Politics & Gov

COVID-19: The curious case of Vinton County

BY: - April 16, 2020

With March Madness cancelled this year and levity hard to find amid a pandemic, the lone county without a confirmed case of coronavirus has decided to take their championship trophy any way they can get it.  Annie Jackson works at the prosecutors office in Vinton County, and when the slow creep of confirmed cases made […]

‘Ambulances leaving at all hours’ from Ohio federal prison, a COVID-19 hotbed

BY: - April 16, 2020

Craig Wilson, 42, is about halfway through a 10-year prison sentence for possession of methamphetamine and a firearm.  He’s afraid he won’t survive until early 2026, when he’s slated for release. “I feel like I’ve been handed a death sentence,” Wilson said in a recent court filing.  He’s one of about 2,400 inmates currently incarcerated […]

COVID-19 may hit rural residents hard, and that spells trouble because of lack of rural health care

BY: - April 16, 2020

The burden of COVID-19 in rural areas has been under the radar, as the toll of the disease so far has been heaviest in dense urban areas. But up to 30% of the U.S. population lives in rural America, which already has experienced more than 128 hospital closures since 2010, including 19 last year. COVID-19 […]

Ohio Supreme Court to review ECOT appeal

BY: - April 15, 2020

The Ohio Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to take up the case of a former online charter school that is fighting the Ohio State Board of Education over funding standards. The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) filed an appeal in February of this year, arguing for the state high court to hear the case by saying […]

GOP lawmakers push to reopen, Ohio’s budget, and Trump’s task force

BY: - April 14, 2020

Each day in our newsletter, we are highlighting stories and commentary from other media big and small throughout Ohio and the nation. If you’d like to get this feature directly to your inbox, please sign up for our newsletter here.  Catching Our Eye: Pressure to reopen. Cleveland.com’s Andrew J. Tobias is reporting, “Gov. Mike DeWine facing increasing pressure from […]

Some lawmakers itching to reopen economy as COVID-19 cases keep climbing

BY: - April 14, 2020

It was only minutes after state legislators ended their Zoom conference meeting, with many urging a swift reopening of the economy, that the Ohio Department of Health announced a new slate of virus deaths and illnesses.  Fifteen more Ohioans had died in the prior 24 hours. An additional 363 people were confirmed to have the […]

Controlling Board approves nearly $250M in funding for Ohio ventilators, summer lunches, other efforts

BY: - April 14, 2020

The state of Ohio’s Controlling Board approved the distribution of millions of dollars in federal funding Monday to purchase medical masks and help schools with summer lunches, among other things. In its Monday meeting, the board, made up of members of the Office of Budget and Management and legislators from the House and Senate, cleared […]

Pandemic highlights gaps in internet access

BY: - April 14, 2020

WASHINGTON — Lawmakers are urging congressional leaders to prioritize emergency funding for high-speed internet access in upcoming coronavirus relief legislation. More than two dozen lawmakers sent a bipartisan letter last week asking Democratic and Republican leaders of the U.S. House and Senate to set aside funding for a temporary emergency relief fund at the Federal Communications […]

Voting by mail gains traction, but advocates warn it’s not ‘a panacea’

BY: - April 13, 2020

WASHINGTON — As the COVID-19 virus continues to sweep the country, voting rights advocates are demanding Congress fully fund a national vote-by-mail program so people aren’t forced to choose between their health and their right to vote. But for large swaths of the population, voting by mail isn’t a viable option. The voting debacle in […]

Trump ousts another watchdog as critics see ‘disturbing pattern’

BY: - April 9, 2020

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday ousted the second federal watchdog in the span of five days as congressional Democrats accused him of purging federal employees for political reasons. Trump removed the Defense Department’s Acting Inspector General, Glenn Fine, who had been on the job since early 2016. Last week, Fine had been named by a group of […]

Congressional Dems want more federal cash to combat hunger during pandemic

BY: - April 9, 2020

WASHINGTON — Democratic lawmakers want to prioritize food insecurity in the next round of COVID-19 relief legislation. More than 100 lawmakers sent a letter Tuesday asking Democratic and Republican leaders of the U.S. House and Senate to boost the maximum Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefit by 15% — a request Republicans rejected in the $2 […]

Dark Web: Telemedicine a challenge with lack of access in Appalachian communities

BY: - April 8, 2020

Note: This is the third story in a multi-part series detailing the effects of COVID-19 on Appalachian Ohio and how local residents, businesses and health professionals are responding to best serve their region. Ohio’s governor has expanded the state’s ability to use telemedicine during the coronavirus stay-at-home order, but for some parts of the state, […]