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Greater Dayton RTA drivers union files intent to strike Jan. 1

Published: Thursday, December 21, 2017 @ 10:59 AM


            RTA drivers and mechanics could strike for the second time in about a year, if an agreement is not reached. STAFF
RTA drivers and mechanics could strike for the second time in about a year, if an agreement is not reached. STAFF

The union representing the Greater Dayton RTA drivers and mechanics late Wednesday filed a state notice of intent to strike and picket with a New Year’s Day start date.

The notice by the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1385 inches the more than 400 employees closer to a strike with the regional transit authority, though the union’s president said members had not yet voted on whether a strike would actually occur.

MORE: ‘Unacceptable’: Leaders urge Greater Dayton RTA, union to avoid strike

“We’ll be calling for a meeting hopefully this Sunday with members to discuss what we’re going to do,” said Glenn Salyer, ATU Local 1385 president.

Reached by the Dayton Daily News on Thursday morning after the State Employment Relations Board posted the notice on its website, Salyer said he wasn’t aware his attorney had filed the notice, which has his signature.

Negotiations earlier this week between ATU and RTA did not result in agreement.

Both Salyer and RTA CEO Mark Donaghy said the union and RTA would meet Jan. 23 with a state mediator to discuss the dispute — more than three weeks after the potential strike start date.

Disagreement exists over who set the meeting date. RTA said the union proposed the Jan. 23 date with the mediator, but the union said that the Jan. 23 date was selected because the state-appointed mediator was unavailable until then.

Donald Collins, SERB general counsel, declined to comment on whether the mediator’s schedule determined the Jan. 23 date, but said “upon request from the parties, we will respond whenever.” He said the union is not required to strike on Jan. 1, but could re-file notice to strike at a later date.

State Rep. Niraj Antani, R-Miamisburg, said the union should not strike before the Jan. 23 meeting.

“SERB is aware I feel strongly their mediator should be available as soon as possible,” Antani said. “I would encourage the RTA and ATU to keep negotiating and pick a sooner date to negotiate.”

RTA officials said they are “preparing for either outcome.”

“We continue to seek a reasonable resolution to the dispute and/or commitment from the local to continue with mediation of the issue without a work stoppage,” said Donaghy in a prepared statement. “The final decision to strike, of course, rests solely with Local 1385.”

PREVIOUS: RTA’s union deal could be opened by June, allowing another strike

The parties have until Dec. 31 to settle the dispute before a strike could begin. ATU was required to send RTA a strike notice by Dec. 21 if they intend to strike, according to the terms of a contract agreed upon last January.

The current strike threat is by design of the last contract. In order to get workers back on the job during the strike last January, RTA and ATU agreed to a contract with a reopener clause. The language allowed either party to reopen the contract in order to settle still-unresolved questions about healthcare. ATU reopened the contract in March.

Shooter who killed man during sex act to be sentenced

Published: Thursday, January 18, 2018 @ 4:15 PM

UPDATE @ 7:49 a.m. (Jan. 23):

Sentencing is scheduled Tuesday for the man convicted of killing a man while a teen performed a sex act on the victim.

Michael J. Wood Jr, 19, is set for sentencing at 9:30 a.m.

Wood killed Elroy Facey on Hoover Avenue in May 2017.

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INITIAL REPORT (Jan. 18):

The man accused of shooting a 41-year-old man, ultimately leading to his death, was convicted of murder and felonious assault.

Michael J. Wood Jr., 19, of Dayton, shot and killed Elroy Facey on Hoover Avenue on May 3, 2017, according to prosecutors.

“The victim attempted to run away, but the adult defendant chased the victim and shot him a second time,” the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office said in a prepared statement.

Elexus Dawkins, 17, was convicted of murder in October 2017 and was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison for her role in the shooting.

Wood and Dawkins planned to rob Facey, prosecutors said.

Dawkins was in a vehicle performing a sex act on Facey when Wood shot him, according to the prosecutor’s office.

Sentencing for Wood is scheduled for Jan. 23 at 9:30 a.m.

Rough winter brings potholes ‘worse than normal’ to Miami Valley

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 7:11 AM

Local officials say potholes are worse this year than the past two winters. A Dayton crew patches a pothole on Gettysburg Ave. MARSHALL GORBY
Local officials say potholes are worse this year than the past two winters. A Dayton crew patches a pothole on Gettysburg Ave. MARSHALL GORBY

The worst winter weather in recent years also has spawned the worst potholes on area roads in some time.

