About the author  ⁄ Doug Jenkins

3/10/15 – 11:20 A.M.

A comment made in the newspaper last week was a sticking point between Hancock County Commissioners Mark Gazarek and Brian Robertson today. During the commissioner’s meeting Gazarek asked Robertson to clarify comments that saving $2 million on the county garage allowed the county to stay under its borrowing cap, and invest $2 million more into the Ohio Logistics Business Park…

Audio: Mark Gazarek

Robertson said he thought Gazarek was splitting hairs on the issue…

Audio: Brian Robertson

Robertson added the focus should be on the progress Hancock County has made. He also said he hasn’t nitpicked his fellow commissioners.

MORE: Courier Article from March 5

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3/10/15 – 9:05 A.M.

Unemployment was up in every area county in the first month of the year. January unemployment numbers were released by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services today, and show a spike in joblessness. Unemployment claims typically go up when temporary holiday jobs come to an end.

Only Hancock and Wyandot Counties remain under 5 percent unemployment. Hancock County was up from 3.5 to 4.6 percent. Wyandot jumped from 3.6 to 4.8.

Elsewhere in the region Putnam County saw 5.2 percent joblessness, Wood County checked in at 5.5, Allen was at 6.1 and Seneca county was at 6.5 percent. Henry County had the highest unemployment at 7.5 percent in January.


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3/10/15 – 6:44 A.M.

It looks like a greenhouse for the new Carey school building won’t cost as much as originally expected. The Courier reports the school board discussed the issue during their Monday meeting. Superintendent Mike Wank told the board a new greenhouse, bigger than the current facility would only cost around $30,000. Previous estimates from the state had pegged the cost at $150,000.

Vocational Agriculture teacher Donna Hohman said the new greenhouse would be located on the north side of the new building. Students and community members could help with the construction because the state will not be helping fund the project.

Wank said the building could also be used for fundraising activities and community outreach.

MORE: The Courier

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3/10/15 – 5:31 A.M.

Things are starting to warm up, and with plenty of snow left on the ground many people are once again keeping an eye on the Blanchard River. Fortunately, it looks like the river will stay within its banks as the snow continues to melt. While the river is rising a little faster than anticipated, no flooding is projected in either Findlay or Ottawa.

At 4 a.m. today the river was at a little over 3.2 feet and rising in Findlay. Flood stage doesn’t start until 11 feet.

In Ottawa, the river was just over 13 feet and rising. However, that’s still 10 feet below flood stage.

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3/10/15 – 5:21 A.M.

A new State Wildlife Officer is taking the reigns in Hancock County. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources says Eric VonAlmen has been hired to fill the role. VonAlmen is originally from the area. He’s a 2004 graduate of Columbus Grove High School and has been a wildlife officer in Lucas County since 2012.

VonAlmen will enforce wildlife regulations, investigate allegations of waterway pollution, protect state property, and make arrests when necessary. He’ll also put together educational programs, perform fish and wildlife management duties and advise landowners on how to deal with wildlife on their property.

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3/10/15 – 5:13 A.M.

The McComb Police Department is getting a canine unit. The Courier reports an anonymous donation has made money available to pay for the dog. Village council members say the donor is providing between $25,000 and $30,000 to establish a trust. The village will pay for dog food and vet bills.

Councilman Robin Rader objected to the expense, saying that council hasn’t given pay raises to village employees this year. Councilman Gordon Myers said that issue could be taken up in July.

MORE: The Courier

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3/10/15 – 5:02 A.M.

If you’re interested in becoming a police dispatcher, an upcoming exam could help you reach that goal. The Findlay Civil Service Commission has scheduled testing in April. Applications are available now and can be picked up in the mayor’s office or in the Civil Service Commission office. You can also get the application on the city’s website.

The deadline to turn in the application is March 31. Tests will be given by appointment April 7 through April 9. For more information call (419)424-7112.

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3/10/15 – 4:50 P.M.

Last year was very good for area farmers. Numbers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture show Hancock County farmers set records for corn and soybean yields. An average of 193.3 bushels of corn and 54.2 bushels of soybean per acre set the bar high for future harvests.

The corn yield was nearly 7 percent higher than the average harvest. The soybean yield was almost 8 percent above average.

Hancock County farmers also harvested a record total of bushels of corn, with about 17.4 million bushels collected. That’s around 100,000 more than the previous record set in 2013.

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3/10/15 – 4:36 A.M.

Home Depot is hiring nearly 300 people for its distribution center in Wood County. A spokesman says applications are being accepted now and a hiring event will be held within the next couple of months. The distribution center will ship online purchases directly to customers across the Midwest.

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3/9/15 – 11:28 A.M.

A long line of Hancock County residents greeted Congressman Bob Latta in Findlay today. The Fifth District representative held local office hours Monday. Latta said many of the people he talked to are concerned about what they consider the overuse of executive orders from the President…

Audio: Bob Latta

Latta said he shares their concerns. He added he was very concerned that the U.S. Senate wouldn’t pass a Department of Homeland Security funding bill and take it to conference committee.

The House version of the DHS bill included language that denounced an executive order granting benefits to illegal aliens. The Senate version did not.

Latta talked to residents about also talked to them about what is on the horizon in the nation’s capital…

Audio: Bob Latta

Latta added that other issues being discussed are the budget, cyber security, and the potential of a nuclear Iran.

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