Friday, October 30, 2015

RELEASE: LaRose Seeks to Update Ohio's Drug Abuse Laws

COLUMBUS — State Senator Frank LaRose (R-Copley) yesterday introduced legislation to ensure that Ohio's drug abuse laws appropriately reflect the potency of fentanyl and address its growing prevalence in overdose deaths.

"The alarming number of recent fentanyl related deaths is a serious concern," said LaRose. "This legislation has the potential to save lives by getting these highly potent drugs off our streets."

Fentanyl, a drug typically prescribed in clinical settings, is used as a powerful synthetic opiate to treat or manage pain after surgery. In some instances, the drug is prescribed to treat patients with chronic pain who are tolerant of other opiates.

In 2014, fentanyl overdoses resulted in 502 deaths, according to preliminary data from the Ohio Department of Health. This number is nearly 6 times higher than the previous year.

The legislation would change what constitutes a “bulk amount” in order to adequately recognize the seriousness of the illegal use and trafficking of fentanyl. The bill establishes that five milligrams or more of fentanyl or an amount equal to or exceeding one gram of a compound, mixture, preparation, or substance that contains any amount of fentanyl and that is not in a final dosage form manufactured by an authorized manufacturer constitutes a bulk amount for the purposes of drug offense laws.

The bill also harmonizes state law with federal law by adding lisdexamfetamine to the Ohio schedule of controlled substances. Lisdexamfetamine is used to treat ADHD and hyperactivity and is at a high risk of being abused, especially in juveniles.

ADVISORY: Senator Hite Tours State to Hear from Ohioans About Fees for Co-Curricular School Activities

COLUMBUS — State Senator Cliff Hite (R-Findlay) will be holding informal public hearings across Ohio on co-curricular school activities as it relates to pay-to-participate fees, student athlete health concerns and school start dates. The hearings will be held in Columbus, Findlay, Cleveland and Dayton during the month of November, and Hite will be joined by other members of the legislature.

"Co-curricular activities are important to the educational and social development of our young people and often give them a pathway to thrive and succeed at school," said Hite, a former educator and coach. "Requiring outrageous fees to participate limits students who might not be afforded those opportunities otherwise."

In addition to discussing the costs of co-curricular school activities, Senator Hite will hear from interested parties and experts on the topics of youth concussions and sudden cardiac arrest, as well as yearly school start dates.

Dates and locations for each hearing are below, and additional details will be forthcoming. For more information, please contact Senator Hite's office at (614) 466-8150 or

Thursday, November 12

2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Ohio Statehouse | Grant Hearing Room
1 Capitol Square, Columbus 43215

Monday, November 16

5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
University of Findlay | Alumni Memorial Union, Endly Room
225 Frazer Street, Findlay 45840

Thursday, November 19

5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Lorain County Community College
1005 North Abbe Road, Elyria 44035

Monday, November 23

5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Salvation Army Kroc Community Center
1000 North Keowee Street, Dayton 45404

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

RELEASE: Derickson Opposes Budget Deal

OXFORD, OHIO- Conservative State Representative and candidate for Congress in Ohio's 8th District, today announced his opposition to the two-year budget deal between the White House and GOP Congressional leaders. "Sometimes you have to stand strong even if it means standing up against leaders in your own party," said Rep. Derickson. "I oppose this bad deal because it was made in the cover of darkness, busts previous budget caps, increases the debt limit, raises spending by $80 billion dollars and does nothing to reduce our growing $18 trillion dollar national debt. The New York Times called the deal a 'victory for Obama,' but I call it a defeat for our hardworking taxpayers."

Rep. Derickson said the budget deal also fails to defund Planned Parenthood. "The budget deal is a victory for Planned Parenthood and the culture of death because it fails to eliminate their funding. As State Representative, I voted to eliminate Planned Parenthoods funding in Ohio and we won that fight. In Congress I will promote a culture of life and vote to defund Planned Parenthood once and for all because life is a gift from God that must be protected," Derickson said.

Derickson called on his opponents in the race for Congress to take a stand on the Obama budget deal. "The voters of Ohio's 8th District know where I stand on this bad budget deal, but it's time for my opponents to make their stand known today. The voters are waiting."

