Nick Castele

Judges in Cuyahoga County held another meeting on Monday to talk about reforming the bail system, their first gathering since a withering U.S. Marshals Service report on the county jail.

Local judges and other officials have been talking for years about changing the way bail is set, so that fewer defendants await trial from inside a jail cell.

The United Auto Workers labor union is suing General Motors over the use of temporary workers at a plant in Indiana, saying that laid-off members from Lordstown could do the jobs.

The UAW filed the suit this week in federal court in Youngstown. The suit accuses the company of violating a labor agreement that allows laid-off employees with seniority to seek to relocate to other GM facilities.

The complaint says the union agreed to GM’s hiring of temporary employees in Fort Wayne, Indiana, through August 2018 to help with the launch of a new pickup truck.

The federal government has been partially shut down for almost a week, but not all agencies and services in Ohio are equally affected.

Eligible households will still receive cash and food benefits for January, a spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services said. The department administers both federal programs, known as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. 

Whether it’s an All-Star Game, a Final Four tournament or a pro-sports draft, hosting big events costs local organizers money. A bill signed by Gov. John Kasich this month will give cities, counties and local host committees more help hosting such events.

Starting in January, people caught in Euclid with small amounts of marijuana will no longer be looking at six months in jail—and they have the podcast Serial to thank.

The city is reclassifying low-level marijuana possession as a minor misdemeanor, which carries a maximum fine of $150.

Cuyahoga County Justice Center

A Cuyahoga County grand jury has indicted ex-judge Lance Mason on charges of aggravated murder in the fatal stabbing of his estranged wife, Shaker Heights teacher Aisha Fraser.

A U.S. Marshals probe of the Cuyahoga County jail uncovered conditions so severe that they put the safety of staff and inmates at risk, according to a report released Wednesday morning.

Among the Marshals’ findings were that the jail used food as a form of punishment, that meals failed to meet nutritional standards, that inmates received inadequate medical care and that defendants awaiting court were placed in cells without working toilets or running water.

Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, speaks during the 2016 Democratic National Convention.
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

U.S. Rep Marcia Fudge (D-Warrensville Heights) will not run for Speaker of the House.

The sister of former Cuyahoga County judge Lance Mason told a police dispatcher on Saturday that he had stabbed his estranged wife, Aisha Fraser, according to a 911 call released Monday afternoon.

Mason’s sister told the dispatcher that he then walked into the house on Chagrin Boulevard and said that Fraser was dead. His sister also said that the couple’s two daughters were in the house with her at the time.

Shaker Heights police have charged Mason with felonious assault, accusing him of ramming a police cruiser with his SUV while fleeing the scene of the homicide.

In the months leading up to the midterms, Ohio election officials tried to make their computer systems harder to hack.

They role-played how to handle cyberattacks and received help from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

They say last week’s vote went off without major cybersecurity problems. Now they have to prepare for an even bigger election—the 2020 presidential race.

President Trump dropped into Ohio the afternoon before Election Day in a bid to boost the Republican ticket here.

Trump, joined by his daughter Ivanka, called a number of GOP candidates to share the stage with him during his hour-long rally at the I-X Center in Cleveland. The president was also scheduled to speak in Fort Wayne, Ind., and Cape Girardeau, Mo.

Nick Castele / ideastream

The Anti-Defamation League says the mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue over the weekend has left Ohio’s Jews in a state of shock. While synagogues step up security measures, congregations have held vigils around the state to remember those killed at the Tree Of Life.

The podcast Serial has called new attention to the power that local judges wield over everything from license suspensions to prison sentences.

“Judges in America are really the only elected public officials that the public invests with the authority to take their property, their liberty and sometimes even their life,” retired Cleveland Municipal Judge Ronald Adrine said.

There are more than a dozen contested judicial races on Cuyahoga County ballots this November, from the state supreme court down to the court of common pleas.

The leader of the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus joined with some Cleveland City Council members and other local officials to support Issue 1 at a news conference Thursday morning.

The proposed constitutional amendment would reduce penalties for drug possession, reclassifying lower-level felonies as misdemeanors. It would also allow incarcerated people, with some exceptions, to shorten their prison sentences by taking part in job and education programs.  

Ohio governor candidates Democratic Richard Cordray and Republican Mike DeWine speak to reporters following their third debate at Cleveland State University.
Angelo Merendino / AP

Richard Cordray and Mike DeWine tussled over healthcare, drug sentencing laws and support for local government in their third gubernatorial debate Monday night.

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