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Incumbent Peter Spaulding faces State Rep. David Kidder in GOP race for county commissioner
There’s nothing very exciting about the job of county commissioner, a position that many voters don’t even know exists, and the Republican primary race for District 3 in Merrimack County reflects the lack of drama.Merrimack County government has a $98 million operation budget and the three-person bo...
3 points by Concord Monitor | Merrimack County New Hampshire Concord New Hampshire County commission New Hampshire Boscawen New Hampshire Local government in the United States Hopkinton New Hampshire County
Can it hold a snow plow? Golf carts OK on U.P. town streets
NORWAY, Mich. (AP) - Golf carts have the green light in an Upper Peninsula community. Norway in Dickinson County will allow golf carts on residential streets during daylight hours. The Daily News (http://bit.ly/2cFXg74 ) says top speed is 15 mph and drivers must be at least 16 and possess a ...
-1 points by The Washington Times | Iron Mountain Michigan Michigan Dickinson County Michigan English-language films New York City Upper Peninsula of Michigan Local government in the United States Iron Mountain micropolitan area
Lafayette lays claim to 20 acres of Erie in unprecedented legal maneuver
In a standoff with Erie over the future of a retail-ready site at the corner of Arapahoe Road and U.S. 287, Lafayette has taken the unprecedented step of attempting to lay claim to its neighbor's land by filing a condemnation action in court.
135 points by The Denver Post | Colorado municipalities Front Range Urban Corridor Weld County Colorado Local government in the United States City Boulder County Colorado City manager Eminent domain
Utah city considers offering fire suppression help
CEDAR CITY, Utah (AP) - A Utah city might bring in extra revenue by contributing to firefighting efforts throughout the West. The Spectrum of St. George reports (http://bit.ly/2bVLnHX ) that the Cedar City Fire Department presented the idea to the city council this week. Chief Mike Phillips says a Southern ...
-1 points by The Washington Times | Utah Southern Utah University Firefighter Firefighting English-language films Cedar City Utah Municipality Local government in the United States
At Wayne County jails, 4 suicides in 5 months
Officials note dire conditions at the jails during discussion about privatizing medical services.        
-1 points by Detroit Free Press | Coroner Mental disorder County commission Suicide Local government in the United States Psychiatry County executive County council
At outdated Wayne County jails, 4 suicides in 5 months raise alarm
Officials note dire conditions at the jails during discussion about privatizing medical services.        
1105 points by Detroit Free Press | Coroner Mental disorder County commission Suicide Local government in the United States Psychiatry County executive County council
Henderson extends city attorney’s contract, OKs fire station for Inspirada community
Henderson City Council on Tuesday approved in a 4-0 vote a second amended employment agreement with Josh Reid, which will be in effect through Aug. 31, 2018.
37 points by Las Vegas Review-Journal | Salary Councillor City council Recruitment Employment Local government in the United States Municipality The Council
Strongsville takes up medical marijuana issue
Strongsville fell in line with the three other Ohio 82 cities in Cuyahoga County on Tuesday night and established a moratorium on medical marijuana. STRONGSVILLE, Ohio - On Tuesday night, Strongsville fell in line with three other Ohio 82 cities in Cuyahoga County and established a moratorium on medical marijuana. The moratorium, which City Council approved, will prohibit the growing, processing and selling of marijuana for six months. New Ohio legislation allows patients, starting this week, to use medical marijuana prescribed by doctors, but the state has not nailed down the law's details. "The moratorium gives us the ability to see what the state is going to do and decide if the city needs to introduce its own zoning legislation," Law Director Neal Jamison said Tuesday night. Last week, Broadview Heights City Council voted unanimously to establish a 12-month moratorium on medical marijuana. Brecksville and North Royalton city councils were expected to approve six-month medical marijuana moratoriums, and may have done so Tuesday night. Broadview Heights establishes one-year moratorium on medical marijuana Several other Cuyahoga County communities, including Lakewood, and municipalities throughout Ohio, including Beavercreek, Troy and Piqua, have also approved medical marijuana moratoriums. Rocky River has introduced legislation that would ban the growing, processing and selling of medical marijuana. The new state law - House Bill 523, which Gov. John Kasich signed in June - already provides some restrictions on medical marijuana. For example, no one can grow, process or sell marijuana within 500 feet of a school, church, library, playground or park. Also, no one is allowed to grown marijuana in their homes. HB 523 authorizes municipal governments to establish their own medical marijuana regulations. Local governments can restrict locations where marijuana is cultivated, processed or sold, or they can ban the growing and selling of marijuana altogether. However, municipalities can't stop patients from using medical marijuana. Strongsville Councilman Joe DeMio said council hasn't yet decided whether the city should ban the growing and selling of medical marijuana here. He said such a debate is premature. But DeMio did express concern that HB 523 might contradict federal law, which still lists marijuana as an illegal drug. He asked Jamison to prepare a memo on the state versus federal laws. This story has been updated. 
