Harvest time in Akron, as the city's first licensed medical marijuana growing facility opened its doors yesterday, to show off their new buds.

AT-CPC, unveiled their new "Mimosa" and "Cuyahoga River" cannabis strains, which they will be used in medical marijuana products sold under the brand names "Song Wellness", and "Josh D".

Local officials, including Congressman Tim Ryan (pictured below) toured the facility at 1055 Home Avenue, in Akron's North Hill neighborhood.

TIM RYAN WITH BUDS 1

Tuesday, 29 January 2019 10:30

Ray Horner Podcast - 1/29/2019

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:17 - Quite an eventful way to begin a Tuesday. First, Ward 2 councilman Bruce Kilby sounded off in the Akron Beacon Journal on the mayor’s lack of awareness with city services during last week’s major snowfall. That prompted a response from….

8:30 - Mayor Dan Horrigan, who happened to be listening to Kilby’s commentary in the car, and presented a counterpoint.

13:26 - The city services are preparing for this week’s deep freeze, but what about the schools? Akron Public Schools superintendent David James joined the program to discuss how the district goes about the process of delaying or canceling school. He did break some news: Akron Public Schools are closed tomorrow.

20:22 - Every Tuesday during the tax season, Doug Klein will attempt to answer your tax questions.

28:40 - You may have heard about the cyber attack that happened over the weekend. SACS Security & Consulting president and CEO Tim Dimoff made some sense in how to prevent such attacks in the future.

34:42 - The Orange & Brown Report’s Fred Greetham stopped by to talk about the Browns’ offseason.

Tuesday, 29 January 2019 07:27

METRO RTA Offering Free Rides

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(METRO RTA) Beginning Tuesday, January 29, 2019 through Friday, February 1, 2019, METRO is offering free fares on all services, including line-service, Northcoast Express, SCAT, and Call-A-Bus.
 
The Weather Channel has warned that the coldest arctic outbreak in at least 20 years is expected this week in parts of the Midwest. With temperatures so low, METRO invites members of the community to utilize its services for a dependable mode of transportation.
 
“We do not cancel operations; this is transportation people can rely on. We run 359 days a year, in all weather conditions,” said METRO Executive Director Dawn Distler. “We want to make the boarding process as easy as possible for folks coming in from the cold, so we decided to waive fares during the arctic blast. It was an easy decision to make.”
 
First-time riders can call METRO at 330.762.0341 or visit akronmetro.org for schedule information. Or, you can plan your trip using Google Transit.
Tuesday, 29 January 2019 05:13

Akron Warming Centers Open Ahead of Brutal Cold

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(Community Support Services) As the National Weather Service warns that Wednesday, January 30, 2019 could be one of the coldest days on record, Akron area organizations charged with aiding the homeless are working to ensure that everyone will have access to shelter.  
                Community Support Services, Inc. operates the Homeless Outreach and Intake Center at 111 E. Voris Street, Akron; bringing supportive services for persons experiencing homelessness under one roof. Individuals who are homeless or at risk for homelessness, have symptoms suggestive of severe and persistent mental illness and/or substance abuse disorder, and who is not already active in mental health and/or addiction treatment is eligible to utilize all the services at the Center. If a homeless individual does not meet program criteria, outreach workers will attempt to connect the individual with other community agencies and services. The Homeless Outreach office can be reached at 330-762-4663.
                Haven of Rest Ministries, 175 E. Market Street, Akron, is accepting admissions at all hours in preparation for the cold.
                The City of Akron has opened warming centers at the following locations:

  • Mason Park Community Center, 700 E. Exchange Street
  • Patterson Park Community Center, 800 Patterson Ave (North Hill)
  • Summit Lake Community Center, 380 W. Crosier Street
  • Lawton Street Community Center, 1225 Lawton Street (near West Side)

All these warming centers will be open from 8:30 am to 10:00 pm. 
According to Bob Stokes, President and CEO of Community Support Services, “Recent studies have shown that approximately 700 homeless individuals die each year due to hypothermia. With this dangerous polar vortex forecast this week, we are reaching out to the homeless men and women throughout our community in as many ways as we can to give them this potentially life-saving information.”

