April 24, 2014

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A flower with a powerful smell...
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 4:23 PM
Sherri Black's voodoo lily, currently in bloom.

In botanical gardens around the nation, garden enthusiasts and curiosity seekers are flocking to see – and smell – exotic voodoo lilies, which are in bloom right now. Sherri Black, who resides on Road 171 near Five Span, has a massive voodoo lily corm in full bloom.

“This was given to me by my cousin and is a native of Thailand, China and Indonesia. The lily’s bloom smells like rotting flesh to attract bees and flies to pollinate,” Black says. “The stench is unreal, but this truly is an amazing plant to see.”

Friends and neighbors have been marveling at the 4-foot-tall, cone-shaped stalk surrounded by a blood-red frill.

“She truly is a gorgeous lily right now, and will be blooming for a couple more days. The flower will die off. If you plant it outside in the spring, it grows and it produces a palm tree look in the summer months.”

Voodoo lilies, or Amorphophallus konjak, are also called devil’s tongue, snake palm or elephant yam.

Red Cross of Paulding County to hold open house March 13
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 4:19 PM
Red Cross members and staff met with Randy Shaffer, Paulding County EMA director, in February to discuss potential bad-weather scenarios and what each agency’s role would be in the event of a tornado, flood, high wind or snowstorm. Seated are, from left – Sandy Lane, Community Chapter Executive of American Red Cross of Van Wert and Paulding counties; Kristy Bidlack, board member of Van Wert County Red Cross; Rick Noggle, Paulding County Disaster Action Team (DAT) chairman; and Randy Shaffer, EMA director. Standing are Phil Wells, Paulding County DAT volunteer; Jennifer Messana, disaster program manager of the Northwest Ohio Region of American Red Cross; and Mark Klausing, Van Wert County DAT chairman.


PAULDING – March is nationally recognized as American Red Cross month. In celebration, an open house will be held from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. on March 13 at the Paulding office.

Do you know where the Red Cross office is located in Paulding? Not many people do, so this is a great opportunity for residents to stop in, get acquainted with the local volunteers, ask questions and learn about the services provided by the agency.

Located at 211 N. Main St. in the First Financial Bank building, the American Red Cross of Paulding County has been an integral part of the community for many years.

Rick Noggle, current Disaster Action Team chairman, said the volunteer-rich agency is one of the county’s best-kept secrets.

“I’ve talked to a good number of people who aren’t even aware that Red Cross has a presence in the county,” he said. “I guess if they’ve never needed our services, they’re just not aware of our existence.”

The American Red Cross of Paulding County receives a portion of its funding from United Way. The funds provide services and assistance to people in the county regardless of their socioeconomic status when they are in need of emergency aid following tornadoes, fires, floods or high-wind damage.

“So far this year, we’ve had eight fires in the county,” Noggle added. “Some of them have been minor, but most have been large and have caused partial or total loss of the victims’ homes. We’ve provided emergency assistance, such as temporary housing and help with food and clothing, to all of them who needed it. It makes us feel good to be able to help families get back on their feet.”

In May, the Paulding County EMA and Red Cross will be participating in a full-scale mock disaster involving a fire at an agricultural and chemical storage facility. Both Noggle and EMA director Randy Shaffer say they’re looking forward to the exercise and gaining experience in setting up command stations and shelters and working with other emergency-response agencies in the county.

If you would like more information about Red Cross or the open house, would like to become a volunteer, or have any questions about the American Red Cross of Paulding County, call 419-399-3557 or visit the office.


Oakwood resident asks council for better community event planning
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 7:48 AM


By BILL SHERRY • Progress Correspondent

OAKWOOD – Oakwood Village Council held a regular meeting on March 10, 2014 with four council members present. Absent for tonight’s meeting were Todd Dangler and Heather Huff. Newly appointed councilman Beau Leatherman was sworn in to fill the seat vacated by Phil Stucky.

