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Published: Monday, 8/10/2009

Toledo mayor flip-flops on 'Safety First Plan'

BLADE STAFF

Toledo City Council President Joe McNamara and a coalition of other councilmen Monday morning asked voters to support the "Safety First Plan," which changes the allocation of revenue from Toledo's payroll tax to allow more to be spent on police and fire services, but later in the day, Mayor Carty Finkbeiner urged people to vote no.

Council set aside $3.9 million of 2009 capital improvement funding in anticipation of voters next month approving Issue 1 - also called the Safety First Plan.

Their intent is to apply that money to reduce the 2009 deficit to about $5 million.

Although Mr. Finkbeiner spoke in favor of the plan last month, Monday the mayor said he supported it only for a single year.

"Next year, it's $8 million and we cannot afford that," the mayor said.

He called council's inaction on his requests to increase fees and taxes on Toledoans and instead advocating to use money that can be spent on road construction and repair as "cowardice."



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