Thursday, January 24, 2002

Tristate A.M. Report

Fernald processing building demolished

        An $8.5 million project to tear down one of the biggest uranium processing buildings at the former Fernald plant near Ross has been completed.

        Plant 6, the former Metals Fabrication Plant, was the sixth of 10 major structures to be demolished since production stopped in 1989. During the Cold War, Fernald refined uranium ore and other products that were later used at other facilities to make atomic bombs.

        The remaining large buildings, Plants 2 and 3 (the Ore Refinery), Plant 8 (the Scrap Recovery Plant) and the Pilot Plant, are expected to be demolished by the end of 2004, said officials with Fluor Fernald, the lead contractor in the multibillion-dollar cleanup project.

        While many kinds of contaminated waste have been hauled from Fernald, scrap from the buildings is being buried in long-term waste cells recently constructed on plant grounds.

Bush to tap Rose as federal judge

        WASHINGTON — President Bush plans to nominate a Greene County judge for federal judge in Cincinnati, the White House announced Wednesday.

        Republican Sens. Mike DeWine and George Voinovich had asked Mr. Bush to name Thomas M. Rose, who has been a Greene County Common Pleas Court judge since 1991, to the post. He must be confirmed by the Senate.

        Judge Rose would succeed U.S. District Judge Herman Weber of Cincinnati, who plans to reduce his caseload. Judge Rose previously served from 1978 to 1991 as an assistant Greene County prosecutor, and was a Juvenile Court referee in the suburban Dayton county from 1976 to 1977. Mr. DeWine is a former Greene County prosecutor.

        Judge Rose is a native of Circleville. He graduated from Ohio University in 1970 and the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 1973.

State appeals ruling on death row inmate

        A lawyer for the state argued Wednesday that a federal judge erred when he ruled that death row prisoner Derrick Jamison deserves a new trial on charges he beat a Cincinnati bartender to death.

        Dan Ranke, an Ohio assistant attorney general, asked the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati to reverse U.S. District Judge S. Arthur Spiegel's ruling in May 2000.

        Appeals judges Danny Boggs, Martha Craig Daughtrey and R. Guy Cole Jr. did not say when they would rule.

        Mr. Jamison, 40, remains on death row in Mansfield. No execution date has been set while his appeal is pending.

        Mr. Jamison's lawyer, John Gilligan, said Judge Spiegel's ruling should be upheld because he correctly concluded that Mr. Jamison was denied a fair trial in the August 1984 killing of Gary Mitchell.

        Judge Spiegel ruled that Hamilton County prosecutors violated Mr. Jamison's constitutional rights by withholding evidence his lawyers could have used to defend him.

        Mr. Jamison was convicted in 1985 of aggravated murder, aggravated robbery, robbery, receiving stolen property and carrying a concealed weapon.

Cincinnati State lands vocational grants

        Cincinnati State Technical and Community College has received three grants totaling $119,928 from Ohio's College Tech Prep Program to jointly fund automotive, health and information technology programs.

        The money will help schools develop and maintain two-year college tech prep programs that stress technical careers and offer high school students college credit for these skills.

        The program is a statewide effort to create a career path for students interested in technology to go from high school on to an associate's degree and possibly on to a bachelor's degree program.

        The information technology program will team Cincinnati State and the University of Cincinnati's College of Applied Science, Hamilton High School, Butler County Joint Vocational School District and Warren County Career Center.

        The health technology program will involve Cincinnati State, Great Oaks Institute of Technology, U.S. Grant Career Center in Bethel, and UC's Clermont College.

        In automotive technology, the teams will include Great Oaks, U.S. Grant Career Center and Cincinnati State.

School employees' credit union robbed

        The Hamilton County School Employees Credit Union in College Hill was robbed Wednesday afternoon, the fourth robbery of a financial institution in Cincinnati this year.

        A man entered the credit union office at 6230 Hamilton Ave. about 4:25 p.m., showed a teller a note and demanded money, police said. The robber, who did not show a weapon, fled the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash.

        He is described as a black male in his 20s, about 6-foot, 180-200 pounds, with a mustache and light facial hair. He was wearing a white bubble-type coat, dark shirt and dark pants.

        Anyone with information on the robbery is asked to call the Cincinnati Police Department criminal investigations section at 352-3542, or Crime Stoppers at 352-3040.

Firm sues over zoning that bars Meijer's

        LEBANON — A zoning dispute involving the proposed construction of a Meijer store near Interstate 75 in Springboro has landed in court.

        Eastbrook Farms Inc., a Lebanon company that owns 81 acres at Clearcreek Franklin Road and Ohio 73, filed suit against the city, its planning commission and engineer, Raj Sharma, saying they applied the wrong zoning to the land and have refused to review the company's development plans.

        Eastbrook Farms, which wants to use half of the property for the Meijer store, contends that zoning reverted from planned unit development to business in 1978. However, the city claims that the property is zoned PUD.

        Differences between the parties surfaced in October, when city leaders passed an emergency ordinance placing a moratorium on any property development with PUD zoning.

        Eastbrook Farms wants a Warren County Common Pleas Court judge to declare that the zoning is for business use and to force Mr. Sharma to review the Meijer plans.

Motel gives way to convention parking

        SHARONVILLE — With the purchase of the adjacent Super 8 Motel, the Sharonville Convention Center will double its parking by spring.

        Sharonville Nights Inc., which owns the motel, has signed a contract to sell the 4-acre piece of property immediately south of the center and to raze the building for the new owner.

        The purchase, which should become final on Jan. 30, will provide another 500 parking spots for the center. Razing should happen by March.

        The $2.7 million project will be complete by May, when new parking will be available.


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