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Noon headlines, Feb. 19, 2013: RTA cameras, Kasich preview; FitzGerald
RTA invests in cameras; Kasich previews State of State; Fitzgerald talks the state of Cuyahoga; former faith-based head back in prison

Web Editor
M.L. Schultze
Cuyahoga Executive Ed FitzGerald is considered a likely Kasich rival in the 2014 race for governor
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In The Region:
  • RTA  votes to spend $2.5 million on safety cameras
  • Gov. Kasich says no surprises in State of State
  • Ed FitzGerald outlines the state of Northeast Ohio's biggest county
  • Former Ohio interfaith chief back in prison
  • RTA  upgrades safety cameras
    The Greater Cleveland RTA board voted today to spend some $2.5 million to install and upgrade safety cameras on its buses and trains. 

    General Manager Joe Calabrese plans to install the cameras on 230 buses and upgrade videos on nearly 100 more – all within 15 months.

    The plan is in response to a rise in assaults on drivers and rowdy passengers. It also follows a cell-phone video that went viral that included a driver punching a woman who was irate and abusive. He’s is appealing his firing.

    RTA says trouble grows as the weather gets warmer and is worse from 2 to 5 p.m., when kids get out of school. The money for the upgrades would come from reserve and capital accounts.  

    Gov. Kasich says no surprises in State of State
    Gov. John Kasich says he doesn’t expect much new in his State of the State address, but he is expected to underscore the major changes in sales and income taxes, Medicaid expansion and education funding that he’s unveiled over the last month.

    And Democrats are expected to underscore their opposition, including to a shift from income taxes to a lower-and-broader sales tax applied to everything from cable TV to haircuts.  They’re also expected to question whether his new school funding formula really helps poor school districts the most.

    And some Republicans, including state Treasurer and failed senatorial candidate Josh Mandel, are fighting the governor’s decision to accept federal Medicaid expansion to provide healthcare to nearly 300,000 more people.

    The governor’s speech is in Lima this evening. WKSU will be airing it beginning at 8 p.m.

    Ed FitzGerald outlines the state of Northeast Ohio's biggest county
    Former Gov. Ted Strickland’s head of faith-based initiatives is back in prison after he violated his probation on his conviction for promoting prostitution.

    Former Ohio interfaith chief back in prison
    The Columbus Dispatch is reporting that 50-year-old Robert McFadden was ordered back to prison on Jan. 24 and will serve through June 23. A sex-offender treatment program said he had made “zero progress” toward his rehabilitation, and that he had violated a court order prohibiting him from accessing the internet.

    McFadden had served under Strickland in 2007. He was laid off because of budget cuts and was convicted on the prostitution charge in 2009.

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