Missouri House Sends Bill Clipping Health Officials’ Emergency Powers to Senate

A bill that would require local governments to approve extensions of public health emergency orders after 15 days is ready for adoption by the Missouri House.

House Bill 75, sponsored by Rep. Jim Murphy, was perfected Wednesday in a floor debate and awaits only a floor vote to be transferred to the Senate, where a raft of similar bills are matriculating in committees.

HB 75, which has already passed through the House Special Committee on Small Business and Rules – Legislative Oversight committees, would allow local public health officials to order a closure for no more than 15 days.

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Ohio Prosecutors Support Bill to Force Convicted Rioters to Pay for Damages

Last summer, millions of dollars in taxpayer money were spent in response to protests that turned violent throughout Ohio. A bill proposed in the Ohio Senate looks to make sure those responsible will pay for it.

Senate Bill 41, currently being discussed by the Senate Judiciary Committee, calls for restitution from those who are convicted of property damage during riots, including vandalism. The restitution would pay the expenses of police and emergency crews who have to respond to riots. The bill also allows the government to take possession of any property left behind by those who end up convicted.

State Senator Tim Schaffer, R-Lancaster, is sponsoring the bill. Lou Tobin, the Executive Director of the Ohio Prosecuting Attorneys Association, offered his support before the committee recently.

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Ohio Secretary of State Drafting Bill To Automatically Enroll Citizens as Voters

  Secretary of State Frank LaRose along with a bipartisan group of legislators announced in a Wednesday joint press conference that they were crafting an election reform bill that would automatically register eligible citizens to vote throughout the Buckeye state. The bill, which has not yet been introduced, would alter…

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New Ohio Bill Would Overhaul Controversial ‘State Takeovers’ of Local Public Schools

A new Republican-backed bill is being considered that would dramatically undo a major and controversial education initiative that was supported and signed by former Gov. John Kasich. In 2015, Ohio was facing an epidemic of failing schools. An Ohio Department of Education report for 2014-2015 found that only six of the…

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DeWine Officially Signs Heartbeat Bill as National Groups Prepare for Legal Battle

Gov. Mike DeWine signed Ohio’s heartbeat bill into law Thursday afternoon, and advocacy groups and legal teams nationwide are all preparing for what is sure to be a major political and legal battle. For the third time in the last decade, a bill that would ban all abortions after a fetal heartbeat…

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Two Ohio-Based Nuclear Power Plants Will Receive Bailouts Under Legislators’ New Plan

Ohio legislators revealed Monday their latest plan to save Ohio’s only two nuclear power plants from bankruptcy. As previously reported, FirstEnergy Solutions, a subsidiary of FirstEnergy that manages several power stations across the Midwest, announced that it was closing all three of the nuclear plants it owns and operates throughout the region. Two…

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Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown Joins Bipartisan Group Introducing Bill Sanctioning China for Opioid Trafficking

Democratic Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown joined a bipartisan group of six Senators Thursday to introduce a bill that would sanction any country involved in the trafficking of illegal opioids into the United States. According to the U.S Department of Justice and Drug Enforcement Administration’s 2018 National Drug Assessment, synthetic opioids,…

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Ohio Legislature Reaches Compromise on Gas Tax Hike

Late Tuesday night, a joint legislative committee of the Ohio House and Senate reached a compromise on the controversial and divisive gas-tax hike. The gas tax will increase by 10.5 cents per gallon, and 19 cents per gallon for diesel fuel. While this falls short of Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s original…

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New Bill Provides Tax Exemption for Ohio’s Disabled Veterans

A bill currently under consideration by the Ohio Legislature would exempt disability service pay, made to honorably discharged veterans, from state income taxes. House Bill 18 (HB 18) was introduced to the Ohio House of Representatives last month. Wednesday, the bill finally came to a vote where it passed by an…

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Report: Ohio Prison Population Still Growing Despite Bipartisan Criminal Justice Reform

Despite bipartisan calls for a reduction in the prison population and a slew of laws aimed at doing just that, a new report released this week has found that the prison population of Ohio has continued to climb over the past decade. Since 2011, the state has passed several new…

