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KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

When the Indians took the field for their home opener yesterday, they donned caps featuring the controversial Chief Wahoo logo. It came days after team owner Paul Dolan told our commentator Terry Pluto that the team has officially demoted the logo to secondary status, following years of criticism and protests. Pluto says it was the first time Dolan made an official statement.

Photo of Margaret Scott
MARGARET SCOTT / LINKEDIN

With heroin related deaths on the rise, Summit County law officials are taking a stronger approach to punishing those who supply deadly doses of the drug than surrounding counties.

Most offenders in the county are being slapped with the maximum charge of involuntary-manslaughter, which can mean up to 11 years in prison.

photo of Madison's house
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

  The trial starts today for an East Cleveland man accused in 2013 of three gruesome murders.

Three rotting corpses, wrapped in duct tape, were found in Michael Madison's garage in July, 2013. East Cleveland Mayor Gary Norton said at the time that Madison -- a registered sex offender -- had made statements indicating he might have been influenced by serial killer Anthony Sowell.

photo of SabreCat bats
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

  There are about 30 companies in the world authorized to make bats for Major League Baseball – and one of them is in Northeast Ohio.

Today is the Indians’ Home Opener, right in the middle of the busy season for Rob Roberts and the team at SabreCat Bats. The seven-year-old company just moved to a new shop in Louisville, where ash and maple are being spun into bats for everyone from Little Leaguers to Major Leaguers.

photo of cows
VIVIAN GOODMAN / WKSU

A deadly Listeria outbreak in raw milk from a Pennsylvania farm has some Ohioans concerned about milk safety.

Inspection records are available to the public in Ohio, but WKBN News reports that public records are more difficult to obtain in Pennsylvania. Ohio also doesn't allow the sale of raw milk.

Here, only six people have become sick from contaminated milk in the last four years.

Photo of Donna Skoda
YOUTUBE SCREENSHOT / WEWS-TV, CLEVELAND

Summit County Public Health and the International Community Health Center are partnering with Akron’s North High School to open a school-based health care clinic.

The school is in Akron’s North Hill neighborhood, which is home to a growing number of refugees. Many of the people in that area don’t have access to routine health services, such as check-ups.

Blood collected in southwest Ohio has been sent to Puerto Rico.  Blood banks there have been closed because over fears of spreading the Zika virus.  Hoxworth Blood Center in Cincinnati shipped 75 units of O positive Tuesday, according to Dr. Ronald Sacher.

“We, at least at the moment have some increase in our inventories in O Positive blood, and this is very unusual.”

Sacher says if more units of blood are requested, and Hoxworth has enough to share, it will.

Robert Griffin III
WIKIPEDIA

The Cleveland Browns are in a familiar spot this offseason --- looking to find a new quarterback. Just weeks after cutting troubled QB Johnny Manziel, the Browns signed Robert Griffin III. Griffin, who’s known as RGIII, is looking for a fresh start after he was released by Washington. WKSU commentator Terry Pluto weighs in:

Fans might remember that back in 2012, the Browns were clamoring to draft RGIII, but instead he ended up in Washington.

Photo of Austen BioInnovation's facilities
AUSTEN BIOINNOVATION INSTITUTE

Summit County Council is considering a proposal to help Akron’s Austen BioInnovation Institute remain viable.

At a recent council meeting, the county proposed to defer the Institute’s nearly $87,000 in loans for its downtown Akron headquarters for the next five years. The county also proposed to provide the medical-product incubator with a $102,000 grant.

PHOTO OF SPORTS ALLIANCE OF GREATER AKRON LOGO
SPORTS ALLIANCE OF GREATER AKRON

The Greater Akron-Summit Convention and Visitors Bureau has a new division aimed at attracting sporting events to the area.

The Sports Alliance of Greater Akron was created to differentiate Summit County’s sports venues from those in Medina, Portage and Stark counties.

Photo of Fresh Coast Capital logo
FRESH COAST CAPITAL

 The city of Youngstown is partnering with Fresh Coast Capital of Chicago to redevelop and repurpose some of the city’s vacant land.

Fresh Coast Capital plans to lease 29 acres in four unused Youngstown city parks to grow flowers and trees for harvest and sale.

In lieu of monetary payments, Fresh Coast Capital will be solely responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the land it uses.

Indians left fielder Michael Brantley
Keith Allison / Flckr.com

The Cleveland Indians are feeling confident about the upcoming season with less than two weeks until Opening Day. The team has had a solid spring training with a few pleasant surprises. WKSU commentator Terry Pluto has spent the past week with the Tribe in Goodyear, Ariz., and says there are four reasons why the Indians will be Central Division contenders:

Photo of a blighted home in Cuyahoga County
WESTERN RESERVE LAND CONSERVANCY

A new report by the Western Reserve Land Conservancy shows the number of home foreclosures in Cuyahoga County continues to drop.

