Monday, March 24, 2003

Tristate A.M. Report

Drawing of suspect in killing released

Cincinnati police on Sunday released a sketch of a man they're looking for in connection with the afternoon killing last week of an 81-year-old woman in West Price Hill.

The man is described as 6 feet tall, thin, wearing a white T-shirt, baseball hat and green pants or blue jeans.

He was seen leaving Lavern Jansen's apartment on Clevesdale Drive carrying a plastic bag.

A neighbor of Jansen's called 911 and said she heard the man knock on Jansen's door and order Jansen to get on the floor.

Police ask anyone with information about this man or the crime to call homicide at 352-3542 or Crime Stoppers at 352-3040.

UC's Internet health unit gets $750,000

A $750,000 federal grant has been given to support NetWellness, an Internet health resource operated by the University of Cincinnati, Case Western Reserve University and Ohio State University.

Faculty members answer questions submitted through the anonymous, confidential, and free "Ask an Expert'' service.

They respond to legitimate questions within two or three days.

NetWellness was founded at UC in 1995.

For information about NetWellness, call 558-8766 or visit

Fair demonstrates devices for disabled

People with disabilities can check out gear to help make their lives easier at an equipment fair in Bridgetown.

The fair will be held at 5 p.m. April 3 at the Margaret B. Rost School , 5858 Bridgetown Road.

Vendors and makers of wheelchairs, feeding equipment, patient lifts, walkers, bath seats, stair lifts, communication devices, toys and switches, vans and van lifts will demonstrate equipment and answer questions.

For information, call 587-7320.

Deaf council sponsors free health workshop

The Deaf Health Care Council will sponsor a free day-long workshop to educate deaf and the hard-of-hearing about preventing health-related problems starting at 9 a.m. Saturday at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College in Clifton.

Deaf comedian Ken "Professor Glick" Glickman will be keynote speaker.

The author of two humor books on deaf culture, he will present his routine, "DEAFology 101: Deaf Culture Through the Eyes of a Deaf Comedian," which explores situations unique to the deaf world.

Participants can attend workshops on a wide variety of topics, including stroke, cancer, women's health and blood pressure.

Other speakers will include representatives from University Hospital, AIDS Volunteers of Cincinnati, and the Inclusion Network.

To register, call Betty Rosenberger 513-584-5052, or 513-584-3785, TTY.

Federal swap won't be in highway budget

COLUMBUS - The transportation budget that Gov. Bob Taft gets apparently won't include a proposal to trade 2 cents of his 6-cent gasoline tax increase for promises of more highway construction money from Washington.

That's fine with Taft, who may have vetoed the provision anyway.

The state's $4.7 billion construction budget, which legislative leaders want ready for Taft's signature by the end of the week, would raise the state's 22-cents-a-gallon gasoline tax by 2 cents in each of the next three years.

The increase would raise about $400 million annually for highway construction.

The Senate considered a plan, though, that would have traded the third-year increase for assurance from Washington that the federal government would increase the return the state gets from the 18-cents-a-gallon federal gas tax it sends to Washington.

Now, the state gets about 89 cents for every dollar it sends, but proposals in the U.S. Senate would increase that to 95 cents, bringing in an extra $140 million a year.

Taft dismissed the proposal to swap 2 cents of the increase for assurances of more federal highway money. He wants to make sure a solid funding stream is in place.

More money asked for statehouse project

COLUMBUS - The state's $121 million restoration of its Civil War-era statehouse is in jeopardy because not enough money is being provided for proper upkeep, says the agency in charge of the building.

The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board's original maintenance budget for this year of $3.3 million has been cut four times.

The board asked the Legislature for $6 million during the next two years to maintain the Statehouse, the Senate Building and other facilities.

Faced with a budget crunch, Gov. Bob Taft's Office of Budget and Management recommended $5 million.

Ronald Keller, the board's executive director, asked a House finance subcommittee for the other $1 million.

Metal recyling firm to pay $373,000 in fines

CLEVELAND - A metal recycling company has agreed to pay nearly $373,000 in fines for antitrust violations and fraud.

Bluestar Metal Recycling Inc. of Elyria pleaded guilty Thursday to the felony charges in U.S. District Court.

The company must pay $302,000 to scrap metal suppliers who were underpaid for their shipments, authorities said.

Residents apply for $1 million in disaster aid

RICHMOND, Ky. - Residents in 15 counties have applied for more than $1 million in federal and state disaster funds after a winter ice storm swept the state in February.

Assistance for housing and essential needs of those who suffered losses in the severe storms totaled $1.16 million Saturday, according to a statement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Spelling winner gives idiosyncratic credit LOUISVILLE - Ten-year-old John Tamplin says his "lucky" red, white and blue golf shirt helped him win the Kentucky Derby Festival Spelling Bee for the second year in a row.

The Brandeis Elementary School spelled "idiosyncratic" correctly to win.

"I didn't know if I would win again. It was iffy," said John, who last year became the youngest winner ever. "I was a little more nervous than last year because it took longer this time."

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