The iOpener: O'Rourke Blasts Trump Lordstown Tweets; University of Akron Offers Buyouts; Cavs Win

Former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke spoke to a crowd in Cleveland's Brooklyn Centre neighborhood.
Former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke spoke to a crowd in Cleveland's Brooklyn Centre neighborhood. [Nick Castele / ideastream]

Good morning, iOpeners. It's Tuesday, March 19, 2019.  On this day in 2003, President George W. Bush ordered the start of the war against Iraq

Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke says President Trump’s criticism of Lordstown UAW leader David Green over the weekend was “absolutely shameful.”  He told Cleveland.com the president “added insult to injury” to the workers who were laid off earlier this month when General Motors idled the Lordstown plant.  The former U.S. Congressman from Texas drew a capacity crowd at Gino’s Cento Anno in Cleveland.  It’s one of a series of stops he’s making before he officially launches his campaign later this month in El Paso.  

The University of Akron is offering buy-outs to about 47 percent of its faculty to help balance its budget.  The offer is to full-time permanent faculty who are not in what the university considers "strategic investment areas," such as polymer science and law.  The university estimates 340 of the 720 faculty members will be eligible.  They will have until May 31 to make a decision.  A spokesman said there are no plans for layoffs if a number of faculty reject the plan.  The university is seeking $15 million in cuts.

Cleveland’s City Council has approved a plan to hire armed security to help direct traffic into and out of the parking lot at the West Side Market.  The gated entrance to the lot off of Lorain Avenue has led to traffic backups onto Lorain.  The one-year contract with Tenable Protective Services will cost about $89,000.

Five military projects in Ohio could lose their funding so that President Trump can find the money to build a wall along the U.S-Mexico border.  The list of potential cuts, released by Senate Democrats, total about $112 million and include $6.8 million for a new fire-crash rescue station at Mansfield Lahm Airport. 

Strong shooting from Collin Sexton and Cedi Osman pushed the Cleveland Cavaliers passed the Detroit Pistons, 126-119 at the Q. Sexton and Osman hit several three-pointers down the stretch to put the game out of reach for the Pistons.  Sexton finished with 27 points, making 5-of-6 beyond the arc; Osman notched 21 points.

Weather forecast: Mostly sunny, high 44.  Tonight, partly cloudy, low 34.  Wednesday, cloudy with a 30 percent chance of afternoon rain.  Warmer, high 52.

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