Isaac’s rains spotty, many areas still thirsty

Published: Monday, September 03, 2012 @ 5:01 PM
Updated: Monday, September 03, 2012 @ 5:01 PM

Hurricane Issac did most of its damage in the south and left Ohio still thirsting for water over the weekend.

Sure, it rained, but not much to make a difference.

“What I’m worried about most (this week),” said WHIO TV meteorologist Erica Collura, “is some (car) hydroplaning and low visibility. There will be no flooding.”

Chief meteorologist Jamie Simpson of WHIO said there “might be some decent rain next weekend,” but didn’t think it would amount to more than an inch. He called for “spotty showers” Tuesday afternoon and said it would “not be impossible for isolated heavy rain.”

A downpour that didn’t last long on Saturday night drenched Huber Heights with 3.2 inches of rain and Vandalia with an inch and a half, but winds reached only 27 mph there.

It also rained a little on Monday, “but it’s not going to help the corn at all,” Collura said. “It might help the bean size a little.”

John Stedman, the lead farmer at Allwood Farm in Montgomery County, echoed what Collura said.

“Most of the people I’ve talked too say it’s pretty poor,” Stedman said. “The rain will help the soybean crop a little, but I don’t think it will help the corn. Some fields of corn I’ve seen are real short and some (stalks) don’t even develop ears.”

At Allwood, Stedman usually mows just for hay, and his first mowing this summer yielded nearly 600 bales.

“We only got 40 bales out of the second mowing, then 300 some on the third mowing,” Stedman said. “We’ll get another cutting of hay and we’ll see if this rain has helped. I’ve got some friends in Preble County who didn’t get any rain at all. I don’t know what they’re going to do.”

Tom Hertlein, a farmer in Butler Twp. who also farms land for others, said he was lucky that he was a couple weeks late putting out his soybean crop, which allowed it to grow bigger.

“I put it out about May 20 or so,” Hertlein said. “This rain will do a lot of good. I also had some late corn out, but some guys north of here got a zero yield.”

Hertlein also said he attended an insurance meeting recently and last year $2.5 billion was paid out nationally for crops that didn’t come in. This year, the number is expected to be as much as $10 billion.

“It will be November before everybody finds out how bad it was,” Hertlein said.

Earthquake reported in southeast Ohio

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 2:51 PM

Photo Contributed: United States Geological Survey

A 3.4 magnitude earthquake occurred near McArthur, Ohio at 12:24 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, according to the United States Geological Survey. 

McArthur is located in Vinton County with an estimated population of about 1,600. Over ten cities in southeast Ohio reported effects from the quake including: Vinton, Jackson, Logan, Londonderry, Albany, South Bloomingville, Wellston, Creola, McArthur and Hamden. 

There have been no reports of injuries or major structural damage according to the Vinton County Sheriff’s Office. 

Parents shut out of Middletown High School graduation

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 1:25 PM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 2:39 PM


            Middletown School officials apologized today to parents who were shut out of the district’s high school graduation Tuesday evening even though they had tickets. School officials said they were told by church officials hosting the event that a side door had been held open allowing people without tickets to enter and fill the facility to capacity. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Some parents were locked out of their child’s Middletown High School graduation Tuesday because someone let family members without tickets into a side door of the ceremony site, according to school officials, who issued an apology today.

“Middletown High School wishes to apologize to anyone who had a ticket for graduation and was denied access after the ceremony began at 7:00 p.m. Tickets for the exact number of seats available in the auditorium were issued. Each main door had security supplied by Princeton Pike (Church Of God),” Middletown High School Principal Carmela Cotter wrote in a released statement posted on social media.

STORY & VIDEO: Middletown grad and best selling author speaks at graduation

“Following graduation, the management of Princeton Pike alerted us that someone inside the building had gone to a door and let in several people without tickets. The result was capacity was reached. Thus, the (Butler County) sheriff (deputies) closed the access doors at 7:15 p.m.”

“Graduation is a very special time for every student and parent. We are very sorry if any ticketed parent or family member was denied entrance and will take into account this security challenge when organizing future events,” wrote Cotter.

MORE: Middletown picks top Lakota official as new superintendent

The Butler County school graduated 375 seniors during the ceremony Tuesday night. Families were issued a limited number of tickets and had to show those to gain entrance to the Liberty Twp. church.

The Butler County Sheriff’s Office said it was called by church officials to the event, but there were no incidents reported nor arrests from the scene.

Officials at Princeton Pike Church Of God did not respond to a request for comment.

In a Facebook post, a parent claimed: “Omg what a horrible graduation ceremony… So you treat the families to these kids like we were criminals why?”

The writer said her husband, who had a ticket but did not enter with his family because he was parking the family car, was not allowed in.

“They locked him out and I had already given them his ticket. Wow very sad that this happened and he wasn’t the only one locked out.” said the Facebook post.

Democrat files to challenge Congressman Mike Turner

Published: Monday, May 22, 2017 @ 3:38 PM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 1:50 PM

Congressman Michael Turner (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

UPDATE: The name of a first possible challenger for U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, in 2018 has surfaced. Democrat Michael J. Milisits of Riverside filed a statement of candidacy  for the 2018 10th Congressional District race.

“I want the average person to have a voice in Washington,” Milisits said.

His filing with the Federal Elections Commission sets up his campaign committee, but Milisits has not started gathering signatures on nominating petitions necessary to get his name on the ballot.

