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Court of Appeals belongs in downtown Youngstown



Published: Sun, June 10, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



It's only a matter of time before all parties involved in the proposed relocation of the 7th District Court of Appeals from the Mahoning County Court house to the Youngstown City Hall Annex develop an agreement that meets everyone's needs.

How do we know that? Because the heavy-lifting in this project has already taken place.

The judges of the appeals court want to remain in downtown Youngstown; the county commissioners, who are responsible for providing the court with space, want the judges to remain downtown; the mayor of Youngstown and city council wouldn't be able to abide the idea of the court being anywhere but in the city; and the Youngstown Central Area Community Improvement Corporation considers the appeals court's move from the courthouse to the annex an important element in its effort to revitalize the central business district.

With such a solid foundation, the project is bound to succeed.

Crunching the numbers: All that remains is for the mayor, city council and the CIC, a public-private entity charged by city government to guide the development of downtown, to crunch the numbers so that the annex, which started off as the United States Post Office, does not become a drain on the city's treasury.

We are confident that the questions members of council have will be answered to their satisfaction and that the concerns expressed by county government and the judges will be fully addressed.

Therefore, we urge judges Gene Donofrio, Joseph Vukovich, Cheryl Waite and Mary DiGennaro to be patient for just a little while longer. The annex once housed the federal bankruptcy court and it's an ideal setting for the 7th District Court of Appeals.

Last week, members of city council's finance committee expressed the desire to discuss the lease with the county commissioners. That should not be a problem since the point man on the project, county Administrator Gary Kubic, once served as the city's finance director and is familiar with the needs of both county and city governments.




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