120 points by The Plain Dealer | Cuyahoga County Ohio North Royalton Ohio Broadview Heights Ohio Municipality Parma Ohio United States Congress United States Local government in the United States
Santa Ana city council declares 'crisis' over homeless encampments in civic center
Santa Ana’s City Council voted late Tuesday to declare a “public health and safety crisis” over a mushrooming homeless encampment in the Civic Center that has attracted more than 450 homeless people in recent months. The resolution, backed by Councilwoman Michele Martinez, called for the city to...
292 points by Los Angeles Times | Homelessness Santa Ana California Homelessness in the United States Police Orange County California Orange California Local government in the United States Humanitarian aid
At Wayne County jails, 4 suicides in 5 months raise alarm
Officials note dire conditions at the jails during discussion about privatizing medical services.        
-1 points by Detroit Free Press | Coroner Mental disorder County commission Suicide Local government in the United States Psychiatry County executive County council
Aberdeen Room museum leaders blindsided by city's notice that they might have to move
Volunteers with The Aberdeen Room Archives & Museum have been shocked to learn they may have to vacate their longtime downtown building, which is owned by the City of Aberdeen. The museum is a treasure-trove of documents, heirlooms and other archival material documenting the city's history and...
-1 points by Baltimore Sun | Harford County Maryland Aberdeen Proving Ground Aberdeen Maryland Municipality Local government in the United States Management Heads of settlement New York City
Stokes: Baltimore officials reach deal with Port Covington developer
A prominent city councilman says officials have reached an extensive community benefits agreement with the Port Covington developer that doubles the originally proposed amount of lower-income housing and requires greater commitments to hire local workers. Councilman Carl Stokes said the City Council...
-1 points by Baltimore Sun | Councillor City council Economic development Mayor Municipality Local government in the United States The Wire Town council
Ex-appointees sue Macomb County clerk over firings
Two former appointees of Macomb County Clerk Karen Spranger filed a civil rights and whistle-blower suit Friday        
-1 points by The Detroit News | Pleading Whistleblower Local government in the United States Plaintiff First Amendment to the United States Constitution Computer Complaint Cause of action
Baltimore Co. Council questions proposed sewer extension to official's property
The Baltimore County Council postponed action this week on a resolution that would have extended a public sewer line to a single property at a cost to taxpayers of nearly $200,000. The home is located in the 100 block of Delight Road in the Reisterstown area. "I think the question that we all have...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Baltimore County Maryland Property Local government in the United States Sanitary sewer Ownership County commission Councillor Baltimore
Havre de Grace mayor, council races set; Craig not running
The field of candidates is set for the 2017 elections for Havre de Grace mayor and City Council, with a contested race for mayor and one of three council seats open to a new member, as Councilman Randy Craig did not file for re-election by the 5 p.m. Tuesday filing deadline. Mayor Bill Martin,...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | City council Local government in the United States Councillor Municipality Titles Mayor Computer file Town council
July 4 HdG carnival move not her doing, mayor's sister says
Mary Martin tells City Council she loves the event, 'people that know me know I love it'
-1 points by Baltimore Sun | Municipality City council Local government in the United States Councillor Mayor Susquehanna River Town council Drinking water
Baltimore County Council member says new charter review panel has conflicts of interest
A Baltimore County Council member has withdrawn his name from legislation establishing a commission to review the county charter, citing possible conflicts of interest by some members of the panel. "I cannot in good conscience support a commission comprised of a large number of lobbyists who are...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Baltimore County Maryland County Local government in the United States Unincorporated area Towson Maryland Towson University Local government County commission
Town Crier columns
ALLENSTOWN Hand spa for seniors Sign-up to enjoy a warm wax hand spa that will take place Feb. 22 at 10 a.m. at the Suncook Senior Center.The Allenstown town clerk’s office will be closed Feb. 21 because of statewide motor vehicle software updates; motor vehicle transactions will not be able to be...
