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Thursday, August 03, 2006

Jailhouse Politics

After a majority of Cincinnati city council voted to send the idea of building a $6 million temporary jail back to the Law and Public Safety Committee Wednesday, council member Leslie Ghiz unloaded on her colleague John Cranley.

Ghiz, along with council member Jeff Berding, has floated the idea of building eight temporary jail structures as a way to eliminate the early release of prisoners. She was offended that five of her fellow council members declined to back her up with a vote that would have instructed acting city manager Dave Rager to begin negotiating with county officials the parameters of the jail proposal.

The county, through Sheriff Simon Leis and Prosecutor Joe Deters, has repeatedly said building the temporary jail structures is a bad idea and one they won't support.

While Ghiz was angry at all five council members who voted to send her idea back to committee, she was especially upset at Cranley's vote, which she said was politically motivated.

Cranley is running for Congress against Republican Steve Chabot.

"John is making a political decision to put this off until after the election is over," Ghiz said of Cranley. "He doesn't want to have to deal with the sheriff. His congressional race is far more important to him than the city.

"He did it for political reasons, and it makes me want to vomit."

Cranley explained his vote in Wednesday's council meeting, saying it makes no sense to instruct Rager to negotiate with a group of people who don't want to talk about a temporary jail. Cranley said the better approach is for elected officials from both governments to talk about it in an attempt to convince county officials that the idea is a good one.

Cranley said he supports the temporary jail.

"I don’t question her motivations," Cranley said of Ghiz. "I think she really wants to get this done. We just have a disagreement over how to get it done. But if the shriff isn't convinced, this will never get accomplished.

You can’t ask the administration to solve a political problem. This can only be solved by the city's elected officials reaching out to the county's elected officials, and figuring out a compromise. If we stopped criticizing each other, we’ll go a lot further."


at 7:30 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talk about Jailhouse Politics !!

This just out:

BREAKING NEWS: The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a ruling today forcing Tom DeLay to stay on the ballot in Texas.

Once again, Tom DeLay's legal chicanery has blown up in his face. He delayed his resignation from Congress so that he and the GOP could handpick his replacement, but he was too slick for his own good, and now will have to stay in the race that he's already conceded he probably can't win.

at 8:30 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whoa-boy! Things just keep getting better and better for Cranley. Yesterday, Chabot had to cancel a major fund-raiser because the illegitimate war he supports came back to blow up in his face.

Today, Cranley puts the queen bee of city politics in her place.

There is no limit to what John Cranley can do in Congress.

at 10:08 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous TB said...

"He did it for political reasons, and it makes me want to vomit."

Is she in the third grade? Who says "it makes me want to vomit"? What an idiot.

at 10:13 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

She may be loosing face, but, she can still haul a_s !!

at 10:32 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen to John Cranley! With the spotlight constantly on him these last months, he is showing voters firsthand what kind of guy he is.

He doesn't do things for political reasons, he does them for ethical and civically responsible reasons.

Leslie Ghiz doesn't know what she is doing on Council. Republicans don't like her, and Democrats don't like her either.

Let's take partisan politics out of Council and unethical Congressmen out of Congress as well!

at 10:35 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you think the ghiz grandstanding is politically motivated ??

at 10:40 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

The majority voted to sit on it ??

What's the hurry, we needed a solution for years. Is she trying to boost hindlick ??

Maybe she doesn't have the temperament to be a council member ??

at 10:55 PM, August 03, 2006 Blogger College Hillbilly said...

"But if the shriff isn't convinced, this will never get accomplished."

Is the Enquirer's spell check on the fritz, or is John Cranley using some kind of urban slang?

'Cuz if he is, John Cranley is so shriffing phat.

at 11:22 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...


queen bee is about right. will love to see how cranley explains this to city voters. "Mr. average 1st district voter-I'm sorry, the office of environmental quality is more important than the fact that you just got mugged by someone who couldn't be held at the justice center because it was overcrowded, and you didn't think jail space was important enough." I'll bet district 1 will be out in full force to support cranley's rationale. What a tool.

at 11:42 PM, August 03, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

it seems to me that cranley is just stating the obvious - what is the point of any of this if the county is publicly saying they are not willing to run the tent jail? it seems more "political" to have a vote that will amount to nothing.

at 6:13 AM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous John "lil dwarf" Cranley said...

Mom!!! You're embarrasing me! You said you would stop posting!!!

at 9:05 AM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

at 8/04/2006 6:13 AM John "lil dwarf" Cranley said...
Mom!!! You're embarrasing me! You said you would stop posting!!!