                Community Support Services, Inc. is a leader in behavioral healthcare for Summit County and the surrounding region. The agency provides comprehensive, high quality, cost-effective treatment, rehabilitation, advocacy, and support for recovery, primarily to persons most in need, to enhance the quality of their lives.

Meanwhile, the Salvation Army of Summit County is responding as well: 

(Salvation Army) Local offices of The Salvation Army in Akron and Barberton will be open as warming centers as temperatures are expected to drop to what could be record lows in the area this week.

· Both Summit County Salvation Army locations will serve as drop in center/warming sites Tuesday through Thursday, January 29 through January 31, 2019.  
· Hours for the downtown Akron location, 190 S. Maple Street, south of St. Vincent de Paul Church on West Market Street, will be from 9:00AM to 4:00PM.
· The Barberton location, 560 Wooster Road West, will be open from 9:30AM to 4:00PM.
· Donations of new or clean, gently used winter hats, scarves and gloves in all sizes will be appreciated and accepted at both locations.

 

Monday, 28 January 2019 11:30

CVNP to Re-open After Government Resolution

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Staff with the Cuyahoga Valley National Park is working to clear snow and ice that's accumulated throughout the park since workers were furloughed more than a month ago.

With Friday's announcement of the continuining resolution to re-open the government for at least three weeks, the park expects to fully resume regular operations on Wednesday, though all trails and park restrooms are already open. In addition, the Boston Store Visitor Center is set to open Tuesday morning at 9:30.  

See the full press release regarding the re-opening of the park

(CVNP) Brecksville, OH – With the enactment of the continuing resolution, staff at Cuyahoga Valley National Park have already begun the process of opening facilities that will allow the park to fully resume regular operations on Wednesday, January 30. Due to significant winter weather during the lapse in appropriations, park staff is working to clear snow and ice from walkways and other facilities to ensure the safety of visitors. Restrooms and trails are open. The Boston Store Visitor Center will open on Tuesday, January 29 at 9:30 a.m. Please visit www.nps.gov/cuva for updated information about the park.

“I would like to express the National Park Service’s gratitude to the park partners Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Countryside, and Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, as well as local community members, for helping to care for and support Cuyahoga Valley National Park,” Paul Stoehr, acting superintendent said. “In addition, my appreciation goes to the staff who worked while in furlough status. They showed admirable dedication.”

Monday, 28 January 2019 10:06

Ray Horner Podcast - 1/28/2019

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:17 - It was announced Friday afternoon that the partial government shutdown will cease, at least temporarily. Dr. David Beer, professor of political science at Malone University, recapped what went down and the impact the shutdown has had on the political landscape.

6:50 - Another incident occurred Friday on the local front, as the city of Akron was hit with a cyber attack. Akron mayor Dan Horrigan joined the program to discuss the cyber event, with him believing this attack to be financially motivated.

14:36 - We may see negative digits for a high in the Akron area, so our veterinarian, Dr. Gary Riggs, urges owners to keep their pets inside as much as possible.

22:36 - For more on the government shutdown, Dr. David Cohen called in to talk about the stalemate that continues, even if building a wall may still be on the table.

Time now for our Business of the Week! Ray sat down with Paul Doerr, the owner of Quick Clean Car & Pet Wash in Akron.

Ohio National Guard

Eight members of the The Ohio National Guard Cyber defense team are helping the City of Akron deal with the financially motivated atttack on its computer network that started last Tuesday.

The National Guard Cyber team provides defensive operations, forensic support, and analyisis, and was authorized for duty in Akron by Governor Mike Dewine. 

In addition to the National Guard team, the City of Akron is also obtaining assistance from the FBI, and Ohio State Patrol.

So far, they have not reported that any data was lost, or that the personal information of Akron residents has been compromised. 

Related story: City of Akron Hit by Cyber Attack 

Friday, 25 January 2019 19:17

City of Akron Hit by Cyber Attack

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Akron City Seal akroncity

The City of Akron is in the process of mitigating the damage from a malicious cyber intrusion they say was financially motivated.

They first noticed the unusual criminal virus activity on city computer systems on Tuesday, just as they were trying to dig the city out from this winter's worst snow storm so far.

City officials say they called in the F.B.I. Ntaional Guard, and Ohio State Patrol to help. They've also taken some computers offline, and are limiting the use of credit card payments for some city services.

