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Fire evacuates two buildings on Kent State University campus
Other morning headlines: Camp Ravenna could become new missile defense site; Another traffic snag for Cleveland drivers; New baby mandrill at Columbus Zoo
by WKSU's JEFF ST. CLAIR
and LAUREN SCHMOLL


Reporter / Host
Jeff St. Clair
 
  • Fire evacuates two buildings on Kent State University campus
  • Camp Ravenna could become new missile defense site
  • Another traffic snag for Cleveland drivers
  • New baby mandrill at Columbus Zoo
  • Toledo's state prison has highest drug, homicide, and turnover rates
  • School board president says opinion was hers, not board's
  • Hacker sentenced to three years in federal prison
  • Governor, state lawmaker disucss Medicaid at awards ceremony
  • Fire evacuates two buildings on Kent State University campus
    A fire on the Kent State University campus evacuated two academic buildings overnight.

    The University reports a turbine caught fire in the power plant about 11 last night. WEWS TV reports that the fire was contained by a CO2 system until firefighters got there.

    There were two people inside the building when the fire started. They were not hurt.

    The math and Liquid Crystal Institute buildings were evacuated. They reopened just after midnight.

    A University spokesman said the power plant has two turbines, and only one was affected by the fire. Power remains on and the University will be open today.

    The cause of the fire is not known.


    Camp Ravenna could become new missile defense site
    Portage County's Camp Ravenna could become the site of a new missile defense system.

    The training base is one of five sites under consideration to house rockets that would shoot down nuclear weapons aimed at the US.

    Other potential sites include bases in Michigan, Vermont, Maine and New York.

    The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that Ohio members of congress are enthusiastic about the Ravenna site being selected as an option. Vermont’s democratic senator Patrick Leahy said he didn’t want a site in his state.

    If Camp Ravenna is selected, lawmakers say it would be an economic boost to the area, although it’s not known how many jobs it would bring.

    Another traffic snag for Cleveland drivers
    Another headache begins Monday for drivers in Cleveland.

    The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports the East Ninth Street ramp to the Inner Belt Bridge will close Monday for 60 days … as work continues on the new Inner Belt Bridge project.

    About 15-hundred drivers a day use the ramp. The ramp at Ontario street is already closed.

    The Inner Belt Bridge is the most expensive project in the history of the Ohio Department of Transportation and will cost nearly 300 million dollars.


    Toledo's state prison has highest drug, homicide and staff turnover rates

    A report says the state prison in Toledo has Ohio's highest rates of inmate drug use, prisoner homicides and staff turnover.

    The report by a legislative prison committee says inmate-on-inmate and inmate-on-staff assaults jumped between 2010 and 2012.

    The review of Toledo Correctional Institution also says inmates at the prison are openly disrespectful to staff.

    The report released Thursday by the Correctional Institution Inspection Committee says the prison faces significant challenges.

    Ohio prisons spokeswoman JoEllen Smith says incidents of violence are down this year at Toledo as the state takes steps to address the problem.

    She says the report's data come from a time when the prison began housing more high-security inmates.


    Ohio Supreme Court ensuring equal access to interpreters
    The Ohio Supreme Court is taking steps to ensure that non-English speakers and people who are hearing impaired have access to foreign and sign language interpreters.

    The court is making a free telephone line available to courts to provide round-the-clock interpreting in more than 200 languages.

    The phone service will cost up to $50,000 a year with the expense covered by the Supreme Court's budget.

    New court rules taking effect in January require courts to provide certified sign language and foreign language interpreters when available, and a newly developed court brochure, video and public awareness campaign will provide judges guidance on finding interpreters.

    Chief Justice Maureen O'Connor said Thursday the efforts are ensuring equal access in courtrooms.

     

    School board president says opinion was hers, not board's
    The president of Ohio's state school board says her characterization of Toni Morrison's "The Bluest Eye" as "pornographic" was a personal opinion not a board position.

    Debe Terhar reiterated Thursday she sees the novel's graphic passages as unsuitable for school-aged children. But Terhar said she remains "completely supportive of Ohio's new learning standards," which list the 1970 novel among recommended texts.

    The American Civil Liberties Union-Ohio challenged her statements on Morrison, one of Ohio's most acclaimed authors.

    The group called the young black girl who's raped and impregnated by her father in the book "a haunting symbol of internalized racism."

    It's the second flap for Terhar this year. She faced near ouster in February after sharing a Facebook post some said equated President Barack Obama to Adolf Hitler.


    Hacker sentenced to three years in federal prison
    A 22-year-old Ohio man linked to the hacker collective Anonymous was sentenced Thursday to three years in federal prison for breaking into police-agency websites across the country.

    Court records say John Anthony Borell III used Twitter to advertise his exploits to other members of the group.

    A newlywed, Borell was given until Dec. 6 to turn himself in at a federal prison near his family in Toledo, Ohio.

    He was arrested after taking down police-agency websites in Utah, California, New York and Missouri in January and February of 2012.

    Borell pleaded guilty to computer fraud in April and agreed to pay $227,000 in damages to computer servers that had to be repaired or beefed up for security.

    Anonymous is a loosely organized group of Internet enthusiasts, pranksters and activists that has targeted organizations such as MasterCard and the Church of Scientology.


    Governor, state lawmaker disucss Medicaid at awards ceremony
    Governor John Kasich’s trip to Cleveland yesterday included a discussion with a republican lawmaker about Medicaid changes in Ohio.

    Kasich supports expanding Medicaid under a federally funded program.

    The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports Kasich was in Cleveland to receive an award for the plan.

    But republican State Representative Marlene Anielski of Independence isn’t on board with what the governor wants to do.

    At the Sam Miller Goodness Awards ceremony in Mayfield Heights, Anielski engaged the governor in discussion about Medicaid expansion.

    She says she wants to see more Ohioans covered by health insurance, but doesn’t want to use federal dollars to get there. She favors in-state reforms.

    The Governor’s plan would cover about 275 thousand additional low-income Ohioans, and use federal funds to get there.

    New baby mandrill at Columbus Zoo
    The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in central Ohio has a new resident: A baby mandrill.

    Officials announced Thursday the healthy 1.9-pound mandrill boy was born at the zoo early on Monday.

    The zoo in a statement said its animal care team had to step in and care for the mandrill after his mother stopped providing him with neonatal care.

    The mandrill's mother, Mandisa, initially showed maternal instincts, but she stopped after other members of the mandrill troop showed interest in the baby.

    Zoo officials say they hope to reunite the baby with his mother in the near future.

    Mandrills are the largest of all monkeys.

    Officials say it is unknown when visitors will be able to see the baby.


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