He also has raised no money for the race.

Turner, who has held the seat since 2003, has $302,202 on hand, according to the FEC website.

5/22/17

For the first time in more than a dozen years, the congressional seat now held by U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, is being targeted by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which has named 79 seats of more than 130 it plans to focus on in 2018.

Turner was one of 20 new targets the DCCC announced Monday. He is one of only two that voted against the recent Republican legislation to replace Obamacare.

Mark Owens, chairman of the Montgomery County Democratic Party says the DCCC sees the 10th District as winnable for a Democrat in part because of the district makeup and also because of the current political climate.

RELATED: Look back at Turner’ 2016 race

The district includes all of Montgomery, Greene and part of Fayette County.

Turner’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

“I think it’s because even though it is a gerrymandered district it is less gerrymandered than some others around the country,” Owens said.

Owens said two potential candidates are already interested in challenging Turner in 2018 but he would not name them as he did not have their permission to do so.

RELATED: With protesters outside Republicans at local GOP dinner stress unity

“One is a West Point grad, Afghan/Iraq vet” and the other is a a local businesswoman, Owens said. He said one of the two “has some wealth and is going to put some money into” the race, which Owens expects will require $1 million to $1.5 million to be competitive.

Blaine Kelly, spokesman for the Ohio Republican Party, said Turner won by a large margin in the Nov. 2016 over teacher Robert Klepinger, a Democrat, and Huber Heights Mayor Thomas McMasters, an independent.

“The only explanation for the Democrats’ decision to target Congressman Turner, or any Republican seats in Ohio, is that they are gluttons for punishment. Congressman Turner’s constituents gave him a giant stamp of approval last November by reelecting him with sixty-four percent of the vote,” Kelly said. “Democrats can manufacture outrage when Republicans keep campaign promises, but they can’t fake votes.”

Turner’s seat is one of four in Ohio the DCCC believes can be taken from Republican incumbents in 2018. The others are U.S. Reps. Steve Chabot, R-Cincinnati, Bob Gibbs, R-Avon, and Dave Joyce, R-Russell Twp. Nearly all the targeted seats are held by the GOP and the others are open.

RELATED: Groups hold town hall without Rep. Mike Turner

Owens said a Democratic candidate can get logistical and fund-raising support from the DCCC in a targeted race. He thinks the last time Turner’s district was targeted was the year he won it in a 2002 battle against Democrat Rick Carne to replace longtime U.S. Rep. Tony Hall, D-Dayton.

“We’re incredibly excited that our national partners are expanding the map and targeting races like Ohio’s 10th Congressional District,” said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper.

The DCCC raised more than $9 million in April, beating previous records for the month, according to The Hill. However that’s about $1 million less than what was raised last month by Republicans.

West Chester may be site of medical marijuana grow operation

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 1:05 PM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 1:36 PM


            West Chester Twp. and Oxford are among Butler County communities that haven’t come out with moratoriums or bans on such businesses.

A West Chester Twp. business owner has informed officials he wants to open a marijuana cultivation business here, but says he won’t force the issue if the township decides to ban such businesses.

David Haley told trustees Tuesday that he wants to locate in the township because he already owns a pharmaceutical business here and thinks West Chester Twp. should get the tax benefit.

MORE: Warren County to get medical marijuana farm

West Chester Twp. and Oxford are among Butler County communities that haven’t come out with moratoriums or bans on such businesses.

“I have no interest in trying to force my way into a community that either just hasn’t really thought it all the way through or if they are not 100 percent clear on which direction they want to go…,” Haley said. “I’m not here with a team of attorneys to tell me what my rights are or to tell you what my rights are in trying to start this business.”

MORE: West Chester to debate medical pot regulations

West Chester Twp. trustees elected Tuesday not to take any action on medical marijuana businesses the state has sanctioned, saying they need more time to educate themselves on medical marijuana.

Haley is interested in opening a level 2 cultivation business — maximum 3,000 square feet — in an industrial area.

“I’ll be utilizing greenhouses to actually grow the cannabis, completely enclosed,” he said. “No one will know what is going on at this location by simply driving by or walking by. It will be out of sight.”

MORE: Oxford official says medical pot could be good for business district

Trustee Board President Mark Welch was leaning toward a moratorium — or temporary ban — on medical marijuana businesses Tuesday night, but his two fellow trustees said they wanted to wait.

Trustee George Lang said he remains steadfast in his belief that any action at this time is premature because the state has not yet released all the rules governing the cultivation, testing and dispensing of the drug. Those are due in September.

“I still feel the same way,” Lang said. “We’re waiting to see what the state’s ultimate rules are going to be. I think we’ve got somewhat of what they are going to be in terms of cultivation but not in terms of sales. I think we’d be premature in doing anything until we see what the state’s going to do.”

Ohio is still deciding how many dispensaries and testing laboratories will be allowed, but said earlier this month there will be 24 cultivator licenses — 12 large and 12 smaller operations — to begin with.

RELATED: Drug rehabilitation doctor sues West Chester Twp.

Hamilton, Middletown and Fairfield have banned the sale of the drug and Liberty, Fairfield and Ross townships have placed moratoriums on the industry as they see how the rules roll out.

The law doesn’t permit smoking pot but permits vaporizers, patches, edibles and oils and the program will be implemented in September 2018.