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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Can you give us an hour this weekend?

Cincinnatians For Progress is looking for volunteers to hand out flyers at City Flea and the AFL-CIO Labor Day Picnic at Coney Island this weekend, Saturday and Monday, Sept. 3 and 5. One hour any time during either event is all we ask. If you can help, please email with your contact information, and tell us which event and what hour you prefer.

Here are details on the two events:

City Flea
Southwest corner of Central Parkway and Vine Street at the Cincinnatus Mural.
Saturday, September 3, 10 am to 4 pm,

Labor Day Picnic
Coney Island
6201 Kellogg Ave
Monday, September 5,  9 am to 8 pm

Thank you!!

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Monday, August 29, 2011

The Coffee is On Us

Cincinnatians for Progress needs your help in getting our information to the voters.

We have a four $25 dollar Coffee Emporium gift cards to give away. How can you win one? Simply LIKE our FaceBook fan page and share the page with your friends.

Beginning Saturday, Sept. 3rd for four consecutive weeks, one of our FaceBook fans, chosen at random, will win a gift card. The sooner you like the page, the more chances you have to win.

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Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Truth About the Riverfront Transit Center

Proponents of the anti-rail charter amendment keep saying that it should not be defeated because the Riverfront Transit Center is seldom used. Like a lot of things they say, this is untrue and reveals their lack of understanding of Cincinnati's physical infrastructure.

The truth is, the Riverfront Transit Center was designed to accommodate the multitude of buses that arrive in downtown Cincinnati for riverfront special events. The RTC is regularly used for Reds' games, Bengals' games, and for events like the circus, Tall Stacks, Riverfest and many other special events.

Metro has never proposed to use it for rail, but thinking to the future, it was designed so it could accommodate trains. For instance, backers of the proposed Eastern Corridor commuter rail project would like to see it connect to the RTC. Ironically, because the RTC occupies a city "right-of-way," the charter amendment, if passed by voters, would absolutely prevent any kind of passenger rail from using it.

[Cincinnati Enquirer Photo]

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

OTR Brewery District Community Urban Redevelopment Corp. Endorses "NO' Vote on Anti-Rail Amendment

Thank you to the OTR Brewery District Community Urban Redevelopment Corp. for today's endorsement of a 'NO' vote on the anti-rail amendment.

A public statement signed by Executive Director Steven Hampton on behalf of the board of directors said, "We are greatly concerned that this restrictive amendment would unnecessarily set back the city's, and our neighborhoods, development for years to come."

The district comprises one of the largest collections of pre-Prohibition brewery architecture in the country. For more information or for details on their walking tours, visit


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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

It's On. Again.


Charles Ashdown | Eric Avner | Aine Baldwin | Patricia Baxter | Gerard Berding |

Fred and Gail Berger | Charles Boswell | Doug Brandt | Robert S. Brown |

Christine and Louis Carli | Jim Caskey and Leanne Lawton | David Cook | Judi Craig |

Marc Cop | David and Tiffiny Dawson | Holly Dorna | Mark Essex | Julie Fay | Kevin Feldman | 
Jake Fessler | Larry FoBiano | Carol Friel | Alfred and Sarah Gaspari | Jeanne Golliher |

Sean Gray | Theresa Harper | Reid Hartmann and Patricia Klein |

Shawn Jenkins | Theresa Harper | Jason Hatfield and Melinda Voss | J. Thomas Hodges |

Karen and Brad Hughes | Maynard Johnson | Dan Korman | Ron Kull and Mary Stagaman |

Jonathan Lippincott | Christine Moran | Nasra Mesmer | Kristen Myers and Chris Heckman |

Margaret McGurk | Peg Moertl | Christine Moran | Jameson Muth | Thomas Murphy | 
Jeanette Murray | Evan Nolan | Fred Orth | Judge Mark Painter | Sue Ann Painter |

John Philips | Nowl Prows | Kevin Pape and Kimberly Starbuck | Rob and Mahlet Richardson | 
 Jeff Raser | Judith Rhodes | Rob Richardson, Sr. and Sherri Richardson | Jason Riveiro |

Dave and Priya Rolfes | John Rockwell | Mark Rudemiller | Mark Schmidt |

John and April Schneider | Chris Seelbach | Michael Setzer | Mike Stehlin | Brad Thomas | 
Mark Vaughn | The Voss Family | Margo Warminski | Joe Warkany |

Jim and Marilyn Wellinghoff | Robert Woods | Melissa Wideman| The Wissel Family |

Kristin Woeste | Kyle Wynk |

*Hosts at time of posting


for our Campaign to fight against another far-reaching anti-passenger rail amendment and in
Support of Progress in Cincinnati.

