Morning Headlines: Akron Children’s Ready to Offer COVID Vaccine to Kids; Gov. DeWine Signs Rent, Mortgage Aid Bill
Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, May 12:
- Akron Children’s ready to offer COVID vaccine to kids
- Gov. DeWine signs rent, mortgage aid bill
- Cleveland Clinic study underscores vaccine efficacy
- Parents sue fraternity over pledge's death in alleged hazing
- Sen. Portman: End $300 unemployment checks
- NOAA issues first Lake Erie algal bloom forecast
- Rock Hall to induct Jay-Z, Todd Rundgren, Tina Turner and others
- Rubber worker statue to be unveiled in Akron
Akron Children’s ready to offer COVID vaccine to kids
Local providers are gearing up for expanded eligibility of the Pfizer COVID vaccine. Akron Children’s Hospital on Tuesday announced that vaccination clinics for kids 12 and up are open at its Akron and Boardman campuses. Appointments can be made at akronchildrens.org/covidvaccine. Over the next couple weeks, the hospital will offer the vaccine at select primary care offices in its 20-county service area, at its urgent care locations, and at drive-through clinics. In June, the hospital will partner with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio to offer the vaccine to eligible children. University Hospitals is now taking appointments at its vaccination site in Shaker Heights.
Gov. DeWine signs rent, mortgage aid bill
Governor Mike DeWine has signed into law a $465 million bill meant to help lower-income Ohioans pay for rent and mortgages. The new law (HB 167) has widespread support and passed through the Ohio Legislature without opposition. The law allows local community action agencies to work with landlords to keep people in their homes if they are unable to pay as a result of the pandemic. That money can also help with utilities. The new law also provides $100 million in coronavirus aid to the Ohio Department of Public Safety.
Cleveland Clinic study underscores vaccine efficacy
A new study at the Cleveland Clinic shows that the new technology behind the coronavirus vaccines is working well. The study looked at the system’s 47,000 employees and found that of those who received the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, 95% of them were completely protected from COVID. The study also showed that virtually all of the COVID infections seen this year were among employees who did not receive the vaccine. And, 99% of the 4,300 coronavirus patients admitted to Clinic hospitals between Jan. 1 and April 13 were not fully vaccinated.
Parents sue fraternity over pledge's death in alleged hazing
The parents of a 20-year-old fraternity pledge who died from alcohol poisoning after an alleged hazing ritual in March have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the fraternity and several of its members. The lawsuit says Stone Foltz was joining a fraternity at Bowling Green State University when he and other pledges were blindfolded and forced to drink an entire bottle of alcohol. It says he was taken back to his apartment, where a roommate found him unconscious. He died three days later. Eight current or former fraternity members have been indicted on criminal charges. The university has banned that fraternity.
Sen. Portman: End $300 unemployment checks
Ohio’s Republican U.S. Senator is urging the state to stop providing the $300 weekly federal checks to unemployed Ohioans, which will stop coming September 6 unless another COVID relief package extends them. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Cincinnati) says there are good jobs available but says many Ohioans won’t work because the federal jobless benefits are too generous. Portman says Ohio should stop those checks and give people who take jobs a $100 signing bonus instead. Ohio has reinstated the requirement that unemployed Ohioans getting benefits prove they’re looking for work starting May 23.
NOAA issues first Lake Erie algal bloom forecast
This year’s Lake Erie algal bloom is expected to be smaller than average, but more severe than last year. The first forecast from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration rates it a 6 on a scale of 1-10. Cleveland.com reports last year, the forecast was for a 4.5 and the bloom ended up at 3. The toxic blue-green algae has plagued the lake, especially the western potion for more than a decade. How big the bloom is depends on rainfall that increases phosphorus levels. Rainfall was below average in March and April, but May is expected to be wetter than normal.
Rock Hall to induct Jay-Z, Todd Rundgren, Tina Turner and others
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has announced this year’s class. It includes rapper Jay-Z, being inducted in his first year of eligibility. He’ll be joined by Todd Rundgren and The Go-Gos, who have each been eligible for decades. In 1990, Carole King was inducted as a songwriter but will now also be recognized for her recording career. Similarly, Tina Turner was inducted 30 years ago as part of Ike & Tina Turner – and she now gets a solo induction as well. Rounding out this year's class is Foo Fighters, led by Warren, Ohio, native Dave Grohl. Akron new wave band Devo didn’t make the cut. This year’s ceremony takes place in October in Cleveland, the first time inductions are being held in-person since 2019.
Rubber worker statue to be unveiled in Akron
Akron on Thursday will unveil a statue that pays tribute to the city’s rubber industry. The 12-foot-tall bronze sculpture of a rubber worker is accompanied by an interactive kiosk where people can hear personal stories. It’s the centerpiece of the city’s redesigned downtown roundabout. The statue was set to be complete last fall but faced material and shipping delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic.