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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Alumni call for reinstatement of fired OSU band director
Other headlines: Brunswick brings back tornado sirens; Brother charged in death of dirt bike thief

  • Brunswick brings back tornado sirens
  • Brother charged in death of dirt bike thief
  • Akron schools pay $100,000 for single student's special ed
  •   Jeff St. Clair reports

    House Republicans introduce bill to kill the Common Core
    Other headlines: Secs. Duncan and Perez tour Toledo school today; RPM reaches $800 million asbestos settlement

  • Secs. Duncan and Perez tour Toledo school today
  • RPM reaches $800 million asbestos settlement
  • Online retailer to add 900 Columbus-area jobs
  • Passenger in deadly plane crash still unidentified
  • Year-round schools start in Cleveland
  • Akron approves plans for new hotel expansion
  • Straight A Fund approves $145 million in school grants
  • Kindergarten teacher resigns after grabbing student
  • Cincinnati owes neighborhoods $4 million
  • State won’t inspect Skyhawk after accident
  • Byron named Lakers head coach
  • James celebration sells out in hours
  •   Jeff St. Clair reports

    Heroin heating in a spoon (Wikipedia)Heroin use and deaths continue to rise in Northeast Ohio
    Heroin is cheaper and more available than the prescription opiates that experts say often lead to addiction

    Five people die from drug-related causes every day in Ohio, according to recent state figures. Many of those deaths are heroin overdoses. In a three-week period this summer, eight heroin users died in the Akron Canton area alone.

    WKSU’s Tim Rudell has more on Ohio's opiate epidemic.  Tim Rudell reports

    Construction debris and flooding disrupted service Monday. (Greater Cleveland RTA)Greater Cleveland RTA to resume Blue and Green line service
    Heavy rain washed contruction debris onto tracks, shutting down service Monday

    The Greater Cleveland RTA planned to reopen an east-side train station and resume running its Blue and Green train lines early this morning. 

    All were largely out of service Monday after the weekend’s heavy rain flooded some areas and broke through a retaining wall at a nearby bridge-construction site, washing debris onto tracks.

    RTA’s Mary Shaffer says this year has been a rough one.   M.L. Schultze reports

    Monday, July 28, 2014

    Matt Huffman and Andy Thompson think they can get the repeal of Common Core to a floor vote via an alternative route. (ANDY CHOW)Ohio Republicans fast-track a bill to repeal Common Core standards
    Despite backing by House leadership and Ohio Chamber of Commerce, some in the GOP say the standards over-reach

    School districts have spent years preparing to implement the education standards known as Common Core -- which are set to start this coming school year. Now House Republicans are renewing efforts to repeal the standards. And as Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports the bill could be on the fast track to the House floor.  Andy Chow reports

    Director of Architecture and Design Jeffrey Strean and the new atrium at the museum. (WKSU file photo)Cleveland Museum of Art attendance approaches 600,000
    Museum finishes its eight-year renovation and expansion in the past fiscal year

    The Cleveland Museum of Art reopened in full last year after nearly a decade of renovation and expansion. And, as WKSU’s M.L. Schultze reports, it saw a big boom in visitors and fundraising as well.  M.L. Schultze reports

    Former Parmadale mentor sentenced as a sexual predator
    Woman admitted to sexual encounters with two girls placed at the treatment center

    A former worker at a residential treatment center for troubled teens was sentenced today to 44 years in prison for sexual encounters with 13- and 15-year-old girls at the center. 

    Thirty-four-year-old Cossondra Goodson pleaded guilty last month to a dozen charges, including sexual battery. She was a strength coach and mentor at the Parmadale Institute, and prosecutors say she sought out vulnerable victims and molested them over a period of years.

    During her sentencing, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Michael Astrab called Goodson a predator. 

    Parmadale was operated by Catholic Charities for 90 years.

    The Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services put it on probation in 2013 after the sexual abuse surfaced, and the agency announced in January that it was closing.

