Collaborative Effort to Sample for Grass Carp in the Sandusky and Maumee Rivers
Ohio Department of Natural Resources
June 19, 2018
COLUMBUS, OH – Fisheries biologists from multiple agencies recently conducted a project on the Sandusky and Maumee rivers to assess their ability to capture grass carp, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).
Crews from the ODNR Division of Wildlife worked with Michigan DNR; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada; Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry; Minnesota DNR; Great Lakes Fishery Commission; The Nature Conservancy; U.S. Geological Survey; Quebec Ministry of Forest, Wildlife, and Parks; New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; Michigan State University; The Ohio State University; and the University of Toledo for three days of sampling looking for grass carp.
The crews sampled June 12-14 and included the coordinated use of multiple electrofishing vessels and nets to collect adult and juvenile carp in the Sandusky and Maumee rivers. Over the three days, 30 grass carp were collected, 27 from the Sandusky River and three from the Maumee River, using refined sampling techniques to collect grass carp for research and removal. Although present in the system, grass carp populations are considered to be low, and this week’s action reinforces this conclusion.
This week’s planned action is part of continuing efforts to remove invasive grass carp, assess grass carp capture techniques and increase information on grass carp populations in the Sandusky and Maumee rivers. This year’s planned response incorporated results from the 2017 coordinated unified response that tested grass carp collection strategies and the potential to control this species in the basin. This is one part of a structured and measured approach to better understand and address grass carp in Lake Erie.
The increased knowledge of grass carp in western Lake Erie gained through this research allows natural resource agencies, working through the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, to collaboratively develop science-based management approaches and evaluate the effectiveness of different actions and strategies.
The grass carp is an invasive species in the Great Lakes region and is one of four species commonly identified as Asian carp. All species of Asian carp do not have the same negative ecological effects. Grass carp present significantly different risks to the Lake Erie ecosystem compared to highly invasive bighead carp and silver carp.
An adult grass carp commonly weighs more than 20 pounds and can grow up to 48 inches long. The fish are primarily herbivorous, consuming large quantities of aquatic vegetation, and affect fish communities primarily through habitat modification.
Grass carp were actively stocked in private ponds in many states as early as the 1970s, and some have escaped. Grass carp have been detected in Lake Erie since the mid-1980s. Recent efforts to collect fish have resulted in low catch rates, indicating that fish are present in low densities. There is currently no evidence of negative ecological or economic impacts to the Lake Erie ecosystem attributed to grass carp.
ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.
Secretary Husted Addresses Elections Officials at 2018 Summer Conference
Tuesday, June 19, 2018
COLUMBUS – Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted today delivered the opening remarks at the 2018 Ohio Secretary of State Summer Conference held in Columbus, Ohio. Addressing the group of more than 500 elections officials gathered from around the state, Secretary Husted reminded those in attendance of all the work that has been done to improve elections in Ohio since 2011 and announced new initiatives aimed at further enhancing efforts to bolster election security preparedness in the Buckeye State.
“Ohio is a leader in elections administration because officials at every level work together to make it easier to vote and harder to cheat in our state,” Secretary Husted said. “I am proud of the work that’s been done and grateful to the hardworking local elections officials for being dedicated partners in those efforts.”
As noted by Secretary Husted, making it easy to vote and hard to cheat has been a top priority for his administration. Ohio has had many successes on that front, some of which include:
Online Voter Registration: To date, more than 26,000 people have registered online.
Online Change of Address: More than 525,000 people have updated their registration online.
Absentee Voting: First secretary of state to mail absentee ballot applications to voters, which have been sent out for general elections in 2012, 2014, and 2016, and will be sent out for this year’s general election. Established uniform days and hours for in-person absentee voting to ensure all voters have equal access to the ballot no matter where they live and giving them more than 200 hours to cast a ballot in person in every election.
Voter Roll Maintenance: To date, more than 662,000 deceased voters have been removed; more than 1.84 million duplicate registrations have been resolved; and the percentage of voter registrations with complete information is over 90 percent – up from just 20 percent in January 2011.
Technological Innovation: Secured $12.7 million in funding for electronic pollbooks, which have made elections simpler for both voters and the staff and volunteers who assist them on Election Day. Working with lawmakers to get legislation passed that will provide nearly $115 million for the purchase of new voting machines statewide.
