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WRITER: David Skolnick

City hires events planner

YOUNGSTOWN — The city has a new downtown events and citywide special projects coordinator after not having one since before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Mayor Jamael Tito Brown announced Friday the hiring of Melanie Clarke-Penella, who operates a local film company, to the job that’s been vacant since January 2020. “I was impressed by what she’s done in New York and elsewhere,” Brown said. ...

County Dems rules violate state law

“Several parts” of the Mahoning County Democratic Party’s constitution “are in conflict with state statute” and / or Ohio Democratic Party and Democratic National Committee rules and are unenforceable, according to the ODP secretary. Secretary Bill DeMora said Friday a message left by a reporter Thursday asking about the county party’s bylaws requiring candidates for party offices to get the ...

County Dems square off for leadership position

YOUNGSTOWN — Youngstown City Councilman Mike Ray says he will run for Mahoning County Democratic Party chairman while Christopher Anderson, who’s already filed paperwork for the seat, lined up another nine endorsements, including two of Ray’s fellow city council members. Youngstown Councilman Julius Oliver, D-1st Ward, and Councilwoman Samantha Turner, D-3rd Ward, are among those who Anderson listed ...

Party leadership battles loom

There will be challenges to the leadership of the Republican and Democratic parties in Trumbull County and a contested race for chairman of the Mahoning County Democratic Party. There won’t be any issue with Mahoning County Republican Party Chairman Thomas McCabe’s re-election. He’s the only one who appears to be safe. Trumbull GOP Chairman Kenneth Kline will face Martha Yoder, who also is running for ...

High court rejects state maps for 5th time; federal court to impose boundaries

For the fifth time, the Ohio Supreme Court rejected state legislative maps proposed by the state redistricting commission, but a federal court will impose them later this week. The maps rejected by the court Wednesday by a 4-3 vote was identical to the third maps it ruled unconstitutional March 16. Republicans on the redistricting commission said when they voted in favor of those unconstitutional maps again ...

Valley group drops claim against Congress map

The three African-American Youngstown residents seeking to invalidate the new congressional map for disenfranchising black voters in the Mahoning Valley agreed to drop claims of constitutional violations in their federal lawsuit. But they refuse to dismiss assertions the map violates the federal Voting Rights Act. The “plaintiffs do not concede their constitutional claims are not cognizable, however, the ...

State gives $250K for road project to assist Macy’s

NORTH JACKSON — The state Controlling Board awarded $250,000 for a road widening project near the Macy’s distribution center, which is undergoing a $30 million renovation to dedicate a portion of the building to online order fulfillment. The grant, approved Monday, went to the Mahoning County Engineer’s Office for public improvement work, according to a controlling board document. The work is to ...

Party rules favor chairman

After saying he supported Trumbull County Democratic Chairman Dan Polivka’s re-election, Mark Alberini, Trumbull County Board of Elections chairman, is seeking to challenge the incumbent even though the local party’s bylaws don’t permit it. Alberini said he “was still evaluating” a chairman’s run when he told a reporter Friday he wasn’t challenging Polivka and supported his re-election. After ...

Official: Trumbull Dems bylaws violate law

The Trumbull County Democratic Party’s constitution has “several provisions” that are “unenforceable as they conflict with either state statute,” or Ohio Democratic Party and Democratic National Committee rules, the ODP’s secretary said. Bill DeMora, ODP secretary, informed Trumbull Democratic Chairman Dan Polivka and Kathy DiCristofaro, first vice chairwoman, of his ruling after a Monday review of ...

City’s water meter updates trickle off

xYOUNGSTOWN — The meter is running on the city’s often-delayed plan to replace water equipment for its 52,000 residential customers. The latest delay is caused by a lack of residential water meters as a result of national supply chain issues, said Water Commissioner Harry L. Johnson III. “We do not have inventory,” he said. “It’s unfortunate. I’m not happy about it, but there is nothing we can ...