       M.L. Schultze reports

    Southwest Ohioans are divided over the region's role in helping with the flood of immigrant children. (Wikipedia)Southwest Ohio divides over its role in the flood of immigrant children
    Dayton mayor wants to temporarily house the children; GOP congressman and suburban mayor says 'No.'

    A feud is unfolding over whether Dayton should take in immigrant children from Central America who have been crossing the border by the tens of thousands in recent months. For Ohio Public Radio, WYSO’s Lewis Wallace reports that Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley is facing off against Congressman Mike Turner and other local politicians.  (more)

    A new survey shows hospitals are treating many fewer Ohioans who have no insurance, and many more covered by Medicaid. (Ricardo Diaz, Flickr)Early numbers show Medicaid expansion is cutting numbers of Ohio uninsured
    Ohio Hospital Associations plans to look more deeply into the details this fall

    When Ohio expanded Medicaid last fall, Gov. John Kasich estimated as many as 330,000 additional people would have health coverage. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze reports that a new survey -- and a separate study -- indicate that may be coming true.  M.L. Schultze reports

    About 80 percent of Cleveland RTA passengers ride buses, but the 20 percent on trains are seeing disruptions today. (Greater Cleveland RTA)Cleveland RTA trains disrupted when retaining wall gave way
    Other noon headlines: Goodyear vets; bioscience investment; immigrant children; Smokey Bear

  • Train service is out for the day for Cleveland RTA
  • Goodyear plans to hire 1,000 more vets
  • Investments in bioscience in NE Ohio nears $100 million
  • Ohio congressman and others say the region can't handle immigrant children
  • The Ohio State Fair needs a new bear
  •   M.L. Schultze reports

    Flooding knocks out power, trains, and roads
    Other headlines: Ohio CEO dies in Findlay plane crash; Tuesday funeral scheduled for Cory Barron

  • Ohio CEO dies in Findlay plane crash
  • Tuesday funeral scheduled for Cory Barron
  • EPA offers small cities $250,000 for lakeshore cleanup
  • Property values depressed in Summit County
  • Cedar Point’s Skyhawk ride closed after weekend accident
  • Free tickets on sale today for LeBron homecoming
  • Ohio man wins Death Valley ultramarathon
  • Sbarro expands to Brazil
  • Cincinnati lawmaker charged with theft
  • Gas prices down in Ohio, nationwide
  • Ag officials predict bumper crops this year
  •   Jeff St. Clair reports

    The questions revolve around the chemicals used in fracking that are considered proprietary information. (WKSU file photo)Monroe Co. drilling fire might provide impetus to change fracking rules
    Gov. Kasich says the law may need to be changed to give first responders more information

    Big changes could be coming to Ohio’s fracking regulations in terms of chemical disclosure. It’s a transparency issue environmental groups have been pushing for years. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, another step is in the works following a major chemical spill.  Andy Chow reports

    Sunday, July 27, 2014

    Attorney General closes East Akron Community House investigation
    Attorney General DeWine says a new board -- and new audit measures -- will prevent lax financial oversight at the century old non-profit

    Attorney General Mike DeWine has closed his investigation of an Akron charity, putting in place a laundry list of conditions for the non-profit’s new board and executive team. WKSU's Kabir Bhatia reports.  Kabir Bhatia reports

    Friday, July 25, 2014

    Prosecutors are asking that the judge be removed in the trial of Deshanon Haywood of Akron for her bias against the death penalty. (Summit County Sheriff)Summit prosecutors ask for judge's removal in death penalty case
    Prosecutor say Judge Mary Margaret Rowlands asked for them not to seek the death penalty for the quadruple murder

    Summit County Prosecutors are asking that a judge be removed from a quadruple murder case because she is biased against the death penalty.

    Prosecutors have asked that Summit County Common Pleas Judge Mary Margaret Rowlands be removed from the aggravated murder trial of Deshanon Haywood of Akron. They say she called a prosecutor’s office supervisor and asked him not to seek the death penalty.