Property values in the county peaked in 2006 and then plummeted due to the effects of the recession.

The report also shows that recovery in the housing market has occurred at an uneven rate, especially in Cleveland’s east side.

Keith Dambrot
The University of Akron

The University of Akron men’s basketball team’s season is over after a first-round loss to Ohio State in the National Invitation Tournament. Still, commentator Terry Pluto argues Akron deserved a bid to play on a much bigger stage: March Madness.

photo of Euclid Beach bathouse
WIKIMEDIA

Swimming could be returning to Euclid Beach this summer after Cleveland Metroparks commissioners approved $569,000 in improvements there.

Top headlines: Family of Tamir Rice, Cleveland may be headed for settlement; Report: Southern Ohio prison remains most violent in state

LeBron James
Brandon Davis

Cavs star LeBron James has been creating a frenzy on social media in the last week. He’s posted a series of cryptic and confusingly critical messages on his Twitter account with little explanation, leaving the media to speculate that there’s trouble within the Cavs organization and among his teammates.

WKSU commentator Terry Pluto offers three explanations for James’ recent string of strange tweets that went out to his 28.6 million followers:

photo of Caroline Harries
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

State officials are teaming up with business leaders to bring more fresh food to low-income and underserved areas.

Advocates say too many Ohioans, especially in low-income neighborhoods, don’t have access to grocery stores with fresh produce and healthy food.

That’s why the state is teaming up with private partners to launch the Healthy Food for Ohio program. As the program’s Caroline Harries explains, $10 million in grants and loans will be available to encourage grocers to open new stores.

JEFF ST. CLAIR / WKSU

The Cuyahoga Valley National Park is getting $4.2 million for repairs, including several bridges which have been closed for years. Cuyahoga Valley National Parks' spokeswoman Jennie Vasarhelyi says one of the most visible projects here involves replacing the Old Carriage Trail bridges, which have been closed since 2009 due to structural problems.

The Richfield Coliseum was razed in 1999 and now belongs to Cuyahoga Valley National Park
WIKIMEDIA

This week, the Cavaliers are commemorating the 40th anniversary of what’s known in Cleveland sports history as the Miracle of Richfield. In April, 1976, the Cavs surged to the playoffs and won an epic seven-game series at the Richfield Coliseum. Members of that team will reunite at Friday’s game at the Q.

photo of RTA train
RTA

The board of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority reviewed several options Tuesday to raise fares and reduce service.   

The goal is to save $7 million and stay within its recently passed budget.

To meet its budget shortfall, RTA is looking to raise a little over $3 million by hiking fares and to save about $4 million by cutting bus and train service it considers underutilized. 

Classes to Resume at Madison Schools in Wake of Shooting

Mar 1, 2016
Photo of Madison Junior, Senior High School
MADISON LOCAL SCHOOLS

Madison Schools Superintendent Curtis Philpot says crisis counselors will be on hand Wednesday to help students move forward following Monday’s shooting which injured four.

The district canceled classes today. The school will be open tonight from 6:00 to 7:30 for students and families to walk the halls.

Philpot says the idea is to make them feel more comfortable about returning to classes.

“We believe that getting kids back into school as quickly as possible, with supports, is the best for them.”

Top headlines: Trump to bring GOP presidential campaign to Ohio; Ohio officials to discuss Zika virus preparedness, scenarios

Stark County Library Now Lends Electronic Devices

Feb 29, 2016
Stark County District Library main branch
STARK COUNTY DISTRICT LIBRARY

In Canton and much of the rest of Stark County, you can go to the library and take out more than just reading material.

Whether it be a portable Wi-Fi connection, a meter that shows power use in home appliances, or an air-quality analyzer, the array of gizmos you can now borrow has to do with access to knowledge. 

Stephanie Soduk heads public relations for the Stark County District Library.

Four Injured in Shooting at Cincinnati-Area School

Feb 29, 2016
Photo of Madison Junior, Senior High School
MADISON LOCAL SCHOOLS

Butler County authorities are investigating a shooting this morning in the cafeteria at Madison Junion/Senior High School.

Two students were shot and two others were injured at the southwest Ohio school.

While their conditions are unknown, none of the student’s injuries are reported to be life-threatening.

Sheriff Richard Jones says the alleged shooter is a 14-year-old student.

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