Tim Derickson is a committed husband and father, small business owner, farmer and award-winning conservative leader in the Ohio House of Representatives.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Today in the Ohio Senate

The Senate will consider the following legislation for concurrence during today’s session (2:30 p.m.): 
  • Support for Small Businesses: Senate Bill 208, sponsored by Senator Bill Beagle (R-Tipp City) clarifies language adopted in the state's main operating budget earlier this year that lowers the tax burden for small businesses, which are the backbone of Ohio's economy. The Senate continues to refine a flat tax structure so that small businesses pay no taxes on the first $250,000 of revenue and then can take the benefit of a three percent flat tax on any amount over that. This gives Ohio's small business owners the opportunity to reinvest back into their companies, add additional employees, expand their operations and grow Ohio's economy.

RELEASE: Ohio House Passes Bill to Preserve Small Business Tax Cuts, Address TPP Reimbursements for Schools

COLUMBUS—The Ohio House of Representatives passed legislation that corrects language in the state budget bill dealing with tax cuts for small business owners and funding for schools in relation to phase-outs of the Tangible Personal Property tax.
“While Senate Bill 208 allows us to make certain that taxpayers keep more of their dollars, it also gives the legislature the ability to better support many of Ohio’s schools in a substantial way,” said Rep. Jeff McClain, Chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee.
The state operating budget (Am. Sub. HB 64), which was signed by Governor Kasich in June, included a provision that provided a 75-percent income tax cut for small businesses on the first $250,000 of income, with a flat 3-percent income tax rate on income above that level.
However, the way in which the bill was drafted could have resulted in unanticipated and unintended tax hikes for some small businesses. For example, a business earning less than $40,000 after the 75-percent deduction would see its taxes increase. That is because, under Ohio’s progressive income tax system, rates up to about $40,000 are less than 3 percent.
Senate Bill 208 applies a progressive tax rate structure for TY’15 up to $40,000 of income. It then levies a flat 3-percent rate on income above that level. This ensures that no taxpayer will pay a higher rate than in 2014, and it reduces taxes on Ohio’s small businesses by $84 million over the next two years.
In addition, SB 208 addresses language in HB 64 regarding supplemental funding to protect school districts from the Tangible Personal Property tax reimbursement phase-outs. The state budget bill allowed the TPP phase-outs to continue, but provided a temporary back-fill of funding to protect schools from the phase-outs. For FY’17, Senate Bill 208 provides a supplement of 96 percent of what a school district would have received.
Specifically, SB 208 ensures that no school district receives less than 96 percent of what they received in FY’15 in foundation formula aid and TPP reimbursement payment.
The legislation now returns to the Senate for further consideration.

Monday, October 12, 2015

In Memorium: Mark G. 1976 - 2015

Matt, Congresswoman Jean Schmidt, and Mark G.

Mark passed away last night / early this morning at 1:40 am.

He was a son, a brother, a preacher, and a teacher.

He was a fan of wrestling, NCIS, science fiction shows including Star Trek, and comic books.

He was an American, conservative, Republican.  In that order.

He wasn't afraid to tell anybody what he thought about any political issue or candidate.

Fair winds and following seas, my friend.  Until we meet again.

To absent friends...

Friday, October 09, 2015

Kasich Hates Your Republican Values -- He Wants to "Redfine" Them For You

...but don't take my word for it, he said it:
Republican presidential contender John Kasich has split from other conservatives in his party on issues like immigration and same-sex marriage, but he's not denouncing the GOP's values just yet.
"I think I have right to define what the party is, Charlie," Kasich told "CBS This Morning" host Charlie Rose early Thursday. "Look, if I win, I have a right to define what the party is, and along the way I'm defining what it is."
How gracious of the governor not to denounce our values...just yet.

  • He's for illegal immigration with absolutely no consequences. (I've seen no statement or policy from him or attributed to him that would lead me to believe otherwise.)
  • He's for allowing ISIS to operate in Syria (His policy is a no-fly zone that Russia is currently "violating" by CRUSHING ISIS in Syria.)
  • He's pro-Common Core
  • He's pro Obamacare (even though he claims he wants repeal, his actions tell a different story/  See: Medicaid expansion) 
  • He's opposed to cheap oil (See: Fracking taxes)
  • He's a tyrant.  When he doesn't get his way, he goes around the legislature and takes "executive" action (Sound familiar?)
 There are reasons why people like Joy Behar and Rachel Maddow like him.  He's NOT one of us.  He is one of THEM.

