Ohio News Briefs

Ohio State University to expand aid initiative to regionals

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio State University plans to expand a financial aid program from its main campus to include regional campuses.

The university expects to spend some $3 million a year starting in spring 2019 to extend the program aiming to close the aid gap for low- and moderate-income students. The aid package begins this fall for in-state students in Columbus who qualify for federal Pell Grants. It’s meant to cover tuition and mandatory fees that remain after federal and state aid is applied.

Ohio State expects the “Buckeye Opportunity Program” to help some 3,000 main-campus students.

The expansion is expected to help some 1,200 full-time students at Ohio State’s Lima, Mansfield, Marion and Newark campuses, along with its Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster.

City halts demolition of closed Catholic church

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio city has delayed the demolition of a long-shuttered Roman Catholic church that has received pushback from politicians, residents and community activists.

The city of Toledo issued a stop work order at St. Anthony Catholic Church Sunday, saying the demolition permit has not been approved.

City spokesman Ignazio Messina tells The Blade not all of the paperwork has been completed, and the church has a fence that is out-of-compliance. He says the demolition can continue once the paperwork is finished.

The Diocese of Toledo had scheduled for the building to be torn down with plans to build a community center in its place.

Diocese spokeswoman Kelly Donaghy says they have not received a formal stop work order from the city, but they will comply with any legal requirements.

Strapped Ohio school proposes harvesting old-growth trees

NEWTON FALLS, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio school that’s short on funds is proposing the harvesting of old-growth trees on school property.

Newton Falls Exempted School District in northeastern Ohio is holding a July 3 auction to take timber harvesting bids from interested companies for trees on 42 acres of forest.

School Treasurer Jonathan Pusateri tells the Warren Tribune Chronicle the district needs to look at such a project because of its financial state.

The district recently cut 15 staff and closed the elementary school as cost-saving measures.

Newton Falls graduate Ethan Kistler questions the plan’s wisdom, saying it will accumulate money temporarily while leaving behind a fragmented forest. He says it’s better to pursue a levy for long-term financial needs.

Trees in the forest include walnut, beech and oak.

Teen with cerebral palsy stuns mom by walking at graduation

RAVENNA, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio teenager who has cerebral palsy and was never expected to be able to walk has shocked her family by doing just that at her high school graduation.

The Kent-Ravenna Record-Courier reports 19-year-old Lexi Wright left her wheelchair and used a walker to cross a stage in her cap and gown to accept her diploma at the Ravenna High School ceremony last week.

Her mother, Dede, says seeing her daughter walk for the first time as the audience gave a standing ovation left her weeping so much that she couldn’t even cheer.

Principal Beth Coleman says Wright had been practicing all year.

The teen says she simply wanted to surprise her family and was stunned by the crowd’s reaction. She says she plans to keep working on walking.

Police: Ohio residents surprised by 2 burglars

EUCLID, Ohio (AP) — Police say Ohio residents were surprised by two burglars in their home, including one armed with a gun.

The Euclid Police Department says officers were called to the scene at 1:15 p.m. Sunday after the Euclid residents fled and went to a neighbor’s house.

A SWAT team arrived at the scene and searched the home, but the burglars escaped.

Police have recovered a gun, and no injuries have been reported.

A search for the burglars is ongoing.

ATV crash along road kills 7-year-old boy, injures young man

ASHTABULA, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say an all-terrain vehicle crashed along a northeastern Ohio road, killing a 7-year-old boy and injuring an 18-year-old rider.

Investigators say the child died at a hospital after the ATV hit a ditch and a metal culvert Saturday afternoon in Wayne Township, roughly 20 miles south of Ashtabula.

The Star-Beacon reports that the chief investigator for the Ashtabula County Coroner’s Office identified the boy as Kelden Martinez, of nearby North Bloomfield.

The other rider, an 18-year-old Cleveland man, was flown to a hospital with injuries that weren’t considered life-threatening.

Investigators say neither rider was wearing a helmet. The State Highway Patrol was trying to determine who was driving the ATV and why it veered off the road.