Franklin County

Voters waiting more than two hours to cast a ballot during the final weekend of early voting in Ohio on Sunday, November 1 at the Franklin County Board of Elections in Columbus.
Karen Kasler / Ohio Public Radio

Antone White, the new director of the Franklin County Board of Elections, says he's ready to evaluate the voting process and enhance voter education after the tumultuous 2020 election. 

A view of the downtown Columbus skyline from Franklinton.
Mary Rathke / WOSU

Franklin County is the first and only county in the state to be elevated to a level four "purple" health emergency, the most severe indicator on Ohio's Public Health Advisory map.

Mayor Andrew Ginther tours the Greater Columbus Convention Center.
Greater Columbus Convention Center

The city of Columbus is issuing a "stay at home" advisory starting Friday, urging residents to avoid inessential activities in order to stop the spread of COVID-19.

A ventilator helps a COVID-19 patient breath inside the Coronavirus Unit at United Memorial Medical Center, Monday, July 6, 2020, in Houston.
David J. Phillip / Associated Press

Tuscarawas County and Franklin County are both on the state's watch list for severe exposure and spread of COVID-19. Next week, the counties might move up to purple – the highest level of concern – on Ohio's Public Health Advisory System.

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien giving closing arguments in the case of Quentin Smith, who killed two Westerville Police officers, on Oct. 31, 2019.
Fred Squillante / Pool/Columbus Dispatch

Long-time Republican prosecutor Ron O'Brien lost his bid for a seventh term. O'Brien conceded the race early Wednesday morning to Democratic retired judge Gary Tyack.

Mayor Andrew Ginther at a press conference on October 26.
Nick Evans / WOSU

With COVID-19 cases surging around Ohio, Columbus leaders are urging people to stay home and limit social gatherings. 

This April 5, 2020, file photo shows an envelope containing a 2020 census letter mailed to a U.S. resident in Detroit.
Paul Sancya / Associated Press

Survey collection for the 2020 U.S. Census officially ends Thursday, two days after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling allowed the Trump administration to move the end date up from the end of October.

James and Cheryl Turner in line Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2020 to cast their vote.
Nick Evans / WOSU

Voters snaked down the sidewalk at the Franklin County Board of Elections on Tuesday morning. Past the music shop, past the pizza place, past the department store, to coil up in the parking lot at the opposite end of the strip mall.

They planned ahead – showing up early, bundled against the chill and toting folding chairs for the wait.

Aerial view of The Oval on Ohio State University's campus
Ohio State University

As Central Ohio sees a drop in new coronavirus cases, Ohio State University's new president says the positive test rate for students has nearly tripled this week.

Downtown Columbus, buildings and water.
Ryan Hitchcock / WOSU

Franklin County is among four counties that saw their public health emergency levels reduced this week due to dropping rates of new COVID-19 cases.

Empty Basketball Courts at the former Dominion Middle School.
Mary Rathke / WOSU Public Media

Columbus City Schools will once again allow sports and other extracurriculars, just two weeks after the district suspended in-person activities, due to dropping rates of new COVID-19 cases in the area.

The secure ballot drop box at the Franklin County Board of Elections on Morse Road.
Darrin McDonald / WOSU

In the traditionally-Republican Delaware County, the board of elections is at the end of a strip mall that also houses a Big Lots store. The county's sole drop box is located behind the building, next to a dumpster.

Debbie Holmes

Ohio’s 2020 presidential primary ended with about 20% voter turnout, after some major disruptions from the coronavirus pandemic. 

Paige Pfleger / WOSU

It’s the first of the month, which means it’s time to pay rent. But with unemployment claims at all-time high because of the coronavirus, many tenants in Ohio are worrying about their ability to keep up with payments. 

As many businesses close for the coronavirus epidemic, the Franklin County Board Of Commissioners is offering some new assistance.