Morning Headlines: Laid-off GM Lordstown Workers Get Aid; Aultman Closes Psych Unit

Sep 13, 2018

Here are your morning headlines for Thursday, September 13:

  • Laid-off GM Lordstown workers get federal aid;
  • Autlman Closes Psych Unit;
  • Kent State enrollment down despite record freshman class;
  • Ohio awards more funding in opioid science challenge;
  • Obama to rally Democrats in Cleveland tonight;
  • Myers Industries is move HQ from Akron to Cleveland;
  • Akron Children's to expand in Stark County;
  • About 70 more doctors certified to recommend medical marijuana;
  • New poll shows Ohio governor race virtually tied;
  • Koch Brothers investing in local races;

Laid-off GM Lordstown workers get federal aid

Laid-off workers at the GM plant in Lordstown could be getting some federal relief. Ohio Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman are both of taking credit for requesting the $1.75 million National Dislocated Worker Grant announced by the Department of Labor. The funds will provide employment and training services to around 340 of the nearly 1,700 workers affected by the layoffs. Lordstown produces the Chevy Cruise which has seen a sudden dip in sales.

Aultman Closes Psych Unit

Stark County’s Aultman Hospital has closed its psychiatric unit because of changes in government regulation.

CEO Christopher Remark told the Repository that facility changes to meet new guidelines would have cost the hospital up to $2 million. The hospital will focus more on outpatient treatment and will collaborate with other health care facilities to provide inpatient care. Aultman Hospital was the last hospital in Stark County with an inpatient psychiatric unit.

Kent State enrollment down despite record freshman class

Kent State University has attracted a record number of incoming freshman this year, but has seen overall enrollment fall by around 3 percent. It’s the second consecutive drop in fall numbers for the school. But more than 4,300 freshman enrolled, beating last year’s record number. The University Akron saw enrollment fall seven percent this semester. UA officials point to an overall decline in higher ed students across the country.

Ohio awards more funding in opioid science challenge

Ohio has awarded another round of prizes totaling $2.4 million in its effort to seek scientific breakthroughs to address the U.S. opioid crisis. The dozen winners from six states and Canada each receive $200,000 to advance its technical solution. Among the winners is Aurora-based relink.org, a website that enables people struggling with addiction to find recovery service providers. The University of Akron is getting funding for a specially designed glove that will change color upon a first responder's contact with an opioid. Cleveland’s University Hospitals has created a computer-aided dispatch technology for opioid surveillance and tracking in real-time.

Obama to rally Democrats in Cleveland tonight

Former President Barack Obama will campaign for Ohio Democrats at a rally in Cleveland tonight. The rally at Cleveland Schools’ East Professional Center Gymnasium is in support of gubernatorial candidate Richard Cordray, who served as federal consumer protection chief in the Obama administration. Obama carried Ohio twice, but Republican Donald Trump won the swing state in 2016. The rally is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. Doors open at 5 p.m.

Myers Industries is moving HQ from Akron to Cleveland

Plastic and tire parts maker Myers Industries has announced its moving its corporate headquarters from Akron to Cleveland. Meyers has been based in Akron for 85 years and will relocate 120 white collar jobs from the developing Firestone Business Park late this year or early 2019. The Akron facility will be sold.

Akron Children's to expand in Stark County

Akron Children’s Hospital is expanding in Stark County. The hospital says it’s building a 14,000 square-foot facility in Massillon that will open in 2019. It will provide medical service for infants through young adults, 21-years old.

About 70 more doctors certified to recommend medical marijuana

Seventy-one more doctors have been certified to recommend medical marijuana in Ohio, bringing the total number to 293. Ohio's medical marijuana program was supposed to begin earlier this month, but licensing and business-related delays have pushed back the start date several months. Two of the state-licensed medical marijuana cultivators expect their first harvest in October, but it could take several months for the first dispensaries in the state to open.

New poll shows Ohio governor race virtually tied

A new poll puts the two major party candidates for Ohio governor in a neck and neck race. The Politico/AARP poll shows Republican Mike DeWine and Democrat Rich Cordray in a virtual dead heat at 39 and 38 percent respectively, with 23 percent of voters still undecided. The survey has a two percent margin of error. The same poll gives incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown a 47 percent to 31 percent lead over Republican Rep. Jim Renacci in the U.S. Senate race.

Koch Brothers investing in local races

A national conservative political advocacy group backed by the Koch brothers is investing heavily in some local races. Americans for Prosperity’s local arm is canvasing for Republican candidates in Akron and Cleveland’s Ohio House races. The group is also supporting Republican Kristina Roegner of Hudson in her race against Democrat Adam VanHo to fill the senate seat vacated by Frank LaRose.