My favorite bit is about the Trans-Pacific Partnership:

Kasich said that he believes "it's good for the U.S. not only in terms of economics but in terms of foreign policy. Trade can make a difference in strengthening us around the world."

He added that while he hasn't read the full details of the trade bill, he does support it.
He doesn't need to read the bill to know that he likes it.  Obama likes it and that's good enough for him.

Lastly, there's this:

When questioned about his differing stance on same-sex marriage, Kasich said, "Look, I believe in traditional marriage, but the court has ruled."
The Court ruled on slavery, segregation and women's suffrage too.....  Kasich doesn't really believe in traditional marriage or he'd recognize that the decision doesn't hold up to the values of his party and would insist that the party continue to fight.

Instead, he wants to "redefine" Republican values just as he has "redefined" conservatism in Ohio.  How'd THAT work out for us?

Kevin and Renee

I am shocked -- SHOCKED -- to find hanky-panky going on in this establishment.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

JACOBS: Kasich May Want to Re-Read His Bible on Medicaid Expansion

Today's MUST READ column.  Chris Jacobs writes a stinging post at Conservative Review in which he lays out the facts on how Kasich ignored the needs of 37,000 individuals with disabilities on waiting lists in choosing to prioritize expansion of Medicaid in Ohio to able-bodied adults.

Faber Out for OH-08

Good news for Roger Reynolds as another big name drops out of the race to replace Boehner in OH-08.

Senate President Keith Faber will not run.  He's got his eye on a statewide race.  Probably Attorney General (if he can DeRINO Dave Yost -- it worked once.....) or Auditor (if he can't).

He didn't live in the district anyway.

SIDEBAR: From that article linked above: "DeWine may seek the governor’s office."  Oh, HELL NO...  If there is one thing we can count on, it's Jon Husted's ambition.  There is NO WAY Jonny misses his chance again.  Also hearing that Mary Taylor might want to run for governor assuming she's learned how to campaign...  Anyway...

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

RELEASE: St. Rep. Pelanda’s Bill Strengthens Ohio’s Record Sealing Law

COLUMBUS—State Representative Dorothy Pelanda (R-Marysville) today announced that the Ohio House has passed House Bill 164, legislation that strengthens Ohio’s Conviction Record Sealing Law. Rep. Pelanda was a joint sponsor of the bill.
House Bill 164 alters the Conviction Record Sealing Law to allow a person who is convicted of an offense to apply to have the conviction sealed if the penalty for the offense has been changed so that convictions for that offense can now be sealed since the date of conviction.
By making this change, the law coincides with other recent actions taken by the General Assembly to make the state’s justice system more rehabilitative. Oftentimes, the sealing of a record can provide assistance with employment and can allow those who may not have previously been eligible for such opportunities because of their records to be fairly considered.
“For many, the sealing of a record or its expungement can provide assistance with employment opportunities and enhance the likelihood of personal success which might otherwise be denied,” Rep. Pelanda stated.
The bipartisan legislation passed with a vote of 93-1 and will now be under consideration by the Ohio Senate.

RELEASE: Roger Reynolds Announces Candidacy for Ohio’s 8th District

Liberty Township, OH 10/7/15 – Conservative Republican Roger Reynolds announced this morning that he will run for the open seat in the 8th District of Ohio for the U.S. House of Representatives.

Reynolds, a CPA, is currently serving his third term as Butler County Auditor. He has decided to run for Congress because he recognizes an out-of-control Washington that needs to be held accountable.

“The tax and spend culture of Washington D.C. has led us to a national debt of more than $19 trillion, which serves as a great burden for my children, your children, and generations to come.”

Reynolds said that his top priority in Washington D.C. will be to promote sound fiscal policy and advocate for conservative solutions to address our fiscal crisis.

“The fact of the matter is the people of the 8th District deserve a representative in Congress with proven financial and private sector experience, a track record of making tough decisions, and most importantly a blueprint for success.”

The Reynolds for Congress announcement occurred outside his campaign headquarters in Liberty Township, OH surrounded by family, friends and supporters. Reynolds said he is committed to working hard over the coming months to meet the citizens of the 8th district, listen to their concerns, and earn their trust.

“I commit to you and the people of the 8th District that I will work tirelessly to earn your support.” 

The 8th district seat is currently held by John Boehner and will be vacated on October 30th, 2015.  The district encompasses Butler, Preble, Darke, Miami, and Clarke Counties, and a portion of Mercer County.