Thursday, August 25th 2011
5:30 - 7:30 pm
Blue Wisp
318 E. 8th Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202

$50 - host
$20 - supporter


It's not a party without music, so we are proud to welcome veteran Cincinnati singer-songwriter Dave Hawkins to the fundraiser. Dave has worked with Ian Anderson, Sam Bush, Stacy Earle, Ricky Nye and many other musical greats. For more information, please visit

There will be door prizes from Milton's, Iris Bookcafe, Park + Vine, Segway and others.

Cincinnatians for Progress, Bobby Maly, Treasurer, 417 Vine Street, Suite 202, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202 

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Monday, August 22, 2011

Get The Facts Straight

Supporters of the anti-rail amendment keep suggesting it would somehow help the city resolve its budget deficit. They're wrong.

This amendment would not lower the deficit by one dollar. It would not save a single job. In fact, it would immediately kill 300 construction jobs, and thousands more over the 10 years it would be in effect.

Don't let this bad law take effect. Volunteer to help CFP, donate now, and come out to our fundraiser this Thursday, Aug. 25th at The Blue Wisp.

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Friday, August 19, 2011

Fundraiser Thursday Aug. 25 at The Blue Wisp

Join Cincinnatians For Progress at a fundraiser from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday August 25 at The Blue Wisp, 318 East 8th Street, downtown, for a donation of $25 or more. You can donate right now by clicking here.

You can become a host with a donation of $50 or more. Click here, and be sure to include "Host" in the comment box. (Hurry, though, if you want to be listed on the invitations going out on Monday!)

If you would like to donate money as a business or corporate contribution, please email You will need to fill out  form.

We are also accepting door prizes, such as gift cards, from local merchants who support the campaign to halt the radical, far-reaching anti-rail amendment in November. Email if you have a door prize to contribute.


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Thursday, August 11, 2011

We Need Your Help

We need your help now, more than ever.

Our opponents will turned in enough signatures to qualify the anti-rail charter amendment for the ballot.

The Enquirer headline reads "Streetcar foes rally just in time". We will need to fight back at the ballot box.

Will you contribute today?

Judge Mark Painter wrote an editorial describing the potentially damaging effects of this charter amendment. We need to fight back.

We need money for the fight. Can you contribute?  

Save the date for the next Cincinnatians for Progress fundraiser on Thursday, August 25.
Thanks for your continued help and support.

If you want more information about what the amendment could do to harm the City. You can find more information by visiting our website.

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Latest anti-streetcar effort a detour for all light rail

Latest anti-streetcar effort a detour for all light rail

10:44 PM, Jul. 30, 2011 
There they go again. Special-interest groups are trying to force what they claim is another vote on the Cincinnati streetcar. But just like 2009's failed Issue 9, this second anti-rail amendment is a clever attempt to use misleading language to stop all rail in Cincinnati - including streetcars, light rail or commuter rail.

The backers of this amendment are trying to enact a 10-year ban not on "streetcars" but on "streetcar systems." And the way they define "streetcar systems" would prevent our city from pursuing any rail until 2021.

A "streetcar" is defined under both Ohio and Cincinnati law as a vehicle "for transporting persons or property, operated upon rails principally within a street or highway." This is an accurate definition of a streetcar - a rail vehicle that runs in the street.

But this anti-rail petition blocks spending not on "streetcars" but on a "streetcar system." The opponents created the broader definition of "streetcar system" to block other forms of rail transportation as well. Again, the vote would not be limited to the streetcar issue. The effect of this change to Cincinnati's constitution is much broader.

