More Ohio inmates earning high school diplomas
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 15 January 2014 07:27

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A new report says the number of Ohio prisoners earning their high-school equivalency diplomas is up over the past three years.

And, according to the report from the Correctional Institution Inspection Committee, Ohio's achievement rate in this area beats the national average.

The Dayton Daily News (http://bit.ly/1d3Mtxv ) reports that Ohio's GED certificate rate is 41.4 per 1,000 inmates. That's above the above the national average of 31.8.

Teen faces three murder counts in Indiana fire
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 15 January 2014 07:25

NEW ALBANY, Ind. (AP) — An Indiana house fire where three young siblings died and a fourth was badly burned began when a teenager fired a flare into the home in a property dispute with one of the residents, authorities said Tuesday.

Cody Cashion, 18, faces three counts of murder and one count of arson resulting in injury, Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson announced Tuesday at a news conference. The charges are in connection to the fire that occurred Jan. 4 in New Albany, located in southern Indiana across the Ohio River from Louisville, Ky.

Cashion, of New Albany, already was in custody in nearby Clark County on charges including attempted murder of a police officer stemming from a Jan. 8 car crash. He remained at the Clark County Jail in Jeffersonville on Tuesday, and records there did not indicate whether he has an attorney.

Investigators initially believed the fire started in a front bedroom and might have been caused by a space heater, but Henderson said witnesses provided information linking the fire to a flare shot from a motor vehicle. Two-year-old Trinity Hughes, 4-year-old Tyrese Hughes and 6-year-old Tai'zah Hughes died of smoke inhalation, while 5-year-old Taty'ana Hughes was rescued by firefighters and remained in an Indianapolis hospital Tuesday.

Bill would spend $300M on Great Lakes restoration
Written by JOHN FLESHER, AP Environmental Writer   
Tuesday, 14 January 2014 15:48

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — A spending bill crafted by congressional leaders would allocate $300 million to a Great Lakes cleanup that had been threatened with a massive cut during last year's budget fight, supporters said Tuesday.

The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is a program dealing with some of the lakes' most serious environmental problems such as invasive species, loss of wetlands and other wildlife habitat, toxic pollution and runoff that causes algae blooms.

It has gotten around $300 million in most years since funding began in 2010. But last year, a House subcommittee proposed slashing the 2014 allocation to just $60 million — an 80 percent cut that Great Lakes advocates said would gut the program, which has bipartisan support in Congress.

The compromise measure released this week also would boost spending on another program targeted with an 80 percent funding cut last year that provides loans to communities for improving drinking water and sewage treatment infrastructure. That program is slated to receive $1.44 billion in 2014, up from $1.37 billion in 2013. About one-third of that money usually goes to the Great Lakes region, where sewer overflows are a serious problem.

Ohio Senate OKs effort to renew public works program
Written by Associated Press   
Tuesday, 14 January 2014 15:49

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — State senators have passed a resolution to renew a public works program that funds improvements to Ohio roads, bridges and other local infrastructure needs.

The resolution would ask voters to approve a 10-year renewal of the State Capital Improvement Program.

The proposal would increase the bond funding levels to $175 million annually for the first five years and then $200 million each year for the remaining five years.

Supporters hope the measure will clear the Legislature by the end of this month, so it can appear before voters on May ballots. Voters previously approved the program in 1987, 1995 and 2005.

A Democratic amendment to authorize additional money for the program failed to gain Senate support. But the measure passed on a 31-0 vote and now goes to the House.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Ohio man gets life for killing woman's unborn baby
Written by Associated Press   
Tuesday, 14 January 2014 11:18

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — A 22-year-old northeast Ohio man was sentenced to life in prison Monday for killing his girlfriend's unborn baby by punching her in the stomach.

Tyvon D. Ward of Akron attacked his girlfriend on June 20 after learning that she was 34 weeks pregnant, prosecutors said. He attacked their 4-year-old son, throwing him around the room. A few hours later he assaulted the girlfriend, punching her in the stomach and face.

The woman was hospitalized the next day, and her baby died as a result of the attack, according to the Akron Beacon Journal (http://bit.ly/1gE9qIE ). Authorities said that while the woman was in the hospital, Ward and another girlfriend left the critically injured 4-year-old son home alone.

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