Senate moves toward Cordray confirmation
Former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray is on his way to becoming the permanent head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Seventy-one senators voted today to end debate on Cordray’s long-stalled nomination, a needed step before the final vote approving his nomination. Both Ohio Sens. Rob Portman and Sherrod Brown voted to end the debate.
The vote came after Senate Democrats and Republicans reached a compromise on filibuster rules that had been used to stall Cordray’s appointment and those of other of President Obama’s nominees.
Parole board voted 6-4 to reject clemency for Cleveland man
The Ohio Parole board narrowly rejected clemency for a Cleveland man today despite a rare plea for mercy from the Cuyahoga County prosecutor.
Billy Slagle was sentenced nearly 30 years ago to die for stabbing a neighbor to death. At that time, Ohio law did not include an option for life in prison with no chance of parole.
Cuyahoga Prosecutor Tim McGinty maintains that had a jury been able to choose that option, Slagle would not be on death row. Slagle’s lawyers also have argued for mercy, saying he “was exposed to alcohol from the womb to the crime.”
The Ohio Parole Board rejected both arguments by a vote of 6-4.
Slagle was 18 when he killed Mari Anne Pope. His execution is scheduled for Aug. 7, and his sentence could still be commuted by Gov. John Kasich.
UPDATED: Statement from Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty:
“We respect the Ohio Parole Board’s decision. We will continue to make our position known to Gov. John Kasich as he weighs one of the most difficult decisions that any governor must make.”
Kent's former basketball coach to pay university $1.2 million
Kent State University has been awarded $1.2 million by a Portage County judge in a breach of contract suit against former men’s basketball coach Geno Ford.
Ford had signed a five-year contract in 2008 paying him $200,000 a year. That was bumped to $300,000 with an extra year in 2010. But less than a year later, Ford announced he was heading to Bradley University in Illinois. His Kent contract included pay-back clause and the university sued.
Kent State also is suing Bradley University, saying it interfered with its contract with Ford. That case is set to go to trial this October.
Haslam, trucking company settlement in the works
Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and his Pilot Flying J Travel Centers have signed off on a class-action settlement with some of the more than 20 trucking companies who sued over alleged rebate fraud.
U.S. District Judge James Moody in Arkansas was to approve the settlement today. It could cover as many as 4,000 Pilot customers.
In the preliminary order, neither Haslam nor executives of his truck-stop company admit that they did anything wrong, insisting that they they’re settling to “avoid further expense, inconvenience and the distraction of burdensome and protracted litigation.”
The settlement covers trucking companies who did business with Pilot from January 2008 on, and who were promised discounted fuel that they believe they never got. The settlement paperwork does not give an overall dollar figure, but says the trucking companies will get their promised discounts plus 6 percent annual interest. It also promises Pilot Flying J will do no wrong in the future.
The civil action is separate from a criminal investigation that became public on April 15, when the FBI raided Pilot headquarters in Tennessee. Five employees have pleaded guilty in that case and agreed to testify.
Northeast Ohio heat index expected to hit upper 90s
The afternoon heat index will hit at least the mid- to upper-90s through Friday, and the National Weather Service will issue a heat advisory if it hits 100. Anyone working outdoors is advised to take hot weather precautions, including drinking lots of water.