FLASH BRIEFING THURSDAY


More than 500 Aurora Catholics are asking the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown to speed its publication of all credible abuse allegations against diocesan clergy and establish more community oversight measures. Bill Cushwa, a parishioner of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Aurora, hand-delivered a petition letter signed by more than 500 of the church’s 700 parishioners to the diocese offices just after noon Wednesday. The letter said they believe Bishop George Murry's recent pledge to publish the names of all diocesan clergy facing substantiated allegations of abuse within “the coming months” did not go far enough.

Proponents and opponents of state Issue 1 spent about 90 minutes Wednesday on Vindy.com debating the proposed constitutional amendment that seeks to reduce criminal penalties for nonviolent drug offenders. The proponents said the current criminal justice system unfairly punishes low-level, nonviolent criminals and the issue would rectify that and enable the millions of dollars saved on incarceration to be used for drug treatment and helping crime victims. Opponents disagreed, saying possession or use of deadly drugs such as fentanyl and heroin would result in probation, undermining treatment for addiction.

The Western Reserve Port Authority’s aviation consultant Mike Mooney said bringing commercial flight service back to the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport is an uphill battle, yet he hopes the airport will be able to do so sometime next year. Mooney said Wednesday several airline trends are creating challenges for smaller markets to attract and retain commercial airlines. "You don’t want to take risks in a strong economy, with a pilot shortage, so for smaller communities it’s kind of a pay-to-play situation going on around the country,” he said.

Youngstown officials proclaimed Sept. 19 as a day for residents to look toward to the promise of the city’s revived economy, rather than dwell on its past. Mayor Jamael Tito Brown, council members and local entrepreneurs celebrated the city’s first “Reclaiming Our Identity” Day downtown Wednesday. Derrick McDowell, who founded the Youngstown Flea outdoor market next to the Covelli Centre, said he launched the initiative as a way to “take back what rightfully belongs” to residents. “We have a rich history of entrepreneurship in this city. This is a day to remember our resilience and resolve,” he said.

Struthers residents are mourning the death of 2002 Struthers High School graduate and basketball player Sarah Katherine Slovinsky, who was killed in a bus crash Tuesday in Rayne Township, Pa. The Indiana, Pa., Gazette reported Slovinsky was driving a school bus when a pickup truck trying to make a turn crossed a median and struck Slovinsky’s bus head-on. Slovinsky was alone on the bus and died shortly after, the newspaper reported.

Ellwood Group Inc. plans to construct a new aluminum casting facility at its Ellwood Engineered Castings site on Hubbard Masury Road in Hubbard. The company is investing more than $60 million in the project and expects to employ 30 permanent full-time personnel and produce a projected 150 million pounds of large round billet and slabs. Ben Huffman, Ellwood's chief operating officer, said the company chose Hubbard for the new facility because of its location, its exceptional workforce, and the comprehensive incentive package provided at both the state and local levels.

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