The same bunch as before are, by using confusing legal language, again trying to slip one by the voters. They didn't fool us the first time, but they keep trying.
The drafters of this amendment define a "streetcar system" as "a system of passenger vehicles operated on rails primarily in existing public rights of way." By changing "street or highway" to "public right of way" these special-interest groups have greatly expanded the scope of this anti-rail amendment.
The definition of "right of way" under Ohio law is expansive: "land, property, or the interest therein, usually in the configuration of a strip, acquired for or devoted to transportation purposes." The city (or Metro) owns the rights of way where any rail system would travel. And any trains running in these rights of way would be prohibited for the next 10 years.

This broad definition of "streetcar system" would prevent any future rail planning without first amending our city's constitution. What if someone wanted to bring back an incline, even mostly at private expense? Or if, in 2020, the federal government awarded a grant to cover 100 percent of the cost of a new rail system? The anti-rail amendment would ban federal grants or private donations as well.

Any competent attorney drafting this ballot language would first research the legal definition of "streetcar." So the drafters knew exactly what they were doing when they wrote this new, broader definition of "streetcar system." Or they are incompetent.

Either way, they are attempting to keep any rail transit from being built in Cincinnati for the next decade, leaving Cincinnatians with limited transportation options - and at the mercy of ever-rising gas prices.

They just keep trying to fool us.

Let's say NO to misleading language. If you are asked to sign a petition, say NO.

And if it comes to a vote, let's do what we did on Issue 9 - and say NO again.

This illustration shows what a streetcar might look like running in front of the Aronoff Center for the Performing Arts. The 3-mile route planned here goes from Fountain Square to Findlay Market.
This illustration shows what a streetcar might look like running in front of the Aronoff Center for the Performing Arts. The 3-mile route planned here goes from Fountain Square to Findlay Market. / Provided/Brad Thomas

About the author

Mark P. Painter was a judge in Hamilton County for 27 years.

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Monday, August 8, 2011

Cincinnati Blog: Barry Horstman's Anti-Streetcar Cheerleading Continues

Good piece by Brian Griffin on the Enquirer's inadequate coverage of the anti-rail amendment.

Cincinnati Blog: Barry Horstman's Anti-Streetcar Cheerleading Continues

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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Cincinnati Beacon rejects anti-rail amendment.

"The Dean of Cincinnati" writing in Cincinnati Beacon takes a close look at the COAST amendment and concludes: "(E)ven for people who have legitimate concerns about the streetcar, it has once again become too dangerous to oppose it through this over-broad signature campaign."

Click here for the full story.

The dean, who is not a streetcar supporter, quotes transit activist and CFP supporter Brad Thomas in making the case against the amendment.

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Milwaukee confronts anti-rail pressure

Milwaukee is working on a streetcar plan that has been met with resistance that Cincinnatians would find familiar.

Veteran Wisconsin journalist Dave Zweifel takes a look a this column in The Cap Times.

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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

City Beat hammers the anti-rail amendment as a "Trojan Horse"

Thanks, Kevin Osborne, for the tough, detailed takedown of COAST's anti-rail plan!


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Enquirer update on anti-rail petition drive

 Good news! The Cincinnati Enquirer managed to include a quote from Cincinnatians for Progress co-chairman Rob Richardson in today's story about the COAST anti-rail petition drive, which reports that:

"After months of effort by streetcar opponents and with only a week remaining before a "soft" Aug. 10 deadline, the anti-streetcar petition has 5,227 valid signatures of registered Cincinnati voters, well below the 7,468 needed to qualify for the ballot."

Rob gets two paragraphs:

"But Rob Richardson, co-chair of Cincinnatians for Progress, a group formed to help turn back a similar anti-streetcar ballot measure in 2009, argues that even many who dislike the $95 million-plus streetcar plan 'dislike this charter amendment even more.'

"The streetcar will continue to be a contentious debate," Richardson said. "But this isn't the way to address it. The citizens of Cincinnati understand that, like the last try, this could block all passenger rail for a generation."

Out of 14 paragraphs in the story, four are neutral statements of fact, one is split between the two sides, six focus on  the anti-rail efforts (if we count the lead saying the COAST side "is going to need a strong push over the next week to go before voters this fall") and three address the CFP side.


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Tuesday, August 2, 2011 story on Cincinnati's battle with anti-rail forces

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Monday, August 1, 2011

Is this what we want for Cincinnati?

Interesting reporting from The Economist on what happens when special interests overwhelm the law-making process.

Lessons from California
The perils of extreme democracy

California offers a warning to voters all over the world

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