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Morning Headlines: UH Begins Studying COVID-19 Booster Shot; East Cleveland Officers Accused of Stealing From Citizen

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University Hospitals will begin clinical trials testing a booster shot of the Pfizer vaccine this week. Boosters may be recommended nine months to a year after people received their first dose, depending on how long antibodies last.

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, July 12:

  • UH begins studying COVID-19 booster shot
  • East Cleveland officers accused of stealing from citizen
  • DeWine vetoes bill allowing Ohioans to set off fireworks
  • H2Ohio grants expanding to more counties
  • 15% of special election ballots improperly filled out
  • SUV sought after shots into closed Walmart; no injuries
  • Ohio State to give away $50K in vaccination drawings

UH begins studying COVID-19 booster shot
(WCPN) -- University Hospitals will begin clinical trials testing a booster shot of the Pfizer vaccine this week. Dr. Robert Salata says people who are fully vaccinated appear to be protected against the Delta variant, but researchers want to test whether an extra shot will significantly strengthen immune response. Salata says after these initial trials, experts may recommend boosters for certain vulnerable populations, but not everyone. And boosters may be recommended nine months to a year after people received their first dose, depending on how long antibodies last.

East Cleveland officers accused of stealing from citizen
(Cleveland.com) -- Two East Cleveland police officers are accused of stealing money from a citizen during a traffic stop. Cleveland.com reports Alfonzo Cole and Willie Warner-Simms were arrested and jailed on Friday. They each face one felony count of theft. East Cleveland Police Chief Scott Gardner plans to issue a “further statement” today.

DeWine vetoes bill allowing Ohioans to set off fireworks
(WKSU/Mahoning Matters) — Gov. Mike DeWine vetoed legislation allowing Ohio residents to set off fireworks on certain holidays. The bill would have imposed a 4% fee on the retail sale of consumer-grade fireworks that would have funded firefighter training programs and the Ohio State Fire Marshal’s regulation and enforcement of the fireworks industry. The bill will now go back to the legislature where lawmakers can override DeWine’s veto with a three-fifths vote. In an interview with Mahoning Matters, Youngstown-area based Phantom Fireworks' CEO Bruce Zoldan called DeWine a coward and said that the governor will see an influx of black market companies coming in the state now.

H2Ohio grants expanding to more counties
(Statehouse News Bureau) -- Farmers in more counties will be eligible for the program that pays them for practices that reduce runoff that can create toxic algae blooms in Lake Erie. The expansion of the H2Ohio program would allow farmers in 10 more counties to get money for using science-based methods of applying fertilizer, building ditches and planting trees and shrubs. More than 2,000 farmers signed up in the program’s initial 14 counties in the last two years, because it’s the first one giving them financial incentives rather than just regulations. The new state budget puts $170 million into the H2Ohio program, which also includes wastewater treatment projects, replacing lead pipes in schools and daycares and repairing failing residential septic systems.

15% of special election ballots improperly filled out
(WCPN) – The Cuyahoga County Board of Elections says about 15% of the more than 7,000 applications to vote by mail in the 11th Congressional District special election primary were not properly filled out. Ballots must be filled out in full and the party ballot must be specified to be eligible to vote in the Aug. 3 primary. WCPN reports the elections board will return any insufficient ballot requests in the mail with a ballot and a new application and may contact prospective voters by phone or email. Early in-person voting at the board of elections is now open. Thirteen Democrats and two Republicans are running to replace former Rep. Marcia Fudge.

SUV sought after shots into closed Walmart; no injuries
(AP) — Authorities in Stow are seeking a sport utility vehicle after shots were fired into the front doors of a closed Walmart store. Officers were dispatched to the store shortly after 1 a.m. Saturday following a report of shots fired into the business. Police said an SUV drove by the business and someone inside fired about six shots into the front doors and foyer. Some employees were working inside the store but no one was injured. Employees are being provided with support services including counseling.

Ohio State to give away $50K in vaccination drawings
(Columbus Dispatch) -- The Ohio State University is getting in on the COVID-19 vaccine incentive game. The Dispatch reports the university will hold drawings with awards of $50,000 in prizes to about 100 fully vaccinated students, faculty and staff next month. The prizes include gift cards, a pair of season football tickets or a parking pass. Vaccinated students can record their status through My BuckMD, and employees can fill out a university form. The school says more than 65% of returning students, faculty and staff are fully vaccinated. It also says no tuition, donor or tax dollars will be used to pay for prizes.