Payne approves pager trade in, parking limits
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 7:45 AM

By JOE SHOUSE • Progress Correspondent

PAYNE – Payne Village Council met on Monday, March 10. Council approved trading in four EMS pagers, approved the ordinance establishing two hour parking limits within the village of Payne, and approved the property liability insurance premium for 2014.

Free healthcare enrollment help available
Monday, March 10, 2014 4:03 PM

PAULDING – With the Health Insurance Marketplace officially open, many uninsured and underinsured members of the community are looking to enroll in a health insurance plan or Medicaid Extension.

To assist individuals in finding a suitable plan, Toledo/Lucas County CareNet along with The Paulding County Carnegie Library, are partnering with the Ohio Association of Foodbanks to offer a free healthcare enrollment event on Mondays at the Paulding County Carnegie Library. Anyone interested in an appointment can call Laurie Ricker at 419-779-8679.

Free application assistance is provided by trained health care Navigators and certified application counselors.

Through the Health Insurance Marketplace set up under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, uninsured and underinsured Ohioans can compare coverage options side-by-side, learn about their eligibility for premium tax credits designed to lower premium costs, and enroll in a Qualified Health Plan (QHP).

Open enrollment will continue through March 31.

For individuals who qualify for Medicaid Extension, their coverage will be back dated to the date of application once processed and approved.

Ohioans can visit www.healthcare.gov to apply for insurance on their own or can visit www.benefits.ohio.gov to apply for Medicaid Extension. Those seeking help with enrolling who are unable to attend can call 1-800-648-1176 or visit www.ohioforhealth.org to find assistance.

Turning 65 this year? Learn Medicare basics
Sunday, March 09, 2014 1:02 PM

COLUMBUS – Are you one of the nearly 150,000 Ohioans who will celebrate their 65th birthdays this year?

If so, you will become eligible for Medicare and will likely have questions about your health care benefits. You will face a dizzying array of choices: Which prescription drug plan is right for you? Should you choose traditional Medicare coverage or a Medicare Advantage plan? Do you need a Medicare supplemental plan, or “gap” coverage?

The Ohio Department of Aging is dedicated to meeting the needs of Ohio’s growing and changing aging population, including helping you make informed decisions. The options available with Medicare can be confusing, and the decisions you make can impact the quality of your health care for a long time. To help, we continue our long-standing partnership with the Ohio Department of Insurance, under the leadership of Lt. Governor/Director Mary Taylor.

Staff and volunteers in the Department’s Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program (OSHIIP) provide older Ohioans like you with free, friendly assistance in choosing Medicare options that best suit your needs – sometimes saving you money. Last year, the OSHIIP program helped more than 160,000 Medicare-eligible Ohioans save a record $16.4 million!

Whether you are already enrolled in Medicare or about to become eligible, OSHIIP offers consumer-friendly written information, and its staff can answer your questions about topics such as:

Medicare health coverage for older adults age 65+ and for younger adults who are Medicare-eligible because of disabilities;

Medicare prescription drug plans;

Medicare Advantage plans (HMOs and PPOs);

Medicare supplemental insurance;

Financial assistance programs for individuals with a limited income; and

Long-term care insurance.

Getting information and assistance from OSHIIP is easy. Call 1-800-686-1578 or visit the OSHIIP website at www.insurance.ohio.gov. If you have Internet access, you can attend one of OSHIIP’s “Welcome to Medicare” webinars online throughout the year. Visit the OSHIIP website for the dates and times of these webinars.

If you do not have Internet access, you can attend one of the many “Welcome to Medicare” in-person sessions around the state beginning in April. Call OSHIIP to learn more about these sessions so that you can attend one close to you.

When you, as an older Ohioan, fully understand your Medicare benefits and options, you can get the most out of your coverage. That is why the Department of Aging will continue our partnership with Lt. Governor Taylor and the Department of Insurance to help as many Ohioans in 2014 as we can. Together we can help you remain a healthy Golden Buckeye who continues to grow, thrive and contribute to your communities.