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Morning Headlines: Haitian gang releases 3 hostages from Holmes missionary group; Hospital systems restrict visitations

A photo of the Haitian countryside.
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PIXABAY
A photo of the Haitian countryside. A religious group based in Holmes County has announced that a violent gang in Haiti has released three more hostages, while another 12 remain abducted. On Nov. 21, the religious organization announced that the 400 Mawozo gang had released the first two hostages of a group of 17 kidnapped in mid-October.

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, December 7:

  • Haitian gang releases 3 hostages from Holmes missionary group
  • Hospital systems restrict visitations
  • Proposed bill aimed at recruiting, retaining Ohio students
  • Cleveland council approves $15M COVID relief funds
  • Two Northeast Ohio projects get state tax credits
  • DeWine proposes $250M for police, fire and EMS services

Haitian gang releases 3 hostages from Holmes missionary group
(AP) — A religious group based in Holmes County has announced that a violent gang in Haiti has released three more hostages, while another 12 remain abducted. The statement Monday from Christian Aid Ministries said the people were released on Sunday in Haiti and are “safe and seem to be in good spirits.” The group provided no further details. On Nov. 21, the religious organization announced that the 400 Mawozo gang had released the first two hostages of a group of 17 kidnapped in mid-October. There are 12 adults and five children in the group of 16 U.S. citizens and one Canadian, including an 8-month-old.

Hospital systems restrict visitations
(WKSU, Beacon Journal) - Two Northeast Ohio hospital systems are restricting visitations as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations rise. Beginning Tuesday, the Cleveland Clinic will allow just one visitor, and visitors to inpatients can only enter Clinic buildings once each day. University Hospitals will allow one designated visitor per stay. MetroHealth and Summa have not announced any changes. Another 200 COVID patients were hospitalized statewide Monday, bringing the total to 4,214. The Beacon Journal reports that as of Monday, 281 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 in Summit County hospitals, the most since last December.

Proposed bill aimed at recruiting, retaining Ohio students
(AP) — A Republican lawmaker is proposing legislation to attract and retain Ohio college students through a series of grants, scholarships, and tax breaks. Rep. Jon Cross of Kenton is chairperson of the House Finance Subcommittee on Higher Education. He announced a bill Monday that would boost Ohio college grants, provide tax breaks to companies offering paid college internships, and provide up to 100 merit-based scholarships of $25,000 each to out-of-state students. His bill would also exempt any graduate of an Ohio college who takes a full-time job in the state from paying state income tax for three years.

Cleveland council approves $15M COVID relief funds
(Ideastream Public Media) -- Cleveland City Council approved $15 million in federal COVID relief funding for four development projects and health programs. The legislation includes $2 million for Northeast Ohio Neighborhood Health Services, a financially troubled healthcare provider in the city. NEON, which has a budget of $25 million, reported close to $1 million in losses in 2019, the latest year for which nonprofit tax disclosures are available. Its chief operating officer was paid a half-million dollars that year, according to the disclosures. Four council members voted against the funding proposed by outgoing Mayor Frank Jackson. Council also approved funding for other projects, including restoring a condemned affordable housing building and a loan for a housing and retail project in the Hough neighborhood.

Two Northeast Ohio projects get state tax credits
(WKSU) -- Two northeast Ohio projects are getting state tax credits to spur development and job creation. LG Chem America, Inc. is planning to build a new manufacturing and research facility in Ravenna that will create 72 full-time jobs by the end of 2025. Tax and advisory services group Cohen & Company says it will add 61 jobs in Cleveland, Fairlawn, and Youngstown by the end of 2024.

DeWine proposes $250M for police, fire and EMS services
(Statehouse News Bureau) -- Gov. Mike DeWine wants to spend $250 million in federal COVID relief dollars to police, fire, and emergency services throughout the state. The money would go to help first responders, police, and troopers who are far more likely to have depression, PTSD and burnout, and are more likely to die by suicide than the general public. $75 million will go to wellness programs, with the rest going to new community police programs, equipment, and officer recruitment. State lawmakers would have to approve legislation for the spending.