Roger Reynolds for U.S. Congress

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Ohio Senate Debates Fate of Ride Sharing

If this article is right, today in the Ohio Senate there is a hearing about a bill that would regulate ride sharing companies like Uber and Lyft.

The gist of the bill is to set up the policies under which these companies would operate in Ohio for the foreseeable future.  Requiring these outfits to be permitted by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio is really the only way to make sure that there are some standards being met by the companies.

For the most part, this blog advocates an open market.  The more the merrier.  Competition is good for business and consumers alike.  It may seem odd that we advocate any regulation at all of this industry, but there have been a number of incidents with these enterprises that have made the need for a watchdog present.

The bill has already passed the Ohio House, so if it gets through the Senate it will be off to the governor for signature.  Uber has been planning a large expansion in Ohio, so the issue is a hot one.

St. Rep. Wes Retherford Announces Candidacy for Re-Election to Ohio House

Promo for Retherford appearance on TIB All Stars Show a few years ago.
COLUMBUS-Today, State Representative Wes Retherford (R-Hamilton) announced that he is running for re-election to the Ohio House of Representatives in the 51st District.

"After many conversations with friends and family, and considerate prayer, I have decided that it is in the best interest of both my family and my constituents that I do not seek the open congressional seat," Retherford said. "Therefore, I am formally announcing my candidacy for re-election to the Ohio House of Representatives. I have been able to accomplish quite a bit in the Statehouse and believe that I can do more good there than in Washington."

"Representative Retherford has been a committed servant to the people of the 51st District," said Speaker of the Ohio House Clifford A. Rosenberger (R-Clarksville). "During his nearly four years in the House, he has been steadfast in sponsoring and supporting policies to support Ohio's veterans, seniors and taxpayers. I look forward to supporting him over the next several months and doing what I can to help him return to the Ohio House."

Retherford is seeking his third term in the Ohio House, after first being elected in 2012

Monday, October 05, 2015

The Butler County Seat in Congress

Auditor and Great American Roger Reynolds
As you all know, with John Boehner's coming retirement there is a HUGE opportunity for somebody to step onto a MUCH larger stage.  With that in mind, the Butler County Republican Party has some BIG shoes to fill and as the county with the largest population in the district, they also have greater responsibility to choose wisely.  It is great to hear that the party leadership has chosen to not endorse any particular candidate and allow the membership to make that decision without undue command influence.

Why is it important for Butler County to represented by one of their own?  Should their congressman be from somewhere else, it becomes possible that the area gets split during redistricting and the county could lose a lot.  Butler county has always been a strong, mostly conservative turnout.  Other areas could try to chip off that support in order to strengthen their own positions.

Since I no longer live in Butler County, the preceding paragraph really doesn't hold much weight with me as an argument.  What does, is making sure that the Eighth Congressional District gets the very best representative that it possibly can and in my opinion, that means Roger Reynolds

Roger has integrity.  He's intelligent and has the courage to do what needs to be done.  He's a fighter for conservative principles.  He believes government should be small and efficient.  There are maybe five politicians in this whole state whom I would quit my job and go work for if asked, Roger is one of them.  He's THAT GOOD.

Butler County Republicans, I urge you to unite behind Roger Reynolds and make Congress better.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Forkin The Road Report on Boehner, ORP, and the Tea Party


Most interesting tidbit:

When the Tea Party first arrived on the scene in 2009, I was given the un-glorious task of identifying exactly what the Tea Party was, who they were, what they wanted and then devising a recommended plan of action on the best way to handle the new group. 
I was told, and rightly so, that political leaders in other states and in D.C. were watching Ohio in particular to see how the GOP was handling this new group. 
I put together a nice report outlining who the group was, what they wanted and then made recommendations on the best way to handle the Tea Party. 
Many party leaders, and consequently then members of the media, wanted to incorrectly label the movement as just born-again members of the John Birch Society, or a vast uprising of only social conservatives, or the born-again version of the Know-Nothings, or paid puppets of Dick Armey. 
I tried to explain that there was no reference point in history that could be used to define the Tea Party – it was a unique mix of solidly principled people that consisted of not just Republicans, but Democrats and Independents as well. 
My advice was to make them feel as though they had a seat at the table, make them feel welcomed and that they had a voice that was not only listened to, but considered and sometimes acted upon. 
I advised against the eventual tactic, which was to not only defeat the Republican Tea Partiers, but utterly destroy any future hopes of political success by absolutely crushing them in the 2010 primaries. 
The term used by people on the inside to describe the eventual plan was ‘scorched-earth tactics’

The last sentence was emphasized by me because it is just that important.

