Athens City Council passed two resolutions Monday evening, formally opposing Gov. John Kasich’s budget proposal and President Donald Trump’s travel ban.
Councilwoman Chris Fahl, D-4th ward, said the resolution represented the city’s solidarity with members of the community affected by the ban.
“We stand by the fact that we are an inclusive, tolerant and welcoming community,” Fahl said. “You do not have to be afraid because we’re standing with you.”
Council also passed a resolution formally opposing Kasich's budget proposal for the 2018-19 fiscal year.
According to a previous Post report, the budget would result in the loss of tens of thousands of dollars for the city of Athens. The budget requires that businesses file their taxes through the state instead of local municipalities, resulting in less taxes for businesses but a loss in income for the cities. It would also impose a 1 percent service fee on municipalities for the tax collection.
“I think this proposal … is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard of in my life,” Councilman Jeff Risner, D-2nd Ward. “We don’t need it, we don’t want it and by God we shouldn’t have to pay for it either.”
Athens Mayor Steve Patterson echoed Risner’s sentiment.
“This is just another tool to erode home rule, and push municipalities to continue to raise their own income taxes,” Patterson said.
Patterson said he had taken actions to voice is dissent Kasich.
“I sent off six letters today to our representatives and the governor himself,” Patterson said.
Knisely also formally thanked all of the city’s departments involved with last week’s water main break, which left Athens and OU without water for most of last Thursday.
Fahl introduced measures that would make it easier for protestors to obtain a parade permit in Athens.
Under Athens Municipal Code, parade permit requests have to be made three weeks in advance and require a $25 fee, but the new measure could reduce that time to seven days, or up to 24 hours beforehand at Pyle's discretion. The fee would also be waived, according to a previous Post report.
“The way things are going at the national level, we will continue to see people protesting increasingly,” Fahl said last week. “It is important we find a way to let people protest these things in a safe way.”
Council members also passed several ordinances Monday night, including one to replace defective water meters and one allowing the purchase of softening salt for the Water Treatment Plant.