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Published: 12/16/2013 - Updated: 4 months ago

Five things you might have missed: 12-16

Top stories from this weekend's editions of The Blade

BLADE STAFF

1. TPS gym teacher faces termination under tougher district standards

A Toledo Public Schools gym teacher who has faced a string of allegations — including that he used inappropriate physical discipline on students — is suspended and may be fired.

Steven R. Dickinson, 47, of Perrysburg, a physical education teacher at Harvard Elementary, was suspended with pay effective Nov. 27, and district administration has recommended to the Toledo Board of Education that he be fired. Mr. Dickinson has faced repeated allegations of improper conduct during his TPS career. He has been investigated by Lucas County Children Services twice, was previously suspended for forcing students to pay to use a school gym, and has been in trouble both in and out of school.

“Mr. Dickinson has engaged in a pattern of abusive behaviors and violations of a multitude of policies and procedures,” the district alleged, according to TPS records. READ MORE

 

Rows of chambers hold intermediate-level radioactive waste in shallow pits at the Bruce Power nuclear complex near Kincardine, Ont. Rows of chambers hold intermediate-level radioactive waste in shallow pits at the Bruce Power nuclear complex near Kincardine, Ont.
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2. Ohio, Mich. riled over plan to bury radioactive waste

In tiny Kincardine, Ont., about a four-hour drive north of Toledo, a $1 billion plan to bury radioactive nuclear waste is riling up a number of elected officials in northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan.

Ontario Power Generation, a publicly owned company that manages waste produced by that province’s nuclear facilities, wants to dig a deep mine shaft on the site of its Bruce Power complex and put all radioactive waste other than spent fuel pulled from reactor cores — such as protective clothing, gloves, and miscellaneous plant parts — down that hole. Spent fuel, the most radioactive form of waste in civilian hands, would be sent elsewhere for long-term disposal.

Here’s the catch: The Bruce Power complex is less than a mile from the Lake Huron shoreline.

Critics fear the dump, if built, will someday leak radioactive waste into Lake Huron and that the waste would, eventually, make its way to Lake Erie. READ MORE

 

As director, Jerry Rohrs says he racks up more than 10,000 delivery miles a year as he hauls household goods to and from the Sauder warehouse in Archbold, Ohio, for the Furniture/Appliance Recycling Program. As director, Jerry Rohrs says he racks up more than 10,000 delivery miles a year as he hauls household goods to and from the Sauder warehouse in Archbold, Ohio, for the Furniture/Appliance Recycling Program.
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3. Donations furnish homes with hope

ARCHBOLD, Ohio — They arrive before the warehouse opens.

Crowded in a narrow alley sandwiched between bunches of buildings, they gather.

With hope, they wait.

Hope for a sofa, a dresser, a bed for their children. Hope for an oven on which to cook dinner. And perhaps, please, some plates and silverware, pots and pans.

On Saturdays, people who lack money to buy home furnishings can “shop” for free household goods at a local warehouse through the Furniture/​Appliance Recycling Program, based in Archbold, a Fulton County village.

This isn’t a holiday outreach program — the need is not seasonal, said Mike Torres, 24, program volunteer.

During its 15 years of operation, the program has collected — through donations by area residents — (dare we say Heaven-sent) heaps of good, usable furniture, and appliances. Then those items are “recycled” — donated to area residents in need of such items. READ MORE

 

Members of Congregation B’nai Israel, from left: Dave Treuhaft, Diane Treuhaft, Lennie Thal, Selma Master, Jeff Lublin. Members of Congregation B’nai Israel, from left: Dave Treuhaft, Diane Treuhaft, Lennie Thal, Selma Master, Jeff Lublin.
PHOTO BY CANTOR IVOR LICHTERMAN Enlarge

4. Members of Congregation B’nai Israel in Sylvania reach out to South Africa's Jews

Members of Congregation B'nai Israel in Sylvania had close thoughts of South Africa and Nelson Mandela on learning of the former South African president's death on Dec. 5. Twenty-two people from B'nai Israel, along with their cantor, had returned from South Africa about two weeks before, where they had spent two weeks on a mission trip.

“A mission means there was a specific, official function, a Jewish function, and that was to explore and reach out to the Jewish community in South Africa,” said Ivor Lichterman, hazzan, or cantor, of the Conservative synagogue. The South African Jewish community is very small. The cantor said, “It's probably about 65, 70,000 Jews in a population of 50 million.”

Cantor Lichterman was born and raised in South Africa; his parents moved there as survivors of the Warsaw, Poland, ghetto uprising and concentration camps.

When he started at B'nai Israel about two years ago, Cantor Lichterman said to Lee Kwait, a congregant who operates Let's Cruise, Inc., that he wanted to take a group to South Africa, and Mr. Kwait organized the travel. The trip, “a solidarity mission with the Jewish community of South Africa,” the cantor said, filled up quickly. READ MORE

 

President Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, gestures while speaking to the media before meeting with newly elected mayors to discuss job creation, income equality, and several other topics. President Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, gestures while speaking to the media before meeting with newly elected mayors to discuss job creation, income equality, and several other topics.
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5. Collins among 16 new mayors to meet Obama

WASHINGTON — Conversation ran the gamut from algae in Lake Erie to unemployment benefits, the menu choices ranged from peanut butter and jelly to steak sandwiches, and the guests came from high-tech cities like Seattle and bankrupt Rust Belt cities like Detroit.

Sixteen newly elected Democrat and independent mayors from across the country came to the White House on Friday to talk with President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden about challenges facing cities, particularly the problem of income inequality and the need for early childhood education.

The group included Toledo Mayor-elect D. Michael Collins.

“This is a diverse group. What binds them together is their commitment to helping people succeed in this country,” Mr. Obama said. “They have a shared vision of cities being critical hubs of creating jobs, creating business, seeing start-ups develop, [and] making sure there are pathways, gateways for opportunity.” READ MORE



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