Read the whole thing to find out what happened next because this guy called it...just as I did.

Boehner Circus Update


  • Sheriff Richard "Spotlight" Jones - Out
  • Bill Coley - Out
  • Tim Derickson - Term limited in Ohio House - "I in no way could have anticipated this possibility, but now that it is an open seat, I'm seriously considering a run for that seat."
  • Ross MacGregor - "Some people label me 'liberal.' I prefer 'moderate."
  • Kieth Faber - Lives outside the district - "A spokesman for Faber declined to comment."
  • Wes Retherford - "I really haven't had a chance to collect my thoughts."
  • Seth Morgan - "I don't know if I'm ready to say one way or the other."
  • Chris Widener
  • Steve Austria

Spotlight is Out

Just caught this on Facebook:

A message from Sheriff Jones...
With the sudden resignation of the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, I was asked by a number of people to run for his seat in Congress. Over the last week I’ve discussed this proposition with many of my trusted friends and family. I’ve been fortunate to receive an enormous amount of support from citizens in and around Butler County. With Congress having an overall approval rating of about 15% they could use someone like me who’s willing to speak their mind and stir things up.
My passion has always been serving my County and Country. I’ve decided that, right now, the best way to do that is to remain Sheriff. Someday my future may take a different path, but I’m extremely proud to be Sheriff of Butler County and I truly appreciate the outpouring of support I’ve received over the years and specifically the last few weeks.
Richard K. Jones
Sheriff, Butler County, Ohio

I guess there wasn't enough publicity in it...

Roger Reynolds is the best candidate anyway...

Thursday, October 01, 2015

STATEMENT: Senate President Faber on College Affordability and Efficiency

COLUMBUS - Senate President Keith Faber (R-Celina) issued the following statement in response to the report released today by the Governor's Task Force on College Affordability and Efficiency: 

"I'm encouraged by the work this task force was able to accomplish in identifying opportunities for our universities and colleges to reduce costs for students.

"College affordability continues to be a major priority of the Ohio Senate, and these recommendations today reflect the commitment of both university and legislative leadership to relieve the financial burden of a college tuition through increased efficiency and productivity in our institutions.

"I appreciate the time, expertise and focus that my fellow task force members devoted to this study. I look forward to working with our colleges and universities as we review and implement changes to help our students obtain an affordable, quality education and be successful as they enter the workforce."

RELEASE: AFP Applauds OH on RPS Freeze Recommendation

COLUMBUS -- The Ohio chapter of Americans for Prosperity is applauding state officials for announcing today that they recommend extending the freeze of its Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) indefinitely. The organization has consistently opposed these mandates at the state level that require utilities to buy certain amounts of their electricity from economically unviable electricity sources that are unaffordable and unreliable. The result for Ohio and other states has been higher electricity prices, which squeeze family budgets and kill jobs. 

AFP-Ohio State Director Baylor Myers released the following statement: 

"We're thrilled that Ohio is continuing to lead the way in rethinking these harmful energy mandates, and that state officials have recognized the relief this freeze is bringing to the families and businesses living in our state. This is an important step toward restoring free markets in the energy sector, and I hope Ohio's actions inspire other states to push back against misguided attempts to pick winners and losers among energy sources." 

In 2014, Governor John Kasich signed the freeze of the 2008 RPS mandate into law, giving officials a two-year window to study its effect on utility prices. Yesterday, Kasich backtracked and said that extending the freeze is ‘unacceptable,’ despite his administration characterizing the original freeze as “firmly in the sensible center.” 
A spokesperson for Americans for Prosperity said the group will continue to advocate for a free market in the energy sector, allowing for affordable, abundant energy solutions in Ohio and across the country.

RELEASE: State Representative Mike Dovilla Announces Candidacy for Ohio Senate

COLUMBUS, OHIO—State Representative Mike Dovilla (R-Berea) today announced his candidacy to serve as state senator for the 24th Ohio Senate District, comprised of 28 suburban communities in Cuyahoga County, during the 132nd General Assembly.

