure that could be used for manufacturing and warehousing.”

Delafoil was a Pennsylvania-based manufacturer of television components that opened its $46 million Perrysburg facility in 1996. The company produced components used in TV picture tubes, including magnetic shields. It was the largest single industrial investment in Perrysburg at the time.

At its peak it employed about 250 workers. But the company fell on hard times when its main customer, LG Phillips, closed its TV production plant in Ottawa and moved to Mexico.

Delafoil attempted restructuring itself, closing its Pennsylvania facility and consolidating operations here in Perrysburg in 2003. The company cut its workforce, received numerous tax breaks, and attempted marketing its magnetic shielding for automotive and construction applications. Delafoil closed for good in 2005.

Another company, Proline, began using part of the facility under a lease arrangement in late 2005, but closed the following summer. Proline provided bulk food packaging for Campbell Soup and H.J. Heinz.
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Old March 11th, 2008, 05:32 PM   #1614
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My girlfriend suggested that that building might be the future home of the new Arnie's Downtown, but that's just a theory.
Very interesting...I'm hoping to take some photos of this development project sometime this weekend.
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Old March 11th, 2008, 05:34 PM   #1615
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FedEx Expansion Development Update

Deleted due to Toledo Blade's request.
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Old March 12th, 2008, 05:29 PM   #1616
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Perrysburg: Tennis Center Development

Perrysburg tennis center planned
By CHRIS MILLER Sentinel Staff Writer
Posted on BG Sentinel-Tribune Website 3-12-2008




PERRYSBURG — Start working on that smash and backhand.
A massive new indoor-outdoor tennis facility is coming to Wood County, featuring 16-courts with both hard and clay surfaces, a pro-shop, and year-around action including sanctioned tournaments.

Perrysburg Tennis Center will be located on the east side of Ohio 25, just across the road from Harbor Town Place and about a mile south of Levis Commons. It’ll be situated next to the existing putt-putt golf course — Perry Falls Miniature Golf.

Owners Bob and Sue Fastnacht and Mark and Julie Weider expect construction on the 65,500-square-foot tennis facility to begin in May with opening tentatively scheduled for sometime in September.
“We’re hoping for September because that will allow us to put together a fall-winter program for folks who want to play all winter season long,” said Mark Weider.

Weider said they hope to attract tennis enthusiasts, or aspiring players, from not only Perrysburg but the region.

There will be eight indoor courts and another eight courts outdoor. The center will also include a nearly 4,000 square-foot clubhouse with a mezzanine on top of it for spectators.

Indoor ceiling height will be 38 feet, which meets the standards set by the United States Tennis Association for tournament play.
Weider said the new center will host USTA tournaments.

“We hope to draw folks from all over the Midwest for tournaments,” he said.
This new tennis center will be a “green facility,” according to Weider.
The massive structure itself will feature metal framing covered with fabric that will allow natural sunlight to filter in and light the facility during the day.
“It’s new to this area but it’s been a popular design on the East Coast,” Weider explained.

“It will really be an energy efficient building,” he said, with other “green” features including energy efficient fluorescent lighting for night play.
Four of the 16 courts will feature green clay surfaces which are less jolting on the body, particularly the knees. The other hard surface courts will utilize a “cush-court” paint that also lessens impact.

“That will be very new to this area,” Weider remarked.
Tennis lessons will be offered for all skill levels and ages, and a large pro shop will carry a variety of rackets, balls, shoes and apparel.

Weider said membership information will be available before the center opens later this year. The Sentinel-Tribune will also update readers when the new center launches its Internet Web site. Weider said the Web site will include membership information.
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Old March 12th, 2008, 05:33 PM   #1617
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Findlay: Justice Center Development Update

County unveils proposal for new justice center
By JOHN GRABER STAFF WRITER
Posted on Findlay Courier website 3-12-2008




It may not be the cheapest or the easiest option, but the Hancock County Commissioners are dedicated to keeping county government offices in downtown Findlay — as long as the political will is there from city leaders.

That's why the commissioners met with Findlay City Council on Tuesday night to unveil a proposal for a new $20 million justice center building.

The idea met with general approval from council members.

"This is definitely a step in the right direction in terms of building coalitions" between the city and county, Councilman-At-Large John Urbanski said.

Councilman-At-Large Jim Slough said, "I think this is what we should be doing ... It certainly makes me feel a lot better knowing there is a plan in place. It is a feasible plan."

Proposed justice center

The proposal calls for construction of a 90,000-square-foot justice center just north of the county jail that would house the common pleas court, and the prosecutor's and public defender's offices. To avoid flooding problems, the building would not have a basement.

The building would be connected to the jail for security reasons, and might also include Findlay Municipal Court in order to free up space on the second floor of city hall, allowing the police department to expand.