Another wRong wingnut whacko that doesn't know schmidt !!

Stop it now, you are embarrassing yourself and all of us !!

I suppose we need a social program for chabotheads who project their self absorbed, rejection issues on society !!

We certainly need individuals who are well versed in the demands of society and can speak the language:

Does embarrasing = embarrassing ??


at 10:02 AM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous Peter Deane said...

Anon asked: "Do you think the ghiz grandstanding is politically motivated?"

Chabot must have promised her a seat next to Laura Bush. To bad Chabot had had to cancel his Laura Bush meeting... If she was in town she could have just attended the funeral of another dead Marine with him. Maybe even comforted Chabot for voting us into this ill-informed war.

John Cranley for congress. The people have had enough of Chabot and his killing off of the middle-class.

at 10:25 AM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

An Open Letter to the People of Hamilton County on the Jail Expansion
Thursday, August 03, 2006

by Commissioner Todd Portune

It goes completely against my political instincts to present what I am about to present. Nonetheless, my duties and responsibilities as Commissioner require that I do so. In fact, in the light of how current year electoral politics are destroying the ability of Hamilton County to effectively and definitively resolve this issue, I feel that I have a special obligation to present this alternative.

Attached hereto is a copy of the Proposal I am formally tendering today to Hamilton County Sheriff Si Leis and to County Administrator Patrick Thompson. Copies are simultaneously being delivered to the Hamilton County Commission and to Cincinnati City Council Members Leslie Ghiz and Jeff Berding along with the balance of the Council and the Mayor.

I say this proposal is against my political interests for these reasons. The way this issue is being covered I have little hope that the attached comprehensive corrections and rehabilitation center proposal will be treated fairly or objectively in the media. In fact I expect that the media will present this proposal as one that raises more taxes than Commissioner Heimlich’s even though it doesn’t. I expect that the focus will be on the taxes raised and not on the benefits provided. I expect that the overall objective will be disregarded making it all the more difficult to explain to the general public. Nonetheless, it must be done.

This is also not in my best political interest because the issue is largely one that the majority on the Commission needed to resolve and failed to do so. It would better be in my interest to do nothing, to watch Commissioner Heimlich flounder and to help elect David Pepper. Nonetheless, for me to do that would dishonor the seat that I hold and disrespect the citizens who voted for me. I have a duty and an obligation to resolve this issue any way I know how and as quickly as possible.

Lastly, this is not in my political best interest because I am not only proposing that we might have to raise taxes, but I am also saying that the issue is so important we simply have to do it. I am saying that after you account for all available resources it still looks like we have to raise taxes to do the job right. That being said we have no other option. Putting the issue to a popular vote under those circumstances is only being done to provide political cover for commissioners. The fact is the outcome of such a vote makes no difference because we as commissioners have no recourse except to still raise the money from somewhere. We still have to raise the sales tax. Accordingly, delaying the matter for a public vote means that we are delaying solving the problem and we are supporting giving criminals a pass to be out on the streets just so a few politicians can run from cover. That’s pretty despicable when you really think about it.

There is another proposal on the table. It is a problem for several reasons.

It provides no funding for operations or for programming. Each of the three expert consultants or panels that we empowered to research our needs have opined that building a jail is not enough. If you want to make a difference you have to have a full slate of peer reviewed, proven, state of the art programs, services and treatment methods in place to reduce the likelihood that an inmate will offend again. We have to develop a funding mechanism that provides the right amount of funding and that guarantees it will be there for the long haul.

The proposal on the table is being presented as low cost to taxpayer because other tax levies—in particular the Drake Levy will not be around. The proponent forgets that the Drake Levy provided funding for the Drug Court and for substance abuse programs. Without the Levy those programs are gone. We need a guaranteed funding stream to cover those costs.

The proposal on the table requires a favorable popular vote and already plans are afoot for the business community to spend as much as $750,000.00 or more on the campaign. No one wants to spend that much money if they don’t have to.

The proposal on the table requires an increase to the sales tax for 20 years and for hundreds of millions of dollars to be spent on interest. Our citizens’ tax dollars need not be spent that way. Instead the alternative shortens the length of any tax from 20 years with no operating costs covered to five years maximum with all operating costs covered and the alternative offers a way to reduce taxpayers’ costs by almost $200 Million while increasing overall public benefits to as much as $701 Million.

