Ohio Gov. Kasich's tax, education changes on tap
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Governor John Kasich (KAY'-sik) is preparing to release details of an ambitious election-year policy document that addresses taxes and education and streamlines government services for the poor and unemployed.
The Republican governor's mid-biennium review, or MBR, is expected out today. Testimony is set to begin in the GOP-led Ohio House on Wednesday afternoon.
Kasich said during his State of the State speech last month that the bill would include his plan for driving Ohio's personal income tax rate to below 5 percent. That will likely involve a second attempt at increasing Ohio's tax rate on big oil and gas drillers, as well as new taxes on tobacco products.
The bill is also expected to provide details of Kasich's plans for educating Ohio's budding young workforce and retraining the unemployed.
Ohio panel to weigh letting hunters use silencers
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio committee has scheduled a vote on a bill that would let Ohio hunters to use firearms silencers.
Last month, lawmakers and their aides got a hands-on look at the devices and listened to silenced and unsilenced weapons.
The measure would let Ohioans holding a valid hunting license use the silencers while hunting certain birds and other wild game, including squirrels, rabbits and white-tailed deer. Only those authorized under state and federal laws could use the suppressor, which must be properly registered.
The House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee planned to consider the bill Tuesday morning.
Backers of suppressors say they protect hunters' hearing, make field commands easier to hear and reduce disruptions to neighbors. Opponents say quieter weapons are less safe and easier to use illegally.
AIR FORCE-SEXUAL ASSAULT TRAINING
Ohio Air Force base addresses sexual assaults
DAYTON, Ohio (AP) - Ninety service members at Ohio largest military base are taking sexual assault self-defense training and will in turn instruct their colleagues in the techniques.
Col. Cassie Barlow, commander of the 88th Air Base Wing at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, says it's in response to the Air Force's call to re-emphasize the culture of respect and dignity amid pressure to improve the military's handling of sexual assault issues.
The Dayton Daily News reports that the 90 Air Force members, along with 10 employees of nearby Wright State University, are taking the self-defense training from martial arts teachers.
Barlow said those trainees will then be certified for a two-year period to train their colleagues.
Ohio pays $2.5M to settle lawsuit by prisoner
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The state of Ohio is paying $2.5 million to help care for a severely brain-damaged child born to a state prisoner who claimed she didn't get proper medical and prenatal care.
The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction didn't admit any wrongdoing in the settling the lawsuit filed by Marcquietta Nored of Cincinnati. She was serving a sentence for forgery when she gave birth to daughter Julia in July 2006 at the Ohio State University hospital.
The girl was born with severe brain damage and quadriplegic cerebral palsy. She can neither speak nor use her legs and arms.
The Columbus Dispatch reports the suit claimed Nored wasn't treated for her high blood pressure and did not receive any obstetrical care in the 11 weeks before the birth.
Winter isn't giving up in Ohio
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Winter isn't quite over yet in Ohio.
A winter storm watch has been issued for northern Ohio counties for late Tuesday and Wednesday, with 4 to 6 inches of snow expected in some areas.
A swath of central Ohio could get 1 to 3 inches of show, but it's expected to melt when it hits the ground, creating some slushy conditions and possibly hazardous driving.
After a few days of high temperatures in the 50s and 60s, Ohio is going to get colder again, with highs in the 30s expected on Wednesday.
The winter has been especially long and cold in the Buckeye State, with some cities seeing record snowfall and cold temperatures.
No kids hurt as OH school bus slides into sinkhole
CONNEAUT, Ohio (AP) - Officials say no children were hurt when a loaded school bus slid partially into a sinkhole on a city street in northeast Ohio, nearly flipping it.
A school official in Conneaut said the pavement collapsed as the bus passed on Monday afternoon, causing the rear wheels to fall into the hole. The angle of the bus in the hole caused problems for rescue workers trying to get the 30 elementary-aged children off the bus.
