Morning Headlines: Ohio’s COVID Case Rate Dips; Akron Firefighter Disciplined for Spraying Activist with Hose
Here are your morning headlines for Friday, April 30:
- Ohio’s COVID case rate dips
- Akron firefighter disciplined for spraying activist with hose
- New and continued jobless claims drop
- 8 indicted in alcohol-related death after fraternity party
- Lawmakers propose eliminating E-Check
- Akron to repave 85 miles of side streets
- Tree-planting at Chillicothe state park will be a COVID-19 memorial
- Browns select Northwestern CB Greg Newsome in first round
- Kings of Leon tour Rock Hall, NFT exhibit before draft gig
Ohio’s COVID case rate dips
The two-week average of coronavirus cases per 100,000 people in Ohio is now at just over 155. That's down from over 185 just a week ago, and from 200 two weeks ago. But it’s still more than the 50 cases that Gov. Mike DeWine has set to lift restrictions. Just under 40% of the state's total population has received at least the first dose of the vaccine, but the number of people starting the vaccination process has slowed. Ohio on Thursday recorded nearly 1,800 new coronavirus cases, which is slightly higher than the three-week average.
Akron firefighter disciplined for spraying activist with hose
An Akron firefighter who used a fire hose to spray an activist has received unspecified discipline. The Beacon Journal reports the department is not sharing what the discipline was. A local activist was filming as firefighters were cleaning the sidewalk after a stabbing outside the Haven of Rest Ministries last month. One of the firefighters told the man to stop and turned the hose on him when he didn’t. The Beacon Journal reports he’s still on leave as of Thursday. The department says the investigation is closed.
New and continued jobless claims drop
The number of new jobless claims fell for the second straight week to roughly 21,000. That’s the fewest since November as jobs rebound and state officials reign in the onslaught of fraudulent claims. Meanwhile, around 242,000 Ohioans remain on unemployment, the fewest since the start of the pandemic and down 3% from the previous week. The weekly unemployment rate is still around five times above the pre-pandemic levels. In the past year, Ohio has paid more than $9.6 billion in traditional unemployment compensation payments to nearly one million Ohioans.
8 indicted in alcohol-related death after fraternity party
Eight Bowling Green State University students have been indicted in the alcohol-related death of a 20-year-old found unconscious after a fraternity party. Six of those indicted are charged with involuntary manslaughter, including Daylen Dunson, 20, of Cleveland. Bowling Green sophomore Stone Foltz was found by roommates and taken to a hospital in early March. He died three days later. An investigation found that fraternity members had forced pledges to each drink an entire bottle of alcohol during an off-campus event. The other charges against some of the eight include reckless homicide, felonious assault, hazing, and violating underage alcohol laws.
Lawmakers propose eliminating E-Check
Two Northeast Ohio Republican lawmakers are calling for the end of E-Check. Representatives Diane Grendell of Geauga County and Gail Pavliga of Portage County are sponsoring a resolution to urge Congress to eliminate the program that monitors car emissions in seven Ohio counties. Grendell claims that E-Check disproportionately affects poorer Ohioans who tend to drive older cars which can fail inspections. Ohio’s E-Check is required every two years for cars in Cuyahoga and the six surrounding counties.
Akron to repave 85 miles of side streets
Akron is launching a massive resurfacing plan this year that includes virtually every neighborhood in the city. The city will spend more than $11 million to pave roughly 85 miles of side streets, five times the average resurfacing budget. The city reports that this year's construction will make for a total of 226 miles of city streets that have been repaved since voters passed a quarter-percent income tax increase in 2017.
Tree-planting at Chillicothe state park will be a COVID-19 memorial
A southeast Ohio state park will be the site of a memorial for victims and survivors of the COVID-19 pandemic. Gov. Mike DeWine announced that 15 trees will be planted at Great Seal State Park in Chillicothe today, which is Arbor Day. They’ll be planted by people including survivors, first responders, and families of the more than 19,000 Ohioans infected with the coronavirus who have died.
Browns select Northwestern CB Greg Newsome in first round
The Browns added another to piece to their revamped defense, selecting Northwestern cornerback Greg Newsome II with the No. 26 overall pick in the NFL draft. The 6-foot, 190-pound Newsome will likely compete for a starting job. Cleveland was looking for another cornerback to pair with Denzel Ward, a first-round pick in 2018. The Browns don’t know if projected 2020 starter Greedy Williams will be ready this year after missing all last season with a shoulder injury sustained in training camp. Newsome was the fourth cornerback drafted, but he feels he was the best in the class.
Kings of Leon tour Rock Hall, NFT exhibit before draft gig
Kings of Leon’s rock and roll journey has taken them from an NFT to the NFL. One of rock’s biggest acts, the band visited the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to see a new exhibit featuring their venture into cryptocurrency before they opened the NFL draft with their first live show in more than a year. In March, the band released its eighth studio album, “When You See Yourself” as a non-fungible token or NFT, a digital form of currency that can only be used in its own ecosystem.