Akron City Council

photo of Ohio Statehouse cupola

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, March 20:

photo of Akron City Council

Akron’s projected budget gap has been cut almost in half, but the president of city council says there’s more room for improvement.

Earlier this month, Akron officials estimated that this year’s shortfall would be $916,000. Part of the gap was due to decreased income tax collections last year. As budget hearings concluded last week, the city’s budget director said that number had been reduced by $400,000.

Council President Margo Sommerville says they are exploring ways to make up the rest by cutting costs and also bringing in additional revenue.

Akron City Council chambers
Tim Rudell / WKSU

Akron has become the first city in Ohio to officially ask the state Legislature to ban assault weapons and related equipment. 

City Council passed a resolution at its regular meeting Monday night calling for a ban on the asssault-style weapons at the state level. Councilwoman Tara Mosley-Samples introduced it. 

She says it’s necessary because local communities can’t restrict gun sales, but the U.S. Supreme Court has affirmed that states can. She says the GOP-dominated Statehouse could be ready.

Lock 4 Arcade Mock-up
Beth Borda / Bowery Development Group

The group behind the Bowery Project in downtown Akron is looking for an additional $2 million to add a classical arcade to the redevelopment plan.

The Bowery Development Group, made up of DeHoff Development and the Welty Building Company, is spearheading the $38 million effort to renovate part of Akron’s Main Street adjacent to the Civic Theatre.

DeHoff Vice President Beth Borda says the arcade will make it easier to transition between Main Street and the Lock 4 Canal, which flows two stories below. 

CHARLOTTE GINTERT / Summit County Historical Society

A group of middle school students has drafted a resolution to recognize local Native American history and culture with a “First People’s Day” in Akron.

Students from the Lippman School joined with representatives from the Northern Cheyenne and Seneca nations to help draft the initiative. They presented it to Akron City Council on Monday.

Matt Russ, a humanities teacher at the school, has been working with the students to address what they saw as a problem in the community.