October 8, 2018 •

Ohio State Representative Resigns

Two-term Democratic state Rep. Martin Sweeney resigned from the House on Monday, October 1, with more than two months remaining on his term. In his resignation letter, Sweeney referred to the next chapter of his professional career but did not […]

Two-term Democratic state Rep. Martin Sweeney resigned from the House on Monday, October 1, with more than two months remaining on his term.

In his resignation letter, Sweeney referred to the next chapter of his professional career but did not state his plans.

Sweeney’s daughter Bride Rose is running to fill the seat. Rose will face Libertarian Ryan McClain in the November election.

Sweeney came to the House after serving as Cleveland City Council president.

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September 11, 2018 •

Joint Ethics Committee Issues Opinion on Lawmaker Travel

The Ohio Joint Legislative Ethics Committee (JLEC) issued an opinion this week prohibiting legislators and legislative employees from accepting travel expenses from a lobbyist in the form of transportation in a ride-sharing vehicle, unless such travel expenses are incurred for […]

The Ohio Joint Legislative Ethics Committee (JLEC) issued an opinion this week prohibiting legislators and legislative employees from accepting travel expenses from a lobbyist in the form of transportation in a ride-sharing vehicle, unless such travel expenses are incurred for participation in a panel, seminar, or speaking engagement; or were incurred at a meeting or convention of a national organization of which any state agency or state institution of higher education is a dues paying member.

The opinion also states legislators and legislative employees may ride with a lobbyist in a ride-sharing vehicle for personal travel, if the legislator or employee reimburses the lobbyist for the legislator or employee’s portion of the total fare within seven days of accepting the ride or directly pays the ride-sharing service for the legislator or employee’s portion of the fare.

This advisory opinion stemmed from an ongoing federal investigation into former Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger and his ties to payday lending lobbyists.

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August 1, 2018 •

Akron, Ohio Mayor Attempting to Change Primary Election Date

Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan plans to collect signatures in a citywide petition to move Akron’s primary elections from September to May. City Council previously proposed putting the issue on the November ballot, but the legislation stalled. Local primary elections in […]

Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan plans to collect signatures in a citywide petition to move Akron’s primary elections from September to May.

City Council previously proposed putting the issue on the November ballot, but the legislation stalled. Local primary elections in Ohio are held in May unless a charter provides otherwise.

Summit County is one of only three Ohio counties holding municipal primary elections in September. Moving the Akron primary to May would save the city money while increasing voter turnout.

Five other Summit County cities are also considering the election date change.

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July 24, 2018 •

Ohio Bill Regarding Special Elections Headed to Governor

A bill in Ohio has passed both the House and the Senate preventing special primary elections from occurring if only one candidate files for the election, or if no one files to be on the ballot. If only one person […]

A bill in Ohio has passed both the House and the Senate preventing special primary elections from occurring if only one candidate files for the election, or if no one files to be on the ballot.

If only one person files, he or she will automatically appear on the general election ballot.

If House Bill 18 is signed by Gov. Kasich, it would prevent the state from paying for unnecessary election costs.

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July 5, 2018 •

Mayors in Summit County, Ohio Looking to Move 2019 Primary

Elected officials across Summit County are introducing legislation to their respective municipalities to move the 2019 primary election from September to May to coincide with the statewide primary. Once the measure is passed through the local legislative branches, it will […]

Elected officials across Summit County are introducing legislation to their respective municipalities to move the 2019 primary election from September to May to coincide with the statewide primary.

Once the measure is passed through the local legislative branches, it will be placed on the November ballot this fall for voters to decide.

If passed, the change in primary date will save taxpayer money and increase voter turnout.

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April 11, 2018 •

Ohio House Speaker Resigns Amid Potential FBI Investigation

Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger is resigning from office, effective May 1, amid a looming FBI investigation. Investigators are looking into his lavish lifestyle, including worldwide travel and his use of a donor’s luxury condominium. Upon his resignation, Speaker Pro […]

Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger is resigning from office, effective May 1, amid a looming FBI investigation.

Investigators are looking into his lavish lifestyle, including worldwide travel and his use of a donor’s luxury condominium.

Upon his resignation, Speaker Pro Tempore Kirk Schuring will assume Rosenberger’s responsibilities until the House elects a new speaker.

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January 9, 2018 •

Ohio’s 12th Congressional District Special Election Dates Set

Gov. John Kasich announced the special primary election for Ohio’s 12th Congressional District will be held on May 8, and the special general election will be held on August 7. The seat is being vacated by Rep. Pat Tiberi, who […]

Gov. John Kasich announced the special primary election for Ohio’s 12th Congressional District will be held on May 8, and the special general election will be held on August 7.

The seat is being vacated by Rep. Pat Tiberi, who is resigning in order to lead the Ohio Business Roundtable.

The district is located north of Columbus.

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November 8, 2017 •

Ohio Voters Reject Issue 2

Voters rejected a ballot measure Tuesday to reduce the price of prescription drugs for the state. Issue 2, or Drug Price Relief Act, would have limited the amount the state is allowed to pay for pharmaceuticals to the amount the […]

Voters rejected a ballot measure Tuesday to reduce the price of prescription drugs for the state.

