Youngstown council clears way for vote on reducing political war - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Youngstown council clears way for vote on reducing political wards

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

Youngstown's City Council on Tuesday gave its blessing to two measures that will let voters decide if they want to reduce the number of wards in the city.

Council voted to submit to the Mahoning County Board of Elections petitions circulated by citizens who say that the city should have five wards instead of the current seven, because of declining population.

Even if the elections board finds that the petitions don't have the minimum number of valid signatures,  Councilman Mike Ray says the issue will likely appear on the ballot anyway.

Ray says that council also approved a measure sponsored by him and Councilman Paul Drennen to place a charter amendment question on the November ballot that would reduce the number of political wards.

The vote on both issues was 6-to-1. The lone dissenting vote came from first ward council person Annie Gillam.

If the proposal goes onto the November ballot and voters approve to reduce the number of wards, council would have 30 days to redraw those five boundaries.

If council would fail to do so, the job falls to the city administration which will have only two weeks to accomplish the task.

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