Morning Headlines: Akron Proposes Automatically Posting Police Body Cam Footage; Kucinich Announces Run for Cleveland Mayor
Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, June 15:
- Akron proposes automatically posting police bodycam footage
- Kucinich announces run for Cleveland mayor
- Communities speak out against last-minute broadband amendment
- Centene settles Ohio suit alleging Medicaid fraud for $88M
- Columbus will pay residents $100 to get vaccinated
Akron proposes automatically posting police bodycam footage
Akron City Council is considering a law that would require police to automatically post body camera footage within a week of an officer using deadly force. If approved, the law would require at least three video angles to be released within a week and the rest within 30 days. If a request is made and the footage exists but is not released, the petitioner is entitled to $100 a day for every day the footage is not released, plus legal expenses. The Beacon Journal reports if approved, Akron would be the first in Ohio to put a specific number of days on what state law says should be "a reasonable period of time" for release.
Kucinich announces run for Cleveland mayor
Cleveland's “boy mayor” from the 1970s has announced he will seek another bid for office more than 40 years later. Dennis Kucinich on Monday confirmed he will enter Cleveland's non-partisan mayoral primary in September while emphasizing the need to make the city safe again. Kucinich was 31 years old when he was elected Cleveland mayor in 1977. He is now 74. Kucinich served just one two-year term before losing the post to future Ohio governor and U.S. Senator George Voinovich. Kucinich later served eight congressional terms. Other Cleveland mayoral candidates include Council President Kevin Kelley, state Sen. Sandra Williams, Councilman Basheer Jones, nonprofit executive Justin Bibb, and former council member Zack Reed. The top two September primary finishers will advance to a November runoff.
Communities speak out against last-minute broadband amendment
Several Northeast Ohio municipalities are speaking out against an amendment slipped into the Senate’s state budget proposal that limits public broadband projects and cuts all broadband-related funding. Municipalities that have established their own broadband service, including Fairlawn, Medina, and Wadsworth, would be restricted from expanding internet access outside their boundaries. The proposal would also make most related infrastructure projects ineligible for state and federal aid. Senate President Matt Huffman said he’s concerned that government entities will effectively become competitors in the commercial market. On Monday, Summit County Council approved a resolution opposing the amendment, and Medina County commissioners also stated formal opposition.
Centene settles Ohio suit alleging Medicaid fraud for $88M
Centene Corp. has agreed to pay $88.3 million to settle a lawsuit alleging the pharmacy benefit manager overbilled Ohio's Medicaid department for pharmacy services it provided. Republican Attorney General Dave Yost said the deal announced Monday is the first and largest in the nation secured by a state attorney general against a pharmacy benefit manager. PBMs are third-party companies that help manage health care plans. That includes Medicaid, which covers 2.9 million Ohioans. Yost’s suit alleged St. Louis-based Centene and subsidiary Buckeye Health Plan conspired to misrepresent service costs, which included prescription drug prices. Centene does not admit fault.
Columbus will pay residents $100 to get vaccinated
Columbus will give out cash to help encourage vaccine holdouts to get their shots. City Council approved a proposal to pay $100 to people who get vaccinated. The fund will be overseen by the Columbus Urban League, as part of its program providing income replacement for residents who lost work due to COVID-19. There is $275,000 set aside for the incentive, which means 2,750 Columbus residents could receive payments.