OVER THE RHINE, OH (FOX19) - Community members gathered for a rally in support of Issue 42 on Thursday afternoon at Washington Park.
Mayor Mark Mallory was among those who attended the event to stand up and speak out to support Cincinnati Public Schools and a renewal levy on the Nov. 6 ballot. "One of the things I have to do is to convince them that we have a qualified work force and that we have a strong system of public education," said Mallory.
In June, the Cincinnati Board of Education voted unanimously to move forward to place a renewal levy generating $51.5 million for Cincinnati Public Schools. The renewal of current operating revenue would not raise taxes, according to CPS. "It is critical. With these kind of massive cuts, we would not be able to operate our district," said CPS superintendent, Mary Ronan.
The approval of the operating issue would reinstate the 8.55-mill levy for five years beginning in January 2014 as the emergency levy is due to expire in December 2013. "We think its wrong to renew something two years in advance of it expiring," said Tom Brinkman with the tax watchdog group, C.O.A.S.T. "Citizens want to see five years how the proceeds were spent. Whether they were spent correctly or not. We're not getting a true picture of that," said Brinkman.
Councilman Christopher Smitherman and Symphony Orchestra Conductor John Morris Russell also showed their support for Issue 42 at the rally.