Strickland says no to run

for Ohio's governor in '14

Former Gov. Ted Strickland will not challenge Gov. John Kasich in next year's gubernatorial contest.

Strickland announced his decision Jan. 8, ending speculation about a rematch of a race that he lost by two percentage points three years ago.

"Frances and I will continue to be politically active private citizens," Strickland said in a released statement. "We will continue to stand with working men and women to build a stronger Ohio, and to defeat anti-worker and anti-middle class legislation that may arise."

The decision leaves a handful of potential Democratic challengers in 2014. Former Attorney General Richard Cordray, Cuyahoga County Executive Ed Fitzgerald and U.S. Rep Tim Ryan are among the names that have been mentioned for the race.

In his statement Jan. 8, Strickland defended his administration's work to improve the state and set the stage for economic recovery.

"In short, I believe my administration stood and spoke for the causes that count," he said.

-- Marc Kovac, RPC Capital Bureau

APL lowers adoption fees

The Portage County Animal Protective League is offering a discounted rate for adoptions until the end of January.

Dogs can be adopted for $125 (regular fee is $150) and cats for $40 (regular fee is $50). Each animal is up to date on vaccinations, sprayed or neutered, heartworm tested, dewormed and given a flea preventative.

The APL is at 8122 Infirmary Road, Ravenna. For information, call 1-800-538-0680 or visit APL on Facebook.

LaTourette heads lobby

Former U.S. Rep. Steven LaTourette will run a law firm's new lobbying subsidiary in Washington, D.C. along with his wife.

The firm is McDonald Hopkins, which has offices in Cleveland, Columbus, Chicago, Detroit, Miami and West Palm Beach, Fla.

LaTourette, a Bainbridge Township resident, served 18 years in Congress and didn't seek re-election last year. His wife Jennifer has worked for a Washington lobbying firm for the past 10 years.

-- The Associated Press

Joyce retains two offices

U.S. Rep. David P. Joyce (R-District 14) has announced the opening of two district ofices, one of which will remain in Twinsburg's Government Center at 10075 Ravenna Road. The other is in Painesville. To reach the Twinsburg office, call 330-425-9291 or fax 330-425-7071. Joyce also can be contacted at,gov/ or

Flu shot clinics offered

until the end of January

In response to the unusually high and growing number of flu cases in the county, state and nationwide, the Portage County Health Department is offering additional flu shot clinics at the Portage County Health Department and Kent Health Department.

Clinics are set for today (Jan. 16) from 3 to 5 p.m. at Kent Health Department, 325 Depeyster St., and every Wednesday in January from 8 a.m. to noon at the Portage County Health Department, first floor, next to WIC at the Portage County Administration Building, 449 S. Meridian St., Ravenna.

"It's not too late to get a flu shot" said Rosemary Ferraro, nursing director for the county health department. "It's important to remember that flu season can last as late as May."

The Ohio Department of Health reported 1,922 flu-associated hospitalizations statewide since October, compared with 86 a year ago and 175 the previous flu season. A total of 192 of the cases last week were in the Northeast region.

Robinson Memorial Hospital in Ravenna has restricted visitation by children under 14 years of age and for people with any symptoms of the flu.

All of the flu shot clinics are walk-in. Cost is $10 for children and $20 for adults. Nasal flu vaccine is available for children 2-18 years of age.

-- Mike Sever, Record-Courier

Man gets away with cash from bank in Streetsboro

Streetsboro police and FBI agents are investigating the robbery of a First Merit Bank branch Jan. 10.

Police said a male suspect walked into the First Merit branch on Route 14 just before 2 p.m. and handed a teller a note demanding "she put money on the counter and no one gets hurt."

The suspect received an undisclosed amount of cash and fled the bank on foot. No weapon was seen and no one was injured, according to Streetsboro police.

Security video images released by police show the suspect and another male getting into a newer model white Ford F-150 pickup truck with U-Haul decals and markings on it and leaving the area westbound on Interstate 480.

The suspect is described as a white male, bald, about 5 feet 9 to 5 feet 11 inches tall, wearing sunglasses and a gray hooded sweatshirt with "Apocalypse" and a set of wings on the back.

Anyone with information on the incident or the suspect is asked to call Streetsboro police at 330-626-4976 or the FBI's Akron office at 330-535-6156.

-- Dave O'Brien, Record-Courier

Senator visits NEOMED's

Rootstown Twp. facilities

Sen. Rob Portman said he is impressed with Northeast Ohio Medical University in Rootstown and the people it attracts to Northeastern Ohio.

"The work your students will do will be groundbreaking," said the Cincinnati-area Republican, who visited Jan. 11.

Earlier in the day, Portman attended a liquid crystal technology roundtable hosted at AlphaMicron in Kent and visited Dearing Compressor & Pump Co. in Youngstown.

He decided to fulfill a long held promise to see the NEOMED campus in person after Dr. Jay Gershen, president of NEOMED, encouraged him repeatedly to do so. Portman said his college roommate, Dr. Jeffrey Susman, medical dean at NEOMED, also had some influence in his decision to visit the campus.