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Downtown Columbus remains without power
Other headlines: University Park Alliance lawsuit reveals deep dysfunction; Akron Lockheed engineers head to Florida

Reporter / Host
Jeff St. Clair
  • University Park Alliance lawsuit reveals deep dysfunction
  • Akron Lockheed engineers head to Florida
  • Utility lineman killed in pole collapse
  • Downtown Columbus remains without power
    Authorities are still unsure what caused a series of explosions last night in downtown Columbus.

    Power is still out at a number of downtown buildings.  A water main break has complicated efforts to restore electricity.

    The power failure followed explosions and a fire in an underground electricity “vault” in downtown Columbus.

    A utility spokesman says the water main break could have led to the series of three explosions that blew off several manhole covers.

    No injuries have been reported.

    University Park Alliance lawsuit reveals deep dysfunction
    Details are emerging on how a neighborhood development project in Akron became mired in financial troubles.

    The Beacon Journal reports that former director of the University Park Alliance in 2012 failed to inform the Knight Foundation, a major funder of the development group, that the University of Akron had withdrawn its support.

    The Knight Foundation withdrew a $6 million dollar grant early in 2013 after losing confidence in the Alliance’s leadership.

    The University Park Alliance is being sued by an Akron businessman Roger Carter who contributed properties to the project. 

    Akron mayor Don Plusquellic, University of Akron president Luis Proenza and other University Park Alliance board members include prominent Akron business leaders are named in that suit.

    Akron Lockheed engineers head to Florida
    Lockheed Martin is planning to move 200 engineering jobs to its Orlando flight-training facility, and many of those workers could come from Akron.

    The company announced last fall it's closing the Akron mission systems facility, eliminating 500 jobs. 

    The Orlando Sentinel reports that many of the jobs moving to Florida pay 90-thousand dollars and higher.  In the next few months, the company will figure out how many of those jobs will be filled by transfers from Akron. 

    Maryland-based Lockheed will continue part of its 20-year lease at the Akron Airdock, which is owned by the Summit County Port Authority.   About 70 employees will be retained for work on blimps there.

    The company announced major cost-cutting last fall, and could eliminate up to 4,000 jobs at five plants.

    Lockheed blames the closures on defense department cutbacks related to sequestration.  When the cuts were announced in November, Lockheed said about half the workers could receive transfer offers to Denver or Orlando.

    Utility lineman killed in pole collapse
    Authorities say an electric company lineman was killed and another was injured in an accident in southwest Ohio.

    The Warren County coroner's office said the Duke Energy workers apparently were removing some lines from a pole Thursday afternoon when the pole cracked at the base and came down, along with the workers.

    Several other workers at the scene were able to get the pole off of them.

    Worker Keith Jester was pronounced dead at a hospital. The other worker was flown to a hospital in Dayton and was expected to survive.

    The workers were about 22 feet in the air when the accident occurred near South Lebanon, northeast of Cincinnati.

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