Afternoon catchup: 5 Butler County stories you need to know today

Here’s a look at five big Butler County stories today to catch up on the news:

Butler County bars prepare for back-to-back St. Patrick’s Day, NCAA tournament: What they’re saying

After a disastrous March last year, local bars and restaurants are hoping to score some green this year, starting with St. Patrick’s Day.

Traditionally, March — fueled by St. Patrick’s Day in the middle of the month and the month-long NCAA men’s basketball tournament — is the busiest time of the year in the food and beverage business. Everyone wants to be Irish for a day and college basketball fans love watching their favorite teams during the tournament.

But in March 2020, the green beer was stale and there was no madness.

“It was a horrific time,” said Jim Manley, marketing manager for Fricker’s that has three area locations.


Registrations open for 2 Butler County COVID-19 vaccine clinics this week: How to sign up

The Butler County General Health District will hold two COVID-19 mass vaccination clinics this week at the Butler County Fairgrounds.

Appointments are being scheduled for the events Wednesday and Friday for eligible residents who live or work in Butler County.

Here’s how to sign up:


Butler County communities could get a whopping $147 million in federal COVID-19 relief funding

Credit: Submitted

Credit: Submitted

Preliminary estimates show some Butler County communities could receive about $147 million from the American Rescue Plan signed into law last week, but at least one county commissioner wants to send it back.

President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan into law on Thursday, and it allocated $350 billion to help local governments weather the coronavirus pandemic. According to the latest disbursement list from the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Reform, the county would receive the largest allocation at nearly $75 million, but Commissioner T.C. Rogers said his “big picture” view of the money is to return it.

“My first inclination based upon my analysis of our financial condition and also what it’s going to take to spend this money, is to send it back,” Rogers said. “If one of our partners or whatever makes a good case to change my mind, let them bring it on.”


Former Hamilton athletic director says conference call led to resignation

The former athletic director for Hamilton Schools, who resigned after a basketball player was found to be playing while ineligible, said a January conference call with a parent led directly to the violation and his resignation.

The Ohio High School Athletic Association said Monday that its investigation into the ineligibility of a member of the Hamilton High School boys basketball team, which was eventually ordered to forfeit eight wins, is now done.

Bill Stewart, who resigned in late January from the athletic director’s job, told the Journal-News he was presented with an affidavit regarding the player’s eligibility.


Is Amtrak coming to Butler County? Your questions answered

Hamilton City Council, like other legislative bodies across Ohio, has expressed its support for an Amtrak stop and station in the city.

Area residents also are hopeful that Oxford and Middletown also will have stops on suggested new routes that would link Cincinnati with Indianapolis and Chicago, and also with Columbus and Cleveland.

How likely is it this will happen? Here are answers to your questions, as of now. The answers are likely to change as time goes on.


AND, for an extra sixth story of the day ...

PHOTOS: 80 Acres Farms continues to expand services in Hamilton, this time to Kosher

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

80 Acres Farms produce has been certified insect free and Pareve by Central Kosher. Rabbi Avrohom Weinrib inspected the facility Friday, March 12 and performed tests to verify products were insect free. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF