News

photo of Akron Vulcans
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

Futsal combines soccer-like play on a basketball-like court with baseball-like scores. A semi-professional league known as the National Futsal Premier League came into existence in 2008. This year, Akron has joined the league with The Vulcans. At this point, they’re 5-and-1 on the season.

photo of a voting sign
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

The coalition pushing constitutional protections for voter rights is one step closer to circulating their petition for signatures. They're pitching the potential ballot measure as something that can have widespread support. 

The attorney general has okayed petition language for the potential ballot measure. It would create automatic voter registration, guarantee 28 days of early voting, and allow same day registration and voting. 

photo of Ohio House chambers
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Here are your morning headlines for Friday, Feb. 21:

a photo of a recycling bin
MARK AREHART / WKSU

The business of recycling has changed — China is no longer buying. And communities in Northeast Ohio and across the country are feeling the economic squeeze. In this installment of our series Reduce, Reuse, Refocus, we took a look at emerging recycling technologies and how they could someday make recycling more economically viable.

A photo of Summit Lake Apartments
AKRON METROPOLITAN HOUSING AUTHORITY

The Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority (AMHA) is trying out a new program that aims to help people who live in public housing overcome obstacles for employment.

As part of the program, case managers will be available to meet with people living at AMHA's Summit Lake Apartments.

AMHA executive director Brian Gage says finding a job is not always the hard part.

a photo of Dave Yost
JO INGLES / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A task force studying the use of facial recognition for law enforcement found no wrongdoing in the way the state was handling that system. And an upgrade and expansion of the system is now likely.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost says law enforcement has access to driver’s licenses photos. But he says they aren’t good quality, so he wants the Bureau of Motor Vehicles to turn over new ones. And Yost says drivers voluntarily agreed to that when they got a driver’s license.

“They need to weigh their concerns against that reality. Everything is a tradeoff.”

photo of Sherrod Brown
/ WKSU

No matter who wins the nomination among Democrats running for president, one prominent Ohio Democrat believes it will all come down to highlighting contrasts for people.

Sherrod Brown says once the candidates stop fighting each other for the party nod, they can start pointing out that President Trump is working to undo all the things Democrats stand for—such as overtime pay for workers and expanded medical coverage for people in need.

photo of Akron-Canton Regional Food Bank
AKRON-CANTON REGIONAL FOOD BANK

The Akron-Canton Regional Food Bank has announced an $11.5 million plan to expand operations in Akron and build a new facility in Canton.

The majority of the “Growing For Good” campaign will go towards a new building near downtown Canton, slated for construction this spring on the former site of a Fishers supermarket. In Akron, they’ll add refrigeration space and storage. CEO Dan Flowers says currently, they sometimes have to turn away donations of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Historic Oberlin College Building
TIM RUDELL / WKSU

Here are your morning headlines for Thursday, Feb. 20:

a photo of the band Coby and The Prisoners
COBY AND THE PRISONERS

Indie-rockers Coby and The Prisoners latest album is showing off the band’s talent at producing homegrown recordings that are polished and radio ready. WKSU contributor Brittany Nader talked with frontman Coby Hartzler about the band’s sound and his roots in the Dover/New Philadelphia area.

crane feeds an auto shredder
JENNIFER CONN / WKSU

If you live in the Rust Belt, you’ve likely seen your share of scrap metal yards. Scrap might look like rusted junk, but industrial recycling remains a robust industry. Industrial recycling, combined with commercial material from retail operations, makes up the majority of the U.S. recycling industry today.


A stock photo of stethoscope and chart.
/ PIXABAY

A health finance expert warns Ohio consumers about a new healthcare product hitting the market.

AARP is testing out new short-term care insurance option. Ohio is among 17 states where it is available to buy.

The short-term plan targets individuals over 50 who want insurance that matches their budget and coverage in case of emergencies. It covers things like well-care coordination and household assistance like yard work.

photo of forrest thompson
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

For the first time since November, a Senate committee heard testimony on a bill to eliminate the time limit on prosecuting rapes.