Information Sharing: Improved information among state agencies, like the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, to bring state in full compliance with the National Voting Rights Act of 1993 for the first time. Partnered with Pew’s Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC), which among other things has enabled state elections officials to contact nearly 1.8 million eligible, but unregistered Ohioans and encourage them to become voters.
Voter Fraud: Conducted first ever statewide voter fraud review, identifying 820 voter irregularities and referring 201 to law enforcement to date. Also the first administration to review the voter rolls to identify non-citizens, identifying 821 non-citizens registered to vote and referring 126 to law enforcement to date.
Poll Worker Recruitment & Training: Launched the Day for Democracy initiative to help county boards of elections recruit qualified poll workers. To date, nearly 20,000 poll workers have signed up through the secretary of state’s website and more than $2.3 million in training funds have been provided to county boards by the secretary of state’s office.
Secretary Husted has implemented these reforms to Ohio’s elections while also maintaining fiscal responsibility and efficiency. In fact, since becoming the state’s chief elections official in 2011, Secretary Husted has reduced the staff needed to operate his office by roughly 40 percent and payroll costs at the Secretary of State’s Office are at the lowest level in 10 years. In his first term alone, he cut spending by $14.5 million, a 16 percent reduction when compared to the previous administration at a time when state spending increased 17 percent. He also eliminated the need for any tax dollars to run his office for the last two years of his term. Secretary Husted’s request is saving taxpayers nearly $5 million over fiscal years 2018 and 2019.
While there have been several notable accomplishments, Secretary Husted also made clear that their work is not over. There is a special election scheduled for August 7 and the general election is set for November 6.
To that end, Secretary Husted announced new initiatives aimed at further bolstering the cybersecurity preparedness of the state’s elections infrastructure.
“When it comes to elections cybersecurity readiness, we must ensure that Ohio’s elections officials are not only ready for threats we’re facing today, but that they are also prepared for what may come tomorrow,” Secretary Husted. “We want voters to have confidence in the integrity of the state’s system of elections and that only happens if we remain vigilant and proactive.”
Election Security Workshops
The Ohio Secretary of State’s Office will host five election security workshops across the state this summer for boards of elections. These training sessions are designed to provide board staff with an opportunity to evaluate their readiness to deal with a cyber threat, asses their ability to perform tasks critical to procedural standards, and determine the effectiveness of existing practices and procedures in place for responding to cybersecurity threats. During these events, board staff will participate in a mock election cycle that will mirror real world conditions that will force participants to absorb information, make decisions and execute their plans.
HAVA II Funding
Recently, the state was awarded $12.1 million in federal funding through the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). The funding will be used to further enhance cybersecurity preparedness among all 88 county boards of elections by: improving information sharing; conducting threat assessments; ensuring security efforts meet industry standards; and, upgrading hardware and software. Secretary Husted will issue a directive at a later date with more details for counties.
Muhammad Ali’s Michigan Farm with Boxing Ring
Top Ten Real Estate News
June 19, 2018
Muhammad Ali’s longtime Michigan farm with boxing ring and much more is for sale and featured this week at TopTenRealEstateDeals.com. Photos with listing agent permission available for media use at: http://bit.ly/toptenmedia
“Muhammad Ali’s Michigan Farm”
In 1975, almost ten years before Muhammad Ali was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, he bought an 81-acre property in Berrien Springs, Michigan, insulated from city noise and crowds by the St. James River which surrounds the lush green fields. It was where he spent his summers and a portion of his retirement years until his Parkinson’s became more advanced. According to boxing experts, Ali was on the wrong end of over 200,000 punches during his career, contributing to the Parkinson’s. In 2006, he and his wife Lonnie, moved to Arizona. He succumbed to the disease in 2016 and his widow is now selling the St. James River property.
Born as Cassius Clay, he grew up in Louisville, Kentucky during the 1950’s Jim Crow era where African Americans had few opportunities. The family was not destitute, but fairly middle class within Louisville’s black community. A twist of fate came when he was 12-years-old that changed his life forever when he hurriedly parked his bike and ran inside a building for protection from a rainstorm. When he came out, his bike had been stolen. He found a policeman to tell and said he wanted to fight the thief. The policeman asked him if he knew how to fight, and Cassius realized he didn’t. The policeman said, “Come with me.” He introduced Cassius to a police-sponsored youth boxing club where he was amazed to see blacks and whites fighting each other as though color segregation didn’t matter. That’s when he saw his future which led to Olympic Gold and one of the all-time boxing champions. Ali was known for being verbose as much as his boxing skill, but his charm was what won people over. He loved attention and loved people and found boxing to fill all his needs. He did what he loved and became one of the most important athletes of the 20th century.
