News Break

BG reminds drivers about new law on golf carts, etc.

As warmer weather approaches, the City of Bowling Green and Bowling Green Police Division remind residents of state law changes that went in to effect at the beginning of the year. As of Jan. 1,. unless registered, the State of Ohio has deemed it illegal to operate an under-speed or utility vehicle or a mini-truck on the public streets. This law change includes the prohibition of operating golf carts along the public street.


Nominations sought for Bicycle Spokesperson of Year

The Bowling Green Bicycle Safety Commission is sponsoring the 17th annual Bicycle Spokesperson of the Year award. Nomination forms for this annual award are now available at the City Administration Building, Community Center, Simpson Building and the Bicycle Safety Commission’s webpage. Any Bowling Green citizen can be nominated who exemplifies the spirit of bicycling through involvement in biking, bike safety or bike-related activities. Nominations must be submitted by Monday, May 1. For questions or more information call the Bowling Green Parks and Recreation Department at (419) 354-6225.


Idea for legislation came from Wood County resident

State Representative Theresa Gavarone, R-Bowling Green, has introduced legislation aimed at better facilitating communication between law enforcement and individuals with communication disabilities. House Bill 115 would establish a program through the Ohio Department of Public Safety (DPS) through which an individual may voluntarily submit a verification form, signed by his or her physician, to the local Bureau of Motor Vehicles to be designated as an individual with a communication disability. This information is then made available to state and local law enforcement only through the Law Enforcement Automated Data Systems, more commonly referred to as LEADS. Individuals over the age of 18 would be eligible to enroll in this system, as well as minors who are enrolled by their parents or guardians. Jenny Hughes, a constituent of Rep. Gavarone’s 3rd House District, brought forward the idea for the legislation. Hughes is the mother of two autistic children, one of whom drives. Because some of the symptoms of autism can be similar to those of an impaired driver, the mother raised concern that her son potentially fidgeting, not responding or not making eye contact could lead an officer to the false conclusion that her son is under the influence or even a threat to the officer’s safety. “House Bill 115 is an example of how great ideas can come from constituents who bring forward their concerns,” Gavarone said. “I am so happy that Jenny Hughes met with me to get the ball rolling on this well thought out piece of legislation.” Through working with local police chiefs in the district, Gavarone introduced House Bill 115 along with joint-sponsor Rep. Scott Wiggam (R-Wooster). “The meeting I had with Chief Hetrick and Chief Paez was instrumental because of the suggestions only someone in their position could give,” Gavarone said. “When they told me how supportive they were of this idea, along with Sheriff Wasylyshyn, it became clear to me just how helpful this bill could be for law enforcement and people who live with communication disabilities.” House Bill 115 is currently being deliberated in the House Community and Family Advancement Committee.


BG Parks & Rec Summer Guide available online

The Bowling Green Parks & Recreation 2017 Summer Guide is now available electronically at http://www.bgohio.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/Bowling-Green-Parks-Recreation-2017-Summer-Guide.pdf .  The Summer Guide includes information about programs, events, and activities including swim lessons, pool passes, nature camps, day camps, sports camps, and special events.  Look for hard copies available at various places around town in the coming weeks.  Registration for residents opens May 1 and for non-residents on  May 15 . Each family interested in  signing up for summer programs, swim lessons or activities should have a 2017 registration on file with BG Parks & Recreation by April 24, 2017 for on-line registration and faster processing. The on-line registration form can be found at: http://www.bgohio.org/departments/parks-and-recreation/online-registration/registration-form . People may also register in person at either the BG Community Center, 1245 W. Newton Road or at the Simpson Building, 1291 Conneaut Ave.


Vehicle crashes into house Sunday in BG (updated)

  Willard Misfeldt, 87, was taken to a Toledo area hospital after the car he was driving careened across four lanes of South Main Street and struck a house shortly after noon Sunday. According to the police report, Misfeldt, retired professor from the BGSU School of Art, was eastbound on Pearl Street when his vehicle began to accelerate rapidly. He failed to stop at the stop sign and headed across South Main, struck a curb, then an embankment, before crashing into the house at 303 S. Main St. Misfeldt was taken from the scene to Wood County Hospital, and then by air ambulance to St. Vincent’s. Police believe a health condition may have contributed to the accident. (Photos provided by Clint Corpe of The Morning Show.)  


Wood County JFS workers drop labor union

Another labor union for a group of Wood County government employees has been decertified. The AFSME representing between 80 and 90 workers at Wood County Department of Job and Family Services was decertified after employees indicated they would vote to remove from the union. The union had represented the Job and Family Services staff since the 1980s, according to Wood County Administrator Andrew Kalmar. In the past several years, employees also agreed to no longer be represented by labor unions at the Wood County Child Support Enforcement Agency and the Wood County Health District. “We try to treat all employees consistently and fairly,” Kalmar said of the reason for the union decertification. “Everyone is going to get the same good treatment. Hopefully that played a role in this.” The county employees still in unions include the sheriff’s office, Wood Haven Health Care, and the landfill, Kalmar said.


More road closures needed for waterline connections

The Water Distribution and Waste Water Collection Division have begun to make service line connections in conjunction with the Conneaut Avenue water main line replacement project. This work will require local day closures along the project area on Conneaut, from Wintergarden to Cedar Lane and is expected to last till the end of April. Once all of the service line connections are made, a complete closure of the Conneaut Avenue/Wintergarden intersection will be required. This closure is anticipated to occur in May and is expected to last approximately a week while the water mains on Conneaut and Wintergarden are connected. Once a timeline is established for this portion of the project, the information will be distributed with at least two weeks’ notice along with the applicable detour routes.


