About the author  ⁄ Doug Jenkins

5/13/16 – 4:53 A.M.

A recent inspection of the Hancock County jail found it to be in compliance with all standards. Hancock County Jail Administrator Lt. Ryan Kidwell tells the Courier inspectors from the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction visited in January.

There are 115 standards that jails are rated against. Fifty-four of the standards account for the health and safety of inmates. Sixty-one standards rate the jail for good correctional practices.

Kidwell told the newspaper the inspection showed the dedication and professionalism of the corrections staff and supervisors.

MORE: The Courier

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5/12/16 – 11:38 A.M.

The first step toward building several new Habitat for Humanity homes in Findlay was taken today. The Findlay City Planning Committee recommended vacating a portion of land in the 1000 block of North Blanchard Street. Service-Safety Director Paul Schmelzer says it’s the first step toward possibly locating seven new Habitat homes at the site of a trailer park…

Audio: Paul Schmelzer

However, Schmelzer says there are still a lot of questions…

Audio: Paul Schmelzer

Schmelzer says while the city supports what Habitat is doing, they want to make sure the new homes follow zoning codes. There is also concern about how cars will get in and out with a blind curve in the area.

As for the Habitat for Humanity, the vacation of the land in question was the first step toward getting the land needed for the potential homes.


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5/12/16 – 7:31 A.M.

A coach for the Bowling Green State University football team and a graduate assistant were cited for assault last weekend. The Sentinel-Tribune reports 34-year-old Marcus White and 23-year-old Kenneth Williams II reportedly hit staff members at a bar on North Main Street when they were asked to leave. The incident was reported around 2:20 a.m. Sunday.

White is the team’s co-defensive coordinator. He’s been placed on administrative leave. Williams is a graduate assistant on the team. BGSU officials tell the newspaper that as a student, Williams is subject to the university’s code of student conduct. He could face disciplinary action as a result.

MORE: Sentinel-Tribune

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5/12/16 – 6:54 A.M.

A Findlay company has been recognized for efforts in its field. Six Disciplines Consulting Services has won the 2016 Platinum Governor’s Award for Excellence from the Partnership for Excellence. According to a release, the company received the award for its innovation and leadership efforts.

Applicants for the award were evaluated in seven areas, including leadership; strategy; customers; measurement, analysis and knowledge management; workforce; operations; and results.

The evaluation took more than 1,000 hours of review. A team from the Partnership for Excellence also spent three days with Six Disciplines as part of the analysis.

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5/12/16 – 6:46 A.M.

A committee of Arcadia officials will review suggestions for village upgrades. The Courier reports four village council members will serve on an ad hoc committee to look over surveys being given to community members. The one-page survey can be picked up at village hall and the village grocery store.

Some of the suggestions include park upgrades, sidewalk work, and street repaving among others. The committee will meet May 19 to talk about the surveys.

A Neighborhood Revitalization Fund grant from the Ohio Department of Development could make up to $500,000 available for Arcadia.

MORE: The Courier

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5/12/16 – 5:22 A.M.

The Riverdale school community is raising money to help a third-grade student in the district. The Courier reports around 100 staff members were able to raise $1,000 for the family of 10-year-old Jaeden Washburn. Washburn has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a genetic disorder that involves progressive muscle degeneration and weakness.

The $1,000 already raised came from a fundraiser called “Jeans for Jaeden’s Journey.” It saw Riverdale teachers wear jeans to school for a donation.

A T-shirt fundraiser started a few days ago. You can but shirts that say “Jaeden’s Journey: Best Day Ever!” on the Riverdale school website. All of the money raised will be used to buy gift cards at businesses like Lowe’s.

Washburn uses a motorized wheelchair at school, but can’t use it at home because it’s not handicap-accessible. His family is working to build a new house that will be easier for Jaeden to get around.

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5/12/16 – 5:10 A.M.

Ottawa village council talked about street repairs during their meeting this week. The Putnam County Sentinel reports council voted to move forward with the reconstruction of Villa Drive. The project is estimated to cost around $614,000.

Council also talked about issues on Pleasant Drive. Mayor Dean Meyer said that heavy rains cause the sewage water caps to blow out in that area. That can lead to raw sewage in yards and homes. Village Administrator Jack Williams said the subdivision doesn’t have a storm sewer, which could be part the problem. The cost of installing a storm sewer in the area would be around $500,000.

Williams has been instructed to separate the cost of a sewer separation project from roadwork and then come back to council with his findings.

MORE: Putnam County Sentinel

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5/12/16 – 4:56 A.M.

Teachers at Findlay’s middle schools have created a summer book club for kids. The Courier reports the goal is to encourage students to keep reading over the summer. Kimmie Brown and Angela Dittman, the creators of the group, say the program will feature books that were made into movies. The group will get together to watch the movie after they finish the book.

Response to the idea has been good. The goal was to have 75 people from each middle school. 130 signed up from Donnell Middle School and another 90 from Glenwood Middle School are taking part.

The books, movies, and snacks are being paid for with a $2,500 grant from the Findlay-Hancock County Community Foundation.

MORE: The Courier

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5/12/16 – 4:45 A.M.

A local jobs program aims to get young people in low-income households to work. The Courier reports qualifying Hancock County residents between 16 and 24-years-old are eligible for summer jobs that pay at least $10 an hour. The effort is part of the WSOS Community Action Commission’s Youth Employment Program.

The organization is trying to match workers with fields they have some interest in. Participants will work between 20 and 40 hours a week depending on age. For more information on qualifications call (419)429-8040.

MORE: The Courier

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5/11/2016 – 1:46 pm

Since the last 100 year flood, Findlay, and Hancock County have been working to acquire properties along the Blanchard River that are most prone to flooding issues. Steve Wilson with the Hancock County Engineers Office says that to determine which properties to acquire, officials review data, including initial information from the US Army Corps of Engineers, that looked at which properties had suffered the most flood damage during that flood and since that time.

Audio: Steve Wilson

The sale of properties then is done on a voluntary basis, either between the City of Findlay or Hancock County depending on which entity is acquiring the property from the owner. Land values and costs for the property are determined on an as needed basis and an agreement is then worked out with the owners. The county and city have both purchased a number of properties in the flood plane but Wilson notes that there are a number left to assess.

Audio: Steve Wilson

In addition to appropriating funds to purchase the properties through a tax levy, Wilson said that there are a number of state and federal grants available for the purpose of purchasing property located in a flood plane.

Once purchased, the entity will generally demolish any structures on the property and plant grass. Wilson said that planning can be done to determine what aesthetic improvements can be done to the properties without building structures that would be adverse to flooding conditions.

Audio: Steve Wilson

Once purchased, the properties become the possession of Findlay or Hancock County depending on the purchasing entity. Wilson noted that many of the properties purchased by Hancock County may be transferred to the city as they would be in a better position to maintain them.

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