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Issue 2 a turning point for Ohio agriculture?
Written by Larry Limpf   
Friday, 25 September 2009 11:07

To its opponents, it represents a power grab by Ohio’s agri-business industry and an attempt to thwart efforts to improve treatment of animals on large factory farms.

To its supporters, it represents a comprehensive but flexible mechanism to address animal care issues.

“It” is Issue 2, a proposed amendment to the Ohio Constitution that will be on the Nov. 3 ballot.

According to the ballot language it would:
• Require the state to establish the Livestock Care Standards Board to prescribe standards for animal care and well-being “that endeavor to maintain food safety, encourage locally grown and raised food, and protect Ohio farms and families.”
• Authorize the bi-partisan board of 13 members to consider factors such as agricultural best management practices, bio-security, disease prevention, animal morbidity and mortality data, food safety practices, and the protection of local, affordable food supplies for consumers when establishing standards.
• Provide that the board is comprised of Ohio residents, including representatives of Ohio family farms, farming organizations, food safety experts, veterinarians, consumers, the dean of the agriculture department at an Ohio college, and a county humane society representative.
• Authorize the Ohio department of agriculture to enforce the standards established by the board, subject to the authority of the state legislature.

 
Fire district to answer levy questions
Written by Larry Limpf   
Friday, 25 September 2009 11:01

Rising costs, aging equipment, and increasing calls for service are behind the Allen-Clay Joint Fire District’s request for a replacement levy on the November ballot, says chief Bruce Moritz.

A public meeting to discuss the upcoming 5-mill levy will be held Oct. 8 at 6 p.m. at the district’s administration office, 3155 N. Genoa-Clay Center Rd.

The district – a consolidation of individual fire departments - was established in December, 1999 to service the villages of Clay Center and Genoa and Allen and Clay townships.

Voters approved a continuous levy to support the district but expenses have reached a point that the $585,000 in annual revenues generated by the levy don’t keep pace with rising expenses, said chief Moritz.

A replacement levy would be based on current real estate valuations instead of valuations from the year 2000, when the levy was approved by voters.

 
Charter coalition says Toledo harassing parents
Written by Kelly Kaczala   
Friday, 25 September 2009 10:56

The Northwest Ohio Charter School Coalition (NWOCSC) has accused Toledo Public Schools of writing threatening letters to parents of charter school students to appear at a Toledo Public School attendance hearing or have their case referred to the Lucas County Juvenile Court.

The letters, sent to some parents at Eagle Academy in East Toledo and Maritime Academy in Toledo, allege that their children are not enrolled in school. Maritime Academy says two parents received letters, while Eagle Academy said they were contacted by one parent who received a letter, and a second parent who was getting “harassing truancy phone calls from a nearby Toledo public school.

Mitchell Bean, executive director of Eagle Academy, said one parent received harassing phone calls from a nearby Toledo public middle school, even after explaining that the child is enrolled at a charter school. Bean says another parent received a letter, but apparently resolved the matter with TPS and destroyed the letter.

 
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The Current Weather for Millbury, OH USA

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