-2 points by Concord Monitor | Week-day names Library Local government in the United States Public library Middle school High school Monday Librarian
Six-week Civics Academy to pair curious residents with Concord’s top brass
A free, six-week civics program beginning next month promises to put 30 Concord residents in front of the city’s biggest movers and shakers and empower them to make their mark on local government.And if the Civics Academy goes well, the joint effort between the city, the American Friends Service Com...
54 points by Concord Monitor | City council American Friends Service Committee Local government in the United States Local government Councillor County Local council Federal government of the United States
DA: Ex-Palm Springs mayor took $375K in bribes from developers
Steve Pougnet accepted bribes from local real-estate developers, prosecutors say.       
-2 points by USA Today | Local government in the United States Mayor Municipality Government occupations City council Mayors Mexico City Town council
Wayne Co. Commission OKs steps to vet new jail pitch
Measures submitted by county exec designed to help officials analyze Rock Ventures’ jail proposal        
-2 points by The Detroit News | County commission Youth detention center County executive County council Prison Proposal Counties of the United States Local government in the United States
Police chief suspended for 2nd time since December
FERRIDAY, La. (AP) - A Louisiana town's police chief has been suspended for the second time since December. The Natchez Democrat reports (http://bit.ly/2kNx4KL ) that Ferriday Mayor Sherrie Jacobs suspended Police Chief Arthur Lewis for 30 days without pay. The mayor on Wednesday cited unspecified "administrative issues" as the reason ...
-2 points by The Washington Times | Constable Louisiana City council Alderman City of London Corporation Local government in the United States
Las Vegas council OKs pared-down condo project at edge of Badlands course
The Las Vegas City Council on Wednesday narrowly gave the green light to a proposal to put hundreds of condominiums on the eastern edge of the closed Badlands golf course, after a late-in-the-game reduction in units drew a 4-3 favorable vote.
100 points by Las Vegas Review-Journal | Councillor City council Proposals Proposal Mayor Local government in the United States Municipality City
Denver council pushes police chief to create advisory board to write final use-of-force policy
Denver City Council positioned itself on Wednesday to go head-to-head with police Chief Robert White over bringing more voices to the table in writing the department's use-of-force policy.
231 points by The Denver Post | Councillor City council Mayor Municipality The Council Writing The Police Local government in the United States
Wayne Co. panel gives preliminary OK to vet jail pitch
Actions aim to help county vet Rock Ventures’ plan to build criminal justice center in exchange for unfinished jail        
-2 points by The Detroit News | County executive County commission Local government in the United States Youth detention center County council Prison Counties of the United States Proposal
Many in Southern Nevada paying trash fees never approved by municipalities
Commercial property owners have been paying a number of trash fees that were never approved by Southern Nevada’s municipalities’ lawmakers.
88 points by Las Vegas Review-Journal | Nevada Clark County Nevada Las Vegas Nevada Las Vegas metropolitan area Municipality Local government in the United States Henderson Nevada North Las Vegas Nevada
Letter: Vote Bowes in Epsom
Vote Bowes in EpsomOn March 14, Epsom voters will have the choice of two excellent candidates for selectman. Chris Bowes and Virginia Drew have both served the town as elected officials and both are committed to serving our community. I am supporting Chris Bowes in his re-election quest because havi...