Muhammad Ali’s farm in southwestern Michigan, near Indiana, was the place where he and his family could relax away from the fame. The path of the river, enclosing three sides of the property, ensured privacy from neighbors and onlookers as did the gated entry. By 1975, Ali could afford to design it exactly the way he wanted and he added buildings customized to his needs which also have universal appeal. Structures on the property include the main house, carriage house, pool, gym, garages, barns and office epicenter. The elaborate gym has the boxing ring in the center, exercise equipment, a steam room, baths, massage room, laundry and spa. A few steps outside the gym’s French doors is a full-size basketball court. Next door to the gym is the office epicenter with his private office, conference area, private bath, mail room, vault, kitchen, loading dock and several other offices and a basement. There are two separate climate-controlled garages, each accommodating over five cars, RVs and space for equipment. The two houses, main house and carriage house for guests, are on either side of the pool terrace, which includes a fully-equipped outdoor kitchen, bath house, sound system and pergola. The main house has four bedrooms, living and family rooms and kitchen with large pantry and a three-car, climate-controlled garage. The carriage guest house also has a sun room and deck overlooking the pond and fountain by the river. Grounds are lushly landscaped with fire pit and a waterfall rock garden.
Muhammad Ali’s pastoral Michigan home with every amenity to make a world champion boxer happy in his time off, is now for sale at a very specific price. The last two numbers represent Ali’s 37 career knockouts – $2,895,037. The listing agent is Tim Mitchell of Cressy & Everett Real Estate, Dowagiac, Michigan.
Visit TopTenRealEstateDeals.com for more historic, spectacular and celebrity homes and real estate news.
Secretary Husted Honors Outstanding Elections Officials, Presents Awards
Tuesday, June 19, 2018
COLUMBUS – Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted today honored elections officials from around Ohio for their efforts in 2017. Secretary Husted announced the 2018 Elections Officials of the Year and recognized the boards of elections receiving Bright I.D.E.A. (Innovative Developments in Election Administration) awards.
“Ohio is fortunate to have some of the most dedicated and hardworking elections officials in the country,” Secretary Husted said. “The individuals recognized today are among some of the best and lead by example.”
The presentations were made at the 2018 Ohio Secretary of State Summer Conference in Columbus, Ohio.
Elections Official of the Year Award Winners
The Elections Official of the Year awards are given to one Democrat and one Republican in recognition of their notable, positive contributions to the profession of elections administration in their county and the State of Ohio.
The Democrat Ohio Election Official of the Year Award was presented to Sharon Locke who currently serves as the Director of the Huron County Board of Elections. Ms. Locke leads by example in the office and is committed to running all elections with efficiency and accuracy. This has been proven by her leadership during the process of receiving funding for new voting machines and her drive in implementing electronic pollbooks.
The Republican Ohio Election Official of the Year Award was presented to Jim Ehrman who currently serves as the Director of the Seneca County Board of Elections. Since becoming director, Mr. Ehrman has overseen the creation of a balanced budget and improved overall financial stewardship. Additionally, he took the lead in securing a larger and updated office space for the Seneca County Board of Elections.
Bright I.D.E.A. Awards
The Bright I.D.E.A. awards recognize county boards of elections for the development of an innovation that was successfully put into practice, resulted in a measured improvement in the administration of elections, and serves as a good example of methods for management, policy and procedure improvement.
Bright I.D.E.A. Award Recipient: Montgomery County Board of Elections
For their Voting Location Manager Lanyard
The Montgomery County Board of Elections created lanyards for Voting Location Managers to wear around their neck with step-by-step instructions on how to open and close a polling location. They also included the identification requirements and a barrel key to make the task of opening and closing their polling location more expeditious.
