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Published: Wednesday, November 08, 2017 @ 6:00 AM
— Emergency dispatchers received multiple 911 calls Monday reporting two people potentially drowning in the Great Miami River, bloated and raging after Sunday’s record rainfall.
But surfers Shannon Thomas and Josh Wright were having the times of their lives.
“I had a blast. It was probably one of the best surfs I’ve had in a while,” Thomas said.
The professional river surfer was about to begin his last surf when ambulances, fire trucks, police and park rangers — and a water rescue boat — arrived near the River Run drop just upstream from the Monument Avenue bridge.
“Basically, people aren’t educated enough,” said Thomas, 32. “They see somebody in the river and they immediately think they are drowning. They can’t fathom why someone would be out there on a board surfing.”
Thomas, a 2003 Fairmont High School graduate, said he and friend Wright were taking all the proper precautions: using a buddy system, wearing helmets, wetsuits, PFDs and outfitted with leashes that could quickly be released in case of entanglement.
“At no point were me or my buddy in distress,” said Thomas, who tapped his helmet at the arriving emergency responders, an international symbol that one is not in danger.
While the river where the men surfed is typically much safer now that a low dam has been removed, it can still be extraordinarily hazardous under certain conditions — more so without proper training, said Amy Dingle, director of Outdoor Connections at Five Rivers MetroParks.
“The men surfing the River Run on Monday were highly skilled, which allowed them to assess the action and temperature of the water, and they took every safety precaution,” said Dingle, a former Olympic team kayaker.
Everyone must consider their skill level and experience when deciding whether to get on the water, she said.
“We encourage anyone who hasn’t had training or extensive experience to stay off the river when it’s flooded,” Dingle said. “And always wear a life jacket.”
After exiting the river, Thomas said he had a 20-minute talk with authorities.
“They were basically threatening me with inciting or inducing panic,” he said.
Thomas, who is sponsored by Badfish Stand Up Paddle, said he was not cited because he broke no laws.
The wave created by the unusually high water is on par with one of the best river features in the nation, Thomas said.
Published: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 @ 3:22 PM
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE — If you heard a loud noise today at Wright-Patterson, it was all part of training, a base spokesman says.
The Dayton Daily News and News Center 7 were contacted by residents inquiring what was the cause of the explosion.
A Wright-Patterson Explosive Ordnance Disposal bomb squad was scheduled to set off three explosions between noon and 4 p.m. Wednesday, according to base spokesman Daryl Mayer.
The unit periodically sets off explosions in training which are often heard outside the base.
Published: Wednesday, February 14, 2018 @ 6:04 PM
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE — A real-life Top Gun is scheduled to be at a screening of Top Gun 3D at the Air Force Museum Theatre.
Retired Navy Capt. Ken Ginader, a former Top Gun instructor and F-14 pilot, was set to speak at the screening of film, set for 6:30 p.m. Thursday. Doors open at 6 p.m.
Ginader is the first speaker in the 2018 Living History Film Series at the museum.
Tickets cost $12 for audience members, or $10 for members of Friends of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.
For more information, click onto http://www.afmuseum.com/livinghistory .
MORE WRIGHT-PATT NEWS
Published: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 @ 3:53 AM
Updated: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 @ 11:39 PM
— A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for Auglaize, Champaign, Darke, Logan, Mercer, and Shelby counties, in effect from 1 a.m. to 11 a.m. Thursday.
Total ice accumulations overnight could reach one-tenth of an inch with limited viability also expected.
A Flood Watch has also been issued for Butler, Clinton and Warren counties, now through 10 a.m. Feb. 25.
>> 5-Day Forecast
TONIGHT: Rain likely. As temperatures drop, the rain may become freezing rain across the northern Miami Valley. Elsewhere, temperatures should remain just above freezing, in the lower to middle 30s.
THURSDAY: Rain or freezing rain in the morning then drying out. Clouds will remain. Temperatures will hold in the middle 40s.
FRIDAY: Rain likely. The rain may be heavy at times. It will be mild with highs in the upper 50s.
SATURDAY: Rain likely. The rain may be heavy at times with a chance for some thunder, mainly south. Highs will be near 60 degrees.
SUNDAY: Rain will taper off early in the morning with clouds breaking. It will be windy and cooler with highs in the middle 50s.
MONDAY: Sunshine returns. Breezy and cool with highs in the lower 50s.
Published: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 @ 6:49 PM
A Franklin County judge today threw out a legal challenge brought by more than 160 municipalities — including Dayton, Centerville and Riverside — to a new state tax law.
The ruling means Ohio business tax filers can file municipal business taxes directly with the state instead of local municipalities. Cities challenged the law as an unconstitutional overreach by the state.
“Everything comes down to whether the General Assembly has the power or it doesn’t. In this case, the General Assembly has the power,” wrote Franklin County Common Pleas Judge David Cain in his decision.
Ohio Tax Commissioner Joe Testa praised the ruling in a statement today.
“We are pleased that the court found this law to be constitutional,” Testa said. “It’s an important ruling for business taxpayers in Ohio who for too long have had to deal with this costly, complex process for local tax on business income.”
Businesses that want to file with the state for 2018 taxes have a deadline of March 1 to register through the Ohio Business Gateway.
The state says the change will reduce compliance costs for businesses up to an estimated $800 million if every business filing in multiple jurisdictions takes part, and will improve compliance.
The law applies to the municipal net profit tax, which is worth an estimated $600 million annually. It will benefit businesses that operate in multiple municipalities, allowing them to file one return with the state rather than filing separately in each city where they pay taxes.
The state will collect the money from businesses who chose to file with them, then dispense it to municipalities, charging them a half-percent processing fee.
This amounts to forcing cities to pay for a service they don’t want, according to Kent Scarrett, executive director of the Ohio Municipal League. He said cities plan to appeal the judge’s ruling.
“The real difference is any filer that goes to the state, the municipality that used to review that filing will not be able to review the filing and will have no auditing or review capabilities,” he said.
“Dayton has no way to make sure that filing is accurate.”
Scarrett said the real fear is that lawmakers will expand to start collecting the billions of dollars every year collected by cities across the state in employer witholdings, and may take further steps to control local taxes.
“Once you control the revenue you control a lot of aspects of what happens,” he said. “It’s the state taking over, the state getting bigger, growing in size and eclipsing the powers of our local communities and the decisions they can make.”
Ohio Department of Taxation officials say cities will have access to the same information from the state that they received from filers and can request filings be reviewed.