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Lockheed Martin to close Akron facility, 500 jobs impacted
Other headlines: Mahoning County treasurer sentenced for accepting cash; Ohio lawmaker tries to derail proposed ban on red-light cameras
by WKSU's JEFF ST. CLAIR


Reporter / Host
Jeff St. Clair
 
  • Lockheed Martin to close Akron facility, 500 jobs impacted
  • Mahoning County treasurer sentenced for accepting cash
  • Ohio lawmaker tries to derail proposed ban on red-light cameras
  • Lockheed Martin to close Akron facility, 500 jobs impacted
    Defense contractor Lockheed Martin is closing facilities across the U.S. and laying off, or transferring 4,000 employees nationwide, including 500 from its facility in Akron.

    In a statement, the company attributed the closing to the Defense Department cuts due to the sequester.

    The Akron facility includes the Airdock, built in 1929 by the Goodyear-Zeppelin Corporation to build blimps, and acquired by Lockheed in 1997.  Senator Rob Portman says the company told him about 70 employees will continue working there, but the rest of the roughly 700,000 square facility is definitely closing.

    Portman says, “The layoffs will be incremental, over the next year or so.  [They] indicated that this would go into the first [or] second quarter of 2015. “

    Portman says Lockheed indicated offers will be made to some Akron employees for positions at other plants.  Along with the Airdock, the Akron facility developed flight simulators, surveillance blimps called aerostats.

    In 2006, the Summit County Port Authority took control of the Airdock, leasing it to Lockheed Martin, following three years of testing for PCB contamination at the site.

    Mahoning County treasurer sentenced for accepting cash
    A federal judge in Ohio has sentenced a former county treasurer and local Democratic Party executive to five months in federal prison for failing to report a $3,000 cash gift. 

    The Youngtown Vindicator reports that former Mahoning County treasurer Lisa Antonini was sentenced Wednesday in Akron. The former county Democratic Party chairwoman also will have to serve two years of probation and pay a $2,000 fine. 

    Antonini had pleaded guilty in June 2011 to a single count of honest services mail fraud. She apologized to the judge Wednesday for her "horrible judgment." 

    Antonini admitted taking and failing to report the cash gift from a local businessman in 2008, while reporting only a $200 contribution he gave that day by check to her primary campaign for county treasurer.


    Ohio lawmaker tries to derail proposed ban on red-light cameras
    Some cities that rely on traffic cameras are urging Ohio lawmakers to pass statewide standards on their use instead of banning them altogether. 

    Sen. Kevin Bacon, a Columbus Republican, proposed legislation Wednesday that would require police officers to approve each civil citation, require safety studies of intersections before cameras are installed, and assure that drivers have a way to challenge a citation. 

    The Toledo Blade reports that the bill could serve as a pre-emptive strike against a House bill that would ban red-light cameras and limit the use of speed cameras to 20 mph school zones. The bill was passed the House last spring, but the Senate has not acted on it. 

    Supporters of a ban contend the cameras are more about generating revenue than safety.

     

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