-2 points by Concord Monitor | Board of selectmen Federal government of the United States New England town New England Local government in the United States Local government in New Hampshire Official
Macomb Commissioner works to unravel the 15 Mile sinkhole mysteries
Marrocco approved all business for the district where interceptor collapsed, creating a giant sinkhole        
16 points by Detroit Free Press | Wastewater Drain commissioner County council Drainage County commission Local government in the United States Drainage law Sewage
Candice Miller: Drainage district had little oversight in sinkhole area
Marrocco approved all business for the district where interceptor collapsed, creating a giant sinkhole        
-2 points by Detroit Free Press | Wastewater County council Drain commissioner Drainage County commission Local government in the United States Sewage Lake Saint Clair
Prosecutor says city appointed council members illegally
CENTRALIA, Wash. (AP) - Lewis County Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer has called out the western Washington city of Napavine for engaging in illegal practices. The Chronicle reports (http://bit.ly/2la3l1R) Meyer told county commissioners last week the Napavine City Council has scheduled meetings and appointed members unlawfully. City code requires the council to ...
-2 points by The Washington Times | City council Municipality Councillor Local government in the United States Mayor Washington D.C. New York City Lewis County Washington
State lawmakers offer competing immigration proposals
As Annapolis City Council prepares to vote on a bill intended to protect foreign-born residents from discrimination, state legislators are weighing in with their own immigration-related proposals. Lawmakers have filed more than a dozen bills this session dealing with immigrants and citizenship,...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Local government in the United States Local government County Immigration Maryland Federal government Anne Arundel County Maryland Federal government of the United States
Mayor to city workers who handle money: take polygraph test
VICKSBURG, Miss. (AP) - Vicksburg Mayor George Flaggs Jr. says he wants all city workers who handle money to be required to take polygraph tests. Flaggs told The Vicksburg Post (http://bit.ly/2knoZPc) that "taxpayers need to know we're not losing their money." He brought up the idea Monday, as he and ...
-2 points by The Washington Times | Certified Public Accountant Municipality Washington D.C. City New York City English-language films Tests Local government in the United States
How a Facebook post led to women protesting being left out of local politics
In Arlington Heights, a Facebook post by a candidate for the village board appears to have resulted in the revelation of a deep division in town, with scores of residents – mostly women – packing Village Hall to decry what they called the "backdoor boys' club" of local government. Dr. Kathleen...
148 points by Chicago Tribune | Board of directors Trustee Local government in the United States Fiduciary Facebook Resident The Residents George W. Bush
Town crier for Feb. 5, 2017
ALLENSTOWN Help with activity plan The select boards of Allenstown and Pembroke invite the public to attend a meeting at the Allenstown Town Hall on Monday at 7:30 p.m. to discuss the establishment of a Suncook Village Commission and the revitalization of the surrounding area.The activity planning...
-2 points by Concord Monitor | High school Week-day names Middle school Elementary school Local government in the United States Monday Merrimack County New Hampshire Secondary school
Ann Arbor explores stronger immigrant protections
City Council approved a resolution to direct the city attorney and city administrator to review the issue.        
-2 points by Detroit Free Press | President of the United States Immigration United States Federal government of the United States New York City Australia Local government in the United States John F. Kennedy
Ann Arbor moves to consider stronger immigrant protections
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - The city of Ann Arbor is taking a step toward considering stronger protections for immigrants living in the U.S. without legal permission. The Ann Arbor News reports (http://bit.ly/2jXKfMV ) more than 100 people turned out Monday night's City Council meeting and others demonstrated outside. Some ...
7 points by The Washington Times | Immigration Local government in the United States European Union Donald Trump Municipality Councillor City City council
Voters to hash out tax relief, mill, Northern Pass
Belmont Belmont Mill building’s fate goes up for debate Hot topic: Town residents will decide whether to support the future renovation of the Belmont Mill for use as town offices and other community purposes, to demolish the mill, or to sell off the building.“We had a member of our community come fo...
