Community Voices

Youth mental health first aid training offered

(Submitted by Wood County Educational Service Center) Children as well as adults can experience mental illness. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control one in seven American children has a diagnosed mental, behavioral, or developmental disorder. Children’s symptoms—sometimes different from those of adults—may be difficult to identify. This is why Wood County Educational Service Center is once again offering Project AWARE: Youth Mental Health First Aid Training for all those who work with children. The free course will meet Wednesday, Aug. 16 from 11:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m.; Thursday, Aug. 17 from 8 a.m. to noon; Friday, Aug. 18 from 11:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m.; and Thursday, Aug. 24 from 8 to 11:30 a.m. at the Educational Service Center, 1867 Research Drive in Bowling Green. Registration is required. To register or for more information, please contact Angela Patchen at 419-354-9010 or Project AWARE teaches those who work or live with children—whether teachers, counselors, school staff, health care professionals, or parents—to identify signs and symptoms of behavioral and mental health problems. It shows them what steps to take to connect youth to resources available in the community. Participants receive a manual and a certificate of completion if they attend the entire training. Contact hours are available to those who complete the training. Youth Mental Health First Aid training is available at no cost through the “Now is the Time: Project AWARE” grant.

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BGSU invites public to tour renovated Moseley, University halls

From BGSU OFFICE OF MEDIA & COMMUNICATIONS Community members are invited to tour Bowling Green State University’s renovated Moseley and University halls during open houses Aug. 10 and 12. Attendees will also be able to tour several other newly renovated facilities including the Michael & Sara Kuhlin Center and Falcon Outfitters and the Career Center, which are located in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union. Tour guides will also share information about the new Robert W. and Patricia A. Maurer Center, which will house the College of Business. “Our facilities are a critical component of the BG Experience,” said BGSU President Mary Ellen Mazey. “Next-generation teaching and learning spaces help to ensure that our students are prepared to compete and succeed after graduation.” The renovated University Hall will house the Office of Admissions, cutting-edge classrooms emphasizing technology, and active learning spaces. Because of their central role in BGSU’s mission, almost every prospective or BGSU student will have classes or use services now located in these historic buildings. The renovated Moseley Hall houses an interdisciplinary science complex featuring state-of-the-art, flexible laboratory and classroom spaces accommodating a broad range of science disciplines – biology, chemistry, geology and medical laboratory sciences. The first open house will be held from 5-7:30 p.m. Aug. 10. Tours begin at 5:30, 6 and 6:30 p.m. The second opportunity for community members to tour the new spaces will be held from noon to 2 p.m. Aug. 12. Tours begin at noon and 1 p.m. Free parking will be available in Lot A, which is located at the corner of Wooster Street and South College Drive. The buildings will be open for visitors to explore. Attendees interested in a…

Communities can work together to support breastfeeding mothers

(Submitted by the Wood County Health District) Breastfeeding is a personal choice, but communities play a vital role in informing and supporting a mother’s decision to breastfeed her baby. Returning our communities to a breastfeeding supportive culture will take efforts by family, friends, employers, educational institutions, hospitals and businesses. Wood County Health District is reminding families of the benefits of breastfeeding during Breastfeeding Awareness Month. This year’s theme, “Breastfeeding: It’s a TEAM thing!” is intended to promote the supporting role in successful breastfeeding. Research shows that if a mother’s breastfeeding efforts are supported, she is more likely to give it a try, and more likely to keep going even if things get tough. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life, and continued breastfeeding with the addition of appropriate solid food for the first year and beyond. Research suggests breastfeeding is a way to lower the risk of infections and diseases for both mothers and their babies. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that Ohio’s 2016 breastfeeding rate of 77.7 percent ranks 38th in the nation. “In light of the monetary and lifesaving benefits of breastfeeding, all elements of the community must cooperate and support breastfeeding. Ultimately, our whole society benefits from having healthier mothers, babies and children when breastfeeding is promoted, protected and supported,” said Jackie Mears, director of Wood County’s Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program. One of the most important things the community can do is to allow mothers to feel comfortable nursing in public. Hungry babies need to eat, and Ohio law…

AgCredit advocates for timely farm bill and strong farm safety net

(Submitted by AgCredit) AgCredit staff, directors and members joined more than 600 Farm Credit leaders from across the country who traveled to Washington, D.C., recently to meet with lawmakers to advocate for timely passage of a strong Farm Bill that includes a farm safety net. During their visit to the nation’s capital, AgCredit’s delegation shared how Farm Credit is fulfilling its mission to support rural communities, farming and agriculture with reliable, consistent credit and financial services. The group also communicated how it is critical for policy makers to maintain a strong farm safety net that includes affordable crop insurance. Farm Credit System leaders collectively talked about the need to continue the United States Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency guaranteed and direct loan programs, increasing the volume of loans available and increasing the loan size limits for the guaranteed loans. During Congressional office visits, Farm Credit leaders discussed the need for strongly supported programs tailored to the unique needs of rural America to attract more private investment in rural infrastructure (agricultural research, healthcare, broadband, housing, energy, transportation, financing and water), as part of the Farm Bill or as part of stand-alone legislation. While attending the fly-in, AgCredit’s delegation visited with U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) along with four members of the House of Representatives—Bob Gibbs (R-7 th District), Jim Jordan (R-4 th District), Bob Latta (R-5 th District) and Pat Tiberi (R-12 th District). They also joined Farm Credit system leaders from throughout the country to receive a Farm Bill update from U.S. Senator Pat Roberts (R-Kansas), chairman of the Senate Ag Committee as well as…

