Ben Garbarek, WSYX ABC 6

Ben Garbarek


Columbus, OH, United States

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  • WSYX ABC 6
  • WTTE FOX 28

Past articles by Ben:

'Stay Safe Ohio Order' in effect until May 29 in Ohio, replacing stay-at-home order

Gov. DeWine has issued the "Stay Safe Ohio Order," which goes until May 29. The new order replaces the stay-at-home order that was set to expire Friday evening at midnight. The new order will have more exceptions as parts of the economy begin to reopen. Dental offices and veterinary clinics will begin reopening Friday. More businesses like manufacturing, distribution, and construction companies… → Read More

Campaign wants to empty jails during COVID-19 pandemic

Public health officials have warned nursing homes, prisons and other places where people live in close quarters will be susceptible to outbreaks of the coronavirus. Two of the largest outbreaks in the nation have been in Ohio prisons. A campaign in Columbus launched to empty local jails to prevent inmates from getting infected with COVID-19. → Read More

Time running out to request absentee ballot in Ohio

Time is running out for voters to request an absentee ballot for the Ohio primary. The election moved to all mail after state officials canceled in-person voting the day before the primary. The new deadline is April 28. Roughly 85% of people vote in person on Election Day. “It was the right decision to reschedule the election, that it was not safe for folks to turn out and vote on the (March)… → Read More

Craft breweries struggle to get by during pandemic

One of the industries taking a big hit during the economic shutdown from the pandemic is craft breweries. Some of the larger breweries have been able to stay open to keep making beer but many have shuttered completely with the closure of bars and restaurants across the state. “We all got caught by surprise," said Gavin Meyers, the co-founder of North High Brewing in the Short North. "A… → Read More

Ohio lawmakers not done reacting to coronavirus pandemic

Ohio state lawmakers passed a series of reforms earlier this week to respond to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The reforms ranged from extending the tax filing deadline to July 15th, extending voting in the Ohio primary to April 28th and waiving state testing requirements for students. The halls of the Statehouse were empty Friday but many lawmakers were working remotely, behind the scenes to… → Read More

Ohio unemployment benefits system overwhelmed by coronavirus surge

The phone and online system to file for unemployment benefits has been overwhelmed by the sudden surge of people who lost their jobs in a flash because of the coronavirus pandemic. Nearly 140,000 people in Ohio filed for unemployment benefits last week. That's up from less than 5,000 the week before. The system outage caused frustration for many people trying to file claims who haven't been able… → Read More

Voters will decide whether to give Columbus State more money

Voters will decide in the next week whether to give Columbus State Community College a big financial boost. For the first time, the school will ask local taxpayers to raise taxes to pay for improvements on campus. CSCC has started a campaign to convince voters to support Issue 21 which would provide roughly $300 million over the next two decades to build new buildings on campus and upgrade some… → Read More

More than president on the Ohio primary ballot

Many voters may be focused on the race for president on the Ohio primary ballot but there are also competitive races down the ballot as well. Ohio's 12th Congressional has contests on both the Democratic and Republican primaries in 2020. The district was the focus of the political world in 2018 during a special election and subsequent midterm election. The seat is currently held by Republican… → Read More

New campaign to legalize recreational marijuana in Ohio

A new campaign started this week to amend the Ohio Constitution to allow anyone over the age of 21 to use marijuana. Ohio currently has a medical program that allows patients with a set list of conditions to get pharmaceutical-grade cannabis but the latest proposal would regulate marijuana much like alcohol. Public opinion has shifted on the issue. → Read More

Dramatic changes in Democratic race during early voting

Three major candidates in the Democratic race for the nomination for president dropped out in the past 48 hours. Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar and Tom Steyer have all suspended their campaigns after Joe Biden won the South Carolina primary convincingly. The dramatic downsizing complicates the decision of many Ohioans debating whether to vote early. Fewer than half of the candidates for president… → Read More

Ohio Lawmakers want to declare state of emergency on childhood trauma

Governors often declare a state of emergency after severe storms, but what about childhood trauma? Some lawmakers want the state to deal with that issue with the same urgency as the opioid crisis. Two Democratic representatives unveiled a resolution urging the governor to declare a state of emergency. Advocates said trauma for children can occur from a divorce, a death, neighborhood violence or… → Read More

Campaign to close term limit loopholes in Ohio

A new campaign has launched to convince voters to tighten the term limits for state lawmakers in Ohio. Right now, lawmakers are limited to serving eight years in either the House or Senate, but politicians have found a loophole. The law allows them to switch from the House to the Senate, or vice versa, serve there and then head back to where they started. In effect, they can run as many times as… → Read More

Crowded race to take on Rep. Jim Jordan this fall

Several candidates will be trying to unseat conservative Rep. Jim Jordan this November. The field of three Democrats and an independent will be competing in a duck-shaped district drawn to keep the seat in Republican control. Ohio 4th Congressional district. (. house. gov/ via Google Maps ) Jordan has won the district by wide margins several election cycles in a row. It's a district President… → Read More

What is consensual sex in 2020? Advocates say communication is key

The rape case against two former Ohio State Buckeye football playersAmir Riep and Jahsen Wint includes a video police detectives said has become part of a trend. Court records said Riep and Wint forced the woman accusing them of rape to say her name on video and state the sex was consensual. Documents said she was crying while they were laughing. Videos of alleged consent may become more… → Read More

Ohio Statehouse bill aims to stop distracted driving

Lawmakers held the first hearing Tuesday for a bill making distracted driving a serious enough crime for police officers to pull someone over for it. Currently, Ohio law makes it a secondary offense meaning someone must be breaking another law first before they can be pulled over for it. Most drivers know it's not safe to be on their phones while driving but people continue to do it every day… → Read More

Ohio faith leaders want more protections for drug addicts

People struggling with addiction may face an agonizing decision: do they potentially sacrifice their freedom or a friend's life? Ohio law gives immunity to people with small amounts of illegal drugs if they're calling for help for someone overdosing. A bill in the Statehouse would expand that law to include drug paraphernaliabut some faith leaders believe it needs to go even farther. → Read More

Ohio losing out on millions as neighboring states legalize sports betting

Millions of dollars were bet on the Super Bowl over the weekend. Betting isn’t just legal in Las Vegas anymore though. More than a dozen states legalized it after a landmark US Supreme Court ruling in 2018 allowed all states to allow sports betting. Several of Ohio’s neighboring states have cleared the way for sports betting, including Indiana. The Hoosier State legalized it in September 2019.… → Read More

Ohio senators prepare for start of Trump impeachment trial

The impeachment trial in the U. S. Senate for President Donald Trump will begin Tuesday afternoon. It's still unclear whether any witnesses will be allowed. Negotiations continued Monday about whether any non-government cameras would be allowed inside the chamber. The real suspense won't be how it will end, but how it'll be handled. → Read More

Trump returns to campaign trail in Ohio after Iran battles

President Trump will return to Ohio for his first rally in 2020 Thursday evening. He'll be campaigning with Vice President Mike Pence in Toledo for the first time since the US and Iran exchanged airstrikes. The president will hold his rally at the Huntington Center in downtown Toledo. Trump has opted to forgo the typical campaign events at local coffee shops in favor of rallies that look more… → Read More

Ohio representatives vote along party lines on impeachment

Members of Congress from Ohio plan to vote along party lines on the impeachment of President Donald Trump. Trump would be the third president in US history to be impeached. Only a few Democrats will likely vote against impeachment and no Republicans will be voting in favor of it. “Members of Congress swear a solemn oath to protect and defend the Constitution from all enemies foreign and domestic… → Read More