Axios Cleveland

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Happy Thursday! On this day in 1932, actor/singer/dancer Joel Grey was born in Cleveland.

  • Grey famously portrayed the master of ceremonies in "Cabaret" on stage and screen.

Today's weather: Showers and breezy. High of 68.

🚸 Sounds like: "Teach Your Children," by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

Today's newsletter is 915 words β€” a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: The State of our State

Photo illustration: Allie Carl/Axios. Photo: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

It's not a state budget year, but Gov. Mike DeWine came equipped to his annual State of the State address yesterday with plenty of requests for lawmakers and leaders across Ohio.

Why it matters: His policy ideas involve issues such as education, social media and access to health care that would have implications for all Ohioans.

The big picture: As in previous years, DeWine's speech focused primarily on families.

  • "All of our dreams and all of our goals β€” really, our vision for the future β€” ultimately depends on them," he said of Ohio's children.

Zoom in: Here are his specific requests:

πŸ“š Reading lesson: Colleges and universities should align their teacher training to the "science of reading," a newer learning method that emphasizes vocabulary and phonics.

πŸ“± Down with smartphones: Students should be prohibited from using smartphones during the school day.

🚬 Up in smoke: Lawmakers should ban the sale of delta-8 hemp products to children and limit public exposure to marijuana smoke.

Between the lines: DeWine's speech came as his administration is still facing questions about its connections to the House Bill 6 corruption scandal. The governor is not accused of illegal wrongdoing.

  • Sam Randazzo, a former public utilities chairman appointed by DeWine, recently died by suicide amid criminal allegations he accepted bribe money from FirstEnergy to help secure a legislative bailout package.
  • Yesterday, reporters uncovered that FirstEnergy gave a $1 million "dark money" contribution in 2017 in support of Jon Husted's campaign for governor before he became DeWine's running mate.

Go deeper

2. St. Clair Place tenants decry unsafe, unsanitary conditions

Resident Marsha Howard reads a statement outside the St. Clair Place apartment building. Photo: Sam Allard/Axios

Residents of a 200-unit downtown apartment building for low-income seniors and people with disabilities are fed up with conditions and seeking improvements from the local landlord.

State of play: The St. Clair Place Tenants Association says the landlord, Bedford-based Owner's Management, has failed to properly secure the facility on the southwest corner of St. Clair and East 13th Street, which has led to unsafe and unsanitary common areas.

What they're saying: Resident Marsha Howard said during a demonstration Tuesday that a broken frame on the building's back door has allowed non-residents to enter.

  • Ten-year resident Linda Brown told Axios she has seen non-residents engaged in drug use, sex and defecation in the stairwells and hallways.

Catch up quick: The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland, representing the tenants, filed a complaint in Cleveland Housing Court in December, outlining the issues, which include charging tenants late fees when they are not late on rent.

  • In late March, Legal Aid filed a motion for emergency relief to address the building security.

The latest: Attorney Elizabeth Zak said caution tape has been installed on the back door, but it remains accessible to non-residents.

The other side: Owner's Management has not responded to Axios' request for comment.

3. The Terminal: Small-format news

Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios

πŸ›οΈ Macy's plans to open an experimental "small-format" store at the former Bed Bath & Beyond location at the Westlake Promenade adjacent to Crocker Park. (Crain's Cleveland Business)

πŸŽ“ The Cleveland State University board of trustees voted this week to dip into its reserves to pay for faculty buyouts to help ameliorate a projected $40 million budget shortfall. (Ideastream)

πŸš’ The former Nunn Funeral Home on Lorain Avenue in Ohio City is thought to be a total loss after a fire raged there early yesterday morning. (News Channel 5)

πŸ“Š Worth your time: Signal Cleveland has created an "ARPA project tracker" to follow how the City of Cleveland is spending its $512 million federal stimulus allocation. (Signal Cleveland)

4. πŸ‘ See it or πŸ‘Ž skip it

Swing it, JosΓ©! Photo: Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

⚾️ Yankees vs. Guardians

The intrigue: The reviled Bronx Bombers visit Cleveland this weekend for the only time this year. First pitch today is at 7:10pm.

πŸ’­ Our thought bubble: See it. It's a crime that one of the most anticipated matchups of the season arrives in April, with clouds and rain looming, but the Guards' offense is humming and worth the price of admission.

πŸ§™β€β™‚οΈ Fan Expo Cleveland

The intrigue: Cleveland's answer to Comic-Con arrives this weekend at Huntington Convention Center, headlined by the four hobbits from "Lord of the Rings."

πŸ’­ Our thought bubble: Skip it. Unless you're really into cosplay, it's hard to justify paying admission to wait in line for photos and autographs with aging stars.

⛳️ Ohio City Open

The intrigue: Ohio City Inc.'s annual fundraiser Saturday evening at Urban Community School is a nine-hole putt-putt extravaganza, "a neighborhood tradition unlike any other."

πŸ’­ Our thought bubble: See it. It's hard to come up with a better way to spend Saturday evening on Masters' weekend.

5. πŸ“ˆ One chart to go: Maternal age on the rise

Share of Ohio babies born to mothers in select age&nbspgroups
Data: CDC Wonder; Chart: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

Almost 50% of Ohio babies born in 2023 had birth mothers in their 30s and older, according to provisional CDC data.

Why it matters: In the last few years, age 35 has gone from the start of "geriatric pregnancy" to potentially a maternal-age sweet spot.

By the numbers: Today, 28.9 is the average age of a woman giving birth in Ohio, just below the national average of 29.6.

Between the lines: Regions with higher income and education levels "are correlated with increased advanced maternal age," partly because women there are deliberately delaying pregnancy for economic reasons, Jane van Dis, OB-GYN and assistant professor at the University of Rochester, tells Axios.

The intrigue: 35-year-olds received more prenatal monitoring and had a small decrease in prenatal mortality compared with even those a few months younger, according to a 2021 JAMA Health Forum study.

Thanks to our editor Lindsey Erdody and copy editors Rob Reinalda and Carolyn DiPaolo.

Our picks:

⛳️ Sam can't deny it. He is 100% invested in The Masters and plans to watch a lot of golf this weekend.

β™₯ Troy is freshly tattooed.