About the author  ⁄ Doug Jenkins

5/28/15 – 6:32 A.M.

It’s been a good planting season for area farmers. That’s according to Hancock County OSU Extension Educator Ed Lentz. He tells the Courier the relatively dry conditions and moderate temperatures are ideal for planting.

The dry fields allow crops to develop deeper root systems. Lentz tells the newspaper that’s especially important for corn.

There is one drawback to the dry conditions. Lentz says dryer soil conditions make it difficult for soybeans to emerge.

MORE: The Courier

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5/28/15 – 5:25 A.M.

A four-car crash injured three people on I-75 in Hancock County late Wednesday afternoon. The State Highway Patrol reports the chain reaction crash happened in the southbound lanes of the interstate south of the State Route 613 interchange.

21-year-old Kayla Beltz of Lakeview was driving south when she failed to stop for slower traffic. Her car hit the back of a car driven by 24-year-old Emma Dunn of Archbold. Dunn’s car then hit a vehicle driven by 41-year-old Amy Beth Bowers of Hilliard. Her car was pushed into a car driven by 57-year-old Tami Cory of Bucyrus.

Beltz, Dunn, and Bowers were all taken to Blanchard Valley Hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries.

The crash backed up the interstate for more than an hour.

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5/28/14 – 5:15 A.M.

A Pandora-Gilboa teacher has earned national recognition. The Putnam County Sentinel reports Mark Suter is one of 10 teachers to place first in the Henry Ford Innovation Nation Teacher Innovator Award. Suter created the “Rockettech Club” to work with the economic development offices in Putnam and Allen Counties to come up with solutions to a skilled labor shortage.

Rockettech and another club, P-G Engineering, work together create products and services for area businesses.

Suter has been teaching in the district since 2010.

MORE: Putnam County Sentinel

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5/28/15 – 5:06 A.M.

Findlay’s law director could be in line for a pay raise next year. The Courier reports an Ad Hoc committee meeting of Findlay City Council members talked about the issue Wednesday night. Don Rasmussen makes a little more than $100,000, and would see an $8,000 raise under a recommendation from the committee. The raise still needs full council approval.

Councilmen Grant Russel and Tom Klein said they didn’t agree with a pay cut for the position when Rasmussen was running for the office in 2011. The committee also recommended a two percent pay raise each year from 2017 through 2019. That would put the law director salary at around $115,000.

Human Resources Director Don Essex looked at cities like Findlay to provide a frame of reference. In Wooster, the law director makes nearly $122,000 a year. On the low end of the spectrum the law director in Ashland makes a little more than $78,000.

The committee has also recommended two percent pay increases each year for the next four years for the mayor and city auditor. Mayor Lydia Mihalik took a two percent pay cut in 2012.

MORE: The Courier

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5/27/15 – 6:28 P.M.

The State Highway Patrol says 14 people lost their lives on Ohio’s roads during the Memorial Day weekend. That’s one more than in 2014. A report from the law enforcement agency says three of the deaths were OVI-related. Of the 14 killed, four people were not wearing a seatbelt.

The patrol says 544 OVI arrests were made between May 22 and May 25. More than 5,500 people were cited for not wearing a seatbelt.

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5/27/15 – 6:18 P.M.

Expect more road work in downtown Findlay Thursday. The city’s engineering office reports trench repair will take place on West Main Cross at Cory Street. As a result, West Main Cross will be reduced to one lane from Broadway to South West Street. Cory Street will also be closed for the work.

Construction is expected to last from 7 a.m. until 6 p.m. You’re advised to avoid the area if possible.

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5/27/15 – 5:48 A.M.

One of the men accused of insider trading in the proposed sale of Cooper Tire & Rubber two years ago has fled the country. Reuters reports the whereabouts of Iftikar Ahmed are unclear right now. Ahmed slipped out of the country before May 18 in violation of a judge’s order.

Ahmed is a former partner at Oak Investment Partners. He allegedly received a tip about the potential sale to Apollo Tyre before the announcement was made.

Authorities say Amit Kanodia gave Ahmed and another man the tip. Kanodia’s wife was general counsel for Apollo at the time.

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5/27/15 – 5:02 P.M.

Two people were injured in a Tuesday crash in Putnam County. The Putnam County Sheriff’s Office reports two cars were involved in a collision at the intersection of State Route 15 and Township Road 11.

Arlene McDougle of Ottawa was driving on Road 11 and ran a stop sign, pulling into the path of a pickup truck driven by Thomas Stant of Ottawa. McDougle had to be extricated from her car. Both drivers were taken to St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima for treatment of their injuries.

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5/28/15 – 2:36 P.M.

Unemployment dropped in the region in April, but the numbers may be a little misleading. The latest numbers from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services show Hancock County at 3.3 percent unemployment, compared to 3.9 in March. The number of employed people in the county stayed the same, while the number of jobless claims dropped by around 300. That likely means roughly 300 people stopped looking for jobs in April.

Aside from Hancock County, three other counties show unemployment below 4 percent. Wyandot County was at 3.3, Putnam County checked in at 3.7, and Wood County was at 3.9.

Elsewhere Seneca and Allen Counties both had jobless rates of 4.5 percent in March, while Henry County was at 5.9.

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