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Court fight over water service between Westlake and Cleveland delayed
Other morning headlines: flooding persists as temperatures plunge; sloppy loss for the Browns

Morning Edition Host
Amanda Rabinowitz
  • Court fight over water service between Westlake and Cleveland delayed
  • Flooding persists as temperatures plunge
  • Highway Patrol makes a dozen arrests in turnpike blitz 
  • Gulf war vets urged to sign up for bonuses
  • Cleveland man who rescued captive women signs book deal
  • Ohio colleges training for drone technology
  • Sloppy loss for the Browns
  • Obamas take in Zips basketball game
  • Court fight over water service between Westlake and Cleveland delayed
    A court fight has been delayed between Cleveland and a suburb over water service. The case between Cleveland and Westlake was due back in court Monday but was delayed until Jan. 6 over holiday witness scheduling issues. Upscale Westlake wants to block Cleveland from charging Westlake water customers additional fees. According to the Northeast Ohio Media Group, the fees could range from $291 for residents to more than $5,000 for large commercial customers. Westlake is considering finding another water supplier. Cleveland says the fees would be reimbursement for system infrastructure costs like pipelines. The Cleveland City Council approved the fees to recover about $19 million for rerouting pipes to other suburbs and for nearly $40 million in infrastructure projects.

    Flooding persists as temperatures plunge
    Heavy weekend rains have left numerous low-lying roads and highways blocked across Ohio. Northeast Ohio got more than two inches of rain coupled with all the snow that melted as temperatures reached the 60’s. Rivers overflowed their banks, The National Park Service closed sections of the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park briefly, and canceled Saturday night's Polar Express on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad. The state says some of the hardest-hit highways are located in Sandusky, Seneca and Wood counties in northwest Ohio. In Findlay, located south of Toledo, the Blanchard River has risen 12 feet since Friday to major flood-stage levels. Many of us are waking up to temperatures a good 30 degrees or more colder than just a day earlier.

    Highway Patrol makes a dozen arrests in turnpike blitz 
    The State Highway Patrol says an operation targeting criminal activity on the Ohio Turnpike led to 12 arrests and the seizure of drugs with a $218,000 street value. The patrol says the operation ran last Monday through Thursday and covered the Ohio Turnpike from Toledo to Cleveland. The Blade newspaper reports that troopers made 238 traffic stops during the operation. Those stops led to seven felony drug arrests, two felony weapons arrests, and three misdemeanor drug arrests. The paper says more than six pounds of marijuana was seized, along with more than two pounds of heroin, and small amounts of hashish and cocaine. Two guns and about $29,000 in cash were also seized.

    Gulf war vets urged to sign up for bonuses
    The state is urging Ohio veterans who served during the first Gulf war to apply for a bonus before a year-end deadline. Veterans of the Persian Gulf War that ran Aug. 2, 1990 to March 3, 1991, are eligible for a one-time state bonus of up to $1,000. Vets who served anywhere else in the world during that time are eligible for a bonus of up to $500. Family members of veterans killed in action during the Gulf War are eligible for bonuses of up to $6,500. Voters approved the Ohio Veterans Bonus four years ago, resuming a tradition dating to the Civil War of rewarding state vets' service.

    Cleveland man who rescued captive women signs book deal
    The man who famously put aside his Big Mac to help rescue three women held captive in a Cleveland house over a decade has signed a contract to publish his memoirs. Charles Ramsey signed with Cleveland publisher David Gray & Co. Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight and Berry's 6-year-old daughter escaped to freedom May 6. Ramsey helped pull Berry out the door and called 911. According to The Plain Dealer, Ramsey's co-author will be freelance writer Randy Nyerges. The former U.S. Senate staff speechwriter co-wrote "Day of the Dawg" with former Cleveland Browns defensive back Hanford Dixon. The women also have books coming out. Ariel Castro pleaded guilty and was sentenced to life in prison. He was found hanged in his cell in September.

    Ohio colleges training for drone technology
    Some Ohio schools are preparing students for a boom in the drone industry once the federal government, as is expected, allows civilian unmanned aircraft to fly in U.S. airspace. The Federal Aviation Administration has until 2015 to present a plan for safely integrating drones into national airspace. But Sinclair Community College and Kent State University are already training students for jobs using the technology. Domestic drones typically resemble the small radio-controlled model airplanes and helicopters flown by hobbyists. Proponents say the devices can monitor emergencies, survey crops and assist search-and-rescue operations. They predict an eventual use of drones that will generate thousands of jobs.

    Sloppy loss for the Browns
    It was a sloppy loss for the Browns yesterday in New Jersey,24-13 to the Jets. Cleveland led 10-0 late in the first half. Jason Campbell was intercepted twice and threw three straight incompletions including two in the end zone to Josh Gordon. Greg Little also bobbled and then dropped a 7-yard pass in the end zone. The Browns made four trips inside the 20 and emerged with one TD. The Browns (4-11) lost their sixth straight. They play their final game of the season next week in Pittsburgh.

    Obamas take in Zips basketball game
    President Barack Obama and the first family momentarily skipped the beach in Hawaii to take in a college basketball game….and it happened to be the University of Akron Zips. Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and their daughters attended the Oregon State-Akron game Sunday at the Diamond Head Classic tournament in Honolulu. Oregon State coach Craig Robinson is Michelle Obama's brother. The Zips got the win, 83-71. Demetrius Treadwell scored 24 points. The tournament continues today as the Zips play Iowa State. 

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