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South Side News & Notes

12/12/2013 - South Side Leader
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By Staff Writer

Coventry Local Schools seeking representative for PLCC Board

COVENTRY — The Coventry Local School District is accepting résumés from residents interested in serving as the district’s representative on the Portage Lakes Career Center (PLCC) Board of Education.

According to district officials, PLCC Board members must possess one of the following qualifications before serving on the board:

  • experience as chief financial officers, chief executive officers, human resources managers or other business, industry or career counseling professionals;
  • be qualified to discuss the labor needs of the region with respect to the regional economy; or
  • represent employers in the region served by PLCC who are qualified to consider the state’s work-force needs with an understanding of the skills, training and education needed for current and future employment opportunities in the state.

Those interested in applying for the seat on the PLCC Board should submit a résumé and cover letter to: Coventry Local School District, Attn: Tina Gable, 2910 S. Main St., Akron, OH 44319.

The deadline for application is Dec. 27. Children to Shop With a Cop

SPRINGFIELD — Police officers from the Springfield, New Franklin, Hartville, Mogadore and Uniontown police departments will host the second annual Shop With a Cop program tomorrow, Dec. 14.

Shop With a Cop pairs disadvantaged children in the community with police officers for a paid shopping trip at a local retailer. This year, the police officers will take 75 children to shop at the South Arlington Road Wal-Mart, according to Springfield Police Department officials.

Funds for the shopping trip were raised through the sale of raffle tickets for a variety of prizes.

The event will begin with a breakfast at Maranatha Bible Church on Killian Road. The group then will leave in parade format in police, S.W.A.T. and military vehicles to go to Wal-Mart, where children will be able to purchase holiday gifts.

The children and police officers will return to the church, also by parade, after shopping, according to Springfield Police Department officials. Children will be served lunch and hear a Christmas story. While they eat, their gifts will be wrapped by volunteers.

APD changing response to burglar alarmsm for homes, businesses

DOWNTOWN AKRON — In trying to better utilize its resources, the Akron Police Department (APD) is changing its policy in regards to how officers respond to burglar alarms.

The new policy will take effect sometime after the first of the year, said Lt. Rick Edwards, APD public information officer.

“We are not going to a ‘no alarm’ policy,” he said.

The APD will be going to a “verified response policy,” according to Edwards. What this means, said Edwards, is the APD will verify there is cause for officers to respond to an alarm before doing so. Police will respond if an intrusion is confirmed by a licensed security representative or by a visual account, live video or live audio, said Edwards.

The policy change affects both residential and business alarms, said Edwards.

“Ninety-eight percent of the alarms we respond to are false,” and every alarm requires sending two cruisers, he said.

“We will still respond to hold-up alarms, bank alarms and panic alarms,” without the required step of verification, Edwards said.

Post office processes mail, delivers parcels on Sundays for holiday

CLEVELAND — The U.S. Postal Service has announced it will cancel and process mail in Cleveland and deliver parcels throughout Northern Ohio Dec. 15. The service also was available Dec. 8.

“We are asking our customers to please deposit their mail in a blue mail box or at a Post Office as early as possible this holiday season,” said Northern Ohio District Manager Melvin Anderson. “Since we are expecting a higher than normal mail volume on Mondays during the holidays, we will be cancelling and processing mail on these two Sundays. Normally, we do not cancel and process mail on Sundays, but we are expecting our local mail volume to increase from about 1 million pieces on an average day to about 3 million pieces on Dec. 16.”

The Postal Service also encourages customers to mail early in the morning during the holiday season.

“Getting your mail to us early in the day will speed the processing and delivery of your holiday mail,” said Anderson.

In addition, letter carriers will be out delivering parcels in many locations on both Sundays.

“We appreciate our customers and are committed to providing the best possible mail and package delivery service available,” said Anderson.

American Red Cross taking nominations for Hero Awards

AKRON — Each year, the American Red Cross of Summit and Portage Counties presents the Acts of Courage in Summit County and the Real Heroes Awards in Portage County to honor local individuals who have performed courageous acts to save a life.

The Red Cross is currently seeking nominations of local heroes for the 2013 calendar year.

To submit a nomination, individuals can visit www.redcross.org/oh/akron. Nominations can be accepted online or through the use of a mail-in/fax-in nomination form that can be downloaded from the website or obtained from the Red Cross offices at 501 W. Market St.

The American Red Cross annually recognizes those residents of Summit and Portage counties who have acted courageously and selflessly in a time of emergency. Often at great risk and sacrifice to their own personal safety, comfort and well-being, these ordinary individuals have acted in a heroic manner by reaching out to help others in times of greatest need, according to Red Cross officials.

The hero event may have happened anywhere, but must have occurred in 2013. Nominees must reside in or be employed in Summit or Portage counties. The deadline for nominations is Dec. 31. All nominations will be reviewed by a judges’ panel, and heroes will be selected in January.

The selected 2013 heroes will be honored during a special reception in the spring.

For more information, call the American Red Cross at 330-535-2224.

Grants being used to upgrade, improve local emergency response capabilities

SUMMIT COUNTY — Grants totaling more than $580,000 will be used to upgrade equipment used by the Summit County Special Operations Response Team (SORT). The State of Ohio Homeland Security funding will improve the Hazardous Materials and Collapse Search and Rescue elements of SORT.

SORT, while based in Summit County, responds to incidents throughout Ohio Homeland Security Region 5, including Summit, Medina, Stark, Portage, Wayne, Holmes, Ashland, Richland, Tuscarawas, Carroll, Columbiana, Mahoning and Trumbull counties.

“This is a great example how working together can benefit an entire region,” said Summit County Executive Russ Pry. “Through cooperation and consolidation, the safety and well-being of our citizens has improved as a result of these grants.”

The largest of the three grants, $315,000, will be used to purchase two vehicles that will replace a single 1994 vehicle that has more than 187,000 miles on it. The two smaller vehicles can be stationed strategically in Summit County for the most effective response throughout the region.

The second largest grant, more than $220,000, will be used to purchase equipment that will upgrade current hazardous materials detection capabilities. According to county officials, the Razor EX BioDetection system is the most reliable and sensitive detection and identification system for biological pathogens in the field, and the Smith’s Detection Guardian portable gas chromatograph/mass spectrophotometer can identify volatile organic compounds and weapons of mass destruction in complex gases, vapors, liquids and solids.

The third grant, just more than $47,000, will be used to replace items that are near expiration or require an annual renewal. These items are used in conjunction with primary detection devices and to support the mitigation of the effects of weapons of mass destruction and chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive incidents.

“The award of these three grants to our Emergency Management Agency [EMA] is a testament to the abilities and professionalism of the team,” said Summit County EMA Senior Administrator Valerie DeRose. “The significant amount of the grants is an indicator of the quality of service that state officials see in our organization.”

Ariel Hakim, Stephanie Kist and Maria Linday contributed to these reports.

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