April Laissle

April Laissle is a graduate of Ohio University and comes to WYSO from WOUB Public Media in Athens, Ohio where she worked as a weekend host and reporter.  There, she reported on everything from food insecurity to 4-H chicken competitions. April interned at KQED Public Radio in San Francisco, where she focused on health reporting. She also worked on The Broad Experience, a New-York based podcast about women and workplace issues. In her spare time, April loves traveling, trying new recipes and binge-listening to podcasts. April is a Florida native and has been adjusting to Ohio weather since 2011.

Flash floods were reported in some areas of the Miami Valley today after severe thunderstorms passed through the region Thursday night.
 
The storms produced about 4 to 6 inches of rain in just a few hours, according to the National Weather Service. That resulted in flooding in areas north of Dayton including Wapakoneta and Bellefontaine.

More than 500 people gathered at the Ohio Statehouse Thursday to pressure lawmakers to boost funding for support services for those with developmental disabilities.

The event was organized by the nonprofit group Bridge to Equality, which advocates for people with developmental disabilities.

Bridge to Equality CEO Mark Schlater says thousands of disabled people rely on aides known direct service professionals, or DSPs, to live their everyday lives.

In this Saturday, April 23, 2016 photo, members of the Ku Klux Klan participate in a "white pride" rally in Rome, Ga.
John Bazemore / Associated Press

The city of Dayton has reached an agreement with an Indiana-based Ku Klux Klan-affiliated group set to rally in Courthouse Square later this month.

The Dayton City Commission is urging Dayton’s two major health-care systems to sign a transfer agreement with the Miami Valley’s last-remaining abortion provider.

The agreement is required by state law. And without it, the clinic is in danger of closing.

Among the city commission members, four out of five voted in favor of the resolution asking Kettering Health Network and Premier Health to sign the transfer agreement with Women’s Med Center in Kettering.

Legal efforts to challenge the state requirement have so far been unsuccessful.

The Better Dayton Coalition and Dayton Police officers updated residents about preparations for the KKK-group's rally.
Jess Mador / WYSO

Activists have released details of a plan to counter-protest an Indiana-based Ku Klux Klan group, which scheduled a rally in Dayton later this month.

Activists have released details of a plan to counterprotest an Indiana-based Ku Klux Klan group’s rally set for Dayton later this month.

At a forum Thursday at Mt. Enon Missionary Baptist Church, members of the Better Dayton Coalition and the Dayton Police Department urged potential demonstrators to maintain their safety and consider staying home. Dayton Public Schools officials are also asking young people to steer clear of downtown Dayton during the May 25 Honorable Sacred Knights rally.

The Dayton Commission held its first meeting Wednesday, one day after federal law enforcement officials revealed a major investigation into alleged fraud and public corruption in the city’s government. The probe is related to the city’s handling of public contracts.

At the commission meeting, Dayton officials announced they’re launching their own separate internal investigation into the federal allegations. 

Voters in several Miami Valley counties will have the chance to decide a number of school levies at the ballot box in the May 7 Primary.

Beavercreek officials are once again asking voters to approve a schools levy supporting operating expenses.

After a similar measure failed last fall, the district responded by announcing plans to lay off more than two dozen teachers and staff members.

District leaders say more cuts will be made if voters reject the new 6.15 mill levy on the May ballot.

Human error was to blame for thousands of Miami County votes going uncounted during last fall’s midterm elections, an investigation by the Ohio Secretary of State's office has revealed. State officials say they'll closely monitor the county's Board of Elections this election season.

The state's investigation found more than 6,000 early votes went uncounted last fall because board staff members shut down voting machines improperly.

During a Friday meeting, Wright State University’s Board of Trustees brainstormed new ways to boost enrollment as part of the board's continued efforts to shore up the school’s finances.

The university is projecting another budget surplus this year, for a second year in a row. 

Wright State is expected to add another $5.8 million to its reserve fund this year. This means the school is unlikely to be placed under state fiscal watch.

Board Chairman Doug Fecher says, while that’s good news, they’re not out of the woods yet.

The Montgomery County Jail has been embroiled in numerous lawsuits and allegations of inmate mistreatment in recent years. And, a recent independent investigation into conditions at the jail by the Montgomery County Commission’s Justice Committee reveals a chronic shortage of corrections officers contributes to some of the jail’s most deeply entrenched problems.

The solution may seem obvious: hire more corrections officers to boost staffing at the detention facility.

But some jail officials say it’s not that simple.

Ohio Higher Education officials will review the results a faculty no-confidence vote against Wright State’s Board of Trustees. On Monday, members of Wright State’s faculty approved the no-confidence action by a wide margin. The vote is an appeal for assistance by the faculty to the governor’s office.

More than half of Wright State’s faculty members weighed in, with 87 percent voting no confidence in the Board of Trustees.

No-confidence votes are largely symbolic, according to Sean McKinniss, a researcher who specializes in university governance.

Dayton Public Schools parents came to voice their concerns about the district at a town hall meeting Thursday night. The meeting, held about a month before the start of state standardized testing, comes at a critical time for DPS. The struggling district is facing state takeover in September if student test scores don’t improve this year. 

At the meeting, parents and community members discussed a number of longstanding DPS issues, including transportation and the use of long-term substitute teachers.

Hundreds of people gathered inside a Miami Valley Muslim community center Monday night to honor the victims of last week’s mass shooting at two mosques in New Zealand. Several prominent Ohio religious and political figures spoke at the interfaith event, including former Gov. Bob Taft and Dayton City Commissioner Matt Joseph.

Speakers at the Al-Huda Mosque in Bellbrook memorialized the 50 victims of the Christchurch attacks, denounced hate speech and urged interfaith understanding.

The Dayton Funk Music Hall of Fame and Exhibition Center is moving out of its current location in the city’s Fire Blocks district. The museum first opened there in December 2017. Officials say rising rent costs forced the move.

Rent for the museum’s current space on East Third Street was originally free, thanks to an agreement with the district's former developer. Under the new development company, rent will rise to $1,400 a month. Funk Center Founder and CEO David Webb says they can’t afford it.

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