Portage’s jobless rate
goes up to 5.2 percent
Portage County’s jobless rate went up in June to 5.2 percent from 4.8 percent in May, according to statistics released July 22 by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.
It was the first rate increase since January, when the rate was 7.5 percent. The increase was due to Portage’s workforce inching up to 90,500 in June, with 4,700 looking for employment. May’s workforce was 90,100, with 4,300 people looking for work.
Portage ranked 62nd among Ohio’s 88 counties. There were 26 counties with lower rates. Across Ohio, the seasonally adjusted rate for June was 5.5 percent, unchanged from May. Last year the rate for June was 7.4 percent.
Statewide, rates ranged from a low of 3.3 percent in Mercer County to a high of 11.7 percent in Monroe County.
June rates for counties abutting Portage (with their May rates) are: Cuyahoga 7.9 (7.1); Geauga 6.2 (5.3); Mahoning 6.2 (5.8); Stark 5.6 (5.2); Summit 5.5 (5.0) and Trumbull 6.5 (5.9).
— Mike Sever, Record-Courier

Recorder warns folks
of high land deed fee
If you think you need a copy of your deed, there’s a company willing to sell you one — for about 40 times the amount the Portage County recorder’s office charges.
Recorder Bonnie Howe said she was notified that an out-of-state company is sending letters to property owners offering to provide them with a copy of their deed for $83. The notice is from Record Transfer Services of California.
Howe said the letter implies that property owners would pay more than that for a copy from the county office. And that’s not true, she added.
“Anyone can obtain a copy of their deed from the office for $2 per page. Most deeds are one or two pages long,” she said. The recorder’s fees are set by the state.
She said she’s heard the letters are turning up in counties around Portage. Similar letters have been sent in other states to people who have recently purchased a home.
— Mike Sever, Record-Courier

Portage fatal crashes
decline in last 2 years
As required through the Safe Communities grant, the Portage County Fatal Revidw Board met recently to discuss fatal crash trends in 2014.
So far this year, only one fatal crash had occurred from January to June, compared to four in the same period in 2013 and seven in 2012, according to Safe Communities Director Lynette Blasiman.
“Although there have been fewer crashes, the contributing causes mirror previous years,” said Lt. Chris Heverly of the Ohio Highway Patrol’s Ravenna post.
“Portage County continues to see alcohol- and speed-related causes as trends in fatal crashes. Our goal is to reduce preventable crashes. Driving sober and not exceeding the speed limit are choices which can prevent fatal crashes.”
Portage County has been very visable in an approach to educate the public and promote voluntary compliance with traffic laws, which is key to reducing crashes and saving lives, according to Blasiman.

Tickets available for
circus near Ravenna
Advanced ticket sales locations have been announced for the Carson and Barnes Circus slated for Aug. 8-9 at Sunbeau Valley Farm on Route 59 between Kent and Ravenna. It is sponsored the Ravenna Gridiron Club and Sunbeau Valley Farm.
The ticket location closest to Aurora is Streetsboro Sales at 8958 Route 14. Huntington Bank in Garrettsville also is a site, as are Portage Community Bank in Kent and Portage Community Bank, Sun Beau Valley Farm, Portage Industries, Haasz Automall, Jack Kohl Real Estate, Triangle Pharmacy, Hometown Bank and Huntington Bank in Ravenna.
Those who purchase tickets in advance can save 33 percent off box office ticket prices on circus day. Discounted tickets are $6 for children 11 and under and $12 for adults. On circus day, prices are $10 and $16, respectively.