Cleveland has yet to approve a single application from organizations looking to hold demonstrations during the Republican National Convention this July.
City officials will not even verify that they have received permit requests despite a spokesman for an anti-Trump group confirming to Cleveland.com Friday that they recently filed an application with the Cleveland City Hall.
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Under Ohio law, city officials are required to make demonstration applications publicly available. Cleveland has only made six applications public from groups that applied in March and April.
Cleveland spokesman Dan Williams told Cleveland.com that he would look into the situation with the city’s legal department, which is responsible for publishing records, but gave no further clarification as to why the city has withheld the applications.
City officials claimed that the Secret Service needs to establish the security perimeter surrounding the Quicken Loans Arena where the GOP convention is being held before they are able to evaluate demonstration applications. Those boundaries will not be established until three weeks before the July 18 event.
Officials in Philadelphia, where the Democratic National Convention will be held a week after the GOP’s event, have meanwhile approved a request from environmental advocacy group Food and Water Watch to hold a demonstration called "March for a Clean Energy Revolution."
The U.S. Secret Service also hasn't identified the security permit in Philadelphia. But Lauren Hitt, a spokeswoman for Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, told me in an email that the city signed off on Food and Water Watch's request to march from City Hall to Independence Park because the route is likely well outside any security perimeter that would be set around the Wells Fargo Center, the site of the Democratic event. Hitt says the city has received nine applications for demonstrations on city property. Separately, The U.S. Park Service also has approved a demonstration on its property downtown.
Several groups have reportedly threatened to sue Cleveland if the city continues to delay its application process.