Morning Headlines: GM Loans $40M to Company Buying Lordstown Plant; UA Unveils Cybersecurity Lab

Dec 10, 2019

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, Dec. 10:

  • GM loans $40M to company buying Lordstown plant;
  • UA unveils cybersecurity lab;
  • Summit County fights climate change;
  • Judges to hear arguments for former Niles mayor appeal;
  • Official portrait unveiled of former Ohio Gov. John Kasich;
  • Chapel Hill Mall dodges another possible power shutoff;

GM loans $40M to company buying Lordstown plant
General Motors (GM) has agreed to loan $40 million to a newly formed company that wants to make electric pickup trucks at a massive Ohio assembly plant GM shut down earlier this year. Documents filed last week show the agreement also would allow GM to buy back the plant up until next May. Lordstown Motors wants to begin making electric trucks at the former GM plant by late 2020. But it said in November it still needs more investors before manufacturing can begin. A GM spokesman said the loan is structured to help Lordstown Motors stick to its launch schedule.

Summit County fights climate change
Summit County is trying to be proactive when it comes to climate change. The new Summit County Environmental Sustainability Task Force aims to reduce energy consumption, conserve the environment and decrease use of fossil fuels. The group plans to meet for six months before giving recommendations to county council next summer on possible practices and legislation for sustainability. The task force stems from one created back in 2007, but never took off after its founding council member lost reelection later that year.

UA Unveils Cybersecurity Lab
The University of Akron has unveiled a lab dedicated to helping experts practice identifying and addressing cyber threats. The lab will allow companies to develop skills needed to manage threats without leaving operating systems at risk. School officials said it’s the first of its kind at a university. It'll also be a part of the Ohio Cyber Range, an initiative under Gov. Mike DeWine and the Ohio Army National Guard to help companies and the military prevent digital hackers. The facility is also available for students who are majoring in cybersecurity.

Judges to hear arguments for former Niles mayor appeal
Three Akron judges will hear arguments Tuesday in the appeal of former Niles Mayor Ralph Infante's 10-year prison sentence. The Vindicator reports Infante and his attorney argued for a new trial because they believe the former judge who presided over his case last year made several errors. Infante was found guilty of 22 criminal charges, including tampering, gambling and falsification. Infante said there's insufficient evidence for some of the charges. A decision will be announced in the next few weeks.

Official portrait unveiled of former Ohio Gov. John Kasich
Statehouse officials have unveiled the official portrait of former Gov. John Kasich. The Republican held office from 2011 through 2018. The Capital Square Review and Advisory Board presented the portrait of Kasich on Monday afternoon in the Statehouse atrium, following remarks by Senate President Larry Obhof and current Gov. Mike DeWine. Kasich served as the state's 69th governor and was a long-time former congressman. Private donations are used to pay for portraits of former Ohio governors.

Chapel Hill Mall dodges another possible power shutoff
Akron's Chapel Hill Mall will have its lights on for the holidays. The Beacon Journal reports mall owner Michael Kohan paid the overdue electric bill this week. Ohio Edison warned tenants last week that power would be shut off if the bill wasn't paid. It was the second time this year that the mall received a notice. Chapel Hill has been dealing with empty storefronts. The only chain store left in the mall is JCPenny.