Ohio Municipal League Legislative Bulletin
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January 9, 2017
OPENING DAY AT THE 132 ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY
Last Tuesday saw the swearing in opening ceremonies of the 132 nd General Assembly. Some interesting facts about this new legislative body are:
The League would like to congratulate all of the returning members and newly elected legislators who will begin their new chapter in public service. During the course of the next few months, league staff will be meeting with new and returning members of the Ohio General Assembly to review areas where municipalities and the state can work better together to provide greater stability for our statewide economic engines that are Ohio's municipalities.
Below is the list of leadership teams selected by their respective caucuses to guide the legislative activity of the new General Assembly.
The House Leadership team includes:
Speaker of the House: Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville)
Speaker Pro Tempore: Kirk Schuring (R-Canton)
Majority Floor Leader: Dorothy Pelanda (R-Marysville)
Ass. Majority Floor Leader: Sarah LaTourette (R-Chesterland)
Majority Whip: Tom Patton (R-Stongsville)
Ass. Majority Whip: Robert McColley (R-Napoleon)
Minority Leader: Fred W. Strahorn (D-Dayton)
Ass. Minority Leader: Nicholas J. Celebrezze (D-Parma)
Minority Whip: Nickie J. Antonio (D-Lakewood)
Ass. Minority Whip: Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron)
The Senate Leadership team includes:
Senate President: Larry Obhoff (R-Medina)
President Pro Tempore: Bob Peterson (R-Sabina)
Majority Floor Leader: Randy Gardner (R-Bowling Green)
Majority Whip: Gayle L. Manning (R-North Ridgeville)
Minority Leader: Joe Schiavoni (D-Boardman)
Ass. Minority Leader: Charleta B. Tavares (D-Bexley)
Minority Whip: Edna Brown (D-Toledo)
Ass. Minority Whip: Cecil Thomas (D-Cincinnati)
The league would like to congratulate each of these legislators on their selection by their fellow members to lead and we look forward to working with all of them in the new session.
Legislative activity for the first six months of the year will be consumed by deliberations and committee activity related to Governor Kasich's final state operating budget proposal. The Governor is expected to present this plans for the '17-'18 budget and the priorities of the final two years of the governor's term by January 31, to the Ohio House of Representatives.
Although bills will begin to be introduced, the central priority of the members of the legislature is to get situated in their new offices and chart the course forward with their colleagues.
REPORT ISSUED ABOUT LOSSES TO MUNICIPALITIES
Ohio could improve the quality of life in communities and boost statewide competitiveness by restoring funding for local services, according to a new issue brief from research institute Policy Matters Ohio. The report estimates that Ohio local governments have lost over $1 billion since 2010.
Among other things, the report highlights recommendations to restore Ohio communities, such as boosting the Local Government Fund and increasing the motor fuel tax for use by local governments, as other states have. Ohio's motor fuel tax is much lower than neighboring states. Another important issue addressed in the report discusses that the necessary adjustment to Medicaid managed care services in the sales tax base should not harm local governments that piggyback the state sales tax.
OML members can access the report HERE.
STATEHOUSE COMMITTEE HEARINGS TO BEGIN LATER IN THE MONTH
As activity picks up at the Ohio Statehouse, we will resume our regular schedule of weekly Legislative Bulletins to keep our members and friends informed on issues important to Ohio's cities and villages.