Ohio Municipal League Legislative Bulletin
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January 23rd 2015
OML LEGISLATIVE RECEPTION RECEIVING STRONG LEGISLATOR ATTENDANCE RESPONSE
We want to remind our members to register for the upcoming OML Legislative Reception that will be held at the Ohio Statehouse Atrium, Wednesday, March 18 from 6-7pm. We are very pleased by the large amount of members of the Ohio House and Senate who have confirmed their attendance for the event, with many expressing their anticipation of meeting with their local municipal officials from back in their districts to discuss upcoming legislative action that may affect them and to hear concerns from their local leaders.
We highly encourage our municipal officials who have not yet responded with their attendance confirmation for this important event to do so as soon as possible. Evening events like our reception are a more informal, comfortable atmosphere for legislators and their local leaders to become better acquainted and to strengthen the lines of communication which are more vital than ever at the Ohio Statehouse as major policy issues affecting local government are debated.
Mark your calendar and join us for a bite to eat and good conversation with legislators on March 18 th.
LEGISLATIVE LEADERS SELECTED; HOUSE ANNOUNCES COMMITTEE ASSIGNMENTS
The 131 st legislative session of the Ohio General Assembly continues to take shape as members of the Ohio House and Senate go about the responsibilities of the new session to pick whom will serve as leaders for the respective caucuses and what committees legislators will be serving on, once legislation begins to be introduced and the processes begins again.
The Ohio House of Representatives has seen the most significant change as far as the amount of new members to join the body and the succession of a new Speaker. After over 30 years of service to the state of Ohio and the Ohio House of Representatives, William G. Batchelder was unable to run for reelection due to term limits and thus stepped down as Speaker of the Ohio House. The returning majority Republican caucus members elected Rep. Cliff Rosenberg of Clarksville to take the Speaker’s gavel and serve as leader of the Ohio House. The league would like to congratulate Rep. Rosenberger on this high honor to serve as Speaker and we look forward to our ongoing productive dialogue with the newly elected Speaker. Also as part of the caucus duties, other members of the House majority leadership were selected and they include: Speaker Pro Temp. Ron Amstutz, Majority Floor Leader Barbara Sears, Asst. Maj. Floor Leader Jim Buchy, Majority Whip Mike Dovilla and Asst. Maj. Whip Dorothy Pelanda.
The Democrat members of the Ohio House also elected their new leadership team for the upcoming session by selecting Rep. Fred Strahorn of Dayton to serve as the House Minority Leader. Serving with Leader Strahorn to lead the House Democrat members include Reps. Nicholas Celebreeze as Assistant Minority Leader, Kevin Boyce, Minority Whip and Nickie Antonio as Assistant Minority Whip.
This week, Ohio House Speaker Rosenberger released the eagerly anticipated committee assignments for the 131 st General Assembly which can be found HERE. Although there are members serving as new “Chairs” of House standing committees for this session, the committee structure mainly remains the same as previous session except for a few changes. The State and Local Government Committee was divided into two and now there will be a “stand alone” Local Government committee chaired by Rep. Marlene Anielski and a separate State Government Committee chaired by Rep. Maag. The House Agriculture Committee has been split into two with the naming of the new Agriculture and Rural Development committee and the Energy and Natural Resources committee. Also, the Community and Family Advancement Committee was formed which is a new House standing committee that will be chaired by Rep. Derickson.
As for the Ohio Senate, the Republican majority caucus retained the leadership team from last session with Sen. Keith Faber having been re-elected as Senate President, Chris Widener as President Pro Temp., Tom Patton as Majority Floor Leader and Larry Obhof as Majority Whip. The Senate minority caucus announced their leadership team and retained Sen. Shiavoni as Minority Leader, and elected Charleta Travares as Asst. Minority Leader, Edna Brown as Minority Whip and Lou Gentile as Asst. Minority Whip. The Senate has not released their member committee assignments yet, but when they do we will be sure to announce the information to our members, in our next bulletin.
The league congratulates all of the members of each leadership team and we look forward to working with each of them to craft the soundest public policy, as local government issues are addressed and considered.
FIRE PROTECTION STANDARDS UNDER REVIEW
The National League of Cities has asked that we share with our members the attached memo which provides an update on National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards 1710 and 1730. The full memo can be found HERE.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has published proposed revisions to its 1710 Standard governing career department staffing and response times and a new draft 1730 Standard on fire prevention inspection and code enforcement, plan review, investigation and public education operations. The documents are available for review on the NFPA website at www.nfpa.org/1710 and www.nfpa.org/1730 under the Next Edition tab. The documents are in the final stages of development. This summer any amending motions that have been filed and certified by NFPA will be presented at the 2014 NFPA Technical Meeting, which is held at the NFPA Annual Conference & Expo, June 22-25, in Chicago, IL. The deadline for filing a Notice of Intent to Make a Motion is March 6, 2015. The two standards are scheduled to be issued by the NFPA Standards Council in August 2015. In addition to these developments, the committee working on the fire prevention standard was recently asked to develop a new standard that helps fire departments follow the process steps for a Community Risk Reduction (CRR) Plan.