Bill Mason’s political machine kingless after attempt to influence Cuyahoga County executive race: The Wake Up for Monday, Feb. 14, 2022

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Partly sunny skies are in the forecast today but it will be chilly, with highs in the mid-20s. It will be cloudy and cold overnight, with a low around 10 degrees. Read more.

Kingmaker: Bill Mason, the former county prosecutor and a leader of what many consider the “old guard” of the Cuyahoga County Party, was once revered as a kingmaker. But he didn’t pick the three big power brokers of the county: 11th Congressional District representative, Cleveland mayor, and the county executive. Kaitlin Durbin reports Mason denies having any influence over local politics.

Biden visit: President Joe Biden will visit Cleveland and Lorain on Thursday, Sabrina Eaton reports. During the visit, he will discuss how money from the bipartisan infrastructure law adopted last year is being used to rebuild roads and bridges, upgrade water systems, clean up the environment and create well-paid union jobs.

Redistricting: The two Democrats on the Ohio Redistricting Commission said they still had not seen a new state map proposal from their Republican counterparts and also didn’t know when the redistricting commission might even meet. Andrew Tobias reports that it appears Ohio’s interminable redistricting process is headed down the same familiar Republican road.

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Shareholders, acting on behalf of FirstEnergy Corp., have agreed to a $180 million settlement with a group of top officials who ran the company during the House Bill 6 scandal. We’re talking about how shareholders are also getting more oversight over the company and board, a third of which must resign, on Today in Ohio, cleveland.com’s daily half-hour news podcast.

Bill Batchelder: Former Ohio House Speaker William Batchelder died Saturday at the age of 79, reports Kaylee Remington. Batchelder was Ohio’s second-longest serving representative when he left the house in 2014.

Urban ag: Carl Wallace is one of 12 Americans picked to serve on a new advisory committee on urban agriculture, with agricultural producers, and representatives from higher education, extension programs, non-profits, business and economic development, supply chains and financing. Sabrina Eaton reports that the committee’s job is to give input on policy development and help identify barriers to urban farming as the agriculture department promotes urban farming and the opportunities it provides in cities across the country.

Fentanyl: A group of Ohio Republicans in the US House of Representatives wants the federal government to extend fentanyl’s classification as a Schedule I drug past Feb. 18, when an emergency order expires. Sabrina Eaton reports US Reps. Dave Joyce of South Russell, Bob Gibbs of Holmes County and Anthony Gonzalez of Rocky River joined dozens of their GOP colleagues asking President Joe Biden to permanently classify fentanyl as a Schedule 1 drug, with sales subject to enhanced penalties and to take immediate action to keep it from entering the country from China and Mexico.

Cleveland lynching, 1911

The death of John Jordon was front-page news on all four of Cleveland’s daily newspapers in June 1911. (Images courtesy Cleveland Public Library)

Cleveland lynching: In 1911, a mob chased three black men for miles after they picked some cherries from an orchard. John Jordon was shot and killed, believed to be Cuyahoga County’s only documented victim of lynching, Susan Glaser reports. Now a group of Clevelanders is hoping to shine some light on Jordon’s story, part of an ongoing conversation about race, justice and reconciliation.

FirstEnergy: A federal judge Friday demanded answers from attorneys who had reached a settlement in shareholders’ lawsuits involving FirstEnergy Corp. over House Bill 6, questioning how the agreement came about with so much missing information. John Caniglia reports it’s unclear whether US District Judge John Adams’ filing will block the deal, which calls for an insurer of FirstEnergy officers and directors to pay the company $180 million for the damages brought by what authorities called Ohio’s largest bribery scheme.

Ice fishing reaction: Hudson Mayor Craig Shubert’s suggestion that ice fishing could lead to prostitution has inspired memes, cookies and T-shirts poking fun at the bizarre statement, reports Maura Zurick.

