The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

State Rep. Michael Sheehy (D. Oregon) was recently given the “Legislator of the Year” award by the Ohio Farmer’s Union.

“Rep. Sheehy has worked closely with farmers in and around his district to better understand how fertilizers work on the land and what practices work best to keep nutrients in the soil and out of Lake Erie,” Ohio Farmers Union Spokesman Ron Sylvester told The Press last week. “His legislative agenda on the House Ag Committee has reflected a no-nonsense approach to agriculture and water quality.”

Sylvester in particular noted Sheehy’s legislative proposal last year to ban the spreading of livestock manure and chemical fertilizer on snow and frozen ground on farm fields in the Maumee River Watershed. Last year, it passed the House, but failed in the senate and expired on Dec. 31. It is expected to be reintroduced in the state legislature this year. Phosphorus, which fuels the algal blooms in Lake Erie, is in fertilizer and manure. When it is spread on snow and frozen ground, the phosphorus is at risk of running off of fields and into area watersheds during the spring thaw.

“During deliberations over H.B. 490 last year, Sheehy fought for an amendment to prohibit the spreading of manure on frozen or snow-covered ground in the Maumee River watershed. He also put forth amendments in committee that would have helped aggregate existing data on all farm fertilizers – including manure – from various state and local sources,” Sylvester said. “This data would not have individually identified farms or farmers, but would allow state officials to get a watershed view of potential nutrient run-off hotspots. While many House members talk about basing regulation on science, Rep. Sheehy was actually giving legislators a mechanism to collect the data they say that they want.”

Oregon is considering taking action against solicitors who are pressuring residents to drop their current electric or natural gas providers and sign up with them.

City Administrator Mike Beazley said the city has received several complaints from residents about sales representatives going door to door to find new customers. The solicitors are alleging their rates are lower than the one that was negotiated by the Northwest Ohio Aggregation Coalition, (NOAC), a coalition of local governments who bundle their utility customers into one buying group to negotiate the lowest electric and natural gas rates for their residents. Each governmental entity that is part of NOAC has its own representative on the NOAC board. Residents may opt-out of NOAC agreements and choose their own utility companies. If they decline to choose their own energy providers, residents, by default, are automatically signed up with the companies chosen by NOAC.

“We’re getting a lot of calls from some of our residents about the folks going door to door trying to sign up people for electricity and gas services,” said Beazley at Monday’s council meeting.

For first time in 40-plus years, Hetrick without animals

Wednesday night, Tiger Ridge Exotics founder Kenny Hetrick spent the night without an assortment of lions, tigers, and bears outside his home.

It was the first night in over 40 years that his exotic animals were gone from the Stony Ridge shelter.

Wednesday, Ohio Department of Agriculture officials removed six tigers, a lion, black leopard, liger, bobcat and Kodiak bear that Hetrick’s family said was in hibernation when the ODA officials arrived. A wolf hybrid was allowed to remain on the property because that species is not applicable to state law.

Wood County Sheriff Mark Washylyshyn said a search warrant and seizure warrant was executed earlier that morning giving the ODA access to the Tiger Ridge property. During the day, Hetrick watched on security cameras from inside his home and did not make an effort to intervene.

Oregon’s Recreation and Parks Committee will hold a meeting on February 9 at 7 p.m. in council chambers at the Oregon Municipal Building on Seaman Road to discuss senior services at the new senior center.

The meeting will “explain and review the plans for the new senior center facility,” Councilman Terry Reeves, chairman of the committee, said at a council meeting on Monday.

“Hopefully, we can get the message out and get our seniors in here who are calling, wanting to know when we’re going to get started, if we have the logistics done,” said Reeves.

The city bought a 13,500-square-foot building at 4350 Navarre Avenue for a centrally located senior center for residents. Although the building is in good shape, some upgrades were needed, including the installation of a kitchen to serve meals to seniors.

Revenue from a 0.5-mill five-year senior levy, which generates $210,000 to the city annually, will fund expanded services at the center.

Two area auto dealerships are undergoing extensive improvements to their facilities.

At Mathews Ford in Oregon, management has been planning a groundbreaking for a new body shop which will enable the dealership to service the latest innovations in the automaker’s product line, including the new F-150 pickup truck – a best seller for Ford.

The 2015 model features an aluminum body that reduces the vehicle’s weight by about 700 pounds.

“When we were talking about how to proceed with a new body shop, instead of just renovating and trying to adjust our old shop, we decided to build a new state-of-the-art body shop that’s going to be able to adapt to paint and repair this all new F-150. There are going to be other aluminum vehicles coming on line as well,” said Brian Shephard, sales manager.

The F-150 was chosen for the 2015 North American Truck/Utility of the Year award at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit last month.

Ford offered dealerships with body shops discounts on the estimated $30,000 to $50,000 in special equipment and training for the new F-150, Paul Massie, Ford collision marketing manager, told AutoWeek last year.

Vaccinations

Would fear of other medical problems dissuade you from having your child vaccinated for measles?
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