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Despite Growing Support for Hemp Legalization, Ohio Government Cracks Down

As the Ohio Senate considers legalizing hemp and hemp byproducts in the Buckeye State, the Ohio Department of Health, along with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), is simultaneously cracking down on any form of sale of the substance. Currently, hemp is trapped in a complicated legal limbo and while state legalization will alleviate many of…

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Columbus Democratic Mayor Backs Governor DeWine’s Gas Tax

COLUMBUS, Ohio– In a statement made via a Facebook Video, Columbus, Ohio’s Democratic Mayor Andrew J. Ginther announced that he is backing DeWine’s 18 cent gas tax hike. The mayor said he is backing the bill because: It will help us increase our funding for infrastructure in Columbus neighborhoods by 19 million a year.…

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Bill Typo, If Unchanged, Would Make Felons Out of Half A Million Ohioan Gun Owners

Ohio Gun Owners, a citizens’ Second Amendment advocacy organization, discovered Thursday that House Bill 228 (HB 228) would make many widely-used firearms illegal throughout Ohio. The bill’s current language defines illegal “dangerous ordnance” as: (7) Any firearm with an overall length of at least twenty- six inches that is approved for…

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Half-a-Million Low-Income Ohioans With Suspended Licences Could Be Eligible for Relief With New Program

For many low-income Ohioans who have lost their drivers licenses for minor or unintentional offenses, there is no greater frustration than paying your debt to society, only to be denied your ability to drive legally because you can’t afford a government fee. Thankfully, relief is in sight for thousands of these…

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Ohio Legislature Reintroduces ‘Heartbeat’ Abortion Ban

For the third and, potentially, final time, the ‘Heartbeat’ Abortion Ban is being considered by the state of Ohio. Tuesday, State Senator Kristina Roegner (OH-27) introduced Senate Bill 23 (SB 23), commonly referred to as the ‘Heartbeat’ Abortion Bill to the Ohio legislature. The bill would make all forms of…

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Sandusky, Ohio Will No Longer Observe Columbus Day, Election Day To Become State Holiday Instead

For the first time since 1934, government workers in Sandusky, Ohio will be working on October 12th. The city commissioners approved a measure that would officially eliminate Columbus Day as a federal holiday. In lieu of the lost holiday, Election Day would officially replace it. In a statement to the Sandusky Register, city manager…

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Ohio Governor Kasich Signs Occupational Licensing Reform Bill, Increasing Market Competition

Governor John Kasich signed Senate Bill 255 (SB 255) Friday, reforming Ohio’s occupational licensing laws, some of which are considered to be the most economically crippling in the country. The law will require Ohio’s state legislature to examine every occupational licensing board in the state, assess their value and utility, then…

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Ohio Legislation Sets Age Requirement for Marriage

On Thursday, the Ohio Senate unanimously passed a bill that would effectively end child marriage in the state of Ohio. House Bill 511 (HB 511), introduced on February 14th, 2018, would establish eighteen as the minimum age to get married, regardless of gender, with few exceptions. As the law currently stand, under…

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Ohio Senate Fails to Override Kasich’s ‘Heartbeat Bill’ Veto

Ohio state Republican legislators were unable to override Gov. John Kasich’s (R-OH) veto of the “heartbeat” abortion bill Thursday. House Bill 258 (HB 258), first introduced on June 6, 2017, would have made it illegal for a doctor to perform an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected. In most…

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Ohio Minimum Wage to Increase at Start of New Year

The Ohio hourly minimum wage will be increasing on January 1, 2019. For non-tipped employees, hourly earnings will increase to $8.55 per hour, from $8.30. For tipped employees, hourly earnings will increase to $4.30 per hour, from $4.15. In addition, working longer than 40 hours will be considered overtime and…

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Kasich Faces Potential Conservative Revolt After Vetoing Pro-Life ‘Heartbeat’ Bill

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R-OH) ignited a conservative firestorm Friday after vetoing one of the most comprehensive pro-life bills ever proposed since the passage of Roe v. Wade. House Bill 258 would ban any abortion after a child’s first heartbeat is detected. Since fetal heartbeats, in some cases, can be detected as…

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