About the author  ⁄ Doug Jenkins

7/17/14 – 5:22 A.M.

Putnam County residents got a look at FEMA’s proposed new flood insurance maps last week. The Putnam County Sentinel reports the big topic of conversation was how people living in the “high risk” flood zone will be affected.

People who live in older homes built before the first Flood Insurance Rate Map have been getting subsidies to keep their flood insurance costs down. Residents learned at the meeting those subsidies could be phased out over time.

Older buildings not used as a primary home or used for a business would receive a 25 percent annual increase on their insurance rates.

There is a 90-day appeal process once the new flood maps are put on the federal registry.

MORE: Putnam County Sentinel

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7/17/14 – 5:10 A.M.

Federal officials are now investigating to see if the Chinese businesses have engaged in unfair business practices that have unfairly stolen U.S. tire customers.

The Courier reports the USW alleges the foreign companies have been selling tires below market value in the U.S., while charging regular prices in China. The Commerce Department and the International Trade Commission are both looking into the issue. If they rule in favor of the USW, tariffs will be put back on Chinese imports.

The USW has also alleged the Chinese government is giving some of the companies subsidies so they can sell at an unfair price in the U.S.

MORE: The Courier

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7/16/14 – 1:17 P.M.

Blanchard Valley Health System was honored today for eliminating out-of-pocket costs for colorectal screenings.  The American Cancer Society gave BVHS a “Division Citation” award for their efforts.

Kim Benson is the director of oncology and outpatient services for the health system.  She says employees started signing up for exams once a roadblock was eliminated…

Audio: Kim Benson

Andrew Mariani is with the American Cancer Society, and added that he hopes the move is copied by other large employers in the area.

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7/16/14 – 12:57 P.M.

Your hip friends have gone gluten free, and now you’re asking if you should join them. Blanchard Valley Health System dietitian Julie Russell says if you’re trying to lose weight, gluten free may not be the best way to go…

Audio: Julie Russell

Russell says the best advice remains a balanced diet along with cutting calories.

She it’s a different story if you have celiac disease or are gluten intolerant. Celiac disease usually comes in the form of GI issues, but there are also people who have a gluten intolerance…

Audio: Julie Russell

The only way to find out for sure though is by talking to your family doctor.

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7/16/14 – 10:06 A.M.

Wyandot County authorities shut down a meth lab Tuesday. Wyandot County Sheriff Michael Hetzel reports Defiance Conley of Wharton was arrested during the operation. She’s facing drug charges and a probation violation.

A tip led to officers conducting a surveillance operation on a home at 108 North Jefferson Street. Around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday a car was stopped near the intersection of County Road 330 and Richland Township Highway 79. The driver was wanted on a warrant out of Florida for possession of methamphetamine. Materials to make meth were found in the trunk of the car.

Detectives then went to the North Jefferson Street house to question the residents. Officers found a working meth lab in operation. The METRICH Clandestine Drug Unit was able to safely remove the laboratory.

View Wyandot County Meth Bust in a larger map

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7/16/14 – 6:43 A.M.

A former Wood County Sheriff’s deputy pleaded not guilty to a rape charge yesterday. The Sentinel-Tribune reports 50-year-old Dusty Garwood appeared in court Tuesday. He also pleaded not guilty to sexual battery and abduction charges. Garwood is accused of having a sexual relationship with a female inmate.

The original sexual battery charge was thrown out because the inmate was under house arrest and the incidents allegedly took place at her home. That meant she wasn’t technically in custody.

Judge Robert Pollex stepped down from the case. The newspaper reports Garwood had served in Pollex’s court several times in the past. The Ohio Supreme Court has been asked to appoint a new judge to the case.

MORE: The Courier


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7/16/14 – 5:26 A.M.

A Wood County man will spend two years in prison for threatening the North Baltimore School District. The Courier reports 58-year-old Dwight Bower was sentenced on a charge of inducing panic Tuesday. Bower pleaded guilty in April, and was given credit for 260 days already served in jail.

Bower sent the school a note that said, “can’t wait to blow up your (expletive) schools.” He also promised he would, “burn, mutilate and destroy anything anyone has.” Police were able to identify him as a suspect because his name was imprinted on the notes he sent from letters he had written before on the same note pad.

Defense attorney William Stephenson did not mention mental illness during yesterday’s hearing. However, Judge Robert Pollex did bring up the issue when he made his ruling.

MORE: The Courier

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7/16/14 – 5:15 A.M.

Fostoria City Council was unable to pass a preliminary 2015 budget during their Tuesday meeting; and that could be a problem.  The Courier reports there weren’t enough council members on hand to pass the measure on an emergency.  That could be an issue because budget figures have to be turned into the Seneca County Auditor’s Office by Sunday.

Instead, council heard the first reading of the budget.

City Auditor Steve Garner told the newspaper he’s never faced a situation like this, and isn’t sure what the repercussions are.  There was talk of holding an emergency meeting later this week, but one was not scheduled last night.

2nd Ward Councilman Greg Flores and At-Large Councilman Dave Bettenhausen were absent Tuesday.

MORE: The Courier

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7/16/14 – 5:02 A.M.

By this time next year Findlay could be home to Ohio’s biggest company in terms of sales. The Courier reports Marathon Petroleum could move ahead of Cardinal Health in Dublin. Marathon’s buy out of Hess Corporation’s retail stores are expected to push the company ahead of Cardinal.

Speedway is a Marathon subsidiary, and will expand its reach to the east cost and south with the addition of the Hess stores. That’s expected to double Speedway’s more than $14.5 billion in sales.

Last year Marathon had a little more than $100 billion in sales, while Cardinal Health was just over $101 billion.

MORE: The Courier

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7/15/14 – 10:58 A.M.

The Carey Police Department is offering $350 to the person who can help bring two vending machine vandals to justice. Posts on the department’s Facebook page show two men trying to break into three pop machines in the village early Saturday morning. A dispatcher from the department says the suspects may have gotten away with some money.

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