At-large council candidate forum set for Tuesday

On Tuesday, April 4, People of Engagement Bowling Green will be hosting a BG City Council At-Large Candidate Forum. It will take place at the Wood County Public Library from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Candidates from the Democratic Party and the Green Party will be there to field questions submitted by the community. To submit a question for the candidates, log on to PEBGohio.com.


BG Schools athletic director resigns after 9 months

The athletic director hired by Bowling Green City Schools last June has resigned after getting an opportunity he couldn’t refuse. As the district begins its search for a new athletic director to replace Jonas Smith, former athletic director Mike Vannett has agreed to fill the position on an interim basis. “He was offered a position that he couldn’t pass up,” Superintendent Francis Scruci said Friday afternoon about Smith. Smith did not reveal what the position was, but said there would be a press conference Saturday announcing his new job. Scruci said he is pleased with the job Smith did in his brief stay at Bowling Green. Smith, whose annual salary was $90,000, believed in putting academics ahead of athletics and believed in being accessible to parents. Prior to coming to Bowling Green, Smith served as athletic director for Dayton Public Schools, where he oversaw seven high schools and a $3.6 million renovation of the district’s Welcome Stadium. Scruci said he was attracted to Smith’s 20 years of experience overseeing a large program, his reputation in the state, his winning record at Dayton, and his success securing corporate sponsorships for the renovated stadium. When hired last summer to replace retiring Scott Seeliger, Smith said he was attracted to the “very welcoming” community, the good schools, and the potential to build relationships in Bowling Green.


Child abuse and neglect awareness planned in BG

The City of Bowling Green and the Wood County Department of Job and Family Services (JFS) will hold a ceremony on April 4 at the Wooster Green (corner of West Wooster and Church streets) beginning at 10 a.m. to bring awareness to child abuse and neglect cases. JFS staff annually raises awareness of child abuse and neglect by displaying pinwheels which represent reports of abuse and neglect and serves as a visual reminder to residents and families to prevent child abuse and neglect. For the first time, JFS has partnered with communities in Wood County to make similar displays on a local level.



Water work to require closures along North Prospect

The BG Water Distribution and Waste Water Collection Division will be closing portions of North Prospect during the week of April 3 in order to make necessary sewer infrastructure updates. The work will require day closures, with the road re-opening by 4:30 p.m. each day. Depending on weather and progression of work, the following is a tentative timeline: April 3 – No through traffic along North Prospect from East Merry to East Evers, with restricted raffic in the North Prospect and Evers intersection will occur. A partial closure of East Evers will also be necessary for a manhole installation and preliminary work for a future sewer lateral project. April 4 – Restricted traffic in and around the North Prospect and Reed intersection as well as closing a portion of Reed for a manhole replacement project as well as preliminary work for a future sewer lateral project will occur.


Public help sought in burglary investigation

On March 5, Bowling Green Police Division took a burglary report in the 400 block of South Grove Street, Bowling Green.  There were several tools stolen during the burglary to include: Black and Decker electric hedge trimmer (orange), Black and Decker battery powered leaf blower (orange), Black and Decker battery pack with charger, and extension cord (orange). The investigation into this incident is ongoing. Anyone with information related to this investigation should contact the Bowling Green Police Division at 419-352-1131 or Wood County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-54 CRIME. You may remain anonymous and if information results in the arrest and conviction of a suspect, you could be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.


BG Police seek info on breaking and entering at tire business

The Bowling Green Police Division is investigating a breaking and entering, which took place on March 6 at Northwest Tire, 520 E. Poe Road, Bowling Green.  The suspect stole money. The investigation into this incident is ongoing. Anyone with information related to this investigation should contact the Bowling Green Police Division at 419-352-1131 or Wood County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-54 CRIME. You may remain anonymous and if information results in the arrest and conviction of a suspect, you could be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.


Public invited to view federal transportation plans

People who want to be better informed about how federal transportation money is being spent are invited to participate in the TIP public comment period March 27 through April 7. People can review the plan and related map and comment online, or attend one of two public meetings. The Transportation Improvement Program (the TIP) describes what transportation projects are coming up in Northwest Ohio, how they are funded, and when they are programmed. TIP projects include major roadways in Lucas and Wood counties. The TIP is not the forum for minor collector streets, residential streets or alleys. The TIP document (PDF) is on the transportation page of the TMACOG website: http://www.tmacog.org/Transportation/TIP/DRAFT_FY2018-2021_TIP The related map is: http://www.tmacog.org/TIP_PublicReview.htm This year, the map is interactive. Interested people can review the projects and click on specific projects to leave a comment. In addition to using the interactive map, you can also provide comments to TMACOG at public meetings, by mail (PO Box 9508, Toledo OH 43697-9508), by phone (419.241.9155 ext. 115), or by e-mail (dasher@tmacog.org). Those who want to hear TMACOG and ODOT staff describe the TIP process and explain the maps are invited to attend one of two open house style public meetings. March 30, 2017, 3-6 p.m., at TMACOG offices, 300 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, Toledo April 4, 2017, 3-6 p.m., at ODOT District Two offices in Bowling Green, 317 E. Poe Road, Bowling Green TMACOG encourages input from stakeholders of the entire region of Lucas and Wood counties. People requiring special accommodations for language or mobility disabilities may request assistance: 419.241.9155 ext. 107 or allen@tmacog.org.