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Community celebrates Cincinnati State

Published: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 @ 9:04 PM
Updated: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 @ 9:04 PM


Here’s what some people who attended the grand opening celebration of the Cincinnati State Middletown campus had to say:

“Cincinnati State coming to Middletown is a sign that we are finally getting the momentum to turn our community around. A lot of people have been working very hard over the past several years to stop our community’s decline, and now good things are happening.” — T. Duane Gordon, executive director of the Middletown Community Foundation.

“This is more than just a school. It has the possibility to bring lots of jobs to the area and to create a better, a stronger workforce.” —Bill Triick, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce Serving Middletown, Monroe and Trenton.

“We all know that a high school diploma is not the end of the road, only the beginning. This gives our students another option on their yet path in life.” — Greg Rasmussen, superintendent of Middletown City Schools District.

“This is a game-changer for downtown and possibly the community.” —Judy Gilleland, Middletown city manager.

“This is a great day for Middletown and a great day for Butler County.” — Rep. Tim Derickson, R-Hanover Twp.

“I’m excited about having Cincinnati State here. We’ve already talked with them about the possibility of health care providers. We’re talking about expanding our in-home care program. To have the possibility of training in the area, instead of us having to do it ourselves.” — Ann Munafo, Middletown Area Senior Center executive director

“We’re excited that this campus is so close to our main library in Middletown. It opens up so many different partnerships.” — Anita Carroll, MidPointe Library System executive director

“It’s fantastic, not only for downtown but also for Middletown. It’s a great thing and it provides another opportunity for education for people. And to have it right downtown, it’s a real plus for the city.” — Sam Ashworth, Middletown historian

Compiled by staff writers Rick McCrabb and Michael D. Pitman

In Sunday’s paper

Read Rick McCrabb’s column about how Alan Fugate went from a homeless man in Middletown to a college student at Cincinnati State.

A few year ago, former State Sen. Gary Cates told Cincinnati State officials that if they wanted to be a “player” in the eyes of the state legislature, they needed to open a downtown Middletown campus.

At the grand opening celebration Wednesday morning for Cincinnati State Middletown — which opened for classes Aug. 29 — Cincinnati State Technical & Community College President Dr. O’dell Owens told a crowd of a few hundred, “Today, we’re a player.”

“We’re here. Yes,” Cincinnati State Board of Trustees Chairwoman Cathy Crain said with a slight fist pump to the crowded lobby at Cincinnati State Middletown.

She said the celebration Wednesday recognized what the campus means to Middletown, but she said the campus is strategically important to the college.

“Our research shows that there is a significant demand for the programming we offer,” Crain said. “In other words, Middletown will help us grow.”

And Owens said it’s already has an impact. He said only two higher education institutions in the state have showed growth: Ohio University and Cincinnati State.

The campus, Crain said, helps the school tap into the northern Cincinnati and southern Dayton markets.

“Middletown gives us a basis for an eventual expansion of our wonderful nursing programs and other health care offerings,” Crain said. “Certainly that’s important for our growth and Middletown’s.”

Until the campus opened last month, Butler County was the largest county in Ohio to not have a community college, according to Cates, who is now the Ohio Board of Regents Senior Vice Chancellor.

“This is the eighth largest county in the state of Ohio, 365,000 people, and we’re continuing grow, and for a long time we’ve had our higher education assets underutilized, under appreciated and unnoticed,” he said.

But with Miami University in Oxford and its branch campuses in Middletown, Hamilton and West Chester Twp., and the career tech center at Butler Tech, Cincinnati State can fill the “missing piece of the puzzle.”

“Anyone who needs a GED to a Ph.D. does not have to go outside the county’s borders to get it,” Cates said. “Whatever you need, we have it.”

Cincinnati State and Middletown both took risks in committing to the project, school and city officials said.

Cincinnati State’s board of trustees told Owens he could open a branch campus in Middletown, but allowed him to spend none of the college’s capital dollars and to have it open in six months.