1 points by Concord Monitor | Belmont High School Tax Voting system Local government in the United States Northwood New Hampshire Property Real estate Democracy
With veto on the horizon, Howard County Council votes to become sanctuary for undocumented immigrants -- without the label
Capping weeks of contentious debate intensified by President Donald Trump's executive orders on immigration, Howard County lawmakers declared the county a sanctuary for undocumented immigrants — without formally adopting the label of "sanctuary." An audible sigh waved through the packed meeting...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Democracy Immigration Immigration to the United States County President of the United States Local government in the United States Donald Trump Police
Scheduled sanctuary vote draws supporters, opponents to Howard County council chambers
A sea of green-wearing advocates shored in front of Howard County's packed government chambers this afternoon, chanting, "This is what democracy looks like" and singing Woody Guthrie's, "This Land is your Land" in the packed halls as local lawmakers prepared to vote tonight on a bill that would...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Immigration Democracy Immigration to the United States Asian American Local government in the United States Donald Trump Illegal immigration Spain
Hogan presses Maryland counties to support repeal of transportation law
Gov. Larry Hogan is pressing local politicians to support his effort to overturn a law that requires transportation projects to be ranked. Hogan sent a letter to more than 250 county executives, county council members and mayors across the state last week calling the measure a "severely flawed...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Baltimore County Maryland County Local government Local government in the United States Veto County commission Baltimore Unincorporated area
Steep public pension costs push California cities toward the brink
When the state auditor gauged the fiscal health of California cities in 2015, this port community on the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay made a short list of six distressed municipalities at risk of bankruptcy. Richmond has cut about 200 jobs — roughly 20% of its workforce —  since 2008. Its...
1958 points by Los Angeles Times | Pension Pension fund Police Retirement Local government in the United States Municipality Tax Investment
Coming this week in Harford County – Feb. 6-12
Public meetings and events planned in Harford County for Monday, Feb. 6 through Sunday, Feb. 12: Monday, Feb, 6 – The Bel Air Board of Town Commissioners will hold a regular town meeting, preceded by a public hearing on a resolution to adopt new lease rates for the Armory. Commissioners meeting...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Harford County Maryland Local government in the United States Havre de Grace Maryland Mayor Meetings County United States Municipality
Term limits cause strife on Lakewood City Council
The Lakewood City Council is discussing term limits that could affect Councilwoman Ramey Johnson's ability to run for another term in 2017. Johnson believes some of the council is politically motivated.
2 points by The Denver Post | Councillor City council Mayor Local government in the United States Municipality Town council Government occupations Decision theory
Ex-mayor pleads guilty to $61K theft from tiny Maryland town
The former mayor of a tiny Eastern Shore town has pleaded guilty to stealing more than $61,000 in town funds. The Office of the State Prosecutor said in a statement Thursday that former Marydel Mayor Deborah Rowe pleaded guilty to theft scheme, misconduct in office and forgery Census records show...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Debit card Criminal law Local government in the United States Finance Cheque Charlotte North Carolina Rainn Wilson Money
Warren Mayor Fouts faces toughest test of his career. Will he survive?
Fouts has survived multiple controversies in past thanks to forgiving residents who say he does a great job running city        
218 points by Detroit Free Press | Local government in the United States Warren Michigan Mayor Government occupations Municipality City council Town council Metro Detroit
Indictment of ex-Niles mayor threatens city's recovery
Former Niles Mayor Ralph Infante was charged in a wide-ranging corruption probe on Tuesday. Watch video NILES, Ohio -- After 24 years in the mayor's office, police would've led Ralph Infante out of City Hall in handcuffs if voters hadn't beaten them to it. Infante was charged Tuesday in a 56-count indictment accusing him of peddling his influence to hire friends in exchange for hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes and free work on his home or homes of his friends. The charges came 18 months after residents voted Infante out of office. It was steep fall from power for a man who came into office in 1992, declaring he would never run the city like a dictator. Now, he stands to become the latest Mahoning Valley politician facing a long exile in prison. The area has almost become synonymous with political corruption.  "It's another black eye on the Mahoning Valley," said Trumbull County Republican Party Chairman Randy Law. "It's another reminder that we need new faces and names to clean this up." Infante is also accused of running an illegal sports-betting operation out of the  Italian-American club in Girard, which he owns. He was at the club Wednesday but declined to comment on the charges. He  referred questions to his attorney, John Juhasz, who did not return a message seeking comment. Infante, his wife Judy, and former city water department employee Scott Shaffer are scheduled to make their first court appearances Dec. 5. Judy Infante is charged in several counts accusing the couple of failing to report income on their tax returns and failing to withhold taxes for the ITAM's employees. Shaffer is accused of selling items that belonged to the city and keeping the money, which prosecutors say Infante allowed to happen. Five former city employees, another public official, a zoning board member and two other businesses were all alleged to have taken part in the scheme but were not charged. They are accused of helping the former mayor enrich himself and consolidate his power. 'Business as usual' Infante became the latest public official charged in the Valley's long history of public corruption. In March, current Youngstown Mayor John McNally and former Mahoning County Auditor Michael Sciortino were convicted in a corruption case that was prosecuted in Cuyahoga County. McNally, who was a Mahoning County Commissioner at the time, was elected mayor during the corruption case. Sciortino was re-elected to the auditor's office while the case was pending. The Valley has long been synonymous with political corruption. Jim Trafficant, who beat a corruption charge as Mahoning County Sheriff, was later sentenced to eight years in prison for taking bribes as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. In the 1990s, several judges, a county prosecutor and the county engineer were all convicted of taking bribes from the Mafia. Political corruption continued into this millennium, first with Trafficant and later with former Trumbull County Commissioner Jim Tsagaris, Mahoning County Common Pleas Judge Maureen Cronin and Mahoning County Treasurer Lisa Antonini. The case involving McNally and Sciortino began in 2010, was dismissed by a visiting judge in Mahoning County and later re-filed in Cuyahoga County. "I'm not surprised at all," said Niles resident Mike Crummel, who owns Crystal Dragon Games and Hobbies in downtown Niles, said of Infante's indictment. "It's pretty much business as usual in the Valley. I just hope we can clean things up and get out of fiscal emergency."  Struggles of a small town in a dying region Niles, the birthplace of President William McKinley, sits between Warren and Youngstown and like so much of the rest of the Valley, relied on the steel industry for jobs. The industry collapsed in the 1970s and a tornado destroyed most of the town in 1985, killing 11 people. The population began declining in the 1980s and has continued its slide. The city reached its peak population with 23,000 people in the 1980 census. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the 2015 population at 18,651. But the city has long had one thing going for it. Its main employer, the Cafaro Co., is one of the largest privately-held real estate development companies in the country. The company's flagship mall, the Eastwood Mall, was built in the 1960s in Niles. Infante spearheaded a push to bring the Cafaro Co.'s headquarters from Youngstown to Niles a few years ago. The company officially moved in to its new headquarters in June, bringing a $20 million payroll that will bring an estimated $250,000 to city coffers.  "They pretty much own this town," Crummel said.  Infante elected mayor after incumbent threatened to kill councilman Infante, a former rolling mill operator at Syro Steel in Girard and a city councilman, ran for mayor in 1991. He came from a family that was involved in the city and county government -- his brother was the grievance chairman for the city worker's union, his sister worked in the court system and another brother worked as a lineman. His daughter, Karen Infante Allen, is the current Trumbull County Clerk of Courts. Infante was elected to office in 1992, defeating incumbent Joseph Parise, who was accused of threatening to kill a city councilman who refused to cooperate with him. Parise was never convicted of any crimes, but the publicity surrounding the allegation set the backdrop for Infante, then a city councilman, to run for the office. "You can't be a dictator-type mayor," Infante told the Warren Tribune Chronicle at the time. "You have to communicate with department heads and council. That is one of my best qualities. I can sit down and work things out and treat people like humans." Prosecutors now say he began accepting bribes in exchange for hiring people less than a year after his election. He was seen as a champion of the city in the early years of his administration. Infante helped solve a flooding issue and improved the city's electric infrastructure, which was in dire need of repair, said Trumbull County Commissioner Frank Fuda, who was a Niles councilman in the early 1990s. "He did a lot of good things for the city too," Fuda said. Infante continued winning re-election, with only one challenge between 1999 and 2015. Niles put into fiscal emergency But the city's finances began to suffer with the economic recession in the mid-2000s and later took a $1.2 million loss after Gov. John Kasich stopped sending payments to local governments, Fuda said. Infante fought back, Fuda said. He led an effort in 2009 to build a $4 million