Putting the municipal court in the new building would also greatly increase that court's security.

The new justice center would free up space in the county courthouse for non-justice-related administrative offices like the board of elections and the county commissioners.

The plan also calls for the destruction of the three county-owned buildings in the 300 block of South Main Street, as well as the prosecutor's office at 222 Broadway.

The space on Main Street would be used to enhance Dorney Plaza in order to create an area for downtown events like arts fairs, as well as add some parking.

Library expansion?

The space on Broadway where the prosecutor's office now sits could be used to expand the Findlay-Hancock County Public Library, or be converted into a parking lot.

Library Board President Ed Railing, who was at Tuesday's meeting, said he would have to take the idea to the rest of his board but added that he liked the idea.

"This is what we should be doing in terms of the city and county," he said after the meeting.

Parking area

The plan would require approval by Findlay City Schools because it calls for using a portion of Central Middle School's parking lot for public parking. A parking garage might be built there, too.

Superintendent Dean Wittwer, who was at the meeting, praised the plan.

The school district is working with state officials on the idea of going from three middle schools to two, which means the district might remove the students from Central and keep the historic building for uses like office space, Wittwer said.

Jail expansion

Another variable in the county's plan, which city officials would need to sign off on, is a proposed expansion of the county jail.

The idea has been to build that facility, which would house inmates serving time for misdemeanor offenses, to the north of the jail on county-owned property. But the plan unveiled Tuesday calls for building the expansion west of the county jail on property owned by the city.

Councilman Slough was confident the city could accommodate the commissioners when it comes to that property. But City Auditor Robert Cole Sprague wanted to know if the commissioners were thinking of buying the site, or if they wanted it donated to them.

"I don't know," Commissioner Ed Ingold said.

Common Pleas Court Judge Joseph Niemeyer said the jail addition would be used mainly for housing misdemeanor violators, "which is typically a function of municipal court."

The new justice center alone is expected to cost somewhere around $20 million. That figure does not include the jail addition.

The commissioners would have to add a half-percent sales tax to pay for the justice center project, Ingold told The Courier earlier.

County 140 option

Moving all the county government offices to Hancock County 140 would be cheaper and easier because construction could begin on land already owned by the county.

However, that would mean an exodus from downtown.

"To take county offices, to take the commissioners and the prosecutor and et cetera away, I think would be a devastating blow to downtown Findlay and something we would not desire," said Jerry Murray, a local architect hired by the county to look at the county's space needs.

County offices already out on Hancock County 140 would stay there under Tuesday's plan.

"If we can get a consensus in the next four to six months to go forward (with the plan), it's probably going to take six to eight months to design, and another year, year and a half to build," Ingold said.

Earlier plans

City and county officials had done a study about creating a downtown "civic district" in 1964. However, both sides came to loggerheads and the only thing accomplished between the mid-1960s and mid-80s was the construction of the county jail.

The commissioners purchased the three buildings on South Main Street in the 1990s with the plan to build a new county administrative office, but the county fell on hard times and the money that was going to be used for the new building was redirected to operations.

The commissioners engaged Murray to look at the county's space needs last year.

That effort was intensified when many county offices were heavily damaged in the August flood, which pushed many county employees into various temporary locations.

Bill Recker, a former county commissioner, raised concerns Tuesday that the plan does not allow for more expansion of the county jail.

"In 20 years from now you're going to need more expansion and 20 years from that you are going to need more expansion," Recker said.

Judge Niemeyer said about half of the beds in the current 96-bed jail are currently used for felons, so adding a misdemeanor facility would free up considerable space in the jail and extend its life.

Having enough parking spaces seemed to concern several people at Tuesday's meeting.

"I like the plan, but I'm very concerned about parking, especially for the municipal building," 1st Ward Councilman Mike Slough said. "I see a lot of green space, which is nice, but I think in order to service our community, we need more than ample parking."

After Tuesday's meeting, Ingold was cautiously optimistic about the reception the plan got.

"The devil's all in the details, but conceptually we got a positive reaction, at least from the members (of City Council) who were here," he said.
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Old March 12th, 2008, 08:40 PM   #1618
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ALERT!!!!! Ohio House Bill 480 that "discriminates" against TARTA

A good friend of mine has let me know about this House Bill 480 that is floating around to "cast a stone" against Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority, the bill was originally H.R. 208, S.B. 88 which allows any communities to "opt" out of any public transit. But State Senator Randy Gardner felt too much heat and opposition from statewide public transit and now he's revealing a new bill that specifies TARTA only which is downright discrimination. The Republican Party in this state is out to kill transit authorities. I urge you to contact your local legislatures and tell them "NO for H.R. Bill 480" because we "urban-city" lovers know it's imperative to have regional transit in Ohioan communities to provide the mobility options besides a private vehicle.

