Morning News and Stuff

Senator now supports gay marriage, Sittenfeld demands state funding, parking plan in court

U.S. Sen. Rob Portman
U.S. Sen. Rob Portman

Republican Sen. Rob Portman

reversed his stance on same-sex marriage

after his son came out as gay. The announcement means both Ohio senators are poised to support the Freedom to Marry amendment, which would legalize gay marriage in Ohio and could be on the ballot this year. CityBeat covered FreedomOhio’s efforts to legalize same-sex marriage in Ohio in further detail

here

.

Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld is asking Gov. John Kasich to

reverse local government funding cuts carried out during his tenure as governor

. A previous Policy Matters Ohio report found the state has cut local government funding by $1.4 billion since Kasich took office, which happens to be the exact amount Kasich says his tax cuts are worth. The governor’s office has previously argued that Kasich had to make some cuts to help balance an $8-billion deficit inherited from former Gov. Ted Strickland, and Kasich is touting his tax cuts as one way to reinvigorate Ohio’s small businesses. But local officials from around the state say that money is needed in cities, villages and counties.

The Cincinnati parking plan

will be in court today

to determine whether a temporary restraining order should remain and whether a lawsuit that claims the plan should be subject to referendum should move forward. If the restraining order does remain, the city says it will have to make cuts to balance the budget by July — in time for the 2014 fiscal year. CityBeat wrote more about the lawsuit

here

and the parking plan

here

.

State Auditor Dave Yost says he

“fully anticipates”

he will get the financial records for JobsOhio, the state-funded nonprofit agency that Kasich supports. Some state Republicans and Kasich argue that only JobsOhio’s public funds should be open for audit, but Yost wants to audit all of the agency’s finances. Kasich says he wants JobsOhio to eventually replace the Ohio Department of Development, which is susceptible to a full audit.

Plan Cincinnati won the Frank F. Ferris II Community Planning Award from The Hamilton County Regional Planning Commission, which commemorates “a local planning commission or committee whose efforts have contributed to the elevation of planning principles, greater awareness of the value of planning and improved quality of life,” according to a press statement. CityBeat covered Plan Cincinnati, the city’s first master plan since 1980, in further detail

here

.

Supporters of the Medicaid expansion

gathered at a rally

yesterday. As part of his budget proposal, Kasich suggested expanding Medicaid, which would cover 456,000 Ohioans by 2022 and save the state money in the next decade, according to the Health Policy Institute of Ohio. Opponents say they fear the plan will leave the state under an unsustainable financial commitment. CityBeat wrote more about the Medicaid expansion and the rest of Kasich’s budget

here

.

Defense cuts that are part of sequestration, a series of across-the-board spending cuts that kicked in March 1, have

forced the Air Force to cancel an Ohio festival

.

The development team behind The Banks says it wants to have a hotel

built and ready

in time for the 2015 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.

Some analysts are

doubting Cincinnati-based Procter & Gamble

, which could have bad implications for the local economy.

Higgs Boson, the theorized particle that gives the universe its mass,

has been discovered

with the help of the Large Hadron Collider.
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