Dayton Daily News

The next major construction work in the years-long Interstate 75 project in Dayton will focus on two concrete bridge decks over the Great Miami River.

The Dayton Daily News reports that workers have been preparing dirt embankments, piers and substructures for the southbound portion of the highway through the city. The Ohio Department of Transportation plans in late 2014 to being demolition and reconstruction of the northbound bridges.

Aviation-related classes have been canceled at Ohio's largest military base as a result of furloughs triggered by the federal government shutdown.

The Dayton Daily News reports the Air Force Institute of Technology suspended classes this week at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. About 8,700 civilian employees were sent home without pay when the partial federal government shutdown began Tuesday.

Services agencies across Ohio are spending an estimated $1.2 million a year trying to locate and get information to military veterans about benefits.

The Dayton Daily News reports that county agencies pay for billboards, newspaper ads and other outreach efforts as they struggle to find veterans. The president of Warren County's veterans service commission says it spends a lot of money on postage trying to reach veterans, but officials said a major outreach effort by mail in 2008 resulted in a response rate under 10 percent.

Work has begun on a new river recreation project in southwest Ohio.

What will be known as Mad River Run in Dayton is expected to draw kayaks and canoes. It will feature a 2,100-foot whitewater stretch that includes a drop, with more drops planned when funds become available.

The Dayton Daily News reports that Five Rivers MetroParks says the project includes conservation measures, with bank stabilization work.

The first phase of construction is funded in part by a $100,000 Dayton Rotary Club donation.

The University of Dayton is giving 100 students free bicycles in exchange for their promise not to bring cars to the southwest Ohio campus for two years.

The Dayton Daily News reports the giveaway is part of the university's efforts to shrink its carbon footprint and form a bike friendly campus. It also builds on a bike-sharing program created at the school two years ago.

The company behind a southwest Ohio racino says the project should be finished by its target date next year, though demolition and cleanup work at the Dayton site is taking longer than expected.

An official from Penn National Gaming tells the Ohio State Racing Commission workers are taking extra time to clean up concrete slabs at the site, which is a former manufacturing plant. He says the project is lagging behind construction of another Penn National racino near Youngstown that doesn't involve industrial cleanup.

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in southwest Ohio says budget tightening has postponed millions of dollars in infrastructure projects at the base this year.

The Dayton Daily News reports the delayed projects at Wright-Patterson include installing miles of water lines in different areas and replacing heating and ventilation equipment at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.

Spokesman William Hancock tells the newspaper the projects aren't being undertaken in the current fiscal year but haven't been canceled. The next fiscal year starts Oct. 1.

Officials at Ohio's largest military base are bracing for more potential spending cuts.

The Dayton Daily News reports a Pentagon directive to reduce spending at management headquarters could affect the Air Force Materiel Command offices at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

The directive from the secretary of defense calls for the 20 percent cut over five years. Details aren't yet known.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol has reported more drug-related arrests and seizures in Ohio in the first half of this year compared with the first six months of 2012. 

Recently released patrol statistics show troopers made 4,728 drug arrests January through June for an 18 percent increase over the same period last year. The Dayton Daily News reports that is a rise of 42 percent compared to the average number of arrests from 2010 through 2012.

Ohio is the fourth worst in the nation for infant mortality and is second worst for black infant mortality. In Columbus yesterday, the state health department launched a program to aid 9 Ohio cities to work on lowering those rates. Dayton is among one of the cities chosen.