Ohio panel to weigh tweaks to midterm budget bill
Written by Associated Press   
Tuesday, 08 April 2014 06:01

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio legislative panel is set to consider more changes to a midterm budget bill that is on track for a House vote this week.

The House Finance and Appropriations Committee amended the sweeping proposal Monday to clarify that college athletes are not considered employees under state law.

The move comes after a decision last month by a regional director of the National Labor Relations Board involving the Northwestern University football team. The ruling said that full scholarship players can be considered employees and thus have the right to form a union.

The amendment was among dozens made to the bill.

The Republican-dominated committee removed a provision to require electronic registration for unemployment compensation benefits, and it sought to penalize counties who don't follow state procedures for providing absentee ballots.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Detroit teen charged in mob beating of driver
Written by Associated Press   
Monday, 07 April 2014 14:02

DETROIT (AP) — A Detroit teenager was charged Monday in the mob beating of a suburban motorist who had accidentally hit a 10-year-old boy who stepped in front of his truck.

Wayne County prosecutors charged Bruce Wimbush Jr., 17, with assault with intent to commit murder and do great bodily harm. He was scheduled to be arraigned Monday afternoon.

Police say a group of at least six people descended on 54-year-old Steve Utash after the accident Wednesday. Utash, of Macomb County's Clinton Township, was severely beaten and hospitalized.

Police arrested Wimbush and a 16-year-old boy Saturday. Prosecutors say the younger teen hasn't been charged but will appear Monday in juvenile court. Authorities have five days to determine whether someone is charged as an adult.

$80,000 for hospital care of Detroit mob beating victim
Written by Associated Press   
Monday, 07 April 2014 06:20

DETROIT (AP) — An online fundraising campaign has brought in at least $80,000 for the medical bills of a suburban motorist who was critically beaten by a mob after his truck accidentally hit a 10-year-old Detroit hoy.

Police arrested Detroit boys ages 17 and 16 Saturday in Wednesday's attack on 54-year-old Steve Utash of Macomb County's Clinton Township. Their names and the charges weren't announced Sunday.

Police say at least six people may have been involved in the attack. Police say the mob beat Utash after he stopped at the scene of the crash.

Police say the 10-year-old stepped in front of Utash's pickup truck. He also was hospitalized.

His injuries weren't life-threatening.

The Detroit Free Press (http://on.freep.com/1ig6ZLf ) says donations topped $80,000 by late Saturday.



Donation site: http://bit.ly/1e3LjX0

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

Columbus will seek Democratic convention
Written by Associated Press   
Monday, 07 April 2014 08:54

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Though Columbus was rejected as a site for the 2016 Republican National Convention, area tourism officials say they will now focus on luring the Democrats.

Officials said they'll try to capitalize on the national media exposure garnered for the city during its bid for the GOP event. Last week, the GOP eliminated Columbus while keeping Cincinnati and Cleveland alive as possible convention sites.

The Columbus Dispatch (http://bit.ly/PEMC3r ) reports that the city of Columbus had pledged a total of $250,000 toward efforts to bring either convention to town in 2016, and the money left will now be used to compete for the Democratic convention.

Brian Ross, CEO of the tourism bureau Experience Columbus, says a political convention would bring $150 million to $200 million and 45,000 people to central Ohio.


Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com

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

Harsh winter damages Michigan's fruit trees, vines
Written by Associated Press   
Monday, 07 April 2014 06:19

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Michigan's heavy snowfall and bitter cold winter have damaged some fruit trees and vineyards, according to a leading state farm group.

The late thaw is finally allowing fruit farmers to assess damage from the cold and heavy snow, the Michigan Farm Bureau said in a report Friday.

"There certainly is going to be some bud damage, and potential damage to the wood," said Ken Nye, a horticulture and forestry specialist with the group.

Michigan is the national center for tart cherry production and also a major producer of apples and sweet cherries.

"Apples probably weren't affected too much, but we'll see some damage to cherries, peaches, grapes and blueberries," Nye said in a statement.

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