Greene County officials prepared for ‘different’ weekend with Hamvention

Published: Thursday, May 18, 2017 @ 7:43 PM

Greene County officials and residents are bracing for the impact today of the nearly 30,000 people expected in Xenia for Hamvention’s first gathering in the county.

RELATED: Hamvention expects increased attendance at new venue

The three-day amateur radio convention moved to the Greene County Fairgrounds in Xenia from Trotwood’s Hara Arena after the venue closed in 2016.

Hamvention is projected to provide a $14 million economic boost to the region, but the size of the crowd and the traffic that comes with it is expected to create some challenges.

RELATED: Hamvention finds new home

“For everybody that’s used to going through traffic lights, don’t anticipate them running normally because we’ll be hand controlling the lights,” Greene County Sheriff Gene Fischer said.

About 30,000 people from all over the world are expected to visit the Greene County Fairgrounds, starting today. They’ll all be descending upon a city whose last census update showed about 26,000 residents.

Traffic will be directed in different areas starting at 6 a.m. today at Dayton-Xenia and Trebein Roads, Fairground and Hawkins Roads, Fairground Road and Purcell Avenue and along U.S. 35.

Major Rick Bowman of the Greene County Sheriff’s Department said residents have been receiving “hyper reach phone calls” to alert them of traffic changes and what to expect.

He said peak traffic hours will be from 7 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. as people make their way to the fairgrounds, and from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. as they leave.

The event will from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. today with the opening ceremony at 11 a.m. Hours continue 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday.

RELATED: Hara Arena closing forces Hamvention to find new home

“We’re extremely excited that Hamvention is coming to the Xenia area. We know that it will expose thousands of visitors to our beautiful city and to the county overall,” said Lee Warren, public relations coordinator for the city of Xenia.

Even with the preparation dedicated to the weekend, Warren said they don’t know what to expect “until they happen.”

The temporary increase in population has caused some schedule changes or cancellations.

Xenia City Schools is closed today to allow students “the opportunity to take advantage of all of the sessions associated with this program. We also anticipate a large number of people from outside the city coming to Xenia for the convention.”

The May meeting of School to Adult Life Transition (S.A.L.T.) scheduled for Thursday night was canceled in anticipation of Hamvention. The meeting location is directly across from the Fairgrounds.

Also, Greene County Parks and Trails advised trail users to avoid traveling through the Fairgrounds Recreation Center over the weekend.

Trail users are being advised to avoid the spur that connects Creekside Trail and Little Miami Scenic Trail because of the increased traffic and the recreation center being used for convention parking.

PHOTOS: Hamvention through the years

Warren said even with the bustle of getting the city ready for Hamvention, the city is ready to “welcome more visitors than the city has ever seen.”

Fischer said he expects things to be different, but “in a good way.”

Deg’s Chicken opens at The Greene in Beavercreek today

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 1:02 PM

KARA DRISCOLL/STAFF

A new restaurant serving grilled chicken and other healthy dishes celebrated its grand opening at The Greene Town Center in Beavercreek on Wednesday.

Deg’s Flame Grilled Chicken, which already has a location at the Liberty Center in Liberty Twp., opened its newest restaurant location with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 11:30 a.m. Dr. Naveed Haq, who practices in the Miami Valley, was inspired to open a restaurant that served fast, casual chicken that is also nutritious for consumers.

» RELATED: Locally owned retailers helping attract shoppers to The Greene

Initially, the restaurant set its grand opening date for May 18, but a spokeswoman for the Beavercreek Chamber of Commerce said it has been pushed back to this week. General manager Danielle Mackey will run the new location.

The restaurant also offers grilled wraps, chicken burgers, salads, brown rice, mashed potatoes, corn, bread rolls and fries. Deg’s opened in a 1,687-square-foot space, previously used by Subway at The Greene. The owner told this news organization he hopes to open locations in Indianapolis and Columbus next year.

AK Steel stock on rise, plus 3 more things to know about steelmaker

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 10:14 AM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 10:34 AM


            AK Steel’s Research and Innovation Center in Middletown. GREG LYNCH / STAFF

Here are four things to know about AK Steel, which is Butler County’s third largest employer, with approximately 2,400 full-time employees at its Middletown Works and corporate headquarters in West Chester Twp.

1. The market is looking up for the steel producer today

Shares of AK Steel are on the rise this morning, going from $6.06 a share at the opening of the market this morning to $6.24 as of 9:49 a.m.

That’s a 3.48 percent increase.

