Now that a quarter-percent sales tax hike to pay for a new convention center will go forward, one of the chief opponents of the tax says he hopes the project will be open to public scrutiny and discussion. ideastream's Bill Rice reports.
Cleveland Councilman Zachary Reed says it's not necessarily the tax or the convention center project he opposes, but rather, the fact that the tax wasn't approved by a public vote. Reed was at the center of a petition drive that would have put a referendum aimed at short circuiting the tax on the ballot. He says his group fell short of collecting the approximately 45,000 signatures necessary by Saturday's deadline. On Sunday, he said now that the tax is a done deal, he wants to see more public inclusion in deciding the specifics of the project.
Zachary Reed: The first call I'm going to make Monday morning is to Joe Roman.
That's Joe Roman, head of the Greater Cleveland Partnership, an active proponent of the project.
Zachary Reed: I want to tell him that I want to bury the hatchet between us. And that I want to be able to sit down with him and whoever else he believes I should be able to sit down with, so that we can begin to figure out what kind of public mechanism should we put into place.
Reed says too much of the planning has been the result of deal-making behind closed doors.
Bill Rice, 90.3.