    J. Dean Carro, Professor Emeritus at the University of Akron Law School, says asking to remove a judge from a case is unusual.  Lyndsey Schley reports

    They call themselves the Best Damn Band in the Land, but accusations of inappropriate behavior has led to the firing of OSU band director Jon Waters. (OSU)Ousted OSU band director vows to clear his name
    The attorney for former music director Jonathan Waters says he was 'wrongfully terminated' over accusations of inappropriate band behavior  

    In his two years as director of the OSU Marching Band, Jonathan Waters was praised for using technology to develop complex routines that went viral on the web. Now Jon Waters is out of a job.

    OSU fired him after an investigation found what officials call "serious cultural issues."

    For Ohio Public Radio, WOSU's Mandie Trimble reports Waters intends to clear his name.  (more)

    After a year-and-a-half of freedom, former Akron Police Captain Douglas Prade has been ordered back to prison for the 1997 murder of his ex-wife, while a judge decides whether to grant him a new trial (K. Bhatia)Douglas Prade headed back to prison
    Former Akron Police Captain is 'still a convicted murderer' in the death of his ex-wife, according to Summit County Prosecutors

    After a year-and-a-half of freedom, former Akron Police Captain Douglas Prade is back in prison today, awaiting a decision on whether he will get a new trial in the 1997 murder of his ex-wife. WKSU's Kabir Bhatia reports.

      Kabir Bhatia reports

    Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul touted his ideas about felon voting rights and economic freedom zones at the National Urban League Conference. (U.S. Senate)Rand Paul backs on felon voting rights at Urban League Conference
    The Kentucky Senator and potential Republican presidential candidate also pushes "economic freedom zones" for impoverished regions in the U.S.

    Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul pitched his ideas for expanded voting rights and economic freedom to the National Urban League Conference in Cincinnati this morning.

    In recent months, Paul, who is likely to be a Republican candidate for president, has been reaching out to minority voters.

    Paul told a sparse morning crowd of Urban league delegates about the legislation he has co-sponsored that gives persons previously convicted of nonviolent felonies the right to vote.  (more)

    Hearing today to decide the fate of Douglas Prade
    Other headlines: Fire at metal shop in Mentor; Giant Eagle host huge job fair at I-X Center

  • Fire at metal shop in Mentor
  • Giant Eagle host huge job fair at I-X Center
  •   Jeff St. Clair reports

    Warren Steel is scheduled to reopen Aug. 1 after a four month shutdown. The company worked out a discount electricity rate with the PUCO in exchange for substantial investments to the plant.   (Warren Steel )Warren Steel to reopen, add hundreds of jobs
    Shuttered steel plant reaches deal with PUCO for reduced electricity rates in exchange for $33 million in improvements

    A deal reached this week with state utility regulators will breathe new life into a shuttered northeast Ohio steel mill. 

    Trumbull County’s Warren Steel complained to the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio that it could not maintain operations due to high electricity costs.  The plant closed in March. 

    Niles Congressman Tim Ryan says the deal approved Wednesday by the PUCO will cut power rates by a third if the company makes substantial improvements to the facility.  Jeff St. Clair reports

    Gov. John Kasich, speaking here to Chardon's graduating class, says he supports charter schools but will hold them accountable. (File photo)Ohio community makes plans to house immigrant children
    Other morning headlines: Extradition of ex-Ohio official; charter school tweet wars; Public Square; Mahoning auditor decision; MH17; OSU band director

  • Immigrant children may come to Ohio
  • Feds move for extradition of former Ohio treasurer's aide from Pakistan
  • A tweet and trouble over charter schools in Ohio
  • Gund puts up $5 million for Public Square redo
  • Mahoning County auditor faces removal decision today
  • Former Summit County couple lost in MH17
  • Ohio State fires its band director after investigation reveals 'serious cultural issues'
  • Bedford's former prosecutor pleads guilty
  • Warren Steel gets new life
  • Ohio official pleads guilty in withholding $30 million in tax refunds
  • Woman gets 32 years in slave-labor case
  • No definitive word yet in Progressive Field death
  • Cincinnati excessive force case thrown out
  • Robin Roberts will launch Wingfoot One
  • Browns training begins Saturday
  • Heartbreaker for the Indians
  • Cavs sign $5.5 million deal with Wiggins

