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Published: Monday, October 16, 2017 @ 7:06 PM
DAYTON — The city of Dayton has responded to allegations from U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, that accuse the city of "mismanagement and loss" of federal HUD HOME Investment Partnership Program funds.
Monday, Republican Congressman Turner wrote in a letter to Mayor Nan Whaley, asking for an "update on the city's mismanagement and loss of (HUD) funds from the program:
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"As a former Mayor of The City of Dayton, I am well aware of the housing issues facing the community, roughly 35 [percent] of which is in poverty.
"It appears that the city has lost nearly half a million dollars that was granted to help Daytonians in need get affordable housing. Additionally, Dayton has nearly $4 million in federal funds that have been granted for the purpose of providing affordable housing, but has not made any plans for that critical money to be used to better our community.
"This is concerning and needs to be addressed."
Late Monday afternoon, City Manager Shelley Dickstein issued the following statement, in response to Turner's request:
"The City of Dayton has funded hundreds of projects that have helped thousands of low- and moderate- income Dayton residents.
"Since 1992, these funds have been used to help families purchase new homes and renovate their existing homes, to renovate formerly dilapidated and obsolete apartment buildings, and to construct thousands of new housing units for purchase and rent.
"HUD determined that two of the City's 2012 HOME projects, contracted with developers in 2014, did not meet the contract date set forth by HUD although the City Commission approved the contracts prior to the commitment deadline.
"The City was not required to repay funds and the two projects were completed successfully.
"Because HUD recognizes the challenges inherent in the current commitment deadline regulations, the two-year commitment deadline has been suspended for 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 HOME program years.
"As required through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the City submits annual action plans that outline how we will spend our federal allocation. It has been reported that the City has $3.96 million dollars in uncommitted HOME funds. However, all $3.96 million has been committed through our 2015, 2016, and 2017 Action Plans."
Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 6:36 PM
— Vital services for veterans will not be threatened if the government shuts down this weekend.
The Department of Veterans Affairs medical facilities, including the Dayton VA Medical Center, would remain open.
After previous partial shutdowns caused headaches for the VA, the department lobbied Congress to fund the VA on a two-year budget cycle. That exempts the department from the latest funding skirmish in Washington.
About 4 percent of the department’s workforce — nearly 16,000 workers — would be subject to furloughs during a shutdown, with almost half of that total coming from the Veterans Benefits Administration, according to Navy Times.
Veterans would still get checks during a shutdown, but some education benefit programs would cease as well as the hearing of case appeals.
Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 4:33 PM
Kevin Black hadn’t thought about how the possibility of a government shutdown would affect his family.
World War II veteran Thomas Eubanks of Springfield turns 100 on Jan. 23. To celebrate, his grandson, Black, organized a birthday party for him at the Air Force Museum on Saturday.
With the possibility of the government shutting down tonight, the museum may not open, and the outlook of the party is up in the air.
“I don’t like the playing politics on this,” Black said. “They’re just playing games.”
The possible museum closure hadn’t occurred to Black or his family until this news organization contacted him about the party, which he had asked us to cover.
His family wasn’t the only ones uncertain of what will happen next.
Diana Bachert, spokeswoman for the Air Force Museum, said Friday night in a statement there is currently no order for the museum to shut down.
“However, we will follow procedures for an orderly shutdown when and how we are directed to do so,” Bachert said.
If Congress fails to come to an agreement on a continuing resolution (CR), a bill that appropriates money to different federal departments and programs, some federal agencies could come to a standstill.
Black’s plan is for Congressman Warren Davidson to present Eubanks with a certificate, then Black will present his grandfather with letters from President Donald Trump and Gov. John Kasich.
But if there is no CR passed, Congress plans to stay in Washington and try to come to an agreement, meaning Davidson may have to miss the party.
Black said his grandfather doesn’t know about the planned celebration at the museum.
“He just thinks that a bunch of the grandkids are taking him to the museum,” Black said.
And he probably will continue to keep plans a secret, in case the museum isn’t open.
“(Eubanks) was sick a couple weeks after Christmas, and we didn’t think he was going to be able to go (to the museum). But he wants to go if they don’t shut down,” Black said.
Eubanks is a widower; his wife Suzanne died in 2000. They were married for 59 years.
In WWII he served as tail gunner in the European theatre, an area of heavy fighting across the continent. He flew 13 combat missions from Knettishall Airfield in England.
“Tail gunner was the worst place to be,” said Black, who is retired from the Air Force.
He worked as a building inspector for Springfield for several years.
He lives in Oakwood Village Retirement Home in Springfield. He has four children, nine grandchildren, 22 great-grandchildren and four great, great-grandchildren.
Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 4:35 PM
Updated: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 4:43 PM
TRENTON — UPDATE @ 4:40 p.m.: At least a couple of students are receiving medical attention in the pickup truck-school bus collision on Wayne Madison Road, but there are no serious injuries, Edgewood Schools Spokeswoman Pam Pratt said.
The children are from Edgewood Elementary, she said, and they are in grades 2 through 5.
District officials are telephoning parents and guardians to arrange rides home, Pratt said.
Police and medic crews are at a collision in the 3200 block of Wayne Madison Road involving a school bus and a pickup truck.
Several of the children on the bus have complained of neck and back pain. Medical personnel are evaluating the children and are taking some to a hospital.
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Crews were dispatched just after 4 p.m. on the report of a vehicle accident that been described as a pickup truck that rear-ended a school bus.
The accident occurred near Noah's Ark Child Development Center, 3259 Wayne Madison Road.
Edgewood Schools Superintendent Russ Fussnecker and other district officials are on the way to the scene.
Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 5:57 PM
— One way this potential government shutdown would be different than in the past -- there’s never been a federal shutdown during tax filing season. Nor has the government been shut down amid the implementation of a massive tax code overhaul.
The Internal Revenue Service would lose an estimated 56 percent of its workforce to furloughs if the government shuts down, according to the U.S. Treasury. And it would be happening right when the IRS is updating its guidelines and software, while also fielding questions from the public about new tax laws.
Experts told the Washington Post that even a short shutdown will set back implementation on the new tax code.
Tax filing season begins on Jan. 29. The IRS generally issues nine out of 10 refunds in less than 21 days. With the workforce cut in half, it is likely that a prolonged shutdown could lead to delayed returns and the inability to access IRS assistance phone lines.