The iOpener: Ohio House Adds Citizenship Question to Workers Comp; Husel Charged with Murder

Former Mount Carmel Dr. William Husel pleaded not guilty Wednesday afternoon. His bond was set at $1 million.
Former Mount Carmel Dr. William Husel pleaded not guilty Wednesday afternoon. His bond was set at $1 million. [Paige Pfleger / WOSU]

Good morning, iOpeners. It's Thursday, June 6, 2019. The fog made Playhouse Square look like San Francisco's Ghiradelli Square this morning.  

A foggy Playhouse Square on Thursday June 6, 2019. by Amy Eddings, ideastream.  

Ohio’s House of Representatives approved the addition of a citizenship question to workers’ comp claim forms in their passage of a two-year, $645 million budget for the Bureau of Workers’ CompensationRep. Bill Seitz (R-Cincinnati), who sponsored the amendment, said that without it, the legislature had no way of knowing how many undocumented immigrants get workers’ comp. The bill does not deny benefits to those workers. 

A former intensive care doctor for the Mount Carmel Health System in Columbus has been charged with murder in the deaths of 25 patients for allegedly ordering deadly doses of painkiller for them. Dr. William Husel faces 15 years to life for each of the 25 counts of murder against him in what is one of the largest murder cases in Ohio's history. Husel's attorney said Husel was trying to provide "comfort care" for dying people, not hasten their deaths.

A coalition that’s pressuring Cleveland’s city council to get serious about addressing the childhood lead poisoning crisis says it’s encouraged by the council’s proposed lead legislation but says its criminal penalty structure would likely face a constitutional challenge.  The Cleveland Lead Advocates for Safe Housing also criticized the bill’s 2023 deadline for lead-safe certification, saying it should be moved up.

Members of Ohio’s congressional delegation came away with few answers after meeting with General Motors executive Mary Barra about the future of the Lordstown plant.  Senators Rob Portman and Sherrod Brown also both expressed some doubts about whether the proposed sale of the idled plant to an electric truck startup will go through.

Five of the six candidates hoping to run this November to succeed Lorain Mayor Chase Ritenauer have been ruled ineligible to do so by the county prosecutor’s office, due to the state’s “sore loser” statute. The law prevents candidates who ran for another office in the primary from running in November as independents or on behalf of a different party. Only former State Rep. Dan Ramos remains eligible for the November ballot.

The Indians rallied to beat the Minnesota Twins, 9-7, in a game that saw the Tribe use seven relief pitchers in place of scheduled starter Carlos Carrasco. He’s been sidelined indefinitely because of a recently diagnosed blood condition.

Weather forecast: A dense fog advisory is in effect until 9 a.m.  Sunny skies later, high 68. Tonight, mostly clear.  Low 57. Tomorrow, sunny.  High 75.

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