Morning Headlines: Legal Battle Between State, Summit BOE Intensifies; Summit County Still Finalizin
Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, March 24:
- Legal battle between state, Summit BOE intensifies
- Summit County still finalizing drive-thru vaccination clinic at fairgrounds
- Vaccination site at Wolsten Center gets $8.7M
- DeWine vetoes 2nd GOP-backed effort to limit health orders
- Akron schools to get $100M in stimulus funding
- Cuyahoga sets aside opioid settlement dollars for jail services
- Akron to use stimulus funds to combat gun violence
- Cleveland RTA elects new president
- Canton officials warn of bad drugs following recent overdose deaths
Legal battle between state, Summit BOE intensifies
The legal battle between Summit County Republican Party chair Bryan Williams and Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose is intensifying. Cleveland.com reports that in a ruling Tuesday, the Ohio Supreme Court backed Williams’ request that LaRose and Summit Elections Director Amanda Grandjean be deposed by Williams’ lawyers. The dispute stems from LaRose’s decision earlier this month to force Williams off the county board of elections due to claims that the board mishandled aspects of the 2020 election. Williams claims his removal is simply a political vendetta.
Summit County still finalizing drive-thru vaccination clinic at fairgrounds
Summit County health officials are still working to get a mass vaccination clinic set-up at the county fairgrounds ahead of its Monday opening. Cleveland.com reports that registration for the drive-thru site in Tallmadge has not yet begun. Summit County abruptly shifted the location from Chapel Hill to the fairgrounds last week after the mall property was sold. Public transit to the new location remains a concern. Public Health Director Donna Skoda told Akron City Council on Monday that Monday is still a “tentative hard start” for the clinic. She expects the drive-thru site to administer around 5,000 vaccines a week for at least eight weeks.
Wolstein Center vaccination site gets $8.7M
The mass vaccination site at the Wolstein Center in downtown Cleveland is getting $8.7 million dollars from The Federal Emergency Management Agency. The funding is an advance payment for costs to establish the site on the Cleveland State University campus. The site is open for eight weeks. Eligible Ohioans can schedule vaccines at gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov.
DeWine vetoes 2nd GOP-backed effort to limit health orders
Gov. Mike DeWine has vetoed a GOP-backed bill that would limit Ohio governors’ ability to issue orders during a public health emergency. The move will likely result in a showdown with members of his party who have vowed to override him. DeWine made good Tuesday on his earlier promise to veto the latest iteration of the proposal. This marks the second time in four months that the longtime officeholder has shut down attempts by his fellow Republican colleagues to limit his powers during the pandemic. The governor said he sent House and Senate leadership a compromise, but his attempts did not appear to sway lawmakers.
Akron Public Schools to get $100 million in stimulus funding
As dollars from the massive federal stimulus filter down to local governments, schools are getting an infusion of cash. The Beacon Journal reports that Akron Public Schools expects to receive nearly $100 million in next round of funding, more than twice the district received in the last stimulus funding. Congress allocated $122 billion for public schools across the country, as well as nearly $3 billion in taxpayer funding for private schools. The dollars are distributed to Ohio districts based on family income levels. Around $20 million in Akron schools must be spent on recovering lost learning from the pandemic. Gov. Mike DeWine has set an April 1 deadline for schools to submit their learning recovery plans.
Akron to use stimulus funds to combat gun violence
Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan says the city will use some of its federal stimulus money to combat gun violence. Cleveland.com reports that during Monday’s virtual town hall, Horrigan lamented the 15 fatal shootings in Akron so far this year. At this pace, Akron is on track to shatter the homicide record set last year. Horrigan backs proposals to keep guns out of the hands of those who cannot safely own them.
Cuyahoga sets aside opioid settlement dollars for jail services
Jail inmates who are addicted to opioids will get additional support in Cuyahoga County. County council on Tuesday approved a two-year, $2.8 million contract with MetroHealth to provide services in the jail such as improved intake screenings, additional medical staff and to hire someone who will help connect inmates to services when they’re released. The funding is coming from money the county won in settlements with opioid-makers.
Cleveland RTA elects new president
The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority Board of Trustees elected Rev. Charles Lucas as its new president Tuesday. The vote comes after former President Dennis Clough said he would not seek reappointment to the board last year. Clough had held the position since 2018. Lucas was appointed to the board in 2016, following in the footsteps of his father, who was the first African American to be appointed to the agency’s board in 1968. Lucas was the only nominee for the position and was unanimously approved. Board member Karen Moss will serve as vice president.
Canton officials warn of bad drugs following recent overdose deaths
Canton health officials are warning residents about a bad batch of drugs making their way through the community. The public health department says there have been four suspected overdose deaths in five days, along with an increase in overdose emergency room visits. Toxicology testing has not yet confirmed which drugs have caused this recent increase.
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