Tuesday, July 09, 2002

Tristate A.M. Report


District provides bidding information

Enquirer staff and news services

        The Cincinnati school district is holding a seminar today on “Doing Business with Cincinnati Public Schools” to provide small businesses with information and requirements for bidding on planned demolition projects.

        The free seminar is 4:30-6 p.m. at the district's education center, 2651 Burnet Avenue in Corryville.

        The presentation is part of a series for small-business owners who are interested in supplying goods or performing services for the district as it plans a decadelong $1 billion school construction plan. Cincinnati school officials are expanding the district's supplier diversity program to increase the number of female-owned, minority-owned and small businesses.

       

Voters to decide on tax reallocation

               FAIRFIELD — In November, voters will decide whether to reallocate the city's 1.5 percent income tax, giving the city flexibility to fund both the Village Green Community Center and an expanded or new justice center over the next five years.

        If approved, the reallocation would shuffle about $1.2 million per year from the city's street improvement fund into the general fund.

        City leaders want to reallocate the tax to pay for both projects, each of which are expected to cost about $10 million. There would be no additional cost to taxpayers.

        Voters approved similar moves in the 1970s and 1990 for sewer and road improvements.

       

Homeowners paying despite canceled levy

               KENTON, Ohio — Tax collectors are telling property owners to keep paying for the countywide levy for Hardin Memorial Hospital even though hospital administrators don't want the money.

        The Hardin County treasurer's office, which mails out and collects tax bills, has been swamped with callers asking whether they must pay the 4.7-mill levy.

        County voters approved the five-year levy for the private hospital in November to help keep it financially afloat. But after months of debate about proposed cuts after the levy passage, the hospital's board decided to cancel the levy.

        The levy costs the owner of a home valued at $100,000 about $148 a year.

        County Auditor Mike Bacon said the Ohio Department of Taxation recommended the county keep the levy on its books. State tax advisers also said that with approval from the state, the county could keep the money collected this year and transfer it to the county's general fund for other uses.

        Mr. Bacon said county commissioners have made it clear they want to return the money to taxpayers.

       

No tainted food, water in teen's E. coli death

               BUCYRUS, Ohio — A teenager who died from E. coli bacteria didn't get sick from contaminated food or water, Crawford County health officials said Monday.

        Dustin Stover, 17, died from another unidentified E. coli strain that isn't contagious, said Beth Swalley, nursing director for the Crawford County Health Department.

        Dustin died Thursday at Children's Hospital in Columbus.

        “He had medical conditions that made him very susceptible to many bacteria,” Ms. Swalley said.

        Dustin became ill on July 1, a day after taking a trip to the Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky.

        Erie County health officials tested the food and water at Cedar Point but did not find anything to indicate he picked up the bacteria at the park.

        E. coli infections can develop from eating contaminated food or water or petting an infected animal. Inadequate hand washing can spread it.

       

Fireworks burns land man in hospital

               LOGANSPORT, Ind. — A Logansport man remained hospitalized in serious condition Monday with severe burns he suffered over the weekend when a fireworks shell struck him in the chest and exploded.

        Troy Ingle, 29, suffered second-degree burns from the waist up and on both arms when he and three others were setting off fireworks a few miles north of the city Saturday night, Logansport firefighters said.

        Each person suffered first- and second-degree burns in the explosion and all four had the hair on their heads burned off, the fire department said.

Man finds grenade in yard at home

               GOSHEN, Ind. — As Chris Zimmerman was moving sprinklers onto his lawn, he reached down to grab what he thought was part of an old bedspring sticking from the ground. He then realized he had picked up the pin of a grenade.

        Mr. Zimmerman carried the grenade to his front yard Sunday evening and ran to call police officers, who safely removed the device several hours later after evacuating several neighboring homes.

        Sgt. Frank Thomas of the Elkhart Police Department's bomb squad said the grenade, which was not live, could have been there for years and lain undisturbed all that time in the subdivision about 20 miles east of South Bend.

        Officers suspect the World War II-era grenade came from the explosion of a nearby dentist's home 25 years ago. Richard Gerber, who police thought had stockpiled weapons in his basement, died in 1977 when a natural gas explosion ignited a large amount of black powder in his home.

       

No-smoking rule for restaurants defeated

               MUNCIE, Ind. — Delaware County commissioners on Monday voted 2-1 against requiring restaurants in the area to go smoke-free.

        A task force appointed by the commissioners drafted the proposal, which was intended to protect children from being exposed to secondhand cigarette smoke.

        It would have forced restaurants to be smoke-free in about five years or build enclosed areas with separate ventilation for customers who smoke.

        Commissioners Jim St. Myer and Jack Stonebraker Jr. voted against the proposal, saying government lacks authority to tell restaurant owners how to run their businesses. Commissioner Ron Bonham is a cancer survivor. He voted for the proposal, saying evidence shows secondhand smoke is dangerous.

       

2 Ohioans killed in wreck in Arkansas

               BENTON, Ark. — A car carrying five Ohioans collided head on with a tractor-trailer Monday on Interstate 30 in Arkansas, killing two adults and injuring three children, state police said.

        Mary E. Keaton, 68, of Solon, and Frankie Pighee, 64, of Cleveland, were killed after the car Ms. Keaton was driving crossed into the path of the truck about 2:45 p.m. in Saline County, about 50 miles southwest of Little Rock, state police said.

        Injured were Mycah Wells, 8, of Cleveland Heights; Tracy Quinn, 10; and D.J. Quinn, 8, state police said. The Quinns are from Ohio, but police did not know their hometowns.

       



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