School superintendent Kent Houston tells The (Ashtabula) Star-Beacon (http://bit.ly/1iwgWdq ) that the kids were more scared than anything. They were transferred to another bus for the ride home. A wrecker was called to extract the bus.
The sinkhole may have been caused by one of the water leaks that have resulted from the extreme weather this winter.
JEEP PLANT-PART-TIME WORKERS
Ohio Jeep plant hiring part-time workers
TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - Chrysler says it plans to hire up to 1,000 part-time employees to give exhausted full-time workers a break at its Toledo Jeep assembly plant.
The (Toledo) Blade reports that record demand for the Jeep Wrangler and launch of the new Jeep Cherokee last year is driving the move to spell full-time employees who are regularly working 60 hours a week.
A company spokesman said Monday that Chrysler has hired 380 temporary part-time employees this year, though 50 have been converted to regular, full-time employees. Chrysler has collected applications for all the jobs and is in the process of assessing them.
Most of the new hires will get between 10 and 30 hours per week. They'll be paid $15.78 an hour, the same rate as new full-time hires.
Teen will be tried as adult in Ohio slayings
AKRON, Ohio (AP) - A judge has ruled that a 15-year-old boy will be prosecuted as an adult in the bludgeoning deaths of a northeast Ohio couple.
The boy was barely 14 when he was arrested last year as an accomplice in the slayings of Jeffrey and Margaret Schobert in their home in New Franklin, near Akron. Authorities said they were beaten with a sledgehammer.
The Akron Beacon Journal reports that Summit County Juvenile Judge Linda Tucci Teodosio cited the "the brutal and heinous nature of this crime" in binding the teen over to the adult court.
The principal defendant, 19-year-old Shawn Eric Ford Jr., is charged with multiple counts of aggravated murder and could face the death penalty if convicted. Police say he had dated the couple's teenage daughter.
Cleveland man pleads guilty in fatal heroin dose
CLEVELAND (AP) - Authorities say a Cleveland man who sold a fatal dose of heroin last year to a 19-year-old man has pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in his death.
Cuyahoga (ky-uh-HOH'-guh) County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty said that 24-year-old Michael Karkoska was sentenced to four years in prison Monday after pleading guilty to charges that included involuntary manslaughter, corrupting another with drugs and trafficking.
Authorities say Lanny David Gullion III was found dead in October about a block from where the drug sale took place.
McGinty says prosecutors were prepared to present evidence that included videotapes and text messages tying Karkoska to the deadly transaction.
McGinty's office says Gullion was one of nearly 200 people who died of heroin overdoses in Cuyahoga County last year.
ANIMAL SHELTER-GAS CHAMBER
Ohio county plans demolition of animal gas chamber
MEDINA, Ohio (AP) - The public is being invited to help destroy a gas chamber used to kill hundreds of stray cats every year in one northeast Ohio county.
For a donation to the Medina County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, people are invited to beat on the gas chamber with a sledge hammer in a parking lot later this month.
The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reports its use was discontinued amid public outcry and the objections of animal activists.
The county shelter in Medina, south of Cleveland, gave the chamber to the anti-cruelty group after an anonymous resident offered to donate $10,000 to the group's cat program if the chamber is destroyed.
County commissioners had earlier voted to sell the chamber in a public Internet auction.
WAYNE NATIONAL FOREST-SUPERVISOR
Wayne National Forest in Ohio gets new supervisor
NELSONVILLE, Ohio (AP) - The supervisor for the Ottawa National Forest in Michigan is taking the same job with the Wayne National Forest in Ohio.
A statement from the U.S. Forest Service says Tony Scardina expects to start work at the southeast Ohio forest in early May. He'll replace longtime Forest Service employee Anne Carney, who retired earlier this year.
Scardina has worked with the Forest Service since 2004. His roles have included being district ranger for a district of the Allegheny National Forest in Pennsylvania.
He has a bachelor's degree in forest resources management, wildlife sciences and fisheries sciences, as well as a master's degree in public administration and natural resource law and policy.
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