Good afternoon! Here's a look at how AP's general news coverage is shaping up in Ohio. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to the AP Columbus bureau at 614-885-2727 or APColumbus@ap.org. Lisa Cornwell is on the desk. Delano Massey, AP Ohio news editor, can be reached at 800-762-4841 or 614-885-2727 or dmassey@ap.org.

A reminder this information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. All times are Eastern.

Some TV and radio stations will receive shorter APNewsNow versions of the stories below, along with all updates.

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TOP STORIES:

FUNDING COUNTIES-OHIO

COLUMBUS — A veteran Ohio politician is calling for a special state fund to help counties boost employment, fight opioid abuse and cover basic expenses. By Julie Carr Smyth. SENT: 440 words.

CHILD DEATH-PARENTS CHARGED

CINCINNATI — The mother of a 2-year-old Ohio girl who was starved and beaten to death has pleaded no contest to murder and child endangering charges. By Lisa Cornwell. SENT: 130 words. UPCOMING: 250 words by 3:30 p.m. Pursuing photos.

ENERGY PROJECT-APPALACHIA

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Plans for an underground liquefied natural gas storage hub pegged as a major job creator for the chemical industry in struggling Appalachia have cleared their first big hurdle. Officials say it hasn't been determined where the project will land, but listed West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky and Pennsylvania. By Jonathan Mattise. SENT: 530 words.

DEEP FREEZE

SAVANNAH, Ga. — A brutal winter storm dumps snow, sleet and freezing rain from normally balmy Florida up the Southeast seaboard, delivering a white coating that some cities hadn't seen in decades. By Russ Bynum. SENT: 810 words, photos, video.

WITH:

— DEEP FREEZE-THE LATEST

2018-STATE ELECTIONS

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Buoyed by a string of electoral victories during President Donald Trump's first year in office, Democrats will be waging a renewed battle to wrest control of Congress from Republicans this year. By David A. Lieb. SENT: 1,100 words, photos.

IN BRIEF:

— SHOOTING-OHIO SCHOOL: A defense attorney will argue that the case of a teen charged in an Ohio school shooting that wounded two students should be moved back into juvenile court for a hearing.

— HOLIDAY TRAFFIC DEATHS: The Ohio State Highway Patrol says traffic deaths were down compared to last year during the just-concluded extended holiday weekends

— STREET RACING-CHILD HURT: Police say a 4-year-old girl has died of injuries suffered in a New Year's Day street racing crash in Cincinnati..

— TEENAGE COUNCILMAN: A 19-year-old who launched his campaign for a council seat in an Ohio city while still in high school has officially taken office.

— ABORTION BILLBOARDS: Ohio's largest abortion clinic has launched an advertising campaign aimed at challenging the stigma around abortion..

— TAX AMNESTY-OHIO: Ohio's six-week tax amnesty period is underway, giving taxpayers with unreported or underreported tax debts an opportunity to pay a reduced amount of interest and avoid owing further penalties if they settle up.

— FREEDOM CENTER-PRESIDENT: The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center will have a new president next month.

— NUCLEAR PLANT-MICHIGAN: An official says a minor defect in a fuel assembly has been found in the reactor at Fermi 2 nuclear power plant in southeastern Michigan.

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SPORTS:

FBN--BENGALS-LEWIS STAYS

CINCINNATI — The NFL is a what-have-you-done-lately league, though not in Cincinnati. Marvin Lewis is getting a 16th chance to try to win a playoff game with the Bengals, whose owner would rather stay with the familiar than try someone new in hopes of something better. By Joe Kay. UPCOMING: 600 words by 6 p.m.

BKN--TRAILBLAZERS-CAVS

CLEVELAND: Isaiah Thomas had one last wait. Sitting on the scorer's table, Thomas could see the end of his seventh-month odyssey in front of him. And when the buzzer finally sounded and the Cleveland crowd erupted for a player it barely knows, Thomas took the last few steps onto the court and completed a trip he hopes to never take again. By Tom Withers. SENT: 990 words. AP Photos.

HKN--BLUEJACKETS-STARS

DALLAS — Oliver Bjorkstrand and the Columbus Blue Jackets were headed in the opposite direction of the Dallas Stars even though the teams had identical records going into the halfway point of the season. The third-year forward reversed things in a hurry. Bjorkstrand scored twice 78 seconds apart early in the third period and the Blue Jackets stopped a three-game losing streak with a 2-1 win. By Schuyler Dixon. SENT: 670 words. AP Photos.

FBN--BROWNS-COLEMAN

CLEVELAND — A man is suing Cleveland Browns wide receiver Corey Coleman and several other people over a 2016 New Year's Eve alleged assault. SENT: 130 words.

FBC--PLAYOFF-EXPANSION

ATLANTA — Two teams from the same conference are playing for the College Football Playoff national title. Two Power Five conferences were left out of the final, including Big Ten champion Ohio State, and an undefeated team was not even close to getting into the semifinals. All this, and still there is no legitimate push to expand the playoff from anyone in power in college football. By Ralph D. Russo. UPCOMING: 650 words, with photos, by 5:30 p.m.

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If you have stories of regional or statewide interest, please email them to APColumbus@ap.org. If you have photos of regional or statewide interest, please send them to the AP state photo center in New York, 888-273-6867. For access to AP Exchange and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477.

MARKETPLACE: Calling your attention to the Marketplace in AP Exchange, where you can find member-contributed content from Ohio and other states. The Marketplace is accessible on the left navigational pane of the AP Exchange home page, near the bottom. For both national and state, you can click "All" or search for content by topics such as education, politics and business.