Morning Headlines: Storm Blamed for Vaccine Shipment Delays; Online Vaccine Scheduling Tool Still 2-3 Weeks Away
Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, February 17:
- Storm blamed for vaccine shipment delays
- Online vaccine scheduling tool still 2-3 weeks away
- TimkenSteel to close Canton plant
- Cleveland plans to sue FirstEnergy
- Black franchise owner, ex-MLBer, sues McDonald's, cites bias
- Hudson-based Jo-Ann Fabrics is going public
- Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse adds two all-gender restrooms
Storm blamed for vaccine shipment delays
The latest blast of winter shut down several COVID-19 vaccination sites in Ohio and could delay vaccine shipments by a day or two. Hospitals and health clinics in cities including Toledo, Dayton and Columbus canceled their vaccination appointments on Tuesday. Gov. Mike DeWine says the shipment delays involve vaccines sent directly to providers and the doses the state repackages and sends to smaller distributors. The huge winter storm dumped more than a foot of snow across Toledo and its surrounding counties. At least two deaths in Ohio are being blamed on the storm.
Online vaccine scheduling tool still 2-3 weeks away
Gov. Mike DeWine says the rollout of an online vaccine appointment scheduling tool is still two to three weeks away as the state recruits providers such as pharmacies, hospitals and health clinics. Once the tool is live, Ohioans can enter their zip code and find appointments within 20 miles. The state is also working with groups such as the Area Agencies on Aging to help Ohioans who don’t have Internet access schedule coronavirus vaccines.
TimkenSteel to close Canton plant
Struggling steel maker TimkenSteel is idling its Harrison plant in Canton, shedding around 100 jobs. The Harrison plant covers more than 31 acres and previously employed around 600 workers. The company says it will save as much as $20 million by idling the plant and moving production to the modernized Faircrest facility starting in March.
Cleveland plans to sue FirstEnergy
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson is considering a lawsuit against FirstEnergy, accusing the Akron-based utility of undermining city-owned Cleveland Public Power. Jackson on Tuesday alleged that FirstEnergy sought to create a monopoly at the municipal utility’s expense. This month, Council President Kevin Kelley authorized subpoenas as part of an investigation into alleged efforts to harm Cleveland Public Power. Jackson says the city is trying to put a dollar figure on the alleged damage CPP has suffered. He didn’t say when the city would file a complaint in court against FirstEnergy.
Black franchise owner, ex-MLBer, sues McDonald's, cites bias
The Black owner of 14 McDonald's franchises, including three in Cleveland, has sued the corporation in federal court asserting numerous instances of unfair treatment compared with white owners. Former big league baseball player Herbert Washington says the Chicago-based company has steered him over the years into buying franchises in low-income, majority Black communities while denying him the chance to buy stores in more affluent locations. More than 50 Black former McDonald's franchise owners made similar claims in a lawsuit filed last September. McDonald’s issued a statement on Tuesday denying Washington’s assertions.
Hudson-based Jo-Ann Fabrics is going public
Hudson-based Jo-Ann Stores is going public. The arts, crafts and sewing-gear company that operates about 850 stores nationwide has filed a public offering statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Crain’s Cleveland reports the company has yet to say how much it will raise in the offering, or what the price of its stock will be. Jo-Ann previously was a publicly-held company until 2011, when it was sold to private equity firm Leonard Green for $1.6 billion. The pandemic has fueled sales for the company that struggled in 2018 and 2019. The company said it plans to list on NASDAQ under the symbol JOAN.
Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse adds two all-gender restrooms
Cleveland's Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse announced on Tuesday it's adding two all-gender restrooms intended for transgender and gender non-conforming guests to the arena. Bathrooms for men, women and families are located on every level of the Fieldhouse, and suites also feature private restrooms.