AKRON

Electric stations

AKRON: Those who drive electric cars and park in five downtown parking decks will now be able to charge their vehicles.

Akron installed charging stations in the O’Neil’s deck, Broadway deck, Citicenter deck, Superblock deck and Cascade deck. The stations can fully charge most electric vehicles in four to six hours.

The only cost for the user is parking. Signs will be posted at the entrances to each deck, letting people know about the stations.

Mayor Don Plusquellic said in a news release that the stations “will reduce low battery anxiety” and allow “visitors, residents and downtown workers to recharge their vehicles while at work, shopping or visiting our downtown amenities.”

The stations are another step in Akron’s Greenprint plan, which aims to make the city more eco-friendly.

CUYAHOGA FALLS

Creek restoration

CUYAHOGA FALLS: Falls Council on Monday approved spending $290,000 to restore Kelsey Creek.

The cost includes designing and engineering the project. About one-third of the cost will be paid through a state grant.

The creek, on the city’s east side, handles stormwater run-off from three adjacent neighborhoods. Large amounts of fast flowing stormwater, decades of urbanization and pollutants have damaged the surface water and eroded the creek bank.

Work is expected to begin in April. The project should be finished by the end of June.

KENT

Panel postponed

KENT: The panel discussion “Puerto Rico: The 51st Star On the U.S. Flag?” scheduled for 6 p.m. today in the Kent State Student Center Kiva has been postponed.

A personal matter has arisen for one of the panel members.

The event will be rescheduled on a date to be determined, the university said.

NORTHEAST OHIO

Record high set

AKRON: A new record high temperature for Jan. 30 — 64 degrees — was set at 9:09 a.m. at the Akron-Canton Airport. The previous high was 61 on this day in 1947. Temperatures immediately began declining and had fallen about 8 degrees by 10 a.m.

The unseasonable warmth was short-lived as temperatures plummeted overnight to the 20s.

According to the weather service, today’s and Friday’s highs will be in the 20s with flurries in the forecast.

Gibbs opens office

ASHLAND: U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs, R-Lakeville, has opened a district office in Ashland.

While that might seem like a curious spot, it makes sense when looking at the map of the sprawling, U-shaped 7th District he represents. Ashland and Holmes counties are roughly in the middle, with Ashland sporting a much larger population than Holmes.

The redrawn 7th District is made up of 10 counties, with parts of Huron, Lorain, Medina and Richland counties to the west; all of Ashland, Knox and Holmes counties to the south; and parts of Tuscarawas and Stark counties to the east. The district has most of Stark, which formerly was entirely in the 16th District.

Gibbs’ district office is at 110 Cottage St. in Ashland, which is in the Ashland County Office Building. The phone number is 419-207-0650.

The district office will handle constituent services, including assistance with federal agencies, military service academy nominations, postal service inquiries, flag requests and tour requests; and field services and community outreach for constituents, agencies, businesses, community leaders and nonprofit organizations.

STARK COUNTY

911 levy renewal

CANTON: Stark County voters probably will be asked to renew a 0.1-mill levy for the county’s 911 emergency call system in the May primary election.

County commissioners on Wednesday took the first of two steps needed to put the five-year issue on the ballot.

The levy is expected to raise $616,000 a year. It costs the owner of a $100,000 home $2.90 annually.

SUMMIT COUNTY

District hours

HUDSON: State Rep. Kristina Roegner, R-Hudson, will hold two sessions of district office hours in February.

The first will be 9 to 10:30 a.m. Monday at Laurel Lake, 200 Laurel Lake Drive in Hudson.

The second will be 9 to 10:30 a.m. Feb. 26 at Stow Public Library, 3512 Darrow Road.

No appointment is necessary.

Constituents unable to attend can contact Roegner at 614-466-1177 or by email at Rep37@ohiohouse.gov.

TALLMADGE

Driver identified

TALLMADGE: Authorities identified the driver of a van who died in a crash Monday morning in Tallmadge.

Kenneth Miller, 43, of Parma, died of blunt force trauma to his head and body, according to the Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Tallmadge police say Miller was driving a Chevy Astro on Southeast Avenue near the Summit Racing Equipment parking lot when it left the road and hit a utility pole, tree and several parked cars.

Miller was ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene.

STATE NEWS

Venue unchanged

STEUBENVILLE: A judge ruled Wednesday to keep the trial of two Steubenville High School football players charged with raping a 16-year-old girl in the eastern Ohio county where the attack allegedly happened.

Prosecutors opposed the relocation request by defense lawyers, who said potential witnesses had been threatened and could face intimidation or harassment.

Judge Thomas Lipps kept the case in Jefferson County, home to most of the people involved, but acknowledged concerns about witness intimidation and ensuring a fair trial. Lipps said moving it wouldn’t stop protesters who could relocate or critics who could continue commenting online and through social media.

Lipps, a judge brought in from Hamilton County to handle the nonjury trial in juvenile court, also noted he has avoided media reports about the case.

He said the trial should be open to the public and media. He pushed back the trial date by a month to March 13.

Speech moved

COLUMBUS: Gov. John Kasich’s request to move the State of the State speech away from the capital for the second year in a row won approval Wednesday from the state Legislature. And this time around, the Republican governor had more support from his fellow GOP lawmakers.

The Republican-led House approved the move with a bipartisan vote of 80-16 on Wednesday, while the GOP-controlled Senate cleared it on a 24-9 vote.

Kasich wants to give this year’s address in Lima, a rebounding Rust Belt city in northwest Ohio. The speech is scheduled to take place the evening of Feb. 19 at the Veterans Memorial Civic Center.

— Associated Press