City expects to delay Internet cafe ban

Published: Sunday, September 02, 2012 @ 10:00 PM
Updated: Sunday, September 02, 2012 @ 10:00 PM

Nearly one month before Springfield’s ban on Internet cafes is scheduled to begin, city commissioners will likely delay its start until July of 2013.

Commissioners will likely vote on the updated ordinance on Sept. 11. Mayor Warren Copeland said he expects the revised ordinance to pass at the next meeting.

In December, city commissioners voted 3-2 to a delayed ban on Internet cafes, beginning this October, with hopes the state would regulate the industry in the state and to give local businesses time to comply.

The city has more than a dozen of the businesses.

Internet cafes and game rooms typically offer phone cards that can be purchased for time on computers and also includes sweepstakes entries for games where cash payouts are awarded. Many state and local lawmakers believe the computers are designed to take advantage of loopholes in Ohio’s gaming laws.

A statewide moratorium on new Internet cafes was enacted in May, but no other action has been taken by Ohio lawmakers. Attorney General Mike DeWine recently reiterated his stance that the Ohio General Assembly should adopt regulations on Internet cafes and sweepstakes parlors.

DeWine believes lawmakers must define the sweepstakes rules, establish a state-mandated payout, require certification of software and equipment, establish a computer system which monitors all machines in the state and the designation of a state agency to oversee the parlors. He also believes parlors should pay taxes and license fees.

City leaders wanted to give commissioners an opportunity to delay the ban in case the state does take action during the moratorium, according to Jerry Strozdas, the city’s law director. The statewide moratorium ends on June 30, 2013.

“We feel its appropriate to give (the commissioners) the option to wait and see what the state does,” Strozdas said.

Copeland said they’ve felt all along it was best to let the state take the lead on the issue of Internet cafes. If commissioners were to close down the Internet cafes in October, Copeland said, they’d likely try to move outside the city limits to stay open.

“We’re just trying to get out of the way to let the state what it needs to do and decide what the status of these facilities are,” said Copeland, who voted for the ban last December. “I hope they do that instead of sitting on the moratorium and not taking any action.”

Local Internet cafe owners or managers declined comment for this story.

Officials initially thought three Internet cafes were located within the city limits, but the number is higher. Affidavits filed through state Attorney General Mike DeWine’s office show 782 Internet cafes or sweepstakes parlors in Ohio, including 25 in Clark County.

Of those 25, 14 are located within the city limits, according to the affidavits. Three businesses call themselves Internet cafes, while other businesses like bars, drive-thrus and restaurants offer similar computer devices.

City Commissioner Kevin O’Neill said the attorney general’s report shed a little different light on Clark County because “there was more found than we ever thought were out there.” He was happy to see the ban extended and that the employees of the Internet cafes will keep their jobs.

“I’m still a firm believer that they aren’t causing any problems,” O’Neill said. “I believe everyone that goes in there are adults, and they’re treated as such.”

He also believes it’s a quality of life issue for some people, rather than a way to make money.

“They don’t want to sit around a bar, they don’t want to look at the TV all the time,” O’Neill said. “Maybe they’re not computer-literate enough to get on a computer at home. I think it’s a good thing. If we wait for the state to take the lead and it’s governed properly, it’s a good thing.”

The state Senate and House of Representatives each have bills in the early stages of development in committees, Senate Bill 317 and House Bill 195. According to his office, DeWine prefers HB 195, which mirrors his beliefs on Internet cafes, but said some form of regulation is needed.

State Rep. Ross McGregor, R-Springfield, said he supports the regulation of Internet cafes, especially after the creation of the Ohio Gaming Commission. He expects it to happen before the moratorium ends next summer.

“We’re regulating everything else, Internet cafes should also be subject to consumer protection regulations,” McGregor said. “They should be regulated and held accountable to make sure they’re not ripping people off.”

Clouds and more snow expected over coming days

Published: Saturday, December 09, 2017 @ 5:19 AM
Updated: Sunday, December 10, 2017 @ 4:50 PM

Cool temperatures and snow are expected this week in the Dayton area.

Mainly clear skies are expected this evening, Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar said. Temperatures will fall into the 20s.

>> PHOTOS: Winter comes early

QUICK-LOOK FORECAST

  • Clouds return tonight
  • Chance for snow returns this week
  • Low temperatures remain

>> How much snow fell on Saturday?

>> What are the chances for a White Christmas?

DETAILED FORECAST

Overnight: Clouds build in overnight, which will be cold with lows in the lower to middle 20s.

Monday: Mostly cloudy skies are expected with highs in the middle to upper 30s. There is the chance for a passing light rain shower in the afternoon, but most look to stay dry with a better chance for snow coming overnight into Tuesday. 

>> YOU NEED THIS: WHIO Weather App

5-Day Temperature Trend(Graphic by Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar)

>> County-by-County Weather 

Tuesday Lake-effect snow showers are expected. Highs will be in the upper 20s.

>> SkyWitness7

Wednesday: A few flurries are possible. It's also going to be a cold day, with morning temperatures in the middle teens. Highs will only be in the middle to upper 20s. 

Thursday: The chance for more snow returns with highs in the middle 30s.

Friday: A few flurries are possible with highs in the lower 30s.