Jane Bryan is still haunted by the late night rape of her mother by a man who broke into their Akron home in 1991, while she and her siblings slept in the next room. Her rape kit was lost at the police station, and when it was finally tested in 2014, there was a match to a serial rapist in prison and set for release in 2022.

lake erie
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

The state is spending nearly $200 million to improve and protect Ohio's water quality.

Gov. Mike DeWine encouraged a large group of farmers to keep participating in the program, saying they have a specific indicator to determine if their plan is reducing harmful algal blooms. 

DeWine urged the legislature to make a long-term investment into water quality efforts.

The end result was the H2Ohio collaborative which included $172 million in resources and aid.

a photo of a firefighter and fire truck
CHICOFD / CREATIVE COMMONS

More than 65 fire departments serving rural communities in the state are getting a funding boost from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). 

The ODNR’s Division of Forestry recently approved grant funding of more than $410,000 to aid in projects that include investing in personal protection and fire suppression equipment, obtaining utility terrain vehicles (UTVs), and upgrading communication systems, among other projects.

David James at the podium
JENNIFER CONN / WKSU

Akron Public Schools Superintendent David James gave a positive report , with a twist, during his 13th annual state of the schools address Wednesday.

an illustration of coronavirus concerns
ANGELA HSIEH / NPR

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, Feb. 19:

a photo of John Bielein
ADAM GLANZMAN / FLICKR

The Cleveland Cavaliers reportedly are ready to part ways with rookie head coach John Beilein. The 67-year-old is unlikely to rejoin the team when they return from the All-Star break on Thursday.

When the Cavs hired the longtime University of Michigan coach last May, WKSU sports commentator Terry Pluto was cautiously optimistic that it could be good fit.

Bainbridge Township recycling center
AMANDA RABINOWITZ / WKSU

Recycling in Ohio’s rural communities is all about choice and effort. If curbside is available, it’s expensive, leading many people to rely on dropoff centers. But some areas just want to do it their way, which can be a challenge.

a photo of Myles Garrett
/ ESPN

The NFL has lifted Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett's suspension, but he remains in the spotlight following the ugly brawl with Pittsburgh Steelers quaterback Mason Rudolph last November. Our sports commentator Terry Pluto says Garrett's recent ESPN interview didn't help to take the focus away from the helmet-swinging incident. 

photo of early voters in Stark County
WKSU

A local elections official says Ohio’s upcoming primary is drawing similar public interest and registration numbers as 2016. Tuesday marked the deadline to register to vote in the March 17 primary election. Portage County deputy elections director Terry Nielsen says it’s important for voters to know their ballot, and make sure their voice gets heard.

a photo of carnation city mall in Alliance
NICHOLAS ECKHART / CREATIVE COMMONS

Northeast Ohio has had its struggles with malls, like Akron's Chapel Hill which is facing foreclosure. But in Alliance, there is new hope for the Carnation City Mall.

The shopping center currently has just a few stores and food vendors left including a J.C. Penney and Dunham’s Sports.

photo of Death penalty bed
/ STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A national group of conservatives that opposes capital punishment has made Ohio the 14th state for its campaign to repeal the death penalty. The group says the time is right to come to Ohio, which has been one of the leading states for executions.

photo of Kent State
KENT STATE UNIVERSITY

As the University of Akron nears the end of its search for a new provost, Kent State University has announced the beginning of a search to fill the position.

Dr. Paul DiCorleto, vice president for research and sponsored programs, will lead the search committee that hopes to recommend a candidate by the end of the spring semester.

a photo of a soybean harvester
UNITED SOYBEAN BOARD

A changing trade deal with China has put a strain on Ohio agriculture, but farmers are experimenting with new uses for soybeans to reduce the reliance on Chinese buyers. And a WKSU listener asked us where consumers can find products made with soy. This edition of OH Really? explores where those soybeans go.

For consumers, it’s not always apparent where soybeans go since they’re not the most common item at grocery stores, but they end up in more products than you might expect.

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