Ohio Outdoor & Wildlife Expo set for March 30 in Huron

The Ohio Outdoor & Wildlife Expo is 10 a.m.-7 p.m. March 30 at Sawmill Creek Resort, 400 Sawmill Creek Drive, Huron.

At the event, visitors can connect with industry leaders and experts on birding, boating, hunting, fishing, wildlife habitat and other natural resource interests. The day includes educational fun, including wildlife exhibits, Buckeye Big Bucks scoring, archery, air rifle, a 6-foot Animatronic earth worm, recreational vendors, educational presentations/demonstrations, kids’ activities, raffles and speakers.

The event is free. Donations will be used to help support the Ohio Wildlife Project, which provides funds to improve wildlife habitat, public land accessibility and wildlife education.

For more information, email buckeyewildlife@gmail.com or visit ohwildlife.org/expo.

Bald eagle nesting season underway

COLUMBUS — Ohio’s resident adult bald eagles already are preparing for the next generation of eaglets, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Female bald eagles in Ohio typically lay one to three eggs sometime between mid-February and late March. Eggs are incubated by both parents for about 35 days, and young eagles leave the nest about three months later, usually before the Fourth of July.

Although eagle sightings are common today, bald eagles once were an endangered species. In 1979, there were just four bald eagle nests in Ohio. Thanks to partnerships between the Division of Wildlife, Ohio zoos, rehabilitation facilities and concerned citizens, bald eagle numbers began to climb. Bald eagles were removed from the federal list of threatened and endangered species in 2007 and from the Ohio listing in 2012.

During the 2018 nesting season, biologists estimate there were 286 eagle nests in the state with mature eagles raising 445 young eaglets.

March is a good time to view eagle nests as the trees have yet to leaf out, providing good views of active eagle pairs. Bald eagles typically nest in large trees such as sycamores, oaks and cottonwoods near large bodies of water with fish, their preferred food.

Although bald eagles are no longer endangered, they are protected under the federal Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. It is illegal to disturb bald eagles. Stay at least 100 yards away from the animal or nest. Disturbing bald eagles at the nest site could lead the pair to abandon the eggs.

Ohio unemployment rate drops a bit from January to February

COLUMBUS (AP) — State officials say Ohio’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in February was 4.6 percent.

That is down slightly from 4.7 percent in January but up from a year ago, when the state rate was 4.5 percent.

It also remains higher than the national unemployment rate, which was 3.8 percent, down from 4 percent in January and 4.1 percent last February.

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services says the state’s nonagricultural wage and salary employment dropped by 8,200 from January to February.

Caregivers for disabled to see pay increase under budget proposal

COLUMBUS (AP) — Caregivers for Ohio residents with developmental disabilities could see a higher paycheck under a state-budget proposal.

The Columbus Dispatch reported pay for home care workers would increase 11 percent over the next two years to $12.38 an hour.

Jeff Davis, director of the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities, said the disabilities system is facing a workforce crisis, with turnover rates nearing 60 percent.

The base reimbursement rate for Medicaid-covered home and personal service would rise to $22 an hour by 2021 as part of the budget plan. The hourly reimbursement rate for overnight services would also increase, from $6.09 to $8.55 an hour.

City manager vows to help fix flooded backyard problem

TRENTON (AP) — An Ohio city manager has vowed to fix an issue that is causing some residents’ backyards to become ponds of mucky collected rainwater.

Trenton resident Sheila Sessler and her neighbors first complained in February that a pair of dry wells for rainwater drainage had failed, creating a large and mucky pond that has attracted geese and gnats. WCPO-TV reported interim City Manager Rob Leichman promised to partner with developer Cristo Homes to find a solution on Wednesday.

Leichman’s proposal would involve spending around $34,500 to drill below the pond and determine the cause of the drainage failure.

Leichman cautions that Trenton City Council could vote down the proposal when it appears on its agenda, but says residents deserve an answer to their issues.