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The League of Women Voters of Metropolitan Columbus

Where We Stand


Scope

National - State - Local

Category

Representative Government - International Relations
Social Policy - Natural Resources

Local Positions

Education

Support programs to achieve racial balance in the public schools of the metropolitan area.

Justice and Corrections

Support increasing the number of persons not jailed prior to trial by use of summons citations; support increased use of alternative sentencing such as community service, restitution, work release; favor expansion of alternatives to incarceration for non-dangerous offenders with drug/alcohol problems, mental illness, mental retardation; if construction is necessary, support construction of minimum-security facilities only. All local facilities should meet minimum standards of prisoner classification.

Land Use and Regional Planning

Adopted Apr. 23, 2012

1. Neighborhood Planning
Both older and newer neighborhoods should be vital, diverse, and have a sense of community.
The following characteristics should be sought:
a) A range of housing opportunities with a variety of good quality ownership and rental housing choices, densities, and affordabilities suitable for a diversity of income and life styles.
b) Life-long communities that meet the needs of all age groups.
c) A mixture of housing opportunities based on adoption and implementation of planning and zoning standards that reflect the shifting land use patterns in the central city and the changing lifestyles throughout the region.
d) Government incentives that encourage in both older and newer areas private sector development that reflects these land use planning and zoning standards mentioned in 1.c) above.
e) Sustainable and walkable neighborhoods with sidewalks, commercial establishments, public services, community services, parks and recreational facilities.
f) A wide choice of affordable, accessible and convenient transportation modes.
g) Accessibility for individuals with disabilities.
h) Preservation of historic sites, structures, and neighborhoods.

2. Regional Planning and Cooperation
(Note: It is important to keep in mind that Ohio is a Home Rule state, meaning that it is written in the Constitution that each local jurisdiction has the final say as to what happens within its borders. It is important, then, for each government entity to be able to show its citizens how they will ultimately benefit from cooperating with their neighboring governments.)

Regionalism should be promoted in order to encourage a high quality of life for all Central Ohio residents. Some ways to do that are by:
a) Encouraging environmental sustainability, containment of urban sprawl, balanced growth, clean water, and agricultural land preservation.
b) Using incentives to encourage development conducive to a balanced use of land and environmental standards.
c) Encouraging cooperation among government entities.
d) Designating areas, natural or man-made, for specific purposes such as wildlife and recreation
e) Distributing locally undesirable land uses equitably.
f) Encouraging units of government and business to work with public transit to improve access to jobs and to develop residential and commercial areas adjacent to transit systems.

3. Public and Stakeholder Participation
A wide range of public and stakeholder participation is key to developing successful neighborhood, urban and regional plans and reviewing development proposals.

Learn more...

Public Transit

Adopted May 2010
Connectivity and Mobility: It should be the ultimate goal of a transit system to connect with major places of employment; educational and medical facilities; shopping hubs; religious, sporting, and cultural venues; and other places where all people, including those with disabilities, go to work, shop, and play. Integration and coordination of different modes and providers of transportation is key. Where appropriate, consideration should be given to connectivity to adjoining communities outside Franklin County.
Cost: The cost of building, operating, and maintaining the system should be considered and preference given to economical systems that maximize ridership, recognizing that public transit benefits all communities and that government subsidies will be needed.
Customer Experience: Transit should be safe, convenient, comfortable, easy to use, and affordable for all Franklin County residents, including the elderly and people with disabilities.
Travel Time and Reliability: A public transit system should be efficient, and schedules and travel time should be reliable and predictable.
Land Use and Development: Advocates for and providers of public transit, as well as other stakeholders, should be actively involved in the development of central Ohio’s long-term plans for land use, economic development, and the reduction of urban sprawl throughout the metro area.
Environmental Impact: New transportation systems or modifications to existing systems should be designed to reduce or minimize pollution and consumption of energy.
Marketing: A concentrated marketing/education campaign is an important component of a successful transit system. Read more...

Levy-Funded Agencies

Support collaboration and cooperation among agencies in the planning for and provision of services; support availability of flexible funds, in addition to each agency’s base funds, to meet changing needs in the community; support availability of contingency funds, in addition to each agency’s base funds, to meet emergency needs in the community.

Franklin County Children Services

Amended June 2010
Support efforts to communicate to the public the many ways FCCS is trying to assist families and children in the county and the legal constraints under which it must provide services; support liaison with the schools so that schools and FCCS staff can work as partners to get services to families before problems develop to the crisis state, and to motivate children to complete high school; support cooperation between FCCS and the Court, with the common goal of working together to benefit youth served; after careful review, support reasonable requests for future funding.

Community-Based Treatment

Amended June 2010
Support increased residential services for people with mental illness provided by the Franklin County Mental Health board; support maintaining nonresidential services for people with mental illness with emphasis on case management services, tailoring a service plan to the individual with follow-up; support increased residential services for people with mental illness provided by Franklin County Board of Developmental Disabilities; support monitoring and adequate supervision of group homes; support maintaining nonresidential services for people with mental illness; favor shared responsibility for funding among government, private sector, and consumers, with the greatest responsibility resting with state and local government; support coordination of funding and service delivery.

Addiction Services

Support availability of adequate funds to pay for alcohol and other drug treatment and prevention services; favor primary responsibility for funding for alcohol and other drug prevention services rest with the state/federal government; however, support a significant role for local government; support responsibility of individuals for contributing to paying for their own treatment, based on ability to pay; recognizing that there is a value to society at large to meet alcohol and other drug problems, support that government share the costs; support increase in funds for prevention services until there is parity between prevention and treatment services funding; support priority for providing linkages with other needed services (e.g., child care, housing, basic material needs, employment, reentry, etc.) when making judgments concerning limited public funding; support providing services to underserved population groups and underserved geographic areas.