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Morning Headlines: Metro RTA strike put on hold by international union; The Cleveland Orchestra cancels concerts due to COVID-19

A photo of a Metro RTA bus.
RAYMOND WAMBSGANS
/
CREATIVE COMMONS
Summit County public transit workers will not be going on strike Monday as planned. In a statement, The Transport Workers Union of America said Metro RTA’s strike authorization vote was administered improperly, and that the union did not give adequate notice to the international union. Contract negotiations have been ongoing for more than a year.

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, November 15:

  • Metro RTA strike put on hold by international union
  • The Cleveland Orchestra cancels concerts due to COVID-19
  • All COVID metrics on the rise
  • Ohio to get $140M to offer heating help
  • Darden nominated for U.S. Attorney
  • 1969 heist solved after man's 'unassuming' life in hiding
  • Ohio lawmaker seeks expansion of medical marijuana law
  • Browns blown out in New England, 45-7

Metro RTA strike put on hold by international union
(WKSU) -- Summit County public transit workers will not be going on strike Monday as planned. In a statement, The Transport Workers Union of America said Metro RTA’s strike authorization vote was administered improperly, and that the union did not give adequate notice to the international union. The international union also said the local union’s president no longer works for METRO. Rick Speelman was fired in 2020 on allegations of wrongdoing. The local has been placed in temporary receivership until members of the international union have completed an investigation in Akron. Contract negotiations have been ongoing for more than a year.

The Cleveland Orchestra cancels concerts due to COVID-19
(Ideastream Public Media) -- The Cleveland Orchestra canceled two concerts over the weekend after a performer tested positive for COVID-19. "Pictures at an Exhibition" was called off just hours before it was to begin and then Sunday’s performance was also canceled. A spokesperson says the orchestra is following protocols it developed in consultation with the Cleveland Clinic for testing and quarantining those of who were in close contact with the performer who tested positive. Ticket holders for the canceled shows will be contacted via email to choose between asking for a refund, exchanging the tickets for a future concert, or donating the cost of the tickets to the orchestra. Severance Music Center reopened for live concerts last month after being closed for a year and a half.

All COVID metrics on the rise
(WKSU) -- Ohio's COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are all increasing. There are 2,551 people hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Sunday, which is up by about 400 from last week. The Ohio Hospital Association also says 1-in-5 ICU patients are COVID positive. There were 576 deaths reported this past week, an increase of about 35 from the previous week. Cases are also up with the three-week average at nearly 3,900. Just under 60% of Ohioans ages 5 and up have started a COVID-19 vaccine, including 34,000 kids aged 5 to 11.

Ohio to get $140M to offer heating help
(WKSU) -- Ohioans will be getting extra help paying their heating bills this winter. Ohio’s Home Energy Assistance Program is getting more than $140 million from the federal Department of Health and Human Services. Individuals, families, and senior citizens with household incomes at or below 175 percent of the federal poverty line may receive a one-time financial benefit applied to their utility or bulk fuel bills.

Darden nominated for U.S. Attorney
(AP) — The Biden administration has nominated Cleveland attorney Marisa Darden to become the U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of Ohio. If her nomination is approved by the Senate, she would become the first Black woman in Ohio history to serve as prosecutor in either of its two federal judicial districts. Darden currently serves as a principal in the Cleveland office of the law firm Squire Patton Boggs. She previously worked as an assistant U.S. Attorney in Cleveland and as an assistant district attorney for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

1969 heist solved after man's 'unassuming' life in hiding
(AP) — Federal marshals in Ohio say a 1969 bank robbery has been closed following the death earlier this year of the man they say was responsible. Authorities say 20-year-old Theodore Conrad was a bank teller at the Society National Bank in Cleveland when he walked out with a paper bag containing $215,000. That's the equivalent of more than $1.7 million in 2021 dollars. The U.S. marshals service said Friday that authorities had confirmed that Conrad had been living “an unassuming life” since 1970 under a different name until his death of lung cancer in May.

Ohio lawmaker seeks expansion of medical marijuana law
(AP) — A top Ohio state senator has introduced a bill calling for a further expansion of the state's medical marijuana program. Senate Health Chairman Steve Huffman is a Republican from Tipp City and a physician. His legislation includes under the list of qualifying conditions any medical ailment determined by a licensed physician. It would also put regulation of medical marijuana solely under the Department of Commerce and remove the current, additional oversight by the state pharmacy board.

Browns blown out in New England, 45-7
(AP) — The Browns were blown out in New England, losing to the Patriots 45-7 on Sunday. The Browns were coming off a win over Cincinnati. But they fell behind 31-7 with quarterback Baker Mayfield in the game, and then completely collapsed after he left with a knee injury. They fall to 5-5 and have dropped four of their last six games.