Ohio Closer to Establishing Electric Vehicle Commission

A bill passed in the Ohio House would help the state prepare for a future with electric vehicles.

House Bill 292, which was passed in the House on Thursday, establishes the Electric Vehicle Commission, consisting of elected officials and industry leaders, to study electric vehicle production and the steps needed to take to adapt to potential growth in the industry.

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Republicans, Democrats Still at Odds over Ohio Congressional Maps

Thomas West and Rob McColley

Ohio’s effort to redraw congressional districts bounced back to the General Assembly, where Democrats are calling the Republican proposal heavily gerrymandered and against the wishes of Ohioans who voted for reform in 2018.

State Sen. Rob McColley, R-Napoleon, however, said the Republican proposal meets state constitutional requirements.

“It is the product of a deliberate effort to draw compact districts, while keeping Ohio’s largest cities whole,” McColley said in sponsor testimony.

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General Assembly Keeps Foreign Languages, Home Economics in Ohio Schools

Cleveland Metropolitan School District 8th grade students read with their kindergarten buddies and help the young learners discover the joy of reading.

Foreign languages, business education and home economics still will be a required part of curriculum in Ohio schools after the Ohio Senate voted unanimously to stop a proposal from the Ohio Department of Education that would have allowed them to be eliminated.

The Senate concurred with House Concurrent Resolution 35 to stop a plan that would have changed the state’s administrative code to eliminate those required courses of study, a change put forth by the State Board of Education. The House passed the resolution, 95-0.

Wednesday’s vote marked the first time in 25 years the General Assembly stopped a rule from going into effect, according to Sen. Theresa Gavarone, R-Bowling Green, who serves on the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review.

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Third Lawsuit Filed to Stop Ohio’s New Legislative District Map

Two more lawsuits have been filed with the Ohio Supreme Court challenging Republican drawn legislative district maps, claiming they are unconstitutional and gerrymandered.

The most-recent challenge came Monday from the Ohio chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations and was filed by the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law and the law firm Reed Smith.

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Voting Reform Bill Reintroduced after Pennsylvania Governor’s Veto

Seth Grove and Tom Wolf

The prime sponsor of a vetoed voting reform bill said Friday he reintroduced the measure after Gov. Tom Wolf shifted his public opinion on some components of the legislation over the summer.

Rep. Seth Grove, R-York, said House Bill 1800 would bolster voting rights “through three broad concepts of increased access, increased security and modernization.” 

“We know access and security are not mutually exclusive,” he said.

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Kasich Vetoes Bill Expanding Benefits for Families of Fallen First Responders

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R-OH) vetoed a bill Friday that would expand benefits for widows and children of deceased first responders because it also included legislative pay raises. According to The Dayton Daily News, Senate Bill 296 included a provision that would increase pay for lawmakers by 4 percent in…

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Tennessee Firearms Association Blisters Republican-led Legislature For ‘Pitiful’ 2nd Amendment Protections

Firearms blue

The recently ended legislative year in Nashville was “pitiful” in terms of protecting gun rights, a state firearms advocacy group says in a report. The “Tennessee Firearms Association 2018 Legislative Report and Review” takes the Republican super-majority in the General Assembly to task on 15 new laws and/or amendments to…

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