“Some counties are saying the potholes are worse this year,” said Ohio Department of Transportation public information officer Mandi Dillon in a statement.

Fred Stovall, director of Dayton public works, said there are more potholes than the past two winters. Those previous winters were milder and resulted in much fewer potholes, he said.

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“We’ve seen colder temperatures, freezing temperatures, snow and salt in the street. That all gets in the cracks and makes (conditions for potholes) worse,” Stovall said.

Potholes cost American drivers about $3 billion a year in vehicle repairs, or $15 billion over the last five years, a AAA study revealed, according to AAA spokeswoman Kara Hitchens.

The cost to repair a vehicle can vary because of tire size and the extent of the damage. Jason Brown, store manager at AAA Auto and Tire store in Huber Heights, said replacing a tire can cost anywhere from $80 to $250. And replacing an entire wheel can cost more than $200.

“Today alone, I’ve seen five people come in with damage from potholes,” Brown said. “They’re everywhere.”

Riverside City Manager Mark Carpenter said his city has also seen an increase in potholes this winter.

“The potholes are worse than normal, over the top this year,” he said.

TRENDING: Board to rule on Dayton police sergeant accused of lying

Potholes form when water soaks into the pavement, then freezes and expands as temperatures change, according to ODOT press secretary Matt Bruning.

Bruning said ODOT has spent $726,000 on patching potholes statewide so far this year, most of it in recent days. The vast majority of that number is labor costs.

“This season ODOT crews have spent 21,669 hours— the equivalent of two and a half years— just patching potholes,” Bruning said.

TRENDING: Experts suggest resetting tone as Greater Dayton RTA, union resume talks

ODOT already this year has used the second highest amount of salt that it has used in the past 10 years, Bruning said. This is usually an indication of how bad the winter is, Bruning said.

“Kudos to our men and women on the roads. They are definitely earning that money they make,” Bruning said of the ODOT crews patching potholes and clearing snow and ice this season.

Local crews are also working every day to patch potholes. Stovall said that the city has 48 hours or two business days, not including weekends, to patch potholes after they are reported.

“This is certainly filling our time. And we haven’t even gotten to the residential streets yet,” Riverside’s Carpenter said.

Carpenter said the city appreciates citizens calling and alerting the service department to potholes in the area.

Stovall agreed, urging Daytonians to call (937) 333-4800 or use Dayton’s smartphone app to report potholes.

Drivers can report potholes to ODOT via an online form or if the pothole needs immediate attention, by alerting the highway patrol.

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Bruning also stressed that ODOT crews prioritize potholes in high traffic areas, like interstate 75 over residential roads.

“Just like when we’re clearing snow and ice, we try and make sure the main roadways get taken care of first, and I think most folks understand that,” Bruning said.

Board to rule on Dayton police sergeant accused of lying

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 7:27 AM

A city of Dayton board that is reviewing the firing of a female police sergeant accused of lying and falsifying official documents is expected to release its decision soon.

EARLIER: Dayton police sergeant who sued for discrimination is fired

Dayton police Sgt. Tonina Lamanna challenged her termination with the Civil Service Board, claiming it was in retaliation for her filing a federal lawsuit alleging the city and police department engaged in sexual discrimination. 

Lamanna did not knowingly make false statements, said her attorney Vince Pop, but the city was desperate to fire her. 

Dayton police officials claim Lamanna lied multiple times, which they say is unacceptable from a sworn police officer and requires discharge. 

“Dishonesty is incompatible with public trust,” said Mark Ecton, a Dayton assistant police chief, at Lamanna’s civil service hearing. 

MORE: Learn how the chief’s stolen gun is connected to this case

Last month, the Civil Service Board heard testimony from a variety of witnesses from the police and human resources departments about the circumstances that preceded and resulted in Lamanna’s firing on Oct. 3.

Employers to recruit at Springfield job fair

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 8:05 AM


            FILE
FILE

Local employers like CareSource and Assurant will be recruiting in Springfield this Friday.

CareSource Life Services is holding a job fair 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday at the Faith United Methodist Church at 102 W. High St.

RELATED: Dayton Children’s plans career fair

Life coaching, job readiness training and resume support will be available.

Some of the employers who will be there include:

Assurant

CareSource

Interim Healthcare

Mama Rosa’s

Ohio State Highway Patrol

RTA

Vocalink

I-Supply

The Greentree Group

Klosterman Bakery

Securitas