Here are your morning headlines for Thursday, November 10th:
- Cuyahoga County's auditor finds $1.7 million paid in overtime to workers prohibited from such pay;
- Governor Kasich rejects mercy request for prisoner facing execution;
- State leaders launch new effort to reduce Ohio's prison population;
- Former vice president at Hometown Bank in Kent charged with fraud;
- Cuyahoga Falls leaves GPS-tracked packages around city to catch thieves;
Auditor Finds $1.7 Million in Overtime paid to Employees Even Though Prohibited
Cuyahoga County's independent auditor has found that more than $1.7 million was paid in overtime to salaried employees who were prohibited from receiving extra pay. Cleveland.com reports that despite specific rules barring it, department directors requested and approved overtime pay 33 percent of the time. The audit also concludes payroll staff overrode a control that ensured exempt employees could not enter overtime on their time sheets. The overpayments occurred under former County Executive Ed FitzGerald in 2014 and current executive Armond Budish in 2015 and 2016.
Governor Kasich Won't Pardon Prisoner From Execution
Governor John Kasich rejected a request for mercy Thursday from a condemned inmate who argues he should be spared from execution next month because of poor health and a bad upbringing. Alva Campbell is set to die by lethal injection on Nov. 15 for killing a teen during a 1997 carjacking. The slaying came five years after he was paroled on a different murder charge. Kasich followed the recommendation of the parole board. Campbell has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to delay his execution.
State Leaders Launch New Effort to Reduce Prison Population
State leaders and criminal justice experts are launching a new effort to reduce Ohio's prison population. A yearlong study will analyze thousands of records to examine how sentences handed down for serious crimes affect prison populations and life after prison. The Ohio Justice Reinvestment Committee announced the study Thursday. The state's prison population has leveled off in recent years, with about 50,000 inmates currently, down more than 1,o00 from a record high of in November 2008.
Former Bank Vice President in Kent Charged With Fraud
A former vice president at Hometown Bank in Kent has been charged with fraud and accepting bribes. Crain’s Cleveland reports Steven P. McDonald is accused of defrauding the bank out of at least 160 thousand dollars. The charges say in 2011 McDonald submitted a loan application in a friend's name without that friend's knowledge and then proceeded to withdraw money on that loan to pay personal debts.
Cuyahoga Falls Leaves GPS-tracked Packages to Catch Thieves
Cuyahoga Falls is leaving GPS-tracked 'bait packages' around the city to help catch thieves who steal from doorsteps. The Akron Beacon-Journal reports Mayor Dan Walters hopes awareness about the program will help detour thieves. Davis won’t say how many bait packages are out on any given day and declined to show what the devices look like. The tiny trackers are monitored by an app which gives police an audible alarm if a tagged package or other item is moved.