BG charter amendment group submits ballot initiative

(Submitted by Bowling Green Climate Protectors) On Monday July 31, representatives of Bowling Green Climate Protectors (BGCP) charter amendment group submitted a ballot initiative to the City of Bowling Green. In total, 1,231 signatures were turned in; 714 valid signatures are required to get the issue on the November ballot. Following ORC-731.28, once City officials have reviewed the initiative, they will hand it to Wood County Board of Elections (BOE), which has 10 days to verify the sufficiency of the signatures. Once sufficiency has been determined the charter amendment will go on the November 2017 ballot. The issue sought for the vote is whether the citizens of Bowling Green care to amend the Bowling Green City Charter with the 5-section article, Community Rights to a Healthy Environment and Livable Climate. Part of the inspiration for this initiative was to provide the citizens and the city of Bowling Green a legal platform to resist harmful fossil fuel projects such as the Nexus pipeline.  BGCP worked with the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) in drafting the initiative. If passed, this amendment would codify and uphold the rights of the citizens and environment of Bowling Green above the interests of “new infrastructure for fossil fuel transportation within the city of Bowling Green or on property owned by the city of Bowling Green” (section A). Through the petitioning process, BGCP learned the majority of Bowling Green residents want to safeguard their public health and safety. The group expects public officials to work with the people of Bowling Green to protect their rights. The BOE is charged with ensuring the citizen-led initiative goes on the ballot, and city officials must ensure the measure is enacted and enforced once it passes the election. Petitioner Lisa Kochheiser stated, “We expect no less…

Tax distributions announced for second half of 2017

(Submitted by Wood County Auditor’s Office) Michael Sibbersen, Wood County Auditor, has announced the distribution of the Real Estate, Public Utility tax, and Special Assessments for the second half 2017 settlement. A total of $81,203,716 was collected and distributed including $2,255,359 for special assessments. In addition $8,985,232 is to be reimbursed from the State Income Tax Funds, $6,186,788 in non-business credit, $863,772 in owner occupied credit, and $1,934,672 in homestead exemption monies. These represent tax reductions for qualifying properties. The Board of Developmental Disabilities requested that the 2.95 mill voted developmental disabilities levy collection be suspended for this year due to sufficient fund balance. This provided tax relief of $103 annually on a $100,000 home. Wood County currently maintains 75,079 individual land parcels of record and distributes the taxes to eighteen school districts, nineteen townships, and twenty-six cities and villages. Wood County has over 100,000 individual special assessments, which are distributed to regional, county, municipal and township governments. Examples include ditch construction and maintenance, sewer and water systems, street lighting, street cleaning, and tree maintenance programs. Totals for the second half revenue distribution are as follows: WOOD COUNTY $2,805,848 REGIONAL WATER AND SEWER $682,572 COUNTY DITCH MAINTENANCE AND CONSTRUCTION $162,133 COUNTY SEWER AND WATERLINE PROJECTS $215 MAUMEE WATERSHED CONSERVANCY $41,237 BOARD OF DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES $4,942,378 ALCOHOL, DRUG ADDICTION & MENTAL HEALTH BOARD $2,814,075 PARK DISTRICT $1,111,096 COMMITTEE ON AGING $777,761 BOARD OF HEALTH $625,494 HISTORICAL CENTER $59,695 JOB & FAMILY SERVICES $1,444,423.14 WOOD COUNTY LIBRARY BOND $133,663 TOWNSHIPS $6,420,344 MUNICIPALITIES $5,731,517 SCHOOLS $51,145,066

Sherrod Brown announces grant for Perrysburg Township firefighters

From U.S. SEN. SHERROD BROWN U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced July 28 that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has awarded $36,191 to the Perrysburg Township Fire Department for Operations and Safety through the Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) program. “Ohio firefighters and first-responders work every day to protect our families,” said Brown. “We must support our first-responder organizations so that communities like Perrysburg have the resources to shield families and homes from fire hazards.” The AFG program supports fire departments across the country to ensure the safety of both first-responders and the public. The program provides funds for supplemental training, upgrades to protective equipment, facility modifications, and other supplies that protect firefighters and first-responders in moments of crisis. Grants are awarded to fire department-based and non-affiliated EMS organizations that best address the priorities of the AFG Program. More information about the AFG program can be found here. Interested fire departments can contact Brown’s grant coordinator to receive information about federal grant opportunities by clicking here.