Ohio News Briefs


Ohio college pledges $350K for Amtrak train stop

OXFORD, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio college has pledged $350,000 for an Amtrak train stop to give students, parents and alumni another transportation option.

Miami University says it has formalized its commitment in writing to match the city of Oxford’s $350,000 to pay for the stop, which would include a platform, shelter and access sidewalks.

Amtrak officials have expressed interest in establishing an Oxford stop if it makes economic sense. The city and school have been discussing the issue for several years.

Amtrak’s New York-to-Chicago Cardinal Line passes through Oxford in the early morning hours.

Oxford is some 40 miles northwest of Cincinnati.

Sheriff: County sent emergency notification about dog tags

HAMILTON, Ohio (AP) — A southwest Ohio county sheriff says residents were alarmed when they received a call from an emergency notification system.

That is until the message reminded the roughly 20,000 Butler County residents to renew dog licenses.

Butler County Emergency Management Agency Director Matt Haverkos authorized the Butler County Auditor’s Office to use the agency’s notification system to send the reminder last month.

Haverkos tells the Hamilton-Middletown Journal-News there was a “glitch” when it first went out because it said they were receiving an emergency management agency message. That greeting was later changed.

Sheriff Richard Jones says people become “scared” when they get an EMA notification and called for Haverkos to resign for a “serious breach of protocol.”

Authorities say they don’t intend to take action against Haverkos.

More than 100 historic farms recognized by Ohio

REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio (AP) — Ohio officials say 118 historic farms recognized last year by the state are among more than 1,300 farms now registered in the Ohio Historic Family Farms program.

The Ohio Department of Agriculture says the farms recognized in 2016 were century, sesquicentennial or bicentennial farms owned by the same family for at least 100, 150 or 200 consecutive years.

Gov. John Kasich and Department of Agriculture Director David Daniels signed certificates that were presented to each family to be passed down to future generations.

Ohio Historic Family Farms is a voluntary recognition program administered by the Department of Agriculture.

Century farms have been recognized since 1993, with the bicentennial farm designation added in 2013. The sesquicentennial farm designation was added in 2016.

Environmentalists to fight logging through study of species

WEST PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (AP) — Environmentalists plan to gather evidence of any rare and endangered species in Ohio’s Shawnee State Forest this spring in an effort to fend off proposed logging in the area.

The Columbus Dispatch reports experts who study insects, birds and other creatures will engage in what they call a “bioblitz.” It aims to gather evidence of threatened or endangered species in the upper portion of the forest’s Rock Run watershed in West Portsmouth.

The documentation will be used by environmentalists to build their case against the proposed logging.

The state Department of Natural Resources last summer halted an 84-acre timber sale in the upper portion of the 1,300-acre watershed.

State forestry division officials say part of the agency’s mission involves harvesting timber from a portion of state forests.

Off-duty officer arrested after dropping gun at Ohio theater

MILFORD, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say an intoxicated off-duty Cincinnati police sergeant faces misdemeanor charges after prompting the evacuation of a southwest Ohio movie theater when she dropped a department-issued handgun in front of other patrons.

Court records show 50-year-old Shauna Lambert has been charged with inducing panic and using weapons while intoxicated after the incident Friday night at a multiplex theater in Milford. She was arrested inside the theater and jailed overnight. Lambert posted bond Saturday.

A theater-goer tells WCPO-TV that Lambert was acting strangely and began harassing people before dropping what police say was a 9mm handgun. No one was hurt in the evacuation.

A Cincinnati police spokesman says Lambert has been with the department for about 20 years.

A hearing is scheduled Monday in Clermont County Court.

Ohio treatment center staff would include recovering addicts

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A support group plans to open a northwest Ohio treatment facility for opiate addicts that will be staffed mostly with recovering addicts.

The Blade in Toledo reports Team Recovery is partnering with Florida-based treatment center Recovery in the Light to open the center at Arrowhead Park in Maumee.

Co-founder Matt Bell says the facility will have 22 beds for detox and 38 beds for treatment and recovery for opiate addicts. Staff will include 24-hour nurses, psychiatrists and clinical directors.

Bell says about 75 percent of the staff will be in recovery themselves. Patients would stay 90 to 120 days.

Bell says Recovery in the Light will soon seek a permit from the state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. He expects the facility to open in the spring.

Ohio mayor offers reward for missing 5-foot-tall nutcracker

WREN, Ohio (AP) — The mayor of a village in western Ohio is offering a reward for the return of a 5-foot-tall nutcracker pilfered on Christmas Eve.

Wren Mayor Monica Davis says she’s willing to pay $100 from her own pocket.

She tells The Lima News the village doesn’t have the $500 to replace the missing nutcracker so she’s hoping someone will return it, no questions asked.

It was one of several nutcrackers that lined the Van Wert County village’s downtown as part of its holiday display.

The Wren Christmas Society raised money through a fish fry and private donations to buy the nutcrackers.

The mayor says whoever stole the nutcracker must have brought their own tools because each one was bolted down.

Suit filed over Ohio jet crash into building that killed 9

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — A couple who lived in an Ohio apartment destroyed when a corporate jet plunged into their building is suing the estates of the two pilots who died in the crash that killed nine people on board.

The Akron Beacon Journal reports the suit filed this past week in Akron also is seeking money from the owner of the plane for property loss and damages.

The National Transportation Safety Board concluded pilot error during the plane’s approach to the Akron airport in November 2015 caused the fiery crash.

Seven employees of a commercial real estate company based in Boca Raton, Florida, died in the crash.

Investigators also blamed Fort Lauderdale, Florida, aviation company Execuflight for inadequate pilot training and aircraft maintenance. A message seeking comment was left Friday with Execuflight.

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