  •   M.L. Schultze reports

    The plan to overhaul Public Square includes closing two blocks to vehicular traffic. (James Corner Field Operations)Gund Foundation puts up $5 million for overhaul of Public Square
    The campaign to raise $30 million is nearly half way there

    An effort to renovate Cleveland’s Public Square has gotten a hefty boost -- again. The George Gund Foundation has approved $5 million towards the effort, bringing the total raised so far to $13 million. For Ohio Public Radio, WCPN's Brian Bull reports:  (more)

    Many grocery stores have gluten-free sections. This one's at Buehler's in Ashland. Mustard Seed Market in Akron has had a dedicated gluten-free section for more than 10 years. (Vivian Goodman)Why go gluten-free?
    The protein in wheat and other grains makes celiac sufferers sick, but they can't always be sure everything labeled as such really is "gluten-free"

    A week from Tuesday new rules take effect for labeling “gluten-free” foods.

    Such foods have been on the market for decades and sales are expected to top $6 billion in the next four years. But there’s never been a standard definition of “gluten-free.” That’s been confusing -- even dangerous -- for consumers who must eliminate gluten to avoid getting sick.

    In today’s Quick Bite, WKSU’s Vivian Goodman sorts out the pros and cons and the challenges of going gluten-free.  Vivian Goodman reports

    The national economy crashed midway through Strickland's single term. He says the way he spent stimulus money is paying dividends for his successor now. (File photo)Strickland: Gov. Kasich benefited from Dem. policies and stimulus billions
    Former governor says Ohio was turning around before Kasich took over and the numbers prove it

    The economic recovery is already playing a big role in Ohio’s gubernatorial campaign – and Republican Gov. John Kasich and his Democratic challenger Ed Fitzgerald aren’t the only ones debating who gets the credit.  - none - reports

    Thursday, July 24, 2014

    Former Bedford law director pleads guilty to corruption
    Ken Schuman has pleaded guilty to an unlawful interest in a public contract, charges remain against Bedford judge Jacobs

    Former Bedford Law Director Ken Schuman has pleaded guilty to corruption charges two weeks before his case was scheduled for trial. 

    A grand jury indicted Schuman last December for having an unlawful interest in a public contract, among other charges.

    The charges date back to 2006 when Schuman received nearly $10,000 from a Cleveland law firm doing work with the city of Bedford. 

    Details of the plea deal have not been released. 

    Schuman was scheduled to be tried August 6th with his co-defendant Bedford Municipal Court Judge Harry Jacob III. 

    Jacob still faces 21 felonies and misdemeanors charges tied to allegations he was running a brothel and handling cases for women who worked there. 

    WKYC-TV reports Schuman will be sentenced in September.

       Jeff St. Clair reports

    Many health care jobs in Northeast Ohio do not need college degrees. (Katrin Morenz)Most of Cleveland's health care jobs do not require a bachelor's degree
    Cleveland ranks eighth in nation in health care jobs requiring either a two-year degree or a high school diploma

    Northeast Ohio is abundant in health care jobs and a significant share do not require a college degree. For Ohio Public Radio, WCPN's Brian Bull has more.  (more)

    Ohioans will be seeing over $1 million dollars in refunds for insurance companies. (Andrew Magill)Health insurers refunding more than $1 million to Ohio residents
    Refunds are part of Affordable Care Act iniative to reduce insurance overhead

    Ohio health insurers are refunding more than $1 million in premiums to small businesses and individuals for 2013. That is according to a report out today from the Department of Health and Human Services. For Ohio Public Radio, WYSO's Lewis Wallace has more.  (more)

    Vice president Joe Biden encouraged initiatives that would create jobs for urban residents. (The White House)Biden encourages infrastructure development at Urban League Conference
    Vice President says infrastructure initiatives help urban residents

    Vice President Joe Biden told the National Urban League Conference this morning in Cincinnati that the Obama administration is committed to job training and infrastructure repair.  

