South Side News & Notes
Traditional fall drawdown of lakes set for next year
PORTAGE LAKES — The Portage Lakes Advisory Council announced the waters of the Portage Lakes will remain level this fall.
Typically in October, the water level of the lakes is lowered significantly to help lakefront property owners make repairs to docks and other structures. However, the traditional lake drawdown has been revamped to occur every other year, according to Advisory Council officials. The change was instituted to allow the businesses on the lakes to enjoy a full season every other year.
The next lowering of the waters in the lakes is scheduled for about 30 days in October 2013.
For additional information, contact the Ohio Department of Natural Resources at 330-644-2220 or Ohio Division of Water Ohio & Erie Canal Hydraulic Operations at 330-643-1370.
Office of Consumer Affairs warning residents of door-to-door asphalt paving offers
GREEN — The Summit County Office of Consumer Affairs (SCOCA) is warning residents about an asphalt paving scam.
SCOCA officials state a Green resident recently reported receiving an offer to pave her asphalt driveway from a man who drove up in an unmarked white pickup truck that did not have a front license plate. The man told her he had leftover material made of higher quality than sold in home improvement stores from a prior job, and although the job normally would cost $1,000, he offered to pave her driveway for $650. He also claimed the resurfacing would last at least five years.
“Asphalt driveways that are worn and faded are easy to spot, making many consumers an easy target for asphalt paving scams,” said Cynthia Sich, SCOCA director. “Con artists who have no permanent business location and wander through many counties or states, known as ‘travelers,’ are looking to make their final sales before moving off to warmer climates.”
Many times, travelers seal a driveway with a poor quality material or paint that will wash off in the rain, she added.
Sich offered these tips to help area residents recognize a scam:
• Professional asphalt contractors know how much paving material is needed to complete a project, so it is rare they have leftover material and are driving around door-to-door to get rid of it.
• Often the trucks are unmarked and have out of state plates.
• Travelers do not want consumers to check them out, and with a cash payment, they do not have to worry about stop payments on checks or disputes with credit card companies. Con artists say this great deal is a once-in-a-lifetime offer since they are here today and gone tomorrow.
• They might hand out a professional looking business card with their name and telephone number in order to appear trustworthy. The number could be a cell phone with an out-of-state area code.
• Legitimate companies provide written estimates and contracts specifying the work to be performed and the agreed price. Con artists give a verbal price and may ask for more money upon completion.
• They tell you how much the job would normally cost, but today they will cut the price in half. Scammers hope to lure consumers with low price offers and the ability to start working immediately. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it is.
Before hiring a contractor or agreeing to home repairs, consumers may contact the SCOCA at 330-643-2879 or visit www.co.summit.oh.us/conaffairs.htm to check on the complaint history of a company.
Local Red Cross to recognize 10th anniversary of building construction
AKRON — Following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the local community undertook a capital campaign to provide the local American Red Cross with a home that would enable the organization to effectively fulfill its mission of disaster preparedness, relief and recovery. The result is the Mary S. and David C. Corbin Building, which has stood at 501 W. Market St. for the past 10 years.
To show its appreciation to the community for the building and for its ongoing support of the organization for nearly 100 years in the Akron area, the American Red Cross of Summit and Portage Counties plans a Re-dedication Ceremony for the evening of Oct. 10 and welcomes the local community to attend.
A day-long blood drive also will mark the anniversary.
The rededication ceremony will begin at 5 p.m. and will be conducted from the front steps of the building, weather permitting. Hosting the ceremony will be Eric Mansfield, who is the new executive director of University Media Relations for Kent State University and a local TV personality. The evening’s keynote speaker will be Jim Tressel, vice president of strategic engagement for The University of Akron.
The blood drive will run from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. The Red Cross encourages local residents who wish to donate blood that day to make a reservation by calling 800-733-2767 or online at www.redcrossblood.org/northernohio. Walk-ups also will be welcomed.
“We are very thankful to have a community that so generously supports the Red Cross and our work — not just the work we do here locally, but across the country and around the world as well,” said Margaret Medzie, executive director for the American Red Cross of Summit and Portage Counties. “And we are blessed to have such a remarkable structure from which to do our work. The generosity of so many people and organizations made this building possible. And on the 10th anniversary of its construction, we want to say again how much that generosity is appreciated.”
The Red Cross also will use the anniversary to rededicate itself to its theme “Here for Life,” which was the rally cry for the original capital campaign in 2002.
Following the ceremony, attendees will be invited inside for a tour, and refreshments will be served. The 15-minute tours will begin approximately at 5:45 p.m. and every 15 minutes afterward, with a final tour at 7:45 p.m. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling Shelley Sprang at 330-535-2224.
Veteran of the Year nominations open to Summit County vets
SOUTH AKRON — Once a year, the Summit County Veterans Service Commission (VSC) honors a local veteran who has faithfully served the community with the Veteran of the Year award.
Any Summit County veteran is eligible to be nominated, as long as he or she meets the following requirements: is an honorably discharged veteran, resides in Summit County and has performed documented community volunteer service or veterans’ outreach service.
Veterans, service organizations and the general public are encouraged to participate in the nomination process. Nomination forms can be downloaded from www.VSCsummitOH.us (under the “Documents” tab) or picked up at 1060 E. Waterloo Road.
“So many of our veterans continue their service to the community long after their discharge from the military,” said David Burden, project manager at the Summit County VSC. “Often, these veterans give of many hours per week and make a great difference to the cause they are serving. We want to be sure these people receive due recognition for all their efforts — although recognition is usually the last reason they choose to volunteer.”
Nomination forms must be submitted by Oct. 9 at 4 p.m. Forms should be dropped off at the VSC office, mailed to the Veterans Service Commission, Attn: David Burden, 1060 E. Waterloo Road, Akron, OH 44306, or emailed to DBurden @vscsummitoh.us.
The selected veteran will be honored at the annual awards dinner Oct. 25 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Firestone VFW Post No. 3383, located at 690 W. Waterloo Road. Tickets for the Veteran of the Year dinner are $14 each and must be purchased in advance by calling Burden at 330-643-7636.
Participants sought for UWSC’s Neighborhood Leadership Institute
SUMMIT COUNTY — United Way of Summit County’s (UWSC) Neighborhood Leadership Institute of Summit County is seeking participants for the fifth class that kicks off in March 2013.
The Institute — coordinated by Devoe Johnson, UWSC’s senior director of community impact — is a community collaborative designed to increase grassroots leadership engagement in the community. The goal is to train and empower local residents and community leaders, allowing them to promote positive changes in their own community.
Up to 24 men and women from neighborhoods throughout Summit County will be chosen to participate in the program. The cost is $600, and scholarships are available for individuals who can show need.
The Institute will begin with an orientation Feb. 21 and an overnight retreat hosted by The University of Akron (UA) March 1-2. The nine classes — most of which will take place at UA’s Quaker Square facility — will take place Thursdays from 5 to 9 p.m. between March 7 and May 9.
For applications, visit www.uwsummit.org/NLI/NLI.htm.
The classes offered will cover a variety of topics, ranging from criminal justice to communication and engagement. By participating in these classes, leaders will, according to UWSC officials, learn a wide variety of skills, including how to serve as an advocate for their families and communities, how to find and utilize resources and how to work with government agencies and social service providers. Participants also will gain insight on community development, coalition building, how to assess their neighborhood and their own potential as leaders.
Once they begin to identify the areas in their communities that need improvement, participants can then go about setting a plan and utilizing resources to fix those areas, according to UWSC officials.
Stephanie Kist and Maria Lindsay contributed to these reports.
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