Delaying the death penalty, tracking johns, and farmer bankruptcies

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    Catching Our Eye:

    Death delayed. Nick Swartsell is reporting in the Cleveland Scene, “Ohio delays three more executions.””Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced yesterday that the state will delay three more executions originally set for this year — yet another set of reprieves as the state searches for a solution to problems with its lethal injection execution methods…

    “DeWine’s office acknowledged that difficulty obtaining a controversial execution drug contributed to the reprieves.

    “‘Governor DeWine is issuing these reprieves due to ongoing problems involving the willingness of pharmaceutical suppliers to provide drugs to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, pursuant to DRC protocol, without endangering other Ohioans,’ DeWine’s office said in a news release today…

    “Ohio still has two-dozen executions scheduled through 2024 — though there is no clear path forward for carrying them out as of now.”

    Keeping up with the johns. The Dayton Daily News’ Cornelius Frolik is reporting, “Ohio wants a prostitution registry. Dayton already has a johns list.”

    “Ohio could become the second state in the nation to create an online ‘johns’ registry, listing and identifying men who are caught buying sex.

    “The proposed registry is meant to make it much more likely that prostitution crimes will be discovered by loved ones, friends, neighbors, co-workers and bosses.

    “‘I believe having a publicly accessible registry may prove to be the deterrent that keeps someone from engaging in illegal behavior,’ said Ohio Rep. Rick Carfagna (R-Genoa Twp.), a co-sponsor of the bill that would create a new registry.”

    Selling the farm. Reuters’ P.J. Huffstutter is reporting, “U.S. farm bankruptcies hit an eight-year high: court data.”

    “U.S. farm bankruptcy rates jumped 20% in 2019 – to an eight-year high – as financial woes in the U.S. agricultural economy continued in spite of massive federal bail-out funding, according to federal court data.

    “According to data released this week by the United States Courts, family farmers filed 595 Chapter 12 bankruptcies in 2019, up from 498 filings a year earlier. The data also shows that such filings – known as “family farmer” bankruptcies — have steadily increased every year for the past five years…

    “The increase in cases had been somewhat expected, bankruptcy experts and agricultural economists said, as farmers face trade battles, ever-mounting farm debt, prolonged low commodity prices, volatile weather patterns and a fatal pig disease that has decimated China’s herd.”

    David C. DeWitt
    David C. DeWitt is an award-winning journalist with over 15 years experience covering Ohio politics and policy. He has worked for the National Journal, The New York Observer, The Athens NEWS and Plunderbund.com covering topics such as education, health care, crime and courts, poverty, government, business, labor, energy, environment and social issues. His work has also appeared in Government Executive, the Columbus Dispatch, Girlfriends magazine, Bleacher Report and the Ashtabula Star Beacon, among others.