Minority Strike Force Team Unveils First Recommendations

May 21, 2020

Cincinnati Vice Mayor Christopher Smitherman, a member of Ohio's Minority Strike Force team assembled during the COVID-19 pandemic, joined Gov. Mike DeWine's Thursday briefing to reveal the first steps the team is taking to combat inequalities in the state's response.

a photo of Zach Friedhof

The COVID-19 pandemic has left many artists unemployed due to the cancellations of large gatherings for the last few months as well as the economic downturn. ArtsNow, a Summit County nonprofit that works to connect the arts and the community, is working to change this.

Grace Myers, corporate and community liaison for ArtsNow, says they are launching two virtual series to bring local talent into community members homes. 

Ohio State Fair Canceled For 2020 Due To Coronavirus

May 21, 2020

This summer's Ohio State Fair is the latest event to be scuttled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Courts across the country are facing a daunting task as they look to restart jury trials.

A recent attempt to hold a trial in Ashland County during April and early May showed how easily a trial can go wrong. On April 28, the first day of jury selection, the defendant, Seth Whited, began either having a panic attack or displaying symptoms of COVID-19 while in the courtroom.

Lake County Common Pleas Judge Eugene Lucci has issued a preliminary injunction against the state's public health order closing gyms and fitness centers. The attorneys representing gyms say this ruling has wider implications.

The Ohio Senate unanimously rejected an Ohio House measure that would've scaled back the power of state public health orders. Senators blasted the House amendment, saying it undermined health experts and created too many unintended consequences.

Ohio’s bars and restaurants would be able to expand their seating and service into parking lots or public grounds under a new bill at the Statehouse. And they’d also be able to sell alcohol for delivery through third-party services such as GrubHub or Doordash.

photo of East CLC

The COVID-19 pandemic has left high schools scrambling to create a commencement ceremony that follows social distancing protocols. While some schools have resorted to a virtual or drive-in ceremony, Akron Public Schools has come up with a way for more than 1,000 seniors to graduate in person.

With a state budget deficit of three quarters of a billion dollars and just two months left in the fiscal year, Gov. Mike DeWine ordered huge cuts to schools, Medicaid and other areas. He says he’s considering other options going forward, but he has ruled out one possibility.

Deloitte, a consulting company contracted by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS), is investigating a data breach in the system launched last week to pay benefits to 1099 and self-employed workers. A mass message was sent to applicants letting them know that their personal information was left unconcealed for a period of time.

There have been at least 674 deaths from coronavirus at nursing homes in Ohio, which is 43% of the state’s confirmed COVID-19 deaths. After saying for weeks that nursing home residents who have symptoms are tested but limitations prevented mass testing, there’s a plan for more tests in long-term care facilities.

Emerging data from COVID-19 cases show skin symptoms are potentially associated with coronavirus infection.

Cleveland Clinic dermatologists Drs. Sarah Young and Anthony Fernandez recently published a study detailing several common skin symptoms in COVID-19 patients, such as hives and rashes. They looked at research from Europe.

Fernandez said he's seen some of these symptoms in patients at the Cleveland Clinic as well.

Cuyahoga County election officials are considering changes in preparation for the November general election, but much is unknown until the secretary of state issues instructions.

According to Tony Perlatti, director of the county’s board of elections, they are expecting at this point to hold in-person voting on Election Day in November with six-foot spacing between voting booths.

Cleveland city officials issued warnings against four restaurants and bars over the weekend for not complying with the state’s coronavirus safety guidelines.

The City of Cleveland said it responded to 28 calls regarding “mass gatherings” at both businesses and private residences. Police officers stopped by the businesses with the most complaints: Mulberry’s in the West Bank of the Flats, Harry Buffalo on East 4th Street, Lago East Bank and TownHall in Ohio City. 

Warning letters were issued and the city closed Mulberry’s sand volleyball pit.

Updated: 12:05 p.m., Wednesday, May 20, 2020

No fries will be available at this drive-thru. In fact, please don’t feed the animals.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is reopening for drive-thru visits until the end of May.

The zoo has been closed to visitors since March 16, but employees have continued to care for and feed the animals. As a result, the zoo has lost around $1.5 million in revenue.

A group that’s trying to put changes to voting laws on this fall’s ballot has more time to collect petition signatures. And a federal court is also allowing the group to collect them electronically.

Photo of Mike DeWine

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, May 20:


Ohio college students just finished their spring semester that was disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic. In early March, schools stopped in-person classes and switched to remote learning, upending campus life.

A Kent State University journalism class spent the week after spring break recording diaries about their experience. Alex Gray discovered two things that helped her cope: Quality time with her mom, and taking quiet drives. 

Coronavirus In Ohio: DeWine Lifting Stay-At-Home Order

May 19, 2020

Ohio's stay-at-home order is now less a command than a suggestion.

photo of Akron Public Schools headquarters

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, May 19: 

Updated at 12:37 p.m. ET

The Senate Banking Committee took its first look at spending under the massive CARES Act, which Congress approved in March to provide assistance to individuals, businesses and local governments affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin were pressed by senators about their stewardship of specific aspects of the approximately $2 trillion relief package at Tuesday's remote hearing.


Ohio college students just finished their spring semester which was disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic. In early March, schools stopped in-person classes and switched to remote learning, upending campus life.

A Kent State University journalism class spent the week after spring break recording diaries about their experience. Garrett Naylon stayed in Kent and reflected on what it's like to live on a deserted campus. 

Food Banks And Face Masks

May 18, 2020

Ohio’s foodbanks employ and serve people who are often in high risk populations for developing COVID-19 because of age or health conditions. So, wearing face masks or coverings is recommended but it also causes some problems.

Ohio’s K-12 schools are winding down their remote classes to end this unusual year. And Gov. Mike DeWine says he and school leaders are making plans for returning to in-person classes after summer break.

Updated Tuesday, May 26, 3:00 p.m.

Cincinnati State says its students will do remote learning this fall with the exception of required labs and skills learning. A Tuesday news release says those students will be able to socially distance.