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Cincinnati Council Rejects SORTA Board Nominee

Michael Keating

Cincinnati City Council is rejecting Mayor John Cranley's most recent selection to serve on the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority (SORTA) Board.  

The group voted six-three Wednesday against the appointment of Rayshon Mack.  

Cranley said it's disappointing because Mack is a bus rider. The mayor also said he shouldn't be rejected because he's been critical of the streetcar and is outspoken on politics, especially on Twitter.

"The idea that we're going to vote down somebody who's critical of the streetcar but rides the bus every day to serve as a nurse at Good Sam, I think is imposing an ideological test at the exact wrong reason at the wrong time," Cranley said.

Mack took responsibility for his tweets when addressing council. But he said the focus should have been on his views about Metro and how he uses the bus to get to work.

"I would think those would be the things that, the substance of the matter, is what you all would care about," Mack said.

But a council majority disagreed.  

Council Member Wendell Young expressed concerns about some of the comments Mack makes on Twitter, even if he is a regular bus rider.

"I suspect that there are other people equally as qualified or maybe even better qualified, who don't bring with them the history and/or baggage that Mr. Mack brings with him," Young said.

Cranley will now have to make another selection to serve on the SORTA Board. That appointment, too, will be subject to City Council's approval.

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