“For nearly five years, I have been honored to serve the people of Cuyahoga County in the Legislature,” said Dovilla.  “Throughout the summer numerous community leaders and constituents have asked if I would consider continuing to work on their behalf by seeking our district’s Senate seat.  I am humbled by their strong support and enter this race with great confidence we will earn that opportunity.”
Rep. Dovilla, a lifelong Republican and the House Majority Whip, is currently serving his third term in the Ohio House of Representatives.  As a state legislator who has authored more than a dozen laws and quickly risen through the ranks since arriving in the Legislature, he possesses a wealth of policy experience and a proven record of results as a public servant.  Dovilla has previously served as a presidential appointee at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, a senior advisor to U.S. Senator George V. Voinovich, and a Presidential Management Fellow at the U.S. Department of State.
Additionally, Dovilla has a distinguished military career and is an officer in the Reserve Component of the U.S. Navy.  A lieutenant commander with more than 13 years of commissioned service, he served on active duty on a 12-month deployment in Iraq in 2007-2008.  He currently serves as a department head with a unit supporting U.S. European Command.  As a qualified Information Dominance Warfare Officer, his awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Achievement Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Army Achievement Medal, and various unit and campaign awards.

“My top five priorities in the Legislature remain those on which I first ran for office in 2010, areas where we continue to make measurable progress,” said Dovilla.  “If given the opportunity to continue my public service in the Ohio Senate, I will stay focused on strengthening our state’s business-friendly environment for job creation, promoting strong public education, protecting our senior citizens, advocating for veterans, and reforming state government.”
In the current legislative session, Rep. Dovilla is sponsoring several additional pieces of common sense legislation, including the following measures:
  • House Bill 2 substantially reforms Ohio’s charter school framework by clarifying roles and responsibilities, improving transparency, and increasing accountability.  The bill passed the House by a supermajority in March and is slated for final passage in the near future.
  • House Bill 24, the “Ohio Elder Justice Act,” strengthens Adult Protective Service statutes for the first time in over two decades, helping to protect some of the most vulnerable members of society from abuse, exploitation, and neglect.  The bill unanimously passed the House in March.
  • House Bill 46, “Open Ohio,” which increases transparency by requiring the Ohio Treasurer of State to establish the Ohio State Government Expenditure Database that includes information about expenditures state entities make.  The bill unanimously passed the House in April.
Since arriving in the Legislature in January 2011, Rep. Dovilla has helped lead Ohio’s comeback, voting for three fiscally conservative, balanced budgets that have cut working Ohioans’ taxes by $5 billion, supporting major reforms to the state’s economic development structure, and streamlining the regulatory environment to help promote private sector job creation.  These pro-growth public policy initiatives have helped reduce Ohio’s unemployment rate from 9.6 percent to 4.7 percent, spur the creation of over 350,000 net new private sector jobs, and replenish the state’s budget stabilization fund from 89 cents to $2 billion.
The 24th Ohio Senate District is comprised of 28 communities in Cuyahoga County – Bay Village, Bentleyville, Brecksville, Broadview Heights, Chagrin Falls, Chagrin Falls Township, Fairview Park, Gates Mills, Glenwillow, Highland Heights, Hunting Valley, Independence, Lyndhurst, Mayfield, Moreland Hills, North Olmsted, North Royalton, Oakwood, Olmsted Falls, Olmsted Township, Rocky River, Seven Hills, Solon, Strongsville, Valley View, Walton Hills, Westlake, and Berea – Rep. Dovilla’s hometown.

Preacher John (Kasich) the Green Opposes Republicans on Energy

Hours after the Ohio legislature published their recommendations about renewable energy mandates,  new "grassroots" organization called the Ohio Conservative Energy Forum launched, calling for "a genuine 'all of the above' approach to Ohio’s energy policy – one that recognizes our history while also committing to advancing clean and renewable energy and energy efficiency."

Its chairman? Kasich for Ohio state director and former Columbus Chamber of Commerce lobbyist and former Kasich staffer Michael Hartley.

Its "state energy director"? Former Kasich office and campaign intern Tyler Duvelius.

Their "
regulatory affairs, public policy, federal and state politics, and grassroots organization advisor? Kasich appointee and campaigner Mike Gonidakis.

Who's Terry McClure? Just the president of Northwest Ohio Wind LLC, a company that directly benefits from green-energy power mandates. And a Kasich campaigner.

Tom Moe? Another Kasich state appointee and ex-campaign surrogate.

Now, why is Team Kasich opposing the green-energy freeze recommendation?