>> WHIO Doppler 7 HD Interactive Radar

Updated: 2 inches of snow falls in parts of region

Published: Saturday, December 09, 2017 @ 10:38 PM
Updated: Sunday, December 10, 2017 @ 1:30 PM

VIDEO: Snow falls in Beavercreek

A clipper brought snow showers throughout Saturday afternoon and evening, measuring as much as 2 inches in Piqua to ½ inch in Lebanon. Most spots reached about 1 inch. In all areas, the snowfall led to numerous crashes and slide-offs as roadways became slick.

Snowfall Totals(Graphic by Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar)
Following are snowfall totals reported as of 11 a.m., Dec. 10, by the National Weather Service in Wilmington:
  • 2 inches Piqua (Miami County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1.7 inches Dayton International Airport, reported at 12 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1. 5 inches Englewood (Montgomery County), reported at 12:42 a.m.
  • 1.5 inches Celina (Mercer County), reported at 12:21 a.m.
  • 1.5 inches Greenville (Darke County), reported at 7:03 p.m. 
  • 1.4 inches Springfield (Clark County), reported at 10:49 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1.4 inches Fairborn (Greene County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1.3 New Carlisle (Darke County), reported 10:49 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1.2 inches Centerville (Montgomery County), reported at 9:05 p.m. 
  • 1.1 inches in Wilmington (Clinton County), reported at 12 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1 inch Eaton (Preble County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1 inch Versailles (Darke County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1 inch Waynesfield (Auglaize County), reported at 12:15 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1 inch Wapakoneta (Auglaize County), reported at 12 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 1 inch Springfield (Clark County), reported at 11:47 p.m.
  • 1 inch Maustown (Butler County), reported at 9:17 p.m.
  • 1 inch Richmond (Wayne County, Ind.), reported at 8 p.m.
  • 1 inch West Alexandria (Preble County), reported at 7:58 p.m. 
  • 1 inch Urbana (Champaign County), reported at 7:56 p.m. 
  • 1 inch Xenia (Greene County), reported at 7:37 p.m. 
  • 1 inch Sidney (Shelby County), reported at 7:15 p.m. 
  • 0.8 inch Houston (Shelby County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 0.8 inch Bellefontaine (Logan County), reported at 11:51 p.m.
  • 0.7 inch Maineville (Warren County), reported at 9 p.m.
  • 0.5 inch Huntsville (Logan County), reported at 10:49 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 0.5 inch St. Paris (Champaign County), reported at 10:49 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 0.5 inch Farmersville (Montgomery County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 0.5 inch New Lebanon (Montgomery County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 0.5 inch Fort Loramie (Shelby County), reported at 9:02 a.m. (Dec. 10)
  • 0.5 inch Lebanon (Warren County), reported at 7:58 p.m. 
  • 0.5 inch Liberty Twp. (Butler County), reported at 6:15 p.m. 
  • 0.2 inch Kings Mills (Warren County), reported at 10:49 a.m. (Dec. 10)

Air Force Marathon chooses drone as ‘official’ aircraft of 2018 races

Published: Sunday, December 10, 2017 @ 10:13 AM


            The MQ-9 Reaper drone will be the “official” aircraft of the 2018 Air Force Marathon. CONTRIBUTED
The MQ-9 Reaper drone will be the “official” aircraft of the 2018 Air Force Marathon. CONTRIBUTED

The MQ-9 Reaper drone has been chosen as the “official” aircraft of the 2018 Air Force Marathon, a series of races that draw thousands of runners across the nation and other countries to the Miami Valley.

This marks the second time the Air Force has chosen an unmanned aerial vehicle as the aircraft for the contest.

RELATED: Hypersonic research could lead to future spy drone

In 2009, the MQ-4 Global Hawk, a reconnaissance drone, was the first, according to the Air Force.

The Air Force marathon has drawn more than 15,000 runners in recent years, who compete in full- and half-marathons, and a 10K race at Wright-Patterson and a 5K race at Wright State University.

RELATED; Drones, lasers, hypersonic weapons will be ‘game-changers’

The Reaper will be featured on runners’ medals and T-shirts. The marathon is scheduled for Sept. 15, 2018.

Northwestern superintendent on leave for ‘unprofessional conduct’

Published: Saturday, December 09, 2017 @ 3:40 PM


            Northwestern superintendent Jesse Steiner
Northwestern superintendent Jesse Steiner

Northwestern Local Schools Superintendent Jesse Steiner has been placed on administrative leave while the school board investigates allegations of unprofessional behavior, according to a statement from the board’s attorney.

“The superintendent is aware of the investigation and is not reporting to work to allow for a thorough and expeditious investigation,” the statement says. “Once the investigation has been completed, the board will take whatever action it deems is in the best interests of the district and the students it serves.”

Steiner’s leave began on Nov. 26, according to board president Donna Myers and is ongoing. She declined to give any further details on the reason for the investigation.

Steiner could not be reached for comment on Saturday.

He was hired by the district in June of 2015 following the departure of Tony Orr who became Superintendent of Hamilton City Schools.

Before coming to Northwestern, Steiner served as superintendent of Celina City Schools since 2012. Before that he was superintendent of the Hicksville Exempted Village district in Defiance County for two years.

High School principal Lori Swafford is second in command at the district and therefore will fill in for Steiner during his leave, Myers said.

Northwestern’s long-time treasurer David Bollheimer announced his retirement last week. He’s been with the district for 27 years and will leave at the end of the month.