U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler concluded his tour of Northern Ohio Tuesday with visits to Akron and Cleveland and announcing more than $2 million in federal grants.

Akron will receive more than $1 million for the Gorge Dam removal project as part of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

Akron City Council has wrapped up a three-year long process to do away with Columbus Day. Beginning in 2021 because of the pandemic, the city will celebrate Italian-American Heritage and Culture Day each October. September will be known as “Welcoming Month.” 

Columbus joined several other Ohio cities in requiring masks in public spaces. The Columbus mask mandate begins Friday. Akron may soon follow.

“This is about science. This is not about politics,” said Akron Ward 5 councilwoman Tara Mosley-Samples.

“I think that they have politicized it so much that we are ignoring the science here, and the science says we have a problem,” said Samples.

A caregiver tests a patient for coronavirus at University Hospitals, Monday, March 16, 2020, in Mayfield Heights, Ohio.
Tony Dejak / Associated Press

Hundreds of people lined up in West Akron for free, in-car coronavirus testing over the weekend.

The city of Akron will begin reviewing police policies and procedures locally and across the state to enact best practices that combat racism and improve police relations with the community.
Josh Troche / WKSU

The phrase "Defund The Police" has become a battle cry of protesters after the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis Police. Now, like many cities, Akron is in the early stages of what could add up to significant change for the police department.

Akron officials on Tuesday announced a reward of $45,000 for any information regarding the murder of 18-year old Na’kia Crawford earlier this week.

“Today I’m humbled to say that the Akron community is stepping up in a very big way to try to help give Na’kia and her family the justice she so desperately needed in this case,” Mayor Dan Horrigan said.

Galenas in Akron harvested its third crop in February. It can complete four grows a year.
Amanda Rabinowitz / WKSU

You notice Galenas right away if you're driving down Main Street on Akron's east side. It's a modern, pyramid-shaped building with a wood-paneled façade, half a mile down the street from Bridgestone’s Akron tire center, nestled among car repair shops and surrounded by houses.

You can even catch a whiff of the roughly 750 marijuana plants growing inside.

A new Akron startup wants to create a community of people interested in learning about crypto-currency.

Democratic Presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg (left) picked up an endorsement on Wednesday night from Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan, during a speech at Bounce Innovation Hub.
Kabir Bhatia / WKSU

Billionaire and Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg visited Ohio for the second time in a month on Wednesday night, picking up an endorsement from Akron's mayor.

The abrupt closure of an Akron trucking company last month came at the end of a difficult year for the industry.

GDS Express shut down, putting 75 drivers out of work right before Christmas. Last Spring, Falcon Transport in Youngstown closed suddenly.

Akron’s Chapel Hill Mall came perilously close to closing its doors Friday over a delinquent water and sewer bill. 

The city says its Office of Integrated Development gave the mall’s owner, New York-based Kohan Retail Investment Group, until 9:30 Friday morning to make a payment or face closure.

Northeast Ohio communities hope no one goes uncounted in the 2020 Census.

Complete count committees, local groups made up of area government and community leaders, will spend the next few months promoting the decennial count.

A report from the Eviction Lab at Princeton University says Akron has the highest eviction rate in the state and the 24th highest nationally, with nearly seven renters evicted every day.

It's not news to the Fair Housing Contact Service, a nonprofit housing support group in Akron. Lauren Green-Hull, the group's associate director, said they've been aware of that data for years, and they've organized a task force to combat the problem.

Akron Police

Forty-five cadets have begun intensive training in the first Akron Police Academy since the city ended its training program in 2008 due to budget cuts.

The Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority says more than 20,000 families are waiting for housing assistance. A federal grant will allow it to help some of those most in need.

The Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority (AMHA) is calling the project the Mainstream Voucher Program.

AMHA has about 4,000 families with disabilities who could benefit from the program. But the half million dollar grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development will only fund help for 80 families.