Posted Friday, September 13, 2013
Newsmaker: Congressman Jim Renacci, R-Ohio
Renacci is enjoying his second term in the House after winning a hard-fought campaign over Democratic colleague Betty Sutton last fall. As it returns from a summer recess, Congress may well face a vote on support for military intervention in Syria. Another debt ceiling debate looms and Congress still hasn’t made up its mind on immigration reform.
Roundtable: Harry Boomer, reporter, 19 Action News; Henry Gomez, politics reporter, Northeast Ohio Media Group; Bill Sheil, weekend anchor, Fox 8 News.
President Obama told the nation this week but he’ll give diplomacy more time to forestall future chemical weapons attacks against Syrian rebels and civilians. But he’s going to keep his powder dry. If diplomacy fails, he said, Syrian leaders and others may be emboldened to use chemical weapons in the future.
Call 911 for Police & Fire Pensions
An expert consultant warns that Ohio police and fire pension funds need an infusion of cash if they’re to deliver promised benefits to retirees. The consultant found fiscal projections were overly optimistic given low rates of return on pension fund investments. So retirees might have to absorb a cut in benefits or contributors might have to cough up more.
Council Incumbents Survive Primary
Embattled Cleveland City Councilman Zack Reed faces a jail term for a DUI conviction, but his council constituents easily made him the top vote-getter in Tuesday’s Ward 2 primary. Jeff Johnson broadly outpointed fellow incumbent Eugene Miller in newly-drawn Ward 10.
Heroin Addiction on the Rise
Local health officials are worried about the rising use of heroin and the skyrocketing death toll that’s resulted. Heroin users have found the street drug cheaper to obtain than prescription painkillers that deliver the same high. But heroin is more dangerous to use and a harder habit to break.