recreation center that bears his name. But even that has become a burden, not a boon, to the city's finances. The city recently said it is losing about $200,000 per year operating the wellness center. In 2013, a clerk in the city treasurer's office was caught stealing $142,000 in city money. Infante asked for the Ohio Auditor to review the city's finances, and the auditor's office declared the city in a state of fiscal emergency. Niles is still under state supervision. Infante's next project centered on bringing the Cafaro Co. to Niles. The deal got done in 2014, and Infante boasted about it in his re-election campaign. Then came the raids by federal and state agents, who came to Niles City Hall and the Cafaro Co. looking for records relating to the move and other documents. Officials have not linked the Cafaro Co. in any way to Infante's indictment. The indictment only accuses Infante of improperly waiving $40,000 in zoning fees related to an unnamed company's move to a location on U.S. Route 422, where the Eastwood Mall and the new Cafaro Co.'s headquarters are located.   The investigations and the city's financial troubles scared off voters. City Councilman Thomas Scarnecchia, who based his campaign on telling voters he'd restore credibility and accountability in the mayor's office, defeated Infante in the Democratic primary election in March 2015 with 59 percent of the vote.  A fragile recovery and a sense of disbelief Scarnecchia on Wednesday called the indictment of his former political opponent "heartbreaking." He said the charges could scare off further development in the area, and he was unsure exactly how the case could affect the city's recovery. "It's been very difficult," Scarnecchia said. "We hope to get our reputation back. It's very hard obviously. If he did all that, if you play, you must pay." Fuda said the negative publicity could hurt the area. "I'm shocked we have the problems we have now," Fuda said. The indictment says Infante conducted a wide range of illicit activities as the city's mayor. He accepted free work at his home in exchange for hiring a contractor's relative.  He hired people to work for the city in exchange for thousands of dollars in free work at his home and the homes of his friends, including a city council member who is not named in the indictment, according to prosecutors.  Infante also accepted a $100 gift card as a bribe, and in a different instance, was bribed by an unnamed area businessman with tickets to a 2007 NCAA national championship game, the indictment says. Infante had city workers use city equipment to provide work on his friends' homes and businesses, prosecutors said.  Not everyone in Niles, however, believes the case tarnishes Infante's legacy. Dave Rittenhouse, who lived near Infante for several years, said he was surprised by the criminal charges but said he believed Infante did a lot of good for the city.  "I think they need to prove their case in court before I believe he did all of that," Rittenhouse said. "He doesn't seem like the kind of guy that would steal like that. He gave his life trying to do good things for the community." // DV.load("https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3221923-Indictment-of-former-Niles-mayor-Ralph-Infante.js", { width: 600, height: 800, sidebar: false, text: false, container: "#DV-viewer-3221923-Indictment-of-former-Niles-mayor-Ralph-Infante" }); // ]]>
44 points by The Plain Dealer | Local government in the United States Youngstown Ohio City council Trumbull County Ohio Municipality Political corruption Mayor Town council
Future of Badlands golf course in limbo after another contentious City Council meeting
The Las Vegas City Council yet again delayed part of a controversial proposal for a large residential development on the Badlands golf course, after a more than seven-and-a-half-hour session Wednesday that turned testy and dramatic at times.
12 points by Las Vegas Review-Journal | Councillor City council Proposal Proposals Local government in the United States Mayor Municipality Town council
Council delays vote on Crestmont demolition
Houston City Council on Wednesday postponed its vote to fund the demolition of Crestmont Village, a vacant apartment complex about 10 miles south of downtown.
1 points by The Houston Chronicle | Councillor City council City House Houston Real estate Municipality Local government in the United States
Las Vegas council postpones acting on controversial Badlands golf course development after marathon hearing
The Las Vegas City Council yet again delayed part of a controversial proposal for a large residential development on the Badlands golf course, after a more than seven-and-a-half-hour session Wednesday that turned testy and dramatic at times.
12 points by Las Vegas Review-Journal | Councillor City council Proposal Proposals Local government in the United States Mayor Municipality Town council
Rawlings-Blake says she will bypass City Council, approve plan to sell Baltimore parking garages
In what would be one of her last acts in office, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said Monday she plans to bypass the City Council with a proposal to sell four of Baltimore's downtown parking garages to raise up to $60 million for recreation centers.The plan, blocked for two years by City Council...
253 points by Baltimore Sun | Municipality City council Councillor Parking Mayor Town council Baltimore Local government in the United States