Bright I.D.E.A. Award Recipient: Franklin County Board of Elections
For their Partnering for Democracy program
The Franklin County Board of Elections’ Partnering for Democracy initiative benefits students with disabilities by establishing an ongoing collaboration between the board and a local school district. The board of elections provides students the opportunity to be on the frontlines of democracy by educating them about the voting process before preparing them to serve as poll workers on Election Day.
Leland: GOP’s political favor trading for “Stand Your Ground” will cost Ohioans
JUNE 19, 2018
COLUMBUS— State Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus) issued the following statement in response to House Speaker Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell) today telling reporters the House would likely vote on extremist “stand your ground” legislation, House Bill 228, next week:
“Now we know what Rep. Smith had to promise to get his paltry 44 votes for Speaker. Sadly, as a result, Ohioans will be less safe and local communities will be unable to protect their citizens from gun violence. As The Who said, ‘meet the new boss, same as the old boss.’”
Leland, the lead Democrat on the House Federalism Committee, has spoken out against restrictions in the bill that will prevent local communities from passing gun safety laws. The Columbus lawmaker is encouraging citizens to contact Republican legislators using the following link to voice their opposition to a full House vote on the legislation: http://www.ohiohouse.gov/members/member-directory
Ohio State Bar Foundation Announces Spring Grant Recipients
COLUMBUS, OH (June 19, 2018)— The Ohio State Bar Foundation is pleased to announce it has awarded a total of $325,458 to eleven unique projects across Ohio. Each project fulfills the OSBF mission of promoting the pursuit of justice and public understanding of the rule of law.
$100,000 to the Ohio Center for Law-Related Education (OCLRE) to support their student-led programs including Ohio Mock Trial, Ohio Moot Court, We the People and professional development programs for participating teachers.
$60,000 to the Ohio State Bar Association for their Electronic Interactive Trial Advocacy Training (EITAT) program, which uses skill-based training techniques and is designed to assist new lawyers in developing fundamental practice skills and necessary trial skills to become competent trial advocates.
$40,000 to the Ohio State Bar Association for their Non-Metro Practice Clerkship Pilot program, which aims to attract new lawyers to non-metro practice by connecting them with experienced practitioners. This program will provide training and mentoring for lawyers to help with the transition from an academic environment to practice and prepare them for legal services in small and non-metro communities.
$40,000 to the Ohio Poverty Law Center (OPLC), an affiliate of Ohio State Legal Services Association, to raise awareness about Ohio’s Certificate of Qualifications for Employment (CQE). OPLC will develop a toolkit to use in statewide presentations and while working with local reentry coalitions, law schools, business leaders and employer associations.
$39,410 to Ohio Family Care Association for their “Resourcing Vulnerable Families” Project, which aims to provide information, education, resources and service referrals to Ohio families caring for children of child welfare systems.
$15,000 to Health Policy Institute of Ohio for phase three of their Addiction Evidence Project, specifically the creation of a resource page, policy inventory and policy scorecard regarding criminal justice reform, law enforcement and children services. In its entirety, this project will work to address addiction through policy and practice.
$10,000 to Homes on the Hill to support the expansion of their Landlord Engagement Action Network (LEAN) program to incorporate affordable housing organizations across the state.
$8,500 to Operation Legal Help Ohio for their initiative to expand Veterans’ Treatment Courts (VTCs) in every county and large municipality in the state, providing judiciary training on the benefits of VTCs, implementation and management of them.
$5,348 to Catholic Charities of Southwestern Ohio to support expansion of “Know Your Rights” presentations by Immigration Legal Services to clients during English as a Second Language (ESL) and cultural orientation classes. Topics will include information about interacting with law enforcement and civic and citizenship information.
$5,000 to Scranton Road Ministries C.D.C. to support Scranton Legal Clinic’s CLE Project, which will provide courses for prospective volunteer attorneys about best practices for pro bono assistance to underserved populations. Topics will address legal concerns including Elder Law, Custody/Visitation, and Creditor/Debtor Law.
$2,200 to Dominican Literacy Center, a ministry of the Dominican Sisters of Peace, to support bi-lingual legal education for Hispanic/Latino immigrants about their legal rights in a variety of situations and promote the pursuit of citizenship among undocumented immigrants.
Proposals are considered by the Foundation’s Trustees twice each year. The deadline for submitting grant applications for 2018 fall consideration is August 15 at 5:00 p.m. Please visit our website ww.osbf.org for additional guidelines or contact our Project Coordinator, Tiffany Patterson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 614.487.4483.
