Coronavirus restrictions will come to an end in Ohio on June 2: The Wake Up for
Some folks might see some frost on the ground this morning, but it eventually will warm to the low 60s with mostly sunny skies. It will be clear overnight with a low around 42. Read more.
Local scores: Cavs 102, Boston Celtics 94
Restrictions to end: Gov. Mike DeWine announced in a special address Wednesday evening that all pandemic health orders – except those for nursing homes and assisted living facilities – will be lifted in three weeks, on June 2, Laura Hancock reports. DeWine’s decision nullifies his previous benchmark for dropping public health orders — when cases decline to 50 per 100,000 residents — which he made in his last public address, on March 4. The announcement also contained some creative, if unconventional, ways to drive up vaccine demand: college scholarships for five young Ohioans who start the vaccine and $1 million for five Ohio residents 18 and older who have started the shots.
Welcome news: With the exception of “The Cleveland Browns have won the Super Bowl!” there probably won’t be eight words more pleasing to the ears of Ohio’s restaurant operators, entertainment-venue directors and patrons than “It is time to end the health orders.” Marc Bona and Anne Nickoloff report emotions ranged from owners being excited to those in the music industry who will remain a bit cautious. Many said they still see a step-by-step approach for the time being.
Unemployment fraud: State Auditor Keith Faber says unemployment officials withheld the extent of fraud from his office during the first months of the pandemic and dawdled on installing anti-fraud measures. In an interview with Jeremy Pelzer, Faber said the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services told the auditor’s office through December that there was no unemployment fraud outside of “ordinary scope stuff.” In February, the department director at the time, Kimberly Henderson, said she knew as early as June that the state was being hit with a tsunami of fraudulent claims that eventually totaled more than $332 million in 2020 alone.
This Week in the CLE: Who’s getting inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? Troy Smith talks this year’s winners and Seth Richardson talks candidates to replace Mayor Frank Jackson on This Week in the CLE, cleveland.com’s daily half-hour news podcast.
New numbers: Another 1,449 new coronavirus cases were reported Wednesday, above the 21-day rolling average of 1,371, Laura Hancock reports.
Case rate: Ohio’s rate of new coronavirus cases is dropping sharply. Rich Exner predicts the state today will report a rate of close to 122.9 cases per 100,000 over the past two weeks. This would be down from 200 cases per 100,000 as reported by the state in mid-April. In addition to falling case numbers, hospitalization counts have also been dropping.
MetroHealth employees: MetroHealth employees who have not received a coronavirus vaccine by July 1 will have to undergo weekly COVID-19 testing, Evan MacDonald reports. The policy will apply to all employees who enter MetroHealth facilities, not just those who work directly with patients. About 72% of MetroHealth employees have been vaccinated.
Bullying allegations: An attorney hired as a special investigator found “no evidence” to support most of the bullying complaints filed by Cuyahoga County’s independent watchdog against the chair of the committee overseeing her department. Courtney Astolfi reports that one of 11 complaints was substantiated, about the committee chair asking the director of internal audit to meet at his home to prepare for a meeting.
Liz Cheney: U.S. House of Representatives Republicans on Tuesday voted to remove Wyoming’s Liz Cheney from her post as…