Xenia schools hope third time is charm for construction issue

Published: Friday, May 19, 2017 @ 2:32 PM


            Xenia’s bond issue calls for replacing the 1962 Warner Middle School (above) and 1976 Xenia High School with a single building to be constructed at Ohio 42 and Ledbetter Road. JEREMY P. KELLEY / STAFF
Xenia’s bond issue calls for replacing the 1962 Warner Middle School (above) and 1976 Xenia High School with a single building to be constructed at Ohio 42 and Ledbetter Road. JEREMY P. KELLEY / STAFF

Xenia Schools will be back on the ballot Aug. 8, asking voters a third time for the local share of money to construct a new combination middle school/high school building.

The bond issue on the ballot will be the same 4.2-mill, 37-year measure that voters rejected by a 7 percentage point margin in May. It would cost the owner of a $100,000 home $147 per year.

RELATED: Voters rejected Xenia bond issue in May

Xenia Superintendent Denny Morrison said the school board got significant public feedback after the May vote not to be discouraged and to try again.

“We’re going to try to do a door-to-door campaign, and explain what this plan means, not just for Xenia schools, but for the entire community,” said Morrison, who retires July 31, eight days before the vote. “We have so many good things happening that we want to continue the momentum.”

The proposal calls for replacing the 1962 Warner Middle School and 1976 Xenia High School with a single building to be constructed at Ohio 42 and Ledbetter Road. The state-required evaluation of the two existing buildings called them both “borderline,” the middle rating out of three.

RELATED: Xenia Superintendent plans to retire

The Ohio Facilities Construction Commission would pay for 40 percent of the project if Xenia voters agree to raise the rest via this bond issue. The current OFCC funding cycle expires after the August election. OFCC officials said Xenia could still qualify for state funding after that time if they passed a levy, but the funding percentage could shift.

“The $28.5 million that the state is offering now is contingent on the passage of the bond issue to fund our local share,” Morrison said.

Camden on the ballot

The only other levies expected on the Aug. 8 ballot are a pair of renewal levies in the Preble County village of Camden.

Preble County Board of Elections Director Terri Hans said Camden officials filed a 6-mill renewal police levy and a 4-mill renewal levy for general operating expenses. Hans said the Board of Elections is scheduled to certify those levies to the ballot next week.

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Guests use Bluetooth technology at Disney hotel to enter rooms

Published: Thursday, April 26, 2018 @ 3:33 PM

Guests At Disney Hotel Use Bluetooth To Enter Rooms

Opening your hotel room door with your cell phone? Disney has started to roll out the new technology for guests to skip the front desk and go directly to their room, speeding up the start of vacations.

Disney gave WFTV anchor Jamie Holmes an exclusive look at how guests will be able to use their cellphones to get into their hotel rooms.

The theme park rolled out the technology at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge.

Over the years, the My Disney Experience app has been an expanding feature of how guests navigate the parks and hotels.

Previous story: Your smartphone could unlock Disney hotel rooms

Guests can use it to check ride wait times and even clean up park photos.

But guests can also use it to plan their hotel stay, skip the check-in desk, and go straight to their rooms.

"If you choose to, you can actually bypass the front desk area, if that's important to you, and start your vacation earlier," Michael Trum, with Disney digital guest experience, said.

Here’s how it works: Guests take their cellphones and hold it up to their hotel room door, and that’s when a little Disney magic happens.

>> Read more trending news 

"They're Bluetooth-enabled. Your phone, most smart phones. We've upgraded our locks to be Bluetooth enabled as well. So, they pair together, via security obviously," Trum said.

The technology can be used as a companion to the Magic Bands, which are required to get into the parks.

Long gone are metal hotel room keys, and for the most part, even plastic key cards are gone.

But, since most guests these days aren't far from their phones, the Bluetooth technology gives them a choice.

Many people wonder whether the new technology is safe.

Cellphone passcodes are notoriously hard to crack and Disney stands by the system.

“We obviously designed this with security in mind. We can't go into details on Disney security policies, but our guests should absolutely feel safe using this as an entry point into their rooms," Trum said.

Disney is not the first to use the Bluetooth technology. Hilton and Marriot hotels have been using it for several years.

The FBI said it has never had a case of hackers using phones to enter a hotel room in the U.S.

Disney will expand the service to other hotels over the next several months.

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Crews dealing with grass fire in Fairborn Community Park

Published: Thursday, April 26, 2018 @ 6:03 PM

Crews are dealing with a grass fire reportedly in Community Park, on East Dayon Yellow Springs Road in Fairborn.

The park is near I-675 in Greene County and there were calls to police dispatch about a grass fire near the interstate. 

The incident was dispatched just after 4:20 p.m. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Otto Warmbier’s parents sue N. Korea

We're hearing that about an acre is burning. 

We have a crew on the way to check it out. Stay with whio.com for breaking news. 

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com

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Running vehicle leads police to apartment drug operation in Dayton

Published: Thursday, April 26, 2018 @ 6:00 PM

An investigation into a vehicle found unoccupied with the engine running on a sidewalk led police to an apartment believed to be used for drug manufacturing, according to a Dayton police incident report. 

Officers patrolling in the 200 block of West Beechwood Avenue in Dayton found a Dodge pickup truck parked over the sidewalk with the engine running around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday. Police attempted to locate the driver of the vehicle, noting the parked car presented a hazard to pedestrians attempting to walk on the sidewalk, officers  said. 

Police surround home in Xenia, at least one person in custody

While checking apartment units for the possible owner of the truck, police found the door to one unit opened with $79 in cash lying on the ground, officers said in the report. There was also a digital scale, which is commonly used to weigh illegal drugs, the report said. 

The officers identified themselves before entering the apartment, but there was no response. Fearing that someone may be injured, they entered the apartment and found additional items that are commonly used for illegals, the report said. 

No victims found after reported shooting in Dayton

The items included a hydraulic press, which drug dealers use to press and compact illegal drugs, several razor blades with what appeared to be cocaine residue on them, several false bottom containers, 404 grams of suspected cocaine, 783 grams of suspected heroine and a semi-automatic handgun, $79 in cash and several other items that indicated the apartment was being used to manufacture and package illegal drugs, the report said. 

The items were taken into evidence, but it’s not clear if anyone was charged. 

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I-Team: Still alive on death row

Published: Thursday, April 26, 2018 @ 5:21 PM

Tia Talbott speaks out about Samuel Moreland

At first, Tia Talbott thought Samuel Moreland's conviction for the 1985 murders of five of her family members would end in his swift execution. Moreland was convicted in the killing of Talbott's mother, sister, two sons and niece at their home on Dayton's South Ardmore Avenue.But now more than 30 years later, she is still waiting for it to happen.

PHOTOS: 1985 murder rampage leaves 5 people dead

"He's a vicious, cold-blooded killer. He murdered my family," Talbott said. 

Talbott has watched with frustration as Moreland has managed to delay execution for decades through a barrage of courtroom appeals at the state and federal level. It has left her angry at the criminal justice system and wondering if people in the system have forgotten the victims. 

A relative of a victim breaks down in court during an arraignment for Samuel Moreland on Nov. 4, 1985. DAYTON DAILY NEWS ARCHIVE

"My family is valuable. They're human beings. They're worth something and they should act like it and do justice for them," Talbott said.
An I-Team investigation found Moreland is the Miami Valley's longest-running resident on the Ohio prison system's Death Row. He has been in the prison system since May 6, 1986. Repeated attempts to interview Moreland in prison have been denied. The state prison system recently rejected yet another interview request. It comes just as Moreland's latest legal maneuver won support from a judge to allow re-testing of some DNA evidence from the original trial.

TIMELINE: The Samuel Moreland case from 1985 to now

The re-testing effort was spearheaded by Mark Godsey, director of the Innocence Project at the University of Cincinnati Law School. The group has taken up Moreland's case and has pushed for more DNA testing to help determine guilt or innocence. 

The front page of the Nov. 2, 1985 Dayton Daily News.

"Any time there's DNA evidence that could be done to shed some light on the question, we think it should be done in the interest of fairness and justice," Godsey said. 

One of the original investigators on the case, Dan Baker, who was a Dayton Police Lieutenant at the time, said there is no doubt Moreland is guilty. He too did not anticipate that Moreland would still be successfully fighting the death penalty for more than three decades.

"Sammy Moreland has been able to work the system many, many times," Baker said.

RELATED STORY: Convicted murderer Samuel Moreland wins right to DNA testing in notorious Dayton case

Montgomery County Prosecutor Matt Heck was also part of the original case as an assistant prosecutor. To this day he is still defending the guilty verdict and death sentence from a three judge panel in 1986. Heck remains confident that the re-testing of the DNA evidence will have no influence on the case, stating emphatically that Moreland is the killer. 

Samuel Moreland photographed in court for a pre-trial hearing in April 1986. DAYTON DAILY NEWS ARCHIVE

"I don't think there is any question about it. This individual was positively identified by someone that knew him, someone who was there and someone injured, almost killed at the hands of Samuel Moreland," Heck said.

According to Heck, the evidence to be re-tested has been moved to a lab, but the work may not be completed for several months. Tia Talbott is hoping that the latest legal move by Moreland will be his last and that when the testing is completed the execution can go forward. What would Talbott say about it then? 

"The pain is still going to be there, but the monster is gone," said Talbott. She too, believes the evidence will point to Samuel Moreland. 

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