Ohio News Briefs

Ohio judge denies gas pipeline firm’s request to survey land

AKRON (AP) — A northeast Ohio judge has denied a company’s request to immediately survey nearly 60 properties where it is proposing to build a high-pressure natural gas pipeline.

The judge’s ruling Wednesday says she won’t grant NEXUS Gas Transmission a 14-day window to survey 56 properties in Summit County but will instead hold a trial in October to hear arguments about whether the Houston-based company should be granted access.

NEXUS is seeking to build a 250-mile pipeline that it says would carry as much as 1.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day across northern Ohio and into Michigan and Ontario, Canada.

The company must survey all the properties along its proposed route before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission can approve the project.

Car hits wrong-way bicyclist on Ohio highway in fatal crash

COLUMBUS (AP) — Police in central Ohio say a bicyclist riding against traffic on a major highway in the middle of the night was struck by a car and later died.

Columbus police say they started getting calls around 12:40 a.m. Thursday about a man bicycling southbound in northbound lanes of Interstate 71, on a segment of the highway near the state fairgrounds and Ohio State University.

Police say a car struck 24-year-old Matthew Goodwin on his bicycle, which was then hit separately by a second vehicle. Police say the Galloway man was taken to a hospital and was pronounced dead.

There was no immediate word on why he was riding along the highway or how he ended up there.

Property lines being surveyed on Ohio’s Buckeye Lake dam

COLUMBUS (AP) — The Ohio Department of Natural Resources is surveying property lines on the deteriorated Buckeye Lake dam to clarify boundaries of state land before major construction work begins there.

The 4.1-mile earthen dam in central Ohio is about 180 years old and has been weakened by several hundred homes, docks and other structures built on it. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers concluded the dam is at risk of failing, and the state is making plans to install a new barrier there.

First, though, officials want to delineate where the state land ends and private property starts. The Advocate in nearby Newark reports the department sent residents along the dam a letter last week to notify them that surveying work is beginning. It’s expected to continue until October.

Western Ohio counties get federal disaster area tag

WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP) — Eight western Ohio counties have been designated as natural disaster areas after months of heavy rain and flooding.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture tag for Butler, Darke, Defiance, Hamilton, Mercer, Paulding, Preble and Van Wert counties means farmers there can seek federal assistance including emergency loans. They also can get guidance on applying from local Farm Service Agency offices.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown announced the designations in Washington on Wednesday. The Ohio Democrat who serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee says the aid helps farmers manage risk and keep up a reliable food supply for Ohio and the world.

Ohio makes strides to attract international college students

CLEVELAND (AP) — The state of Ohio has launched an initiative to help bring in more international college students and encourage them to stay local after graduation.

Northeast Ohio Media Group reports Higher Education Chancellor John Carey and Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor announced Wednesday the creation of Ohio G.R.E.A.T. — Global Reach to Engage Academic Talent.

The effort aims at increasing Ohio’s share of international college students from 4.1 percent to 6 percent, which officials say would generate an estimated $1.2 billion for the state and support 17,000 jobs.

The initiative will promote the state as a global destination for post-secondary education. Ohio has the eighth-largest international student enrollment in the country.

Officials say international student-visa holders currently enrolled in Ohio support 11,337 jobs and contribute $827 million to the state’s economy.

Low-income students get help taking advanced classes

COLUMBUS (AP) — Ohio is the recipient of more than $595,000 in a federal education grant to help low-income students take advanced-placement exams.

Ohio was one of 38 states to receive a slice of the U.S. Department of Education money set aside to help offset the costs of the exams for low-income students.

The grants are used to help pay for the students to take approved tests administered by the College Board, the International Baccalaureate Organization and Cambridge International Examinations to get them into advanced-placement classes at their schools.

Officials hope subsidizing the test fees will encourage those students to take advanced-placement tests and obtain college credit for high school courses, reducing the time and cost of a college degree.