Here is the direct link to the H.R. Bill 480 http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/b...?ID=127_HB_480

Here is the letter of opposition to the H.R. Bill 480 from TARTA:

Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority Opposes
House Bill 480


Position Statement
The Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority (TARTA) opposes Ohio House Bill 480. This bill, introduced February 14, 2008, gives cities and townships that are current members of TARTA the right to withdraw unilaterally from the Authority.

House Bill 480 differs from a similar bill, House Bill 208 introduced in 2007, in two significant ways. First, along with granting permission to withdraw from a Regional Transit Authority (RTA), HB 480 also includes an unmanageable and unrealistic provision letting jurisdictions join and then withdraw after a three-year trial (opt-in clause). Second, the proposed legislation is discriminatory, since parameters contained in the proposal limit it only to TARTA.

In TARTAs’ opinion, enactment of HB 480 will threaten its existence. TARTA currently provides residents efficient and effective public transit options they have come to depend on and use. To deny current and potential users transit services will disrupt their lives and, in many instances, will make it difficult for them to maintain their standard of living.

TARTA favors continuing current regulations that require all members of an RTA to agree to the withdrawal of a current member from the RTA.

Reasons for TARTA Opposition
TARTA opposes Ohio House Bill 480 because the unilateral withdrawal of a member from TARTA will impact riders directly throughout the entire TARTA service area.

The withdrawal means residents within that area will no longer have transit services available to them. Further, riders from other areas will not be able to use public transit to access the withdrawn area. Such a withdrawal can create unnecessary transportation challenges across the state, instead of making it easier for residents to rely on public transportation.

The unilateral withdrawal of a member from an RTA will impact directly those who depend on public transit the most. The withdrawal will make it difficult, if not impossible, to move from place to place freely for those without personal transportation, without finances or who do not know how to drive. Also, it will make it difficult, if not impossible, for the mobility challenged to move freely from place to place.

The unilateral withdrawal of a member from an RTA and the resulting lack of public transportation could deny some residents living within the withdrawn area the ability to pursue employment, medical assistance, education, family visits and social and cultural opportunities. This goes against the very purpose upon which RTAs were founded – to ensure public transportation options are available to those who need them the most.

The unilateral withdrawal of a member from an RTA will have a direct, negative impact on the overall operation of the RTA to which it belonged. The withdrawal will require the RTA to adjust routes and budgets, both of which can cause inefficiencies and render previous scheduling ineffective. Making the necessary changes also will cause additional hardships within the organization with everything from union contracts to marketing efforts.

The unilateral withdrawal of a member from an RTA is unfair to other RTA member communities. The remaining members will have to take on additional responsibilities as a result of the withdrawal. Contracts and financial arrangements entered into in good faith by the various communities in the RTA may no longer be valid because of the withdrawal. Yet, the reasons underlying these contracts and financial arrangements will continue and solutions must be sought.

The unilateral withdrawal of a member from an RTA will increase the financial burden on the remaining communities, possibly creating instability. The fixed-cost burden and increasing energy costs will have to be spread over a smaller base, requiring those communities remaining to pay an increased portion of these costs. Such cost increases, eventually, will be passed on to the remaining riders, who often rely on public transportation as the most cost-effective transportation option.

The unilateral withdrawal of a member from an RTA will negatively impact the retention of existing businesses and industries within and outside of the RTA’s area by denying employees and potential clients/customers the ability to get to and from that business or industry. Further, the area’s ability to attract new business and industry will be hampered severely by the same inability on the part of employees and clients/customers.

The opt-in language, positioned as being pro-transit, is in reality unrealistic and unmanageable. HB 480 includes language which allows communities to enter the transit authority for a three-year trial period. Unfortunately, given the purchasing period of additional vehicles is 6-18 months along with the time necessary to attract and train employees, three years is not adequate time to begin all services and adequately demonstrate the value of public transit.

The bill clearly discriminates against TARTA. As written, HB 480 contains population and tax limitations that cover only one RTA in Ohio, TARTA. This is discrimination in its most blatant form. If HB 480 passes, the only RTA that will be required by law to both permit unilateral withdrawal of a member as well as the opting in of a nonmember in the geographic jurisdiction is TARTA. None of the state’s other RTAs will be so burdened or discriminated against.

