The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

A member of a committee established to monitor the financial assistance being collected for Wood County victims of the June 5 tornado says there will likely be a need for the panel to continue meeting until the end of the year.

With some residents being without adequate insurance to replace property and others struggling to meet basic needs, the work of the Long Term Tornado Disaster Committee isn’t likely to conclude soon, said John Castellanos, a captain with the Lake Township Fire Department who is a representative of the department on the committee.

Representatives of the Red Cross, United Way, Catholic Charities, WSOS Community Action, area churches, local government, and the township’s emergency responders meet weekly to assess the on-going efforts to help victims financially.

“The committee was set up to assist all the victims of Wood County. I think there will be a need for another six months or so with some people being homeless or without insurance. We want to make sure people realize 100 percent of the money you send in goes where it’s supposed to go,” Capt. Castellanos said, adding committee members are also emphasizing there is no administrative cost siphoning  donation money.

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Residents of the Village of Millbury and Lake Township received an update Wednesday on recovery services available to them in the wake of the June 5 tornado responsible for the deaths of six people and millions of dollars in property damage in their community.

Millbury Mayor Mike Timmons said the village and township are waiving zoning permit fees for storm-related reconstruction projects and the Wood County Building Inspection Department plans to open a satellite office in the township to process building permits.

Residents who need to raze foundations should contact the Northwestern Water and Sewer District which will sever water lines so they don’t get crushed during a demolition.

Officials  at the meeting, held at the Millbury Fireman’s Recreation Center, said there were several  services available:

• Mike Sibbersen, Wood County Auditor, reminded residents with damages to fill out forms to adjust the appraised property valuations for next year’s taxes. Affected residents should contact Brian Jones at the auditor’s office, (419) 354-9174.

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The physical and human damage from the June 5 tornadoes that struck

pic-urbanowski
      Elizabeth Urbanowski

northwest Ohio and Lake Township was, in a word, extreme.

Six people died as a result, including 4-year old Hayden Walters and his parents Mary and Ryan, whose Millbury home was destroyed; Bailey Bowman, who died as she and her boyfriend tried to make it inside the Lake Township administration building to escape the tornado coming at them; Kathleen Hammitt, a Woodville wife and minister in training who died as her vehicle was tossed like a Matchbox toy on SR 795; and Ted Kranz, the father of the Lake High Class of 2010 valedictorian.

Hours before the 2010 seniors were to graduate June 6 at Lake High, the school complex at SR 795 and Lemoyne Road was among the structures heavily damaged by the monster EF4 twister.

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Repairs to Lake Elementary and Middle schools won’t delay the opening of the schools for the 2010-11 school year, according to Tim Krugh, president of the Lake Board of Education, who says the board has reached agreement with the district’s insurer for roof repairs to both buildings.

The middle and elementary schools were damaged in a June 5 tornado that also destroyed the nearby high school building.

The school board is also close to deciding on how to proceed with replacing the damaged cafeteria and boilers for the middle school.

“Both of these buildings will be ready for school come late August,” Krugh said. “That’s our goal and we think it’s realistic. Some of the roof work may be done later but the buildings themselves will be ready to go. That work has been authorized and we’re working on the details for getting the boilers at the middle school operating. The heat we may not need until October, hopefully. But we hope to have the cafeteria running by the time school starts. We’re looking at a permanent structure for the cafeteria rather than a temporary structure because the costs may not be a whole lot more.”

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Red Cross donates funds to the United Way
The American Red Cross Greater Toledo Area Chapter has released approximately $35,000 to United Way of Greater Toledo’s long-term storm recovery fund.

The funds were originally donated to the Red Cross to help respond to relief efforts associated with the tornadoes that swept through Northwest Ohio the weekend of June 5.

“The Red Cross received such an outpouring of good will from the community that we’ve covered our expenses and want to pass on that generosity,” said Tim Yenrick, regional director of the American Red Cross. “This money will help families with long-term counseling, legal services and individual needs that have yet to be met.”

Several weeks ago, a long-term recovery committee made up of social service agencies and emergency personnel formed in Wood County. The group voted United Way to administer funds for long-term efforts.

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$15 Hourly wage

The "Fight for $15" campaign proposes a $15/hour wage for fast food workers. Do you agree?
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