Ohio Lawmaker Wants to Stop Cities from Dumping Sewage into Waterways

Ohio Rep. Jon Cross

The state has been paying some Ohio farmers for the past two years in an effort to reduce Lake Erie water contamination, and at least one city has spent two decades dumping sewage into the lake with little punishment.

Rep. Jon Cross, R-Kenton, said he wants that to change and has proposed legislation that would ban cities from dumping sewage into Lake Erie and increase fines for violators.

“Instead of blaming northwest Ohio farmers, we should thank them for their work to help reduce Lake Erie algae,” Cross said. “The vast majority of farmers are good stewards of the environment.”

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More Ohio Farmers Will Get Paid to Help Keep Lake Erie Clean

More Ohio farmers can be paid by the state to implement measurers officials say help protect Lake Erie as 10 more counties have been added to the H2Ohio program, which received a $120 million boost in the recently signed state budget.

The program, which offers funding to farmers who use proven conservation practices that limit agricultural phosphorus runoff from fertilizer, now includes 24 northwest Ohio counties. Officials said phosphorus runoff is the primary factor behind algal blooms in Lake Erie.

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Great Lakes Water Levels Rise to Record Highs and Will Stay High Through Summer, Experts Say

After a record-breaking 2019, the US Army Corps of Engineers reported in their April summary that all five Great Lakes will again see a higher-than-average water levels. Lake Erie leads the way in 2020 with levels topping nine inches over last year.

Records show that the Great Lakes are experiencing the highest water levels since 1986. Water levels on the Great Lakes – which are connected by above- and below-ground waterways – are cyclical with periods of low and high water. Each period may last for several years depending on the amount of precipitation, runoff, and evaporation that occurs. 

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Like Slaves and Women, Lake Erie Should Have Rights, Plaintiffs Say

In the latest lawsuit over the Lake Erie Bill of Rights, three Toledoans argue the Lucas County Court of Common Pleas should “stand on the right side of history” and “support a democratically-enacted law that would give citizens the tools to enforce meaningful protections for Lake Erie.”

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Federal Judge Calls Motion to Have Lake Erie Named as Party in Lawsuit ‘Unusual’ and ‘Meritless’

  A federal judge in Ohio has dismissed a motion to name Lake Erie, a body of water, as a party in an ongoing lawsuit, calling the request “unusual” and “meritless.” As The Ohio Star previously reported, Toledo voters overwhelming approved of the controversial Lake Erie Bill of Rights in…

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Experts Say DeWine’s Predicted Revenue Forecast Is Off by $705 Million

An expert analyst suggested that the revenue forecast in Gov. Mike DeWine’s budget proposal is $705 million too high during a testimony before the House Finance Committee Tuesday. According to Legislative Service Commission Director Mark Flanders, DeWine’s General Revenue Fund (GRF) tax revenue forecasts would come up $704.9 million short…

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Toledo Ballot Proposition Would Extend Legal Rights of Constitution to Inanimate Body of Water

Voters in Toledo, Ohio went to the polls Tuesday to decide the fate of a “Lake Erie Bill of Rights” ballot proposition, which would extend the legal rights of the Ohio Constitution to an inanimate object. The referendum is the result of a years-long effort to clean up Lake Erie…

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