Issue 2, or Drug Price Relief Act, would have limited the amount the state is allowed to pay for pharmaceuticals to the amount the Department of Veterans Affairs pays, typically a greatly discounted price. The state provides these drugs to prisoners, injured workers, and those who cannot afford them.

Nearly 80 percent of voters rejected the proposal, many citing a lack of transparency on how the change would affect prices for the general public.

The pharmaceutical industry contributed around $70 million to oppose the measure while AIDS Healthcare Foundation, a California-based group, spent only $17 million.

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October 19, 2017 •

Ohio State Senator Resigns after Misconduct

State Sen. Cliff Hite resigned earlier this week, citing inappropriate behavior with a state employee and health reasons. In his statement, Sen. Hite apologized for his actions, which he claims did not go beyond asking for hugs and chat that […]

State Sen. Cliff Hite resigned earlier this week, citing inappropriate behavior with a state employee and health reasons.

In his statement, Sen. Hite apologized for his actions, which he claims did not go beyond asking for hugs and chat that “was not appropriate for a married man.”

A replacement will be appointed by the Senate Republican caucus.

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October 19, 2017 •

Ohio Congressman to Resign

Rep. Pat Tiberi of Ohio announced his intention to resign from the U.S. House of Representatives by January 31, 2018. In a statement, Tiberi said he has been offered the opportunity to lead the Ohio Business Roundtable. The Ohio Revised […]

Rep. Pat Tiberi of Ohio announced his intention to resign from the U.S. House of Representatives by January 31, 2018.

In a statement, Tiberi said he has been offered the opportunity to lead the Ohio Business Roundtable.

The Ohio Revised Code states that the governor “shall issue a writ of election directing that a special election be held to fill such vacancy” once the vacancy has become official.

Tiberi was first elected to Congress in November 2000.

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July 13, 2017 •

Former Major Lobbyist Moves from Big House to Halfway House

In preparation for his September release, former lobbyist John Raphael was moved from a federal prison in South Carolina to an undisclosed halfway house in Columbus. He had been sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to a […]

In preparation for his September release, former lobbyist John Raphael was moved from a federal prison in South Carolina to an undisclosed halfway house in Columbus.

He had been sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to a count of extorting campaign contributions from a red-light-camera vendor to city officials. Despite the city doubling its number of cameras from 2005 to 2010 from said vendor, no city officials have been charged.

According to one of his attorneys, his post-release plans are “up in the air.”

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March 23, 2017 •

Drug Price Relief Act Expected to Appear on Ohio Ballot

The Ohio Drug Price Relief Act is expected to appear on the ballot in November, 2017. The proposed initiated statute would prohibit the state from purchasing a prescription drug unless the net cost of the drug is equal to or […]

Ohio flagThe Ohio Drug Price Relief Act is expected to appear on the ballot in November, 2017.

The proposed initiated statute would prohibit the state from purchasing a prescription drug unless the net cost of the drug is equal to or less than the lowest price paid for the drug by the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs (VA).

It could directly impact more than 4 million individuals served by state programs including those on Medicaid, individuals participating in state retirement programs, and those receiving care through other state programs such as the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.

Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) commissioned Vorys Health Care Advisors (VHCA) and Health Management Associates (HMA) to create an independent and objective analysis of the potential impact of the proposed act.

Results of the analysis show it is highly unlikely the proposed act could be effectively implemented; moreover, it is highly likely it would fail to achieve its purpose and negatively impact non-targeted entities via increased prescription drug costs and limited availability of certain medications.

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March 2, 2017 •

Ohio Rep. Greta Johnson to Resign to Take Summit County Position

Ohio state Rep. Greta Johnson announced her resignation this morning, effective at the end of the month. She is stepping down to take a position as deputy law director for Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro. Johnson was elected in 2014 […]

Greta JohnsonOhio state Rep. Greta Johnson announced her resignation this morning, effective at the end of the month.

She is stepping down to take a position as deputy law director for Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro.

Johnson was elected in 2014 to represent District 35. Prior to serving in the Legislature, she served as a prosecutor in Mahoning County and Summit County, as well as with the city of Akron.

The House Democratic Caucus will soon announce the process for selecting her replacement.

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February 28, 2017 •

Ohio Secretary of State Raises Campaign Contribution Limits

The Ohio Secretary of State Campaign Finance Division recently released revised contribution limits. The new limits are effective February 25, 2017, through February 24, 2019. Among the changes, the limit individuals, political action committees (PACs), and political contributing entities (PCEs) […]

Flag-of-OhioThe Ohio Secretary of State Campaign Finance Division recently released revised contribution limits. The new limits are effective February 25, 2017, through February 24, 2019.

Among the changes, the limit individuals, political action committees (PACs), and political contributing entities (PCEs) may give to statewide or state legislative candidates increased from $12,532.34 per election period to $12,707.79 per election period.

The secretary of state adjusts statutory contribution limits in each odd-numbered year based on the Consumer Price Index. 

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