    The vice president said the initiatives are needed to put under-employed urban residents, particularly African-Americans, in better paying jobs.

    And Biden said the nation needs to invest $3.6 trillion to infrastructure repair between now and the year 2020.  (more)

    Hikma Pharmaceuticals plans to purchase the Bedford Labs division. (Hikma Pharmaceuticals)Deal could keep drug manufacturing in Bedford
    City Manager is "cautiously optimistic" new owner will continue manufacturing at Bedford facility

    A northeast Ohio city is cautiously optimistic that one of its largest employers could soon be back at full strength.

    Bedford City Manager Mike Mallis says London-based Hikma Pharmaceuticals contacted him today to say it plans to purchase the Ben Venue Laboratories facility as part of a takeover of the drug-maker’s Bedford Labs division.

    Ben Venue had reduced its workforce from 1100 down to 300, with plans to close later this year. But Mallis says today’s announcement is a step in the right direction for the plant and the city of Bedford.  Lyndsey Schley reports

    Some leaders are saying that State Superintendent Dick Ross sat on complaints about Horizon Schools, but  Gov. Kasich is standing behind him. (Ohio Department of Education)Democrats call for resignation of state superintendent after charter raids
    Gov. Kasich supports superintendent Dick Ross, saying he did what he needed to do in the situation

    Gov. John Kasich is standing by his top education leader in the wake of controversy surrounding a charter school investigation.

    The probe was launched after a group of teachers alleged sexual misconduct, racism and possible cheating at a Dayton charter school, but some believe more could have been done.  Andy Chow reports

    David Gilbert, president of Cleveland's convention and visitors bureau announces that Cleveland will host the 2017 American Bus Association convention. Behind him are (L-R) Todd Messic of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Laura Rayburn of the Great Lakes Science Center, and Pete Pantuso of the American Bus Association.   (Kevin Niedermier)Tour bus convention coming to Cleveland promises long term benefits
    Backers says it'll mean a big jump in bus tours to Northeast Ohio for years after the 2017 event

    It’s not the huge 2016 Republican National Convention, but Cleveland officials were still excited to announce today that the American Bus Association will hold its 2017 convention in Cleveland.

    With about 3,500 tour bus operators attending, convention officials call it a medium to large event.

    But as WKSU’s Kevin Niedermier reports, most of the excitement is about the convention’s long-term impact.  Kevin Niedermier reports

    There's more to the brain than nerve cells. One cell type, called microglial cells, provide the immune response for the brain. New research shows that microglial cells can also protect the brain from injury.   (J. E. Theriot, CC Flickr)Cleveland Clinic researchers tap into brain's own defense system
    Microglia cells are part of the brain's immune system, but they can also help prevent injuries and disease

    Researchers at the Cleveland Clinic are learning more about how the brain heals itself.  A new study details how certain cells in the brain can also be activated to prevent injury.

    WKSU’s Jeff St.Clair reports the findings could lead to new treatments for Alzheimer’s, MS, and Lou Gehrig’s disease.  Jeff St. Clair reports

    Freedom Schools help instill a love of reading in children (Abhi Sharma)Freedom Schools help at-risk children learn to read
    Organizer says the program aims to make reading cool for kids

    It has been 50 years since Freedom Summer, the civil rights movement that focused on getting southern Blacks to register to vote and become politically active.

    Reverend Laura Young with the Children’s Defense Fund of Ohio explains some of the spirit embodied in Freedom Summer can be found throughout Ohio today in what is known as Freedom Schools.

