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Morning Headlines: New COVID-19 Guidance for Summer Camps; Former Cult Leader Dies in Akron

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GERD ALTMANN
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PIXABAY
State health officials are urging people to take COVID-19 precautions at residential summer camps. The guidelines encourage camps to establish cohorts or “pods” of small groups of campers and staff. State health officials also encourage anyone 12 and over to get vaccinated.

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, July 19:

  • New COVID-19 guidance for summer camps
  • Former cult leader dies in Akron
  • Republic Steel hit with orders for lead emissions
  • GOJO cuts third shift in Cuyahoga Falls
  • Portman: Bipartisan infrastructure bill loses IRS provision
  • Centennial of ex-astronaut, US Senator John Glenn marked
  • Ohio car dealer Moreno top GOP fundraiser in US Senate race

New COVID-19 guidance for summer camps
(WKSU) -- State health officials are urging people to take COVID-19 precautions at residential summer camps. The Ohio Department of Health has issued guidance after several outbreaks, including one following a Baptist retreat attended by 800 people in the western part of the state. Officials say those who are unvaccinated should wear masks and social distance. They also recommend frequent hand-washing and cleaning and sanitizing areas. The guidelines also encourage camps to establish cohorts or “pods” of small groups of campers and staff. State health officials also encourage anyone 12 and over to get vaccinated.

Former cult leader dies in Akron
(Beacon Journal) -- The former leader of a religious cult has died in Akron. The Beacon Journal reports The Rev. Wilbert Thomas Sr. died last week at an Akron hospital at the age of 91. Thomas, who was ordained as a Pentecostal minister, founded the Christian Alliance Holiness Church in the late 1960s in New Jersey, which established in cities including Akron. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison in 1985 on charges including assault and various sex crimes after members of the group reported abuse and threats. His followers then bought land in eastern Ohio’s Jefferson County and built a communal compound. Thomas was released from prison in 1997. The Beacon reports the Ohio branch of his ministry remains active.

Republic Steel hit with orders for lead emissions
(Canton Repository) -- Canton’s Republic Steel has been ordered to make changes after its mill exceeded the federal limit for lead emissions for the second time in three years recently. Levels in May prompted the Ohio EPA to order a temporary halt to leaded-steel production. The Repository reports a Stark County judge has since granted an injunction filed by Ohio’s attorney general on behalf of the EPA. The company has been ordered to comply with a list of actions, including watering the plant grounds several times a day, applying chemical dust suppressant routinely, and performing annual lead scans. Failure to comply would result in fines. The health department is holding a public meeting Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Canton Parks and Recreation hall.

GOJO cuts third shift in Cuyahoga Falls
(WKYC) -- The Akron-based maker of sanitizing products is scaling back after ramping up production during the pandemic. WKYC reports GOJO Industries, which makes Purell hand sanitizers, is going from three shifts back to two at its Cuyahoga Falls manufacturing facility. The company did not say how many workers would be affected but said it would help them move to another shift or find other employment. Last spring and summer, the company was holding weekly job fairs at its facilities in Cuyahoga Falls, Wooster, and Navarre to meet demand, and purchased additional facilities and leased space at Cleveland’s I-X Center.

Portman: Bipartisan infrastructure bill loses IRS provision
(AP) — A Republican senator who helped negotiate a nearly trillion-dollar bipartisan infrastructure bill says a proposal to strengthen IRS enforcement to raise money to help pay for the bill's spending is officially off the table. Ohio's Rob Portman told CNN on Sunday that the proposal was shelved because of pushback from other Republicans who dislike the idea of expanding the reach of the IRS. Portman says Democrats are including a more robust IRS enforcement provision in a separate $3.5 trillion plan they're working to pass through the Senate under special budget rules.

Centennial of ex-astronaut, US Senator John Glenn marked
(AP) — John Glenn has been honored over the weekend with a three-day festival in Ohio marking what would have been the history-making astronaut and U.S. senator’s 100th birthday. Glenn, who died in 2016, was the first American to orbit Earth, making him a national hero in 1962. He spent 24 years as a Democrat in the U.S. Senate. The John Glenn Centennial Celebration Friday to Sunday was a collaboration between Cambridge, where Glenn was born on July 18, 1921, and nearby New Concord, where he grew up and met his late wife, Annie, who died last year at 100 of complications from COVID-19.

Ohio car dealer Moreno top GOP fundraiser in US Senate race
(AP) — The latest twist in the race for an open U.S. Senate seat in Ohio is that Cleveland car dealer and first-time candidate Bernie Moreno outraised the rest of the crowded Republican field for the quarter. The $2.2 million Moreno reported raising as of June 30 was topped only by Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan's $3.1 million, which included a transfer of over $1 million from his congressional account. Campaign finance reports show former Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken raised $1.1 million, former Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel raised just under $976,000 and Cleveland businessperson Mike Gibbons raised $533,000.