Action
TARTA urges all member jurisdictions and patrons to contact their state legislators, especially their state representatives, and register their corporate and personal opposition to Ohio HB 480. Please feel free to use the portions of this TARTA statement that most clearly reflect your current situation. To contact your state legislator, go to http://www.legislature.state.oh.us.

www.tarta.com


Here is a non-profit group called Mobility Alliance of Northwest Ohio that promotes mobility options in the region and here is their concern paper to the H.R. Bill 480:

The Mobility Alliance Opposes - House Bill 480.
(Toledo, Ohio, March 12, 2008)


Concern:
The Mobility Alliance opposes Ohio House Bill 480. The bill, if passed, gives political entities / suburbs that are members of TARTA the right to withdraw unilaterally from this Regional Transit Authority (RTA). This action, if taken, will ultimately undermine local transportation options for individuals with disabilities, first-time workers, senior citizens, and others who depend on public transportation in their daily lives.

Background
The Mobility Alliance is a grass roots organization composed of citizens, public officials and business people formed to promote mobility options in Northwest Ohio.

House Bill 480 was introduced at the request of a Toledo suburb City Council and now several other suburb communities are joining the campaign without being aware of all the implications. These bills would allow the suburb communities to withdraw unilaterally from the Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority, or TARTA. This would be detrimental to these communities and its members for a number of reasons.

While the bill’s major sponsors have characterized this bill as a “voters’ rights issue,” the members of the Mobility Alliance fear this proposal may result in our members losing the ability to move about freely within the communities in pursuit of employment, medical assistance, education, family visits and social opportunities.

The bill’s enactment will threaten available public transportation to individuals in Northwest Ohio who rely on this service, without providing a plan to fill the gap. TARTA has been assembled with great skill and care over the years and currently provides effective public transit options. We need assistance to improve, not eliminate.

The members of the Mobility Alliance and others living within TARTA’s service area have come to rely on these transit services. Many of our members already are mobility challenged. Any withdrawal from TARTA will make it difficult, if not impossible, to get to or from communities for those with homes, employment, physicians or family members outside of Toledo proper.

To deny our members transit services now will disrupt lives and, in many instances, will make it difficult for our members to maintain their standard of living.

Further, such a withdrawal will increase the financial burden on the communities that remain with TARTA, possibly creating instability within existing TARTA routes and service. The communities that remain will have to pay an increased portion of the fixed costs. Eventually, this can lead to fare increases that will be passed on to the remaining riders. It also would lead to service cuts which would eliminate access to necessary jobs and services in our region. And even more, it could lead to other communities deciding a segment of their population is not to justify the cost of public transportation.

The Mobility Alliance favors continuing current regulations which require all members of an RTA to agree to the withdrawal of a current member from the RTA. Maintaining the current regulations will preserve the delicate balance that currently exists and will continue to allow Alliance members equal ability to move freely about our communities.

Please work with us to develop a better financial support system for public transportation before eliminating any current services.

www.MobilityAlliance-nwo.org

The mission and purpose of the Mobility Alliance of Northwest Ohio is to support public transportation and raise the awareness of its importance. The Mobility Alliance of Northwest Ohio shall be formed in three categories; Education, Access and Environment. The Mobility Alliance of Northwest Ohio works with transportation and transit users, taxpayers, business community, stakeholders, and media outlets to bring about a positive understanding of the mobility options and the commitment to provide the best possible service to the community.
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"HOLY TOLEDO!!!"
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Old March 13th, 2008, 01:58 AM   #1619
ilovetoledo
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WTVG -- Economic indicators have gone from bad to worse in recent weeks, and many say we are close to or in a recession.
Economic indicators have gone from bad to worse in recent weeks, and many say we are close to or in a recession.
We're in the middle of the worst job market the nation has seen in 5 years, and like the rest of the country, people are watching their spending here in Toledo.
It's not all bad news. At least one restaurant is serving up changes to keep the customers coming in. The Cousino's exectuive chef says business is holding steady, but because of the slowing economy the Navy Bistro has cooked up some changes on the menu.
The local housing market has taken a hit in recent months with declining home values and an increasing number of foreclosures, but the commercial real estate market is holding its own. The real estate investment sales have slowed a bit, but the office space industrial and retail divisions are doing well.
Jeremy Miller of CB Richard Ellis says, "We've brought in a lot of new retailers Bass, Burlington, Costco. Positive things going on in retail."
Despite the growing concern about the economy, we have yet to officially hear the word recession.
Dr. Gary Moore, a UT professor of finance, says, "Frankly, the word recession scares people. We probably are in a recession."
Dr. Moore says the stock market is another indicator we're in a recession, and he doesn't expect us to emerge from the so-called recession anytime soon because of continuing mortgage and energy problems.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 09:44 PM   #1620
b1gh0u5e
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Sorry to disagree with you Bonjour(which seems to be a major problem for you), but I think a community has a right to back out of Tarta if they see fit to do so. With the exception of Mudhen games, I could not tell you the last time I've seen a Tarta bus even 25-50% full.
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