Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, May 8:
- DeWine dedicates land to protect endangered plants;
- Primary results;
- Summit County to form zoning task force;
- Congress wants to make natural disaster information more accessible;
- Stow police cruiser struck on Ohio 8;
- Karamu House receives $2M grant;
- Cuyahoga Falls Irish festival canceled;
DeWine dedicates land to protect endangered plants
Gov. Mike DeWine has dedicated the addition of 118 acres to a nature preserve to help protect more than 700,000 plants of the endangered Lakeside daisy species. The governor was joined by Ohio's Department of Natural Resources director for Tuesday's dedication at the Lakeside Daisy State Nature Preserve in Marblehead. State officials said the preserve is home to the only natural population of the plant left in Ohio. The Lakeside daisy was listed as endangered in Ohio in 1980. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed it as federally threatened in 1988.
Results of Akron's primary
Voters made some big changes in Akron City Council when they went to the polls in the primary Tuesday ousting four incumbents. Newcomer Phil Lombardo defeated Ward 2 Councilman Bruce Kilby; Brad McKitrick won the Democratic primary in Ward 6 over incumbent Bob Hoch; and Sharon Conner beat Ward 10 Councilman Zack Milkovich. They’ll each face Republican opponents in November. This is Conner’s third run at a council seat representing Goodyear Heights, where she has been a community organizer for years. Ward 8 Councilwoman Marilyn Keith decided to run for an at-large seat in this election and was edged out by just 45 votes. Meanwhile, Mayor Dan Horrigan easily beat challenger Greg Harrison in the mayor's race and will face Republican Josh Sines in the fall.
Across Summit county, in the non-partisan vote in Green, the top two vote-getters were incumbent Mayor Gerard Neugebauer and Matt Shaugnessy. They'll face each other in the general election in November. Lisa Dean and Stephen Pruneski will vie for the newly created elected position of law director in the Fall. School levies passed in Nordonia Hills, Tallmadge, Green and Twinsburg. In Hudson, the no’s outran the yes votes by less than 200 votes on a non-binding ballot question on the phase two development plan for the city's downtown.
Summit County to form zoning task force
Summit County Council is putting together a task force to examine the need for county-wide zoning maintenance enforcement. The Akron Beacon-Journal reports the idea came from a member of the Sagamore Hills Board of Trustees. It would give local inspectors the ability to enforce zoning issues like the long-term presence of a temporary tarp on a roof or a diseased or damaged tree in danger of falling on a building. The president of the Township Assocition of Summit County told the Beacon Journal enforcement would be much easier if the county backed them up.
Congress wants to make natural disaster information more accessible
Members of Congress want to modernize computer maps that assess which natural resources and infrastructure in the Great Lakes region are most vulnerable to disasters. Environmental Sensitivity Index maps are developed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. They provide information that supports advance planning to deal with oil spills, major storms and other calamities. The legislation would require the first update of the maps in more than 20 years. The new maps would provide accurate assessments of coastal resources that are at risk. They include endangered and threatened species, sensitive shoreline habitats and community resources such as beaches, parks and boat ramps.
Stow police cruiser struck on Route 8
Authorities said a car struck a police cruiser in a construction zone in Stow, and the car's driver and the officer were injured. Stow police said Sgt. Theodore Bell was in the left lane on Route 8 with his emergency lights on when the car struck his cruiser. Police said Bell was assisting an overnight construction crew when the crash occurred. A Stow Police spokesperson said Bell was in stable condition. Authorities said the car's driver was taken to another hospital with injuries that weren't considered life threatening. The State Highway Patrol said alcohol is suspected of contributing to the crash.
Karamu House receives $2M grant
Cleveland's Karamu House is getting more money for its makeover. The Cleveland Foundation is giving the theater a $2 million grant to revamp lobbies, a bistro and an outdoor plaza on Quincy Avenue. The Karamu House has served as a cultural landmark in the Fairfax neighborhood, a low-income area south of the Cleveland Clinic. The 104-year-old institution is also Cleveland's oldest black theater organization.
Cuyahoga Falls Irish festival canceled
The Cuyahoga Falls Riverfront Irish Festival has been canceled this year. The festival was supposed to be in early June, but organizers say there weren't enough vendors for the event, and that could bring in less money. It costs nearly $60,000 to put on the three-day festival. But that doesn't mean it's gone forever; the group says they plan to bring it back to Cuyahoga Falls for a large 26th-anniversary bash next year.