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Ohio unemployment steady at 7 percent
Other morning headlines: Northeast Ohio home sales soar; Another hospital merger in the works

Morning Edition Host
Amanda Rabinowitz
  • Ohio unemployment steady at 7 percent
  • Northeast Ohio home sales soar
  • Another hospital merger in the works
  • Ashland enslavement suspect pleads not guilty
  • Judge recommends against new trial for Noe
  • Ohio youth prison's continue to improve 
  • Ohio top source for guns for crime in other states 
  • Ohio unemployment steady at 7 percent
    Ohio's unemployment rate remained unchanged at 7 percent for May. The rate was the same as April, after falling from 7.1 percent the two previous months. The Ohio rate has consistently remained below the national level. The U.S. unemployment rate for May was 7.6 percent

    Northeast Ohio home sales soar
    Home sales in Northeast Ohio and statewide are continuing to soar. In the 15-county region, including Summit, Stark, and Cuyahoga counties, sales of single-family homes increased 12.6 percent to nearly 3,500 during May, according to the Northern Ohio Regional Multiple Listing Service. Statewide, sales in May reached nearly 13,000, a 16 percent increase from the same month last year and the best mark since 2007. The average sales price of $148,000 is about a 9 percent increase over last year.

    Another hospital merger in the works
    Another hospital merger is on the horizon in Northeast Ohio. University Hospitals has announced plans to merge with Lorain County’s EMH Healthcare, one of the few remaining independent hospital systems in the region. Both institutions have signed a non-binding letter of intent and expect an agreement to be complete by the end of the year. In February, Akron-based Summa Health System signed a similar letter of intent to partner with Catholic Health Partners, the largest health system in the state.

    Ashland enslavement suspect pleads not guilty
    One of four suspects in an enslavement case in Ashland has pleaded not guilty. A federal magistrate in Cleveland released 21-year-old suspect Dezerah Silsby after a brief court appearance Thursday afternoon. The group allegedly kept a mentally disabled woman and her daughter captive for nearly two years, forced her to perform housework and beat her and threatened with snakes and a pitbull. An FBI affidavit says Silsby admitted she helped retrieve the woman and her child from their relative's house. The other suspects are expected to have bond hearings Monday.

    Judge recommends against new trial for Noe
    A federal magistrate judge is recommending against a new trial for the former Ohio coin dealer and Republican fundraiser at the center of a state investment scandal. The recommendation filed Thursday says Tom Noe didn't sufficiently prove his arguments that he was denied a fair trial in several ways, including that the trial was not moved out of Toledo. The court says any objections to the recommendation must be filed by early July. Noe was convicted of stealing from a $50 million rare-coin fund he oversaw for the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation. He's serving an 18-year prison term. Noe's attorney says what the judge issued was only a report and a recommendation. He says he intends to appeal.

    Ohio youth prison's continue to improve
    A federal judge says Ohio's youth prison system has met another benchmark for improvement as a long-running lawsuit against the agency continues to wind down. Judge Algenon Marbley ruled Thursday that the Department of Youth Services has proven it can identify and address problems through its systems. Marbley still will require monitoring of the agency's mental health services and its special management unit for especially troubled youths. Marbley in January brought to an end the ongoing court review of numerous issues, such as general education, use of force and dental services. Marbley's rulings this year mean many of the problems identified first in a 2004 lawsuit and later in a 2008 court settlement have been addressed successfully.

    Ohio top source for guns for crime in other states
    Federal statistics show that Ohio is a top source for guns used in crimes in other states. The data released this week and reported by The Columbus Dispatch show 1,601 guns were first legally purchased in Ohio in 2012 and then linked to crimes such as robbery and murder in 36 other states. Another 5,375 guns stayed in Ohio and were linked to crimes in 2012. Ohio was a top contributor to guns used in crimes in 2011, too. 


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