    Young says a main objective of these schools is to help children with their reading skills.  Jo Ingles reports

    Gund Foundation adds $5 million to Public Square project
    Cleveland settles with city officials' son shot by police; Former northeast Ohio couple killed in Malaysian air disaster

  • Cleveland settles with city officials' son shot by police 
  • Former northeast Ohio couple killed in Malaysian air disaster
  • Biden pushes job training and infrastructure spending in Ohio visit 
  •   Jeff St. Clair reports

    Vice President Joe Biden is the keynote speaker at the Urban League's national meeting in Cincinnati this morning. (File photo)Ohio hopes to settle seven-year workers comp suit with $420 million
    Other morning headlines: Fracking fire; execution; political conventions; hotel tax; Biden and civil rights; VA nominee McDonald; Prade's next step

  • Ohio workers comp case could cost $420 million
  • Where was ODNR during early hours of Monroe drilling fire?
  • Arizona execution problems echo Ohio
  • Will Democrats embrace Ohio, too?
  • Hotel tax extension up for a vote
  • Biden talks civil rights in Cincinnati
  • Senate committee OK's McDonald for VA post
  • Summit County prosecutor wants Prade back in prison
  • Ohio sues over foreclosure promises
  • Jim Brown wants his NFL championship ring back
  • Volunteers try to replace vandalized trees in Youngstown
  • Coast Guard tries to free stranded boat in Lake Erie
  • Sentencing in Ashland slave case is today
  • Piketon uranium site cleanup meeting tonight
  •   M.L. Schultze reports

    Dr. Maria Strus has gotten Volodymyn Mochan to Cleveland for treatment of severe head wounds he received during Ukrainian protest, but she's having difficulty getting other patients here.  (Kevin Niedermier)Cleveland doctor is clearing obstacles to help severely wounded Ukrainians
    An effort is underway to bring casualties from Ukrainian violence here for treatment

    As the violence in Ukraine continues, a Cleveland doctor is helping to bring some of the most severely injured to Ohio for treatment. It’s part of a larger effort to evacuate patients to the U.S.

    It's having some success, but also faces obstacles in Ukraine. As WKSU’s Kevin Niedermier reports, only one injured Ukrainian has made it to Cleveland so far.  Kevin Niedermier reports

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    Special Features
    Heroin: Big Trouble in a Small Town

    Heroin abuse is gaining a lot of attention as it spreads through Ohio's suburbs. But it's in rural areas like Tuscarawas County that the drug has been a huge problem for a decade. Some describe it as a first love; others as a lifelong battle. Amanda Rabinowitz examines the issue in a three-part series examining heroin abuse in small-town Ohio with stories of addiction, death -- and hope.

    (more )

    Mean Kids: Bullying in School

    Bullying is a bigger problem in Northeast Ohio than in the nation as a whole. It happens more often and it's reported less frequently. Our region has also been rocked by the suicides of bullying victims who saw no other way out. In this series, Mean Kids, WKSU's Vivian Goodman takes a closer look at the bullies, their targets and their weapons, as well as the tools Northeast Ohio is using to fight the problem.

    (more )

    Kent State 1970: Hear it now

    At the time of the events, WKSU reporters caught many of the key developments leading up to the shooting, the day of the tragedy and of the aftermath. The original audio, as well as photographs, reports and other text, has been gathered on a special web site:

    (more )

    May 4th Remembered

    On May 4th, 1970, Ohio National Guard troops opened fire on Kent State students protesting the invasion of Cambodia, the escalation of the Vietnam War - and the presence of the guard on campus. Four students died; nine were wounded. The scene became an icon for the Baby Boom generation. And this year, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places, as a site that contributed significantly to the understanding of the nation's history and culture. But for many, the history is not national. It's personal. And while it's fading out of many textbooks and memories, it's fresh in the lives of many others. WKSU is taking a look at the personal stories and larger lessons that grew from May 4, 1970.

    (more )

    Good Jobs In Bad Times

    The WKSU newsroom dove into the murky waters of the current employment situation in Northeast Ohio with the 8-part series Good Jobs in Bad Times. With their reports, the award-winning news staff covered topics that include high-paying tech jobs, careers that don't need a 4-year degree, the re-growth of agriculture as industry, working part-time full-time, drastically changing career paths, the truth about healthcare, bridge jobs after graduation and the future of the NE Ohio employment outlook.

    (more )

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