The city purchased multiple buildings downtown before Cincinnati State officials decided on the plan in Middletown.

And after years of planning, negotiating and waiting, two contracts were signed in April to consummate the deal that would give Middletown the county’s first community college. In early April, Middletown sold the building at 1 N. Main St. and donated the former senior center to Boston-based Higher Education Partners for $202,000.

Then a week later, and after months of review by the Ohio Attorney General, the contract was signed between Cincinnati State and Higher Education Partners, the project’s developer and financier.

The school has brought in hundreds of students, people that normally wouldn’t have a reason to be in downtown Middletown. And school officials have said in five years they believe the downtown campus could have thousands of students.

Husted bucks GOP, is against voter photo ID push

Published: Friday, April 08, 2011 @ 6:11 AM
Updated: Friday, April 08, 2011 @ 6:11 AM

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- The official who oversees Ohio's elections says he doesn't agree with a measure proposed by some fellow Republicans to require voters to show photo IDs at the polls.   

Secretary of State John Husted tells The Columbus Dispatch on Thursday that he would not change current policy that allows voters to prove their identities with photo IDs or other documents, such as utility bills or paychecks.   

A bill approved by the Ohio House would require voters to show the photo ID before casting an in-person ballot. It is now being reviewed by the Senate.   

Husted instead proposes changes for voters casting early ballots or provisional ballots. He says those voters should be required to give their full Social Security numbers instead of the currently required last four digits.

Election Board Moves Carefully On Husted Investigation

Published: Wednesday, October 22, 2008 @ 5:35 AM
Updated: Wednesday, October 22, 2008 @ 5:35 AM

DAYTON, Ohio -- The Montgomery County Board of Elections attorney will review voting residency laws before the board decides if it will move forward on an investigation of Ohio House Speaker Jon Husted, R-Kettering.

The four-person board has asked for the legal review after member Dennis Lieberman, a Democrat, said an Oct. 18 Dayton Daily News article raised questions about Husted's residency and voter registration.

"I think we have an obligation to look into it," Lieberman said.

Republican board members Jim Nathanson and Greg Gantt, county party chairman and chairman of the board, both referred to an investigation of Husted as a "witch hunt." Nathanson said he does not think it "serves anyone" to look into Husted's residency this close to the election.

Husted, elected to the House in 2000, said, "if they haven't filed a complaint (then) they must not think there is a problem."

He is running for a Senate seat from the 6th District against Centerville School Board member John Doll, a Democrat.

The deadline to remove names from the ballot has passed, but the board can review the validity of Husted's voter registration.

A legislator must be a legal resident of his district and can be forced to forfeit the seat if he is not.

Ohio law on residency for voting purposes says a person's residence is the "place where the family of a married person resides."

Husted has been dogged by questions about his residency for several years because he stays with his wife and children in Upper Arlington and is rarely seen at his home in Kettering, 148 Sherbrooke Drive.

He is registered to vote in Montgomery County. His wife, Tina, is registered in Upper Arlington. Jon Husted voted absentee every time he cast a ballot since 2005 and voted in person every time prior to that, according to Montgomery County board of elections records.

Since their marriage in 2005, the Husteds have simultaneously owned or co-owned properties that they've called "principal residences" and received 2.5 percent property tax reductions allowed for owner-occupied homes. The law states that a couple can take the tax break on only one house. Neither Husted applied for an exception.

On Friday, Franklin County Auditor Joe Testa said Tina Husted should repay a tax break the Husteds claimed on the Columbus condominium she and Jon co-owned as a "principal residence" at the same time she got a $207.46 tax break on a different home she owned.

Husted said he and his wife have now repaid $27.22 to the auditor, who told him there are no other problems. Testa could not be reached for comment. Husted said Montgomery County Auditor Karl Keith informed him "everything is fine" in this county.

