Ohio Governor Mike DeWine says his legal staff has told him Cincinnati cannot be exempted from the statewide alcohol curfew.
Cincinnati's mayor and police chief had asked the governor to lift the ban, citing increases in violent crime. The state says COVID-19 is spreading where bars are open. Ohio Public Radio's Karen Kasler reports.
The letter from Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley says the alcohol curfew in place since July 31 is forcing people into after-hours gatherings where there have been shootings, so he wants the chance to try something different. DeWine says he checked into it.
“Our lawyers tell us that we can't do that. We can't just carve out the city of Cincinnati and say the bars are going to be open there full time. But every place else, they're going to be closed at 10 o'clock.”
And DeWine says the Democratic mayors of Dayton and Columbus have told him they don’t want the ban on alcohol sales after 10pm to change. Cranley, also a Democrat, is exploring a possible run for governor in 2022, and could face the Republican DeWine if he runs for re-election.