Ohio is offering a Vax-to-School incentive program to try and drive up vaccinations for Ohioans between the ages of 12 and 25. Governor DeWine announced the program yesterday that will offer five scholarships of $100,000 and 50 scholarships of $10,000. Ohio is seeing more younger patients including children sick and hospitalized due to the delta variant of the coronavirus.
On Tuesday, Governor DeWine held a news conference with Ohio Health Department Director, Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff. In the 24 hours prior to the news conference, 459 people had been admitted to the hospital for COVID-19. It was the highest daily increase since January and DeWine said the number of patients hospitalized under the age of 50 reached historic levels this week. While older Ohioans are mostly vaccinated, those under age 50 are not. The Ohio Department Health puts the rate of vaccination for this age group at 35%.
Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish has proposed permanently extending the life of a quarter-percent sales tax increase to pay for costs on a new jail. Former Commissioners Jimmy Dimora and Tim Hagan approved the quarter percent sales tax increase in 2007 for the convention center and Global Health Innovation Center-then known as the medical mart. It was due to expire in 2027.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio, the League of Women Voters and the A. Philip Randolph Institute have filed a lawsuit with the Ohio Supreme Court over new legislative maps. The groups contend that Republicans ignored anti-gerrymandering measures put into place by voters that were intended to produce fairer maps. The maps for Ohio's house and senate districts preserve the supermajority in both chambers for Republicans. The GOP says that since it has won 13 of the last 16 state elections it was entitled to draw maps with 54% to 81% Republican districts.
Both final candidates in the Cleveland mayoral race are picking up endorsements as the campaign heads toward the general election. Justin Bibb earned the most votes in primary held on September 14. Kevin Kelley finished second.
You can follow the race with our After Jackson: Cleveland's Next Mayor podcast. You will find it on iTunes, NPR One or Stitcher. We also bring you the episodes on Wednesdays on The Sound of Ideas.
Nick Castele, Senior Reporter, Ideastream Public Media
Ken Schneck, Editor, The Buckeye Flame
Jo Ingles, Reporter, Statehouse News Bureau, Ohio Public Radio/TV