More details from City of Akron press release below:

City of Akron Mitigating Attempted Malicious Cyber Activity 

Akron, Ohio, January 25, 2019—The City of Akron is investigating and mitigating criminal virus activity on City servers, which appears to be financially-motivated. On Tuesday, January 22nd, an attempt to access City funds was successfully identified, intercepted and prevented.  The City has taken swift and substantial protective action to limit the impact of this activity and protect City assets and information. The City does not have any intelligence at this time that suggests any personal information of our customers, taxpayers, or citizens was harvested. Current intelligence does not indicate any risk to public safety or any motivation to cause harm to the public.  Over the coming days, a joint city, state, and federal team will work to eradicate this malicious activity and maintain operational City services.

  

On the afternoon of Tuesday, January 22nd, the City of Akron Office of Information Technology became aware of suspicious activity on the City’s network.  The Akron Police Department was notified and immediate action was taken to investigate the problem and limit proliferation of any malicious software. This swift action required the City Office of Information Technology to temporarily shut down and protect critical software and hardware systems, including the City’s online 3-1-1 system. 

By the morning of Wednesday, January 23rd, the City had engaged the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Ohio State Highway Patrol to assist in the investigation and interdiction efforts.  Through that work, it was determined that this event merited additional resources, so the City contacted the Chief Information Security Officer for the State of the Ohio for activation of the 172nd Cyber Security Protection Team of the Ohio National Guard. This morning, at Mayor Horrigan’s request, Governor Mike DeWine authorized the deployment of this elite unit to assist in bringing a swift and thorough end to the malicious activity. 

Over the coming days, the joint city, state, and federal team will work together to eradicate and mitigate this activity and restore operational services. This process may require additional software and hardware system to be taken offline, which will likely impact certain city operations.  The City will communicate with the public in advance if we anticipate any major disruptions to city services or public access to online systems.

While mitigation efforts are evolving rapidly, current impacts include:

  • Certain software and hardware systems being unavailable within the Akron Municipal Court, which is requiring the temporary use of traditional recording devices and files;
  • Credit card payments being unavailable to the public in certain city departments, including Recreation, Building, and Tax.  Credit card payments continue to be available in the Utility Billing Office for payment of water/sewer utility bills. 
  • Certain internal City computers being relocated for forensic analysis.

In the coming weeks and months, investigators will conduct thorough forensic analysis to determine the full extent of the breach.  While current intelligence suggests that no personal information of City customers or tax-paying residents was harvested, investigation and mitigation efforts are ongoing, and any meaningful change in this intelligence will be promptly communicated to the public. 

“The Digital Age brings with it constant and ever-changing threats and we must remain vigilant and prepared,” Mayor Horrigan said.  “While this incident is ongoing, all current intelligence indicates that we were well-equipped and well-trained to address this malicious attack and that our employees took timely and appropriate action to prevent an attempted theft.  Public institutions across the nation often are of particular interest to criminal actors, which is why the city has invested more than $9 million since 2016 in citywide IT infrastructure and maintenance. We will continue to monitor our systems and make necessary investments to protect public assets and citizen information.” 

“I want to thank our Office of Information Technology staff, City/County CIO Mark Petit, APD, and members of my staff whose quick and decisive action helped us to limit the impact of this incident,” Mayor Horrigan continued.  “Additionally, I want to thank Governor DeWine, the F.B.I., the Ohio National Guard and Ohio State Highway Patrol for the care and expertise they have brought to the situation. Rest assured, we are doing all we can, deploying every resource and partnering with every agency with expertise to protect our critical city infrastructure from criminal activity.”

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Friday, 25 January 2019 13:48

MOVIE REVIEWS - In Theaters Now

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Let's see what's at the movies these days!

Friday, 25 January 2019 11:13

UPDATE: East Ave. Bridge Repair Delayed

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The Ohio Department of Transportation announced Friday that the recently scheduled repair work on the East Avenue Bridge has been delayed due to weather as temperatures are expected to hit single digits, not factoring in windchill. 

Brent Kovacs with ODOT District 4 tells the WAKR Newsroom that all of the scheduled work needs to be started and completed at the same time, so even if there were a window to get a portion of the repairs underway, they couldn't. 

Below is the updated schedule and affected traffic patterns for the scheduled work:  

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