News Briefs Week of 8/03/20

Staff writer

Libraries open
The Harris-Elmore Public and its branch in Genoa is open to the public. Hours are:
• Monday – 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
• Tuesday – 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
• Wednesday – 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
• Thursday – 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
• Friday – 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
• Saturday – 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
• Sunday – Closed.
The following rules and restrictions are temporarily in place:
• Everyone over the age of 2 who enters the building is required to wear a face covering. Disposable masks will be provided for those who don’t have one. Those who are unable to wear a face covering are encouraged to take advantage of the library’s curbside services.
• Only the parking lot entrance to both libraries will be open during this time.
• The number of patrons permitted in the library at one time is 20 in Genoa and 15 plus four additional in local history in Elmore.
• Patrons are asked to limit visits to one hour.
• No more than four patrons can be in the Local History Room at one time.
• Public computer usage is limited to 30 minutes. One-on-one tutorials and detailed assistance are not available at this time.
• Children under the age of 16 will not be permitted in the library without an adult. This is a temporary measure to help with social distancing.
• Furniture has been moved/removed to accommodate social distancing.
• Children's toys, AWE computers and video gaming consoles have been temporarily removed.
• Please maintain 6 feet of social distancing while inside the library at all times. Follow all marked areas while waiting in line at the circulation desk.
• Restrooms and water fountains are temporarily closed to the public.
• Meeting rooms are closed until further notice. Programs will take place virtually for the time being. Study rooms are open for one person at a time.
• Drop all library materials in the drop box. Do not bring them into the library to hand in to staff. The staff quarantines all materials for three days before putting them back into circulation. The library is now fine free (except hotspots), so patrons needn’t worry about late fees.
• Donations of books or other materials are not being accepted at this time.
Curbside service is still being offered for patrons who feel uncomfortable coming into the library or for those who are unable to wear face coverings. The outside table is gone, but patrons may still call the library; use the online chat feature or fill out the curbside services online form ( Requested items will be delivered to patrons’ vehicles in the parking lot.
For more details, call the Elmore Library at 419-862-2482 or the Genoa Branch at 419-855-3380 or visit

Birchard library
branches open
All four locations of the Birchard Public Library – Fremont, Gibsonburg, Woodville and Green Springs – are open with restrictions for the convenience and safety of customers. Curbside services are offered for anyone who prefers not to enter the library buildings.
Special hours are offered for library users who are at higher risk Thursdays from 9-10 a.m. at the Fremont location, and Tuesdays from 9-10 a.m. at Gibsonburg, Woodville and Green Springs.
All library staff members wear masks, and masks are strongly encouraged for all library users. Meeting rooms are not available at this time. Anyone under age 16 must be accompanied by an adult during the library visit, and library visits are limited to one hour.
A full list of reopening restrictions is posted online at

New health commissioner
Benjamin Robison has been appointed as Wood County Health Commissioner.
Robison has roots in Bowling Green and spent the last five years leading emergency planning and response efforts for the Ohio Department of Health. He was appointed health commissioner during a special meeting Tuesday of the Wood County Board of Health.
Robison graduated from Bowling Green High School and Bowling Green State University. He earned a master’s degree in Public Health Administration from the Northwest Ohio Consortium for Public Health. He has worked in emergency preparedness and public health for more than 10 years.
Robison is taking over the role of health commissioner that was previously held by Ben Batey, who is now serving as the Chief Health Officer for Bowling Green State University. Wood County Health Department and BGSU have formed a partnership that will allow the two agencies to work together.

Helping Hands
Shoe Fest Aug. 1
Helping Hands of St. Louis 7th Annual Shoe Fest, set for Saturday, Aug. 1, is taking a new turn this year as a drive-up, walk-up event because of COVID-19.
Volunteers will distribute new shoes, school supplies and hygiene kits from 9 a.m.-noon at Helping Hands of St. Louis, 443 Sixth St.
Guests in vehicles will line-up on Euclid, entering off of Front Street, then turn right onto Sixth Street. Sixth Street will be one-way from Euclid to Starr during this event, as two lanes of cars approach Helping Hands of St. Louis to pick up new shoes and school supplies. Walk-up guests will be served in the parking lot across the street from the Helping Hands of St. Louis box truck.
Masks and social distancing are required of all guests served.
“Each year we’ve provided new shoes and school supplies to hundreds of school-age children,” said Sue Shrewsbery, director of Helping Hands of St. Louis. “This year, we have 500 pairs of new shoes to give away, toddler sizes 10 up to youth sizes 8. We focus on East Toledo families, but no child will be turned away, if we have their size shoe.”
Children do not need to be present, but parents should double-check their children's shoe sizes before they come, as shoes cannot be exchanged. On Saturday, the parent/guardian will need to provide their name, each child's name, age, gender, grade, name of school and shoe size. There is a limit of one pair of shoes per child. Requests for more than three pairs of shoes in one family will need to provide proof of the number of children in household.
Volunteers are needed -- adults and teens 16 and older (must be accompanied by an adult). Everyone will have to fill out a health check form, have their temperature taken, and wear masks. Volunteers are needed on Saturday, Aug. 1, from 7:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Contact Byron Wynn, Catholic Charities Volunteer Coordinator, at or 419-214-4950.
Various area churches, service groups and businesses are volunteering and many have donated new shoes and school supplies.

Gulburger Nite
canceled for 2020
The annual Gulburger Nite at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, which had been rescheduled from an earlier date to Sept. 10, has been canceled due to ongoing concerns over COVID-19.
Organizers are refunding all ticket money. Ticket holders will be contacted by the ticket seller in the next couple of weeks. Ticket holders are encouraged to put their contact info on the back of tickets so they can have the first opportunity to purchase tickets for the next Gulburger Nite, tentatively set for April 2021.

Road work planned
Sections of Toussaint East Road and Benton-Carroll Road in Ottawa County will be closed Aug. 3-7 for chip sealing, the county engineer’s office said.
Toussaint East will be closed from Benton-Carroll to State Rt. 19 and Benton-Carroll will be closed from Bier Road to State Rt. 2.
Up to two miles of road could be closed at a time. As a section is completed it will be opened before the next section is closed. Work hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Local and emergency vehicles will be allowed through the construction zone.

Householder removed
from speaker’s post
The Ohio House of Representatives voted Thursday to strip Larry Householder, R-Glenford, of his role as speaker.
Householder and four associates were indicted by a federal grand jury amid an ongoing FBI criminal investigation into his connection to an alleged public corruption and bribery scheme.
The vote was unanimous, 90-0, with nine members, including Householder, absent. The vote removes Householder as speaker but not from office.
The Lucas County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday affirmed its opposition to House Bill 6.
“We opposed the bill then (when passed in 2019), and we oppose it today. The law amounted to a ratepayer funded bailout for the Energy Harbor owned Davis-Besse and Perry Nuclear power plants in Ohio that were facing financial challenges in the face of competition from natural gas power plants capable of generating electricity more affordably,” the commissioners said in a prepared statement.


The Press

The Press
1550 Woodville Road
Millbury, OH 43447

(419) 836-2221

Email Us

Facebook Twitter

Ohio News Media Association