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Morning Headlines: 23 Ohio Counties Fall Under New Mask Guidance; Kent State Recommending Face Coverings

CDC map of transmission rates of COVID in Ohio by county.
CDC
There are 23 Ohio counties that fall under the CDC’s new mask guidance. The new recommendations say that vaccinated Americans should wear masks if they live in areas with new infection rates of 50 or more per 100,000 residents.

Here are your morning headlines for Thursday, July 29:

  • 23 Ohio counties fall under new mask guidance
  • Kent State recommending face coverings
  • Renacci wants an investigation into FirstEnergy donations to DeWine
  • More HOF health services coming to help NFL players
  • State employees can get $100 for getting COVID vaccines
  • Two more Ohioans charged in Jan. 6 insurrection

23 Ohio counties fall under new mask guidance
(WKSU) -- There are 23 Ohio counties that fall under the CDC’s new mask guidance. The new recommendations say that vaccinated Americans should wear masks if they live in areas with new infection rates of 50 or more per 100,000 residents. In Northeast Ohio, CDC data show that includes Ashland, Carroll and Lorain counties. Gov. Mike DeWine has said there is no “appetite” to re-impose a statewide mask mandate that he lifted in June. On Wednesday, Ohio reported another summer high of just over 1,450 COVID cases.

Kent State recommending face coverings
(WKSU) -- Kent State University on Wednesday said it’s is following new CDC recommendations and “strongly recommending” face coverings be worn by both vaccinated and unvaccinated staff and students indoors. The university plans to return to in-person instruction this fall, and employees will begin returning to campus next week. Meanwhile, Ohio State University says all students, faculty, and staff will be required to report their COVID-19 vaccine status by next Thursday. OSU officials also say students who are unvaccinated will also need to complete weekly surveillance testing and wear a mask.

Renacci wants an investigation into FirstEnergy donations to DeWine
(Statehouse News Bureau) -- Former Northeast Ohio Congressman Jim Renacci wants the state auditor to investigate any financial support Gov. Mike DeWine may have received from Akron’s FirstEnergy. Renacci, who’s challenging DeWine in next year’s Republican primary, accused DeWine of being wrapped up in the bribery scandal related to Ohio's nuclear bailout bill. Last week, FirstEnergy agreed to pay $230 million in a criminal probe settlement with the U.S. Justice Department. DeWine has said he’ll donate to charity around $100,000 in donations he received from FirstEnergy and its executives.

More HOF health services coming to help NFL players
(AP) — A new effort is underway at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton to help current and former NFL players improve their quality of life. Hall of Fame Behavioral Health was founded in May and is partnering with the largest provider of telepsychiatry services in the country, Array Behavioral Care, which has providers in more than 50 major markets. The Hall's behavioral health initiative includes a call center and crisis line to link players to counseling services in areas dealing with post-career transition, identity, addiction, and performance anxiety.

State employees can get $100 for getting COVID vaccines
(Statehouse News Bureau) – Ohio’s 50,000 state employees are eligible for a bonus for getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Gov. Mike DeWine says state employees who’ve gotten shots will get $100. Vaccinated spouses will get $25. The money will be paid through the state’s health plan and will be retroactive for any employee who has already been vaccinated. DeWine says he’s looking into other possible incentives for Ohioans who are not state employees.

Two more Ohioans charged in Jan. 6 insurrection
(Cleveland.com) -- Two more Ohioans have been charged in connection with the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. Therese Borgerding of Piqua and Walter Messer of Englewood face charges including knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority. The FBI says they both posted selfies from the riot and posted on social about being there. At least a dozen Ohioans have been charged in connection to the insurrection.