City Council Clerk Begins Verifying Signatures in Quicken Loans Arena Referendum

Artist's rendering of Quicken Loans Arena after the proposed $140 million in renovations.
Artist's rendering of Quicken Loans Arena after the proposed $140 million in renovations.

The Clerk of Cleveland City Council has begun verifying signatures on petitions calling for a referendum on the city’s use of tax dollars to renovate Quicken Loans Arena.

The verification process begins after a 4-3 ruling from the Ohio Supreme Court Thursday that ordered Council Clerk Pat Britt to accept the petitions. 

Council Spokesperson Joan Mazzolini says once the clerk confirms that signatures are in proper legal format, the county Board of Elections will determine how many signatures belong to Cleveland voters. Mazzolini estimates the process will be completed by August 21.

To get the referendum on a ballot, the petitioners need 6,000 verified signatures. They collected 20,000.  Even if enough signatures are approved, the issue will not be on this November’s ballot.

A spokesperson for the county Board of Elections says that if there are enough signatures, the city would need to call a special election. It would likely be held in early 2018.

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