Immediately after the first of the year, COAST has two legislative priorities, and two legal battles it intends to tackle.
First, in February or March, the PUCO will take up the question of whether Duke Energy may pass on to City-only ratepayers some $18 million in costs associated with relocating utility lines to accommodate the Streetcar boondoggle.
COAST opposes the initiative, which essentially constitutes yet another Streetcar tax (there have been many others, and will be many more). We will be rallying even more citizens to write to PUCO to stop this abuse of local ratepayers.
Second, we are pursuing legal and political solutions along with old and new coalition partners to stop the privatization of the City's parking meters, including the law enforcement functions of ticketing, assessing fines, determining guilt and even "booting" cars for meter violations.
On the legal front, the COAST legal team, and COAST and its members, have a host of initiatives they are pursuing, but the new suits against Cincinnati Public Schools (for campaigning with tax dollars) and the City of Blue Ash (over re-doing the airport sale) are tops on our list of cases we are anxiously watching. The CPS suit has a trial date next October; the Blue Ash case has no schedule yet set.
Further, COAST always has surprises in store to advance its limited government agenda. Stay tuned for more developments.