However, Keith said he's only verified that the tax break was properly taken on the Kettering home since 1995 and that Husted is registered to vote there. He said it is up to Testa to review that information for possible conflicts with Tina's tax breaks. Keith said he will continue his inquiry.

As of last week, the couple was renting a home at 2672 Coventry Road in Upper Arlington. Husted would not directly say if they moved over the weekend to a house Tina owns at 2305 Haverford Road, Upper Arlington.

"We are no longer renting the Coventry and the only Columbus residence or Columbus property that we own, that my wife owns, is the property on Haverford," Husted said.

(Article courtesy of

Husted Residency Still Questioned, To Appear Before Board

Published: Wednesday, December 17, 2008 @ 7:27 AM
Updated: Wednesday, December 17, 2008 @ 7:27 AM

DAYTON, Ohio -- Ohio House Speaker Jon Husted, R-Kettering, must appear on Jan. 7 before the Montgomery County Board of Elections, which is investigating whether he lives in his district at the Kettering address where he is registered to vote, the board decided on Tuesday, Dec. 16.

A letter will be sent to Husted outlining what documents the board is requesting he provide to prove his residency, said Steve Harsman, board director. Requests for an investigation came from a Kettering Republican and a liberal nonprofit group after an Oct. 18 Dayton Daily News story raised new questions about Husted's residency.

Husted, who could not be reached for comment, says his home is at 148 Sherbrooke Ave. in Kettering. However, he said he sometimes stays with his wife, Tina, in an Upper Arlington house she owns because the demands of his job as House Speaker frequently keep him in Columbus. Jon and Tina have one son and Jon has a son from his first marriage.

Husted took an apartment in Columbus shortly after becoming 37th District representative in 2001 and bought a Columbus condominium in 2003. He became speaker and married Tina in 2005. They co-owned a Columbus condominium they sold in 2007. Husted's wife is registered to vote at the Upper Arlington home.

Husted rarely had official business scheduled on his calendar after mid-August, when the House was not in session this year, according to a daily calendar provided by his office. It also shows few trips to his district. A travel expense report Husted signed for a 2005 trip to a conference in Las Vegas listed his home address as 911 Manor Lane, Columbus, which was the first condo he owned. A 2005 traffic citation handled in Upper Arlington Mayor's court also lists that as his home address.

In January Husted will take office as a sixth district senator. Ohio law requires that legislators live in their district.

In October the Daily News reported that Jon and Tina Husted had simultaneously claimed homes in Upper Arlington and Kettering as "principal" residences and taken property tax breaks for owner-occupied homes on them. They also claimed the condo they co-owned as a principal residence, while claiming the same tax break on homes in Kettering and Upper Arlington.

Tina was ordered by Franklin County Auditor Joe Testa to repay the tax break for the condominium. Testa said he considers the matter closed. Montgomery County Auditor Karl Keith said he believes Husted qualifies for the tax break in Kettering, and he said state payroll records list it as Husted's home.

"If the board of elections determines that his voter registration is invalid at that address then I will have to take another look," Keith said.

(Article courtesy of

Snake in bathroom saves woman from bedroom attacker

Published: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 @ 7:06 PM
Updated: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 @ 7:06 PM

Snake Saves Woman From Sexual Assault

A Florida woman is crediting a snake in her home with saving her from a sexual assault last week.

Police said the Lee County woman called deputies when she found the reptile in her bathroom, minutes before a man broke into her house, grabbed her and demanded sex, according to media reports

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Malcolm Porter, 28, allegedly sneaked up on the victim, choked her, then demanded she get condoms from another room. Once free, the woman fled from her home where deputies, who responded to the snake call, were waiting outside. 

Porter was arrested and is jailed without bond on charges of battery by strangulation.

The victim told police she knew the man and that he “may have been high" on drugs, local media reported. 

One of the victim's neighbors called the snake encounter "a blessing in disguise."

"The snake played a role in saving her," the neighbor said.