(Toledo, OH) Toledo city officials are delivering a strong message about the health of Lake Erie.
City council approved a resolution Tuesday that calls on the state and federal governments to declare the lake impaired under the Clean Water Act. If Ohio and U.S. environmental officials agree, local governments could receive funding to help eliminate the sources of toxic algae on the lake.
In other business, Toledo City Council voted unanimously to unload a long-vacant downtown office building. The sale of the Nasby Building unloads a city-owned eyesore to a Toledo developer for ten bucks. The deal includes a clause where the developer will pay the city $250,000 if he fails to redevelop the Nasby building within a five-year time frame. The mayor now must purchase two TARTA-owned buildings as part of that development deal.
Toledo City Council also approved an ordinance Tuesday to set aside more than $4 million in an escrow account to pay off the debt on a downtown building. The funds have been sitting in the city’s capital improvement budget and will be used to pay down the city’s debt on a 20-year old bond issue that was used to redevelop the LaSalle Apartments. The city may save some bond interest in the transaction.
Finally, City Council voted to hire a pair of private law firms as the first step in suing drug makers for the opiate epidemic. The legislation would only pay the two law firms a retainer if such a lawsuit is successful. Other Ohio cities, including Dayton, also are suing the makers of prescription pain medication for negligent marketing and distribution of the opioids.