10/21/14 – 1:43 P.M. The Hancock County Auditor is trying to clear up some confusion among farmers in Hancock County. Charity Rauschenberg says while several area counties are having their CAUV’s reassessed this year, Hancock County is not… Audio: Charity Rauschenberg CAUV stands for Current Agriculture Use Values. Those rates have been increasing across the state. 41 of Ohio’s counties are being reassessed this year. Hancock County won’t be reassessed until 2016.
10/21/14 – 1:33 A.M. The Hancock County Commissioners cleared the way to finance some big projects in 2015 today… Audio: Brian Robertson The industrial park Commissioner Brian Robertson was referring to is where the McClane development is going in on Industrial Drive. More than $2.5 million in bonds will fund the development projects. The money will mostly go towards ditch and river maintenance, as well as paying for infrastructure on Distribution Drive. Hancock County Commissioner Brian Robertson says that doesn’t mean taxpayers are ultimately on the hook for the debt though. Assessments will pay for the work on the waterways, and a TIF will pay for the Distribution Drive work… Audio: Brian Robertson The bonds will also fund some of the construction costs of the new Hancock County Engineer’s Garage.
10/21/14 – 1:09 A.M. More details have been released on a Bluffton bank robbery and police chase from this morning. The Bluffton Police Department reports that just before 9 a.m., a man later identified as 43-year-old Brian Matheny of East Jordan, Michigan, held up the Chase Bank on Main Street. Matheny allegedly threatened an explosion if his demands weren’t met. A teller complied, and Matheny fled the scene. His white SUV was located in the northbound lanes of I-75 a short time later. Matheny attempted to run from police, but eventually turned off the interstate on State Route 12 in Findlay. That’s where he exited his SUV, and set himself on fire. State troopers quickly extinguished the flames, which only caused superficial injuries to Matheny. He was treated at Blanchard Valley Hospital and then taken to the Allen County Sheriff’s Office. Gallery:
10/21/14 – 12:20 P.M. Home sales in Hancock County remain down for the year. The Ohio Association of Realtors released numbers through three-quarters of 2014 today, and the number of homes sold is down 9.1 percent. Across the state, home sales are down 3.5 percent compared to 2013 numbers. There is good news if you’re trying to sell your home. The average sale price in Hancock County is up 4.5 percent compared to 2013. The average price is a little more than $127,000 through nine months of the year.
10/21/14 – 12:07 P.M. Two area counties now have unemployment rates below 4 percent. September numbers from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services show Hancock County’s jobless rate has fallen to 3.8 percent, while Putnam County’s rate is down to 3.9 All counties in the region saw unemployment at or below 5 percent last month. Wyandot County’s jobless rate was at 4.4 percent, Henry County checked in at 4.4, and Wood, Wyandot, and Seneca Counties were all at 4.6 percent. Allen County had the highest unemployment rate at 5 percent last month.
10/21/14 – 11:11 A.M. A Bluffton bank robbery suspect was captured in Findlay today after he attempted to light himself on fire. The State Highway Patrol reports a bank in Bluffton was robbed around 9 a.m. The suspect was later spotted in a white SUV driving north on I-75 toward Findlay. The man exited the interstate at State Route 12 in Findlay. When the suspect stepped out of the SUV, he reportedly tried to light himself on fire. State troopers extinguished the flames. The suspect was taken to Blanchard Valley Hospital for treatment. No other details are available.
Fostoria police officers were led on a chase through the city early Monday morning. The Fostoria Police Department reports the incident started when an officer tried to pull a man over for a moving violation in the 600 block of Spruce Street just before 3 a.m. The suspect took off, driving west on Culbertson, through a parking lot, and crossing North Countyline Street. The driver nearly lost control several times, and finally came to a stop at Nye’s Trailer Park. The suspect then took off on foot and has not been arrested. However, Police Chief Keith Loreno says officers know the identity of the man and have filed a warrant for his arrest.