Positive trends: After more than a month of increasing COVID-19 deaths in Ohio, the state saw a dip this week, in line with continuing decreases in other relevant coronavirus figures like cases and hospitalizations, Jane Morice reports. This week, 788 COVID-19 deaths were reported in Ohio. The prior four weeks’ death reports are 1,146, 1,084, 1,068 and 850, respectively.

Kid vaccines: The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has told COVID-19 vaccine producers to be ready to receive doses for children younger than 5 by Feb. 21 — just a week after the Food and Drug Administration is expected to make its recommendation on emergency-use authorization, reports Julie Washington.

Vaccination rates: Delaware and Lake counties are maintaining their status as the top two Ohio counties for vaccination rates, reports Julie Washington. Cuyahoga County has moved up from seventh to third best among Ohio’s 88 counties.

Timeline: Australia says it will reopen borders to vaccinated travelers this month while Indonesia will tighten social restrictions in Jakarta and Bali, as well as in two cities on Java island to try to contain a spike in infections, Marc Bona reports in his weekly roundup of COVID news.

Ford Ohio Assembly Plant

Ford’s assembly plant in Avon Lake is closing temporarily amid industrywide parts shortages.The Plain Dealer

Ford plant: Ford is temporarily shutting down its assembly plant in Avon Lake amid a growing shortage of parts across the auto industry as protesters in Canada disrupt the border. A posting on UAW’s Local 2000 Facebook page Friday instructed union members to file for unemployment for next week, with a scheduled recall date of Feb. 21.

Cleveland-Cliffs: Cleveland-Cliffs on Thursday reported a financial rebound in 2021, generating record income after a transformation in 2020 from its core iron ore pellet business to steelmaking. Sean McDonnell reports the Cleveland-based company said it had a net income of $3 billion on $20.4 billion in revenue in 2021, both records.

Spaces: Spaces, which runs shared-working spaces, plans to open a new location March 1 in Cleveland’s Warehouse District. Eric Heisig reports the company, a division of IWG, is leasing about 27,000 square feet of space that will span the first and second floors of the building, which dates to 1891.

Stabbing death: A 5-year-old girl died Saturday night after she was found stabbed at her home, Bedford Heights police said. Police and the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s Office identified the girl as E’Nijah Noelle Holland. The girl’s mother has been arrested, Jane Morice reports.

East Cleveland chase: A man led East Cleveland police on a chase that reached a top speed of 86 mph as it passed through downtown Cleveland early Friday, reports Olivia Mitchell. East Cleveland officers arrested Ke’Leon Da’Lon Boyd, 21, and a 16-year-old boy after they got out of the car and led officers on a foot chase in Lakewood. A 15-year-old girl remained in the car and was also taken into custody.

Kids Film It: The stage is almost set for the sixth annual Kids Film It Festival. The only thing left to do is vote. Marc Bona reports the event showcases the work of inspiring young filmmakers ages 8 to 18.

All-Star charities: Two Northeast Ohio charities stand to benefit from a creative, competitive format when Team LeBron and Team Durant tip off at the NBA All-Star Game on Sunday. Team LeBron will represent the Kent State I Promise Scholars Program and Team Durant will play for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank. In all, the NBA is donating $750,000 to the two local charities, Marc Bona reports.

All-star activities: Tower City Center is being transformed into an elaborate basketball-themed pop-up for special events, collaborations, programming and merchandise for NBA All-Star Weekend. Marc Bona reports pop-up retail shops, dining options and activities are set up in the downtown venue, which has a corridor to Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, site of the NBA All-Star Game.

House of the week: The first thing you notice about 31308 Manchester Lane in Bay Village is the indoor pool between the kitchen and primary bedroom. The design wasal “so the owner could swim from bed to coffee” in the home, built in 1970 by William Trout, who won the Cleveland Arts Prize for architecture in 1978. Featuring four bedrooms, three-and-a-half bathrooms and over 3,600 square feet of living space, the property has an asking price of $600,000, reports Joey Morona.

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