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Morning Headlines: 44 KSU Students Must Quarantine; Lawmaker Demands Charges Against DeWine

photo of Kent State
KENT STATE UNIVERSITY
Several dozen Kent State University students are quarantined in two dorms after they were potentially exposed to the coronavirus. The Kent City Health Department notified the students that they must quarantine until Oct. 7.

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, September 29:

  • 44 KSU students required to quarantine
  • Lawmaker demands charges against DeWine over virus orders
  • Cleveland urges calm among protesters ahead of presidential debate
  • Cleveland officials laud Cleveland-Cliffs deal
  • Akron sets trick-or-treat, issues guidelines
  • UA to offer free COVID-19 testing for campus community
  • Ohio tells GM to repay tax break after it shut down plant
  • Trump praises Lordstown Motors ahead of debate
  • Federal judge rejects changes to Ohio ballot signature rules

44 KSU students required to quarantine
Several dozen Kent State University students are quarantined in two dorms after they were potentially exposed to the coronavirus. Twenty-five Clark Hall students were notified by the Kent City Health Department that they must quarantine until Oct. 7. Nineteen residents of Centennial Court A received similar notices, stating they must quarantine until Oct. 10. The university is providing them with meals and “other university resources.” Students who test positive for COVID-19 will be moved to an isolation area.

Lawmaker demands charges against DeWine over virus orders
A conservative lawmaker has taken his frustration over Ohio’s coronavirus public health orders to a new level by demanding that criminal charges be filed against fellow Republican Gov. Mike DeWine. John Becker is a Republican from Cincinnati. He made his demand Monday in Clermont Municipal Court under a provision of state law allowing private citizen affidavits. Becker says DeWine has exceeded the authority of state law and the state and U.S. constitutions in issuing orders restricting Ohioans' activities to slow the spread of the coronavirus. A county prosecutor swiftly rejected the request for charges, saying state policy decisions should not be criminalized.

Cleveland urges calm among protesters ahead of presidential debate
Cleveland officials are urging calm among protesters and supporters who are planning to gather outside tonight’s presidential debate at the Cleveland Clinic. Mayor Frank Jackson says his definition of success for the event is if demonstrators voice their opinions without destroying property or harming people, not only for the sake of the city but for everyone watching from home. The Ohio National Guard is in town partnering with the local police to monitor any protests. Roads surrounding the Cleveland Clinic campus have been closed off. Jackson says he has no plans for a curfew.

Cleveland officials laud Cleveland-Cliffs deal
Cleveland city officials are lauding a move by Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. to buy the U.S. operations of ArcelorMittal USA for $1.4 billion to become the biggest flat-rolled steel producer in North America. Council President Kevin Kelley and Councilman Tony Brancatelli hailed the decision Monday, noting that the assets being acquired include six steelmaking facilities, including a Cleveland plant in the Industrial Valley in Slavic Village, as well eight finishing facilities, two iron ore mining and pelletizing operations, and three coal and coke-making operations. Earlier this year, Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal had laid off employees at its plants, including Cleveland, after auto-manufacturing slowed down because of the pandemic.

Akron sets trick-or-treat, issues guidelines
The city of Akron is moving ahead with trick-or-treat on Halloween, Oct. 31. The city has issued guidelines, including asking residents to wear a face covering, limit group sizes to no more than 10 and stay six feet away from people who are not from your household. The city also says Halloween costume masks should be avoided this year and are not an appropriate form of face covering. The city says residents should refrain from having children select their own candy from a common container, and instead try individual baggies.

UA to offer free COVID-19 testing for campus community
The University of Akron is offering free COVID-19 testing today and tomorrow for faculty, staff, contract professionals and students. Testing will be for those without symptoms only. Individuals with symptoms should call Health Services for a sick appointment. Asymptomatic testing will then be followed by random campus sampling testing in the weeks that follow.

Ohio tells GM to repay tax break after it shut down plant
An Ohio agency says General Motors must repay nearly half of a $60 million tax incentive package because of the automaker’s decision to close its assembly plant near Youngstown. The Ohio Tax Credit Authority also said Monday that GM must invest $12 million in workforce and education needs near the former Lordstown plant. The issue is centered around an economic development agreement that called for keeping the plant operating at least through 2027. But GM closed the factory last year. GM says in a statement that it still has a large manufacturing presence in Ohio.

Trump praises Lordstown Motors ahead of debate
President Donald Trump on Monday touted the new electric truck plant at Lordstown at the White House, ahead of the first presidential debate in Cleveland tonight. Trump said the area around a former GM plan in Lordstown is now "booming." Lordstown Motors has 135 workers and 200 contractors and plans to hire 600 production workers next year when the plant actually starts manufacturing.

Federal judge rejects changes to Ohio ballot signature rules
A federal judge has ruled that a signature-matching requirement for ballots and ballot applications in Ohio are burdensome to voters but that changing the process so close to the election could be what he called “damaging." U.S. District Judge Michael H. Watson sided with Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose when he ruled that LaRose's July directive ensures integrity in the state’s election procedures. The ruling is the latest back-and-forth between LaRose and voting rights advocates in the presidential battleground state as procedures for election safety and mail-in voting endure as a point of contention while the nation prepares to vote amid a pandemic.