10/21/14 – 5:30 A.M. We continue our preview of the upcoming November election today with a look at another of the candidates running for the 83rd Ohio House district seat. Incumbent Robert Sprague says a lot of work has been done to bring jobs back to this area, but there’s still more work to do.. Audio: Robert Sprague Sprague says the reason the jobs aren’t being filled is because there is a skills gap. He believes the government can help fill that gap by aligning the education system to help train skilled workers that have specialized certifications. Sprague says one thing he wants to continue working on is tackling prescription drug abuse… Audio: Robert Sprague Sprague says he’s also supported measures that end doctor shopping for prescription medications.
10/21/14 – 5:26 A.M. The Fostoria school district is looking at a better financial picture. The Review-Times reports Treasurer Norm Elchert talked about finances during Monday’s school board meeting. Elchert says the district should see revenues of more than $633,000 for fiscal year 2015. Revenue should top more than $384,000 for fiscal 2016. Deficit spending has gone down as well. The school spent $2 million more than it brought in for fiscal year 2013. For this fiscal year that’s been cut to a little more than $282,000. Projections for the future show a slight budget surplus for the next fiscal year. MORE: Review-Times
10/21/14 – 5:16 A.M. The Putnam County Relay for Life will make some changes in 2014. The Putnam County Sentinel reports the event will be shortened to 12 hours next year. Event chairperson Julie Johnson tells the newspaper that only a few people were staying all night during the 18-hour event. That meant fewer people were around for the closing ceremonies. With that in mind, the Putnam County relay will run from 11 a.m. until 11 p.m. on Saturday June 6. The American Cancer Society now allows relay events to be 6, 12, 18, or 24-hours. In the past only the 18 and 24-hour options were available. MORE: Putnam County Sentinel
10/21/14 – 5:07 A.M. The murder trial Montre Robinson continued in Findlay Monday. The Courier reports a detective who investigated the shooting death of Joe Gutierrez testified for three hours. Detective Sgt. Justin Hendren said Robinson was identified as a suspect in the shooting thanks to an anonymous tip. Officers visited Robinson’s home and saw he and Ralph Harris III loading a car with bags. From there, they followed the car to the Roadway Inn on Broad Avenue where both Harris and Robinson were arrested. Hendren said Robinson told them where the car that was allegedly used in the shooting was. Inside the car investigators say they found shell casings that were similar to those found in the intersection where Gutierrez was killed. Robinson is accused of driving the car the shots were fired from. Testimony is expected to continue today. MORE: The Courier
10/20/14 – 11:54 A.M. The Findlay Digital Academy has been named one of the top charter schools in the state. The school was one of four to be named a Charter School of the Year during a conference last week. It’s the first time the online school has received the award. There are more than 380 charter schools in Ohio. Findlay Digital Academy is an online, dropout-recovery school sponsored by Findlay City Schools. It allows students in grades 9-12 to get their education through online instruction. The academy also employs tutors who meet with the students on an individual basis.
10/20/14 – 11:44 A.M. A worker for the city of Findlay was injured in a hit-and-run crash while on the job last Friday. The Findlay Police Department says the incident happened at the intersection of North Main Street and East Pine Avenue around 10 a.m. 53-year-old George Elston was setting up cones at the intersection when he was hit by a black pickup truck. The driver fled the scene. Elston was taken to Blanchard Valley Hospital for treatment and was said to have no visible injuries. The truck that him is described as a mid-90’s Chevrolet.
10/20/14 – 10:27 A.M. If you weren’t’ already exercising patience around school buses, this would be a good week to learn some. The State Highway Patrol is conducting an enforcement blitz around school zones and buses as part of National School Bus Safety Week. Troopers will also be riding with school kids, watching for drivers who are passing stopped buses. Ohio law requires you to stop at least 10 feet from a bus with its red flashing lights on. More than 4,000 drivers have been cited in the state in the last three years for violating that rule while a bus was loading or unloading children.
10/20/14 – 10:17 A.M. The EPA is asking you to test your home for radon this week. As part of National Radon Action Week the agency says homeowners should be aware of the danger the gas presents. Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among nonsmokers, and the Surgeon General says one in 15 American homes has high levels of the gas. Radon test kits are cheap, and easily found in stores. The average price for the test kit is a little more than $10. MORE: RadonWeek.org