Accordingly, I am proposing that we enact the necessary Resolutions to permit the adoption of the above plan and to allow for the immediate collection of the necessary sales tax. Respectfully, I ask the people of Hamilton County to tell us at the pending public hearings how they feel about this. Does the general public prefer that we place the issue in jeopardy and doubt, pending the results of an election, or would they prefer that we go ahead and solve it now, saving additional time and materials, and saving considerable expense and taxes, in the process.

About a month ago, before political pressures were brought to bear, Sheriff Leis and I discussed these concepts. The Sheriff agreed this was the best approach. He sent a letter confirming as much and extending his support. A copy of that letter is attached. Today the Sheriff says he supports Commissioner Heimlich’s model—but that is only because he doubts the ability to get a second vote for the outline attached—not because it is not a sound proposal. For that reason I am urging the Sheriff to reconsider and for all of Hamilton County to consider the sense of what I am presenting that will solve our existing and immediate corrections space needs and will also, at the same time, guarantee we have the money we need to offer all of the help and programs, services and education, that will reduce the amount of repeat criminal behavior that takes place in Hamilton County.

I think this issue has been delayed long enough. Let’s get this county working together on the solution.

Todd Portune
Hamilton County Commissioner
138 East Court Street, Suite 603
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
(513) 946-4401

at 10:31 AM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am more interested in what the social services agencies say about this new "campus" idea.

While not fully versed, I find it very difficult to compute the math. Less citizens + more police = more criminals ?

What is the arrest rate per county capita ?

How does that compare with other counties in the state ?

What is the mean ?

I suspect our county is at the higher arrest rate, why ?

How much money does Si get from governmental sources to fill a bed ?

Are we still arresting good-natured citizens for neighborly gestures, such as placing a quarter in an expired parking meter ?

I have been to meetings where social service agencies have claimed that a large percentage of criminals are actually citizens who have falling victim to the ills of society. Now, we all know that I will be labeled a bleeding heart liberal. Yet, I heard testimony from individuals who have earned their master degrees and lost employment, then no money = no wife, foreclosure, substance abuse.

Now, I'm no expert, but, I would think treatment should be top priority not last. We now have Darwinism treatment for people who are begging for it. People wait for beds then by the time one is available, it may be to late !

I would rather see 1,800 treatment beds go unfilled, than 1,800 jail beds occupied ?

I would like to see the stats on the study for the current jail. Population at the time compared to now. How did we end up with a jail to small ?

Hasn't the population been decreasing ?

at 1:29 PM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

read at least the first 8 pages of the portune plan and you'll find this is the most inovative funding idea encompassing both the facility and services as well as the punishment aspects of corrections.

portune has addressed every conceivable issue from the conservatives to the iberals - it is a comprehensive plan that deserves significant outing.

at 1:32 PM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, Ghiz and I agree on something ! We both want her to vomit.

at 7:15 PM, August 04, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

portune has addressed every conceivable issue from the conservatives to the iberals - it is a comprehensive plan that deserves significant outing.

Do you have a link to the plan ?

at 12:00 AM, August 05, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

go to cincinnati beacon - i'm not computer literate - and this same letter is there with a link to the plan.

it is pure and unabashed political bias for the enquirer not to have covered this jail plan - it is timely, it is relevant, and it is the best option to solve the problem.

i have never seen such obvious patronage, even from the enquirer

at 12:38 AM, August 05, 2006 Anonymous No Vested Interest said...

I question the need for a new jail. A large number of those being held are there for misdemeanors, or are awaiting trial on minor charges and are not a risk to society. Check out hcso.org. These cases should be handled more speedily, especially by the appointment of more judges or magistrates. I'm no fan of Ghiz or Berding, but believe the "tent jails" could be a practical way to solve that temporary housing problem. Why is Carl Lindner so interested in having a large new jail built? Will it be called the Lindner Jail? Or the Great American Jail?

at 8:50 AM, August 05, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Portune endorses sales tax rise

Another wRong wingnut fishwrap slinging elephant dung episode, reinforcing political bias.

Headline Should Read:


The stenographers at the fishwrap are real pieces of schmidt !!!

at 8:13 PM, August 05, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why is Carl Lindner so interested in having a large new jail built? Will it be called the Lindner Jail? Or the Great American Jail?

Maybe funding the build, maybe handling the real estate services, maybe underwriting the bond issue.

You can bet the peanut allocateR has his hand in the feed troth !!

Bi-si's motel has elephant dung all over it and smells like schmidt !!

at 9:22 PM, August 06, 2006 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ghiz is just ticked at Cranley because they used to date and he didn't become her "prisoner of love". Now, I want to vomit, because my last sentence conjured up an image of Ghiz doing something kinky with handcuffs...

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