About the Ohio State Bar Foundation
The Ohio State Bar Foundation is a 501(c) (3) grantmaking organization that works to advance the law and build a better justice system. We believe our democracy works better when people understand the law and have fair and equal access to justice. For more information about the Ohio State Bar Foundation, please visit www.osbf.org.
Ohio State dissolves Sexual Civility and Empowerment unit
June 19, 2018
National expert engaged to develop leading model to serve students
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State University announced today that it is dissolving its Sexual Civility and Empowerment (SCE) unit based on an external review. The university has engaged nationally recognized experts Gina Maisto Smith and Leslie M. Gomez from the Philadelphia-based law firm Cozen O’Connor to help create a redesigned, best-in-class model to support victims of sexual assault, and conduct a thorough evaluation of the broader Title IX program.
SCE was suspended in February 2018 amid concerns that it was not properly supporting victims and was mismanaged. An external review was underway at that time. The review, received on May 28, indicated that SCE had failed to properly document and report information regarding some sexual assault complaints by students.
Cozen O’Connor’s work includes two objectives. First, they will work with Ohio State to develop a new student-support program. Its goal will be to emulate national best practices in this evolving and complex arena. The university will have the changes in place before the beginning of the fall semester. Second, they will assess compliance and recommend enhancements to the university’s policies, procedures and practices related to sexual- and gender-based harassment and violence under federal law.
“Ohio State will do all that we can to be a national leader in preventing and responding to sexual misconduct,” said President Michael V. Drake. “Our campuses must be safe places for all members of our community to learn, work and grow. We remain steadfastly and unwaveringly committed to this goal.”
“Providing critical support for students, faculty and staff while maintaining compliance with state and federal standards is an evolving, complex challenge,” said Maisto Smith of Cozen O’Connor’s Institutional Response Group.
The finding that SCE may have failed to comply adequately with policy requirements covers a range of incidents; some appear to have occurred off campus or even in other cities; others occurred days, months or years before the survivor was enrolled at the university. But other incidents were not reported to police or to the university in a timely fashion. Ohio State policy requires all employees to report incidents of sexual assault — and state and federal laws mandate reporting of specific crimes on or near university campuses, including sexual assault.
The university has engaged a team of independent auditing specialists to assist with an extensive, continuing review of SCE files to ensure that Ohio State has fulfilled its obligations to report certain offenses to law enforcement, federal regulators and other authorities.
Ohio State began examining SCE in February 2016 with a human resources review through the Office of Student Life. A pair of subsequent independent reviews focused on structural and reporting issues. Each review recommended further investigation. The May 28 review offered additional information that led to the university’s decision to dissolve SCE.
These reviews contain confidential information that, if released, would compromise student privacy, victim privacy and attorney-client privilege. Ohio State did release today nearly 200 pages of other records, including employee personnel files and written complaints.
The records reveal several complaints, including allegations from an outside agency that call into question standards of care and victim support at SCE. The records also include evidence of the strong support SCE received from scores of students who saw great value in its services. Its suspension was met with a letter of support signed by 58 student organizations and a resolution passed by the campus-wide Undergraduate Student Government. The university continues to investigate these and other matters and will reach out to students who have been in contact with SCE to ensure that they have received all necessary support services.
SCE was opened in 2015, the year Ohio State launched a comprehensive prevention and support effort to combat sexual misconduct and relationship violence and ensure fairness in the process used to review allegations. This larger effort, involving students, faculty and staff, remains in place. The university maintains an extensive system for providing student support and services, including the Counseling and Consultation Service, which offers individual and group mental health services, including trauma response; the Student Advocacy Center, which helps students access university resources and navigate processes; the Student Wellness Center, offering prevention and education programming; and Student Health Services, offering medical confidentiality and support.
Additionally, the Sexual Assault Response Network of Central Ohio (SARNCO) is a confidential resource and maintains a 24-hour crisis hotline. The Mount Carmel Crime and Trauma Assistance Program provides specialized professional assistance to victims of crime and trauma.
“This is an immensely important issue, and Ohio State is committed to having the very best systems in place to support and protect our students, faculty and staff,” said Bruce A. McPheron, executive vice president and provost.