2. A ruling said alleged hazardous conditions ‘did not exist’

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, in a recent letter to AK Steel, detailed a complaint it received regarding alleged hazards, including “welders have no certification to weld or pressure pipes, structures, railings, etc.” and “no welding logs are being kept for certifications purposes.” A subsequent mandated investigation included the gathering and reviewing welding certifications issued over the last 10 years and led OSHA to close the case on the matter.

RELATED: OSHA: Hazardous condition alleged at AK Steel site ‘did not exist’

3. The company recently scored a major deal

AK Steel has accepted an award of up to $1.8 million from the U.S. Department of Energy under the Advanced Manufacturing Office’s Next Generation Electric Machines program to develop the next generation of advanced, non-oriented electrical steels for motors used in a wide variety of industrial and automotive applications, including hybrid electric vehicles

RELATED: AK Steel gets $1.8M award to develop next generation electrical steels

4. AK Steel’s CEO nabbed ‘Steelmaker of the Year’ honors

AK Steel CEO Roger Newport on May 9 received an award for Steelmaker of the Year from the Association for Iron & Steel Technology, or AIST.

Newport was recognized for his “strategic and dynamic leadership at AK Steel, engaging and empowering employees to drive innovation, quality, safety, environmental stewardship, and productivity,” according to AIST.

RELATED: AK Steel CEO named Steelmaker of the Year

Springboro company to lay off 88 workers

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 8:52 AM

Robert Bosch Battery Systems will lay off 88 workers. FILE

A company in Springboro announced it will lay off 88 workers in late July.

Robert Bosch Battery Systems, located at 50 Ovonic Way, announced it will lay off the workers due to a “significant downturn in business,” according to a WARN notice sent to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

The company expects some layoffs to be permanent, while other could only be temporary. The temporary layoffs would exceed six months, and employees would be recalled to work if Robert Bosch obtained additional contract or new business.

Layoffs will begin July 31, and some of the associates are represented by the IUE-CWA Local 755.

Formerly known as GM Ovonic, Bosch acquired the plant from SB LiMotive in October 2012. In 2015, the company also laid off workers.

Butler Tech to host Veterans Career Training Fair today

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 9:04 AM


            Butler Tech plans to host a Veterans Career Training Fair from 4 to 7 p.m. May 24, 2017, at the school’s Public Safety Education Complex. MICHAEL D. PITMAN/STAFF

Butler Tech plans to hold an event today that will assist local veterans in finding gainful employment.

The Veterans Career Training Fair is scheduled for 4 to 7 p.m. today, May 24, at the school’s Public Safety Education Complex, 5140 Princeton Glendale Road, Liberty Twp.

The event is a collaboration of Southwest Ohio Career Technical Centers to provide veterans with information about local, accredited career education opportunities that can lead to employment in a year or less, and the financial aid options that can help them pay for their education.

MORE: Hundreds of Wright-Patt, Dayton VA jobs vacant as hiring freeze ends

“Employers are eager to hire veterans, because they have valuable skills and discipline,” said Scott Palmer, executive director of Butler Tech Adult Education. “Career technical education is a great option for veterans since they can quickly earn credentials and launch rewarding careers.”

Information also will be provided on how to translate one’s skils for a resumé.

CTCs participating with Butler Tech are Grant Career Center, Great Oaks Career Campuses, Miami Valley Career Technology Center and Warren County Career Center. Each CTC will share information about adult career training programs, focusing on those that are approved by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for benefits.

RELATED: Ohio job growth in 2016 worst since 2009

Butler Tech Adult Education programs approved by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for veterans education benefits include:

  • Advanced Manufacturing Technology
  • Basic Police Academy
  • Commercial Drivers License Class A
  • Commercial Drivers License Class B
  • Emergency Medical Technician
  • EMS Certificates
  • Fire Rescue Academy
  • Firefighter I & II
  • Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVAC/R)
  • Industrial Maintenance Technology
  • Industrial Welding
  • Medical Assisting
  • Medical Billing & Coding
  • Paramedic Academy
  • Phlebotomy
  • Practical Nursing
  • Private Security
  • State Tested Nurse Aide

Representatives from the Butler County Veterans Service Commission will be available at the event to discuss federal, state, and county benefits that are available to veterans.

RELATED: Military spouses face major employment challenges

Veterans who attend the event will have the opportunity to have one-on-one discussions about programs they are interested, available financial aid and employment prospects once training is complete. Butler Tech Workforce Services will be providing attending veterans with resume writing assistance including how to translate their skills and background experience for their resume.

For more information, call 513-645-8200 or visit www.ButlerTech.org.