Morning Headlines: Portage Rises, Summit Drops on COVID-19 Alert Map; 2 Shot at Akron Football Game
Here are your morning headlines for Friday, September 18:
- Portage County rises, Summit drops on COVID-19 alert map
- 2 shot at Akron football game
- UA reports 24 new COVID-19 cases
- New K-12 COVID map shows few cases in Ohio schools
- MAC reportedly exploring fall football season
- Gov. DeWine signs bill banning officials from closing places of worship
- Cleveland leads the nation in poverty
- ACLU report says reducing cash bail could save Ohio millions
- DeWine asks White House to name Dayton Space Command HQ
- Akron gets federal funding for airport upgrades
- Teen indicted in slaying of Cleveland officer, informant
Portage County rises, Summit drops on COVID-19 alert map
Portage County, home of Kent State University’s main campus, is seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases, bringing the county up from Level 2, or orange, to red Level 3 on the state’s COVID-19 alert map. Gov. Mike DeWine said Thursday the majority of cases are driven by off-campus activities and Greek housing. In response, Kent State is limiting campus dining services to take-out only and banning non-resident visitors from the residence halls. In-person classes will continue, unless an instructor decides otherwise. Summit County, meanwhile, has dropped two levels from 3 to 1, or yellow. About 70 percent of Ohioans are living in an orange-rated county according to the Ohio Public Health Advisory System.
2 shot at Akron football game
Two people were wounded by gunfire at a high school football game in Akron last night. The injuries to a 19-year-old man and a 40-year-old woman are not life threatening, according to police. They were shot after an argument broke out last night at the East High School and Firestone Community Learning Center game being played at Ellet High School. No players were reported injured and the game was suspended at halftime. Police are asking for the public’s help in locating the suspect.
UA reports 24 new COVID-19 cases
The University of Akron reported 24 new cases of COVID-19 in the past week. The university updates its dashboard each Thursday, and up to this point reflects only symptomatic students who were tested at the health center, or those who reported a positive test taken elsewhere. The school is ramping up its testing over the next several weeks, including a regular, random sampling of students.
New K-12 COVID map shows few cases in Ohio schools
Gov. Mike DeWine on Thursday unveiled the state’s new database of COVID-19 cases in K-12 schools. It shows fewer than 325 cases since students started returning to the classroom. All K-12 districts are required to report any confirmed cases to their local health department within 24 hours. Columbus, the state’s largest school district, with about 50,000 students, reported no cases. The state says around 7%, or roughly 9,000 cases, have occurred in kids so far.
MAC reportedly exploring fall football season
The Mid-American Conference may be following the Big Ten’s lead in starting a fall football season. The Toledo Blade reports conference presidents, including Kent State and Akron, will meet tomorrow to review plans for a six- or eight-game schedule that would begin Oct. 24 and culminate with a conference championship game at Detroit's Ford Field. The MAC on Aug. 8 became the first conference to postpone the fall football season because of concerns about the coronavirus pandemic. Kent State coach Sean Lewis on Thursday asked the MAC to revisit its decision in a message posted on Twitter.
Gov. DeWine signs bill banning officials from closing places of worship
Gov. Mike DeWine has signed into law a bill that forbids officials from closing places of worship. DeWine has not issued any such orders in Ohio, but other states have. State Sen. Terry Johnson, a southern Ohio Republican, sponsored the measure and says it’s a necessary preventative move. The law also bans state officials from canceling or postponing an election, as happened with Ohio's March primary.
Cleveland leads the nation in poverty
Cleveland has overtaken Detroit to become the city with the highest poverty rate in the United States. New U.S. Census Bureau figures show Cleveland has 30.8 percent or more than 114,000 people living in poverty, edging Detroit by .2 percentage point. The Census Bureau defines poverty as a family of three making no more than $21,330 annually. The Census collected these estimates in 2019 as part of the American Community Survey. They do not reflect the downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
ACLU report says reducing cash bail could save Ohio millions
A new report from the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio says the state could save as much as $264 million a year by reducing the use of cash bail. The report released Thursday includes an analysis of court and jail data in Athens, Cuyahoga, Franklin and Vinton counties. The report found savings available when jails aren't housing defendants who aren't a risk for flight and don't pose a danger to the community. The report also found Blacks charged and jailed at much higher rates than whites. The report says most people should be released on their own recognizance.
DeWine asks White House to name Dayton Space Command HQ
Gov. Mike DeWine wants Ohio to have a big role in space exploration. DeWine on Thursday sent a letter to President Donald Trump encouraging the President to establish the U.S. Space Command headquarters in the Dayton area. City, state and local legislators have applied for Wright-Patterson Air Force Base to become the new headquarters and a decision is expected early next year. The Dayton region has made it past the vetting stage of the process and into the “evaluation” stage.
Akron gets federal funding for airport upgrades
The city of Akron is getting more than $3 million to make upgrades to its small airport on the southeast side. The city says the Federal Aviation Administration grant will cover the entire cost of projects including resurfacing the main runway at the Akron Executive Airport as well as removing a second runway to free up space for development.
Teen indicted in slaying of Cleveland officer, informant
A teenager has been indicted in the killings this month of a Cleveland police detective and an informant during what authorities say was an armed robbery. Eighteen-year-old David McDaniel faces counts of aggravated murder, aggravated robbery and other charges. Two males ages 15 and 17 have been charged with aggravated murder in Cuyahoga County Juvenile Court in the Sept. 3 slayings. Authorities say the three suspects approached Detective James Skernivitz's unmarked car and fired rounds that killed the officer and informant Scott Dingess as they prepared for a drug operation.