“A continued freeze of Ohio’s energy standards is unacceptable and we stand willing to work with the Ohio General Assembly to craft a bill that supports a diverse mix of reliable, low-cost energy sources while preserving the gains we have made in the state’s economy,” Kasich spokesman Joe Andrews said in an email.
“Ohio needs more renewable and alternative-energy sources and it needs a strong system to support them as they get started,” Kasich spokesman Rob Nichols said in an email.

The website,, is registered to Steiner Public Relations, owned by Ohio GOP PR guy and Kasich backer Curt Steiner.

Lots of things bother me about this.

First of all, the "all of the above" approach wasn't designed to be employed as a way to save "green" energy.  It was thought of as a way to protect the coal, natural gas and oil industries FROM the green lobby.

Second, the name of the organization implies that in order to be "conservative" you have to agree with John Kasich's position on energy.  I don't.  But I'm FAR more conservative than he is on a good many issues, including this one.

Lastly, why not just be honest with people.  This is a Team Kasich front.  If Preacher John wanted to make this an issue, why doesn't he just come out and say so?  We all know that the Speaker (and his three "unnamed" state representatives who vetoed me) will fall right in line with whatever he wants, so let's just skip the cloak and dagger and get on with it already.

RELEASE: Ohio House Passes Bill to Designate “Blue Star Mothers and Families Day”

COLUMBUS—The Ohio House of Representatives today passed legislation honoring military families and their loved ones for the sacrifices they make for our nation. House Bill 242, sponsored by Reps. Christina Hagan (R-Alliance) and Jonathan Dever (R-Madeira), designates the fourth Sunday of July as “Blue Star Mothers and Families Day.”

The legislation was derived from the Blue Star Mothers of America organization, which has more than 6,000 members and 200 chapters across the country, with 15 chapters in Ohio alone. The non-profit is known for supporting patriotism and providing outreach to the mothers, stepmothers, and other maternal figures who have children serving in the military.

"I am honored to pass this bill on behalf of every Blue Star Mother and Family in House District 50. It is a special honor to recognize and celebrate the endless dedication and sacrifice that these mothers, families and active military servants make on behalf of all Ohioans and Americans,” said Rep. Hagan. “It is only fitting that we should take a day each year, specifically named in this bill to be the fourth Sunday of every July, to appreciate the history and contributions of such selfless servants, giving all to advance our freedoms and to allow us to raise our families without fear due to the time spent away from their own families."

Through the committee process, House Bill 242 was changed to include entire families of those who serve in the military rather than just mothers and other female guardians. Thus, under the legislation, the fourth Sunday of July would recognize all family members who sacrifice time with their loved ones while they serve our nation.

“Blue Star Mothers and families have gone above and beyond to honor our brave service men and women and they deserve our collective thanks and recognition,” said Rep. Dever.

House Bill 242 was passed unanimously by the House and will now head to the Senate for consideration.

RELEASE: Ohio House Passes Health Care Compact

COLUMBUS—During today’s session, the Ohio House of Representatives passed legislation that, with approval from Congress, would give Ohio more freedom and flexibility over its healthcare policies.
House Bill 34, sponsored by Reps. Wes Retherford (R-Hamilton) and Terry Boose (R-Norwalk), ratifies the Health Care Compact., through which Ohio would enter a multi-state contract that would secure more rights to the states for healthcare policy decisions. The measure is a response to rising costs and deficits, as well as the increased federal overreach into health care. If signed into law by Governor Kasich and approved by the US Congress, the Compact allows Ohio to suspend the operation of all federal laws and regulations that are inconsistent with Ohio laws adopted through the Compact. Should Congress approve the Compact, however, it would still be up to the state legislature whether to change Ohio’s healthcare policy, as well as what those specific changes would be.
“This bill is a great first step to get  healthcare decisions back in the hands of state government, and we will continue to work to make sure Ohioans will have control over their healthcare decisions,” Boose said.
Under the legislation, Ohio would receive federal funding to support health coverage each fiscal year. The amount of funding would be determined based on the estimated level of federal funding used for health care, which would be updated periodically based on population and inflation.
“For years, we have heard the complaints about the ACA,” Retherford said. “We have also seen attempt after attempt to repeal the ACA, but with no back up plan. Ohio, along with several other states, has taken the lead on finding a suitable replacement to the Federal control of our healthcare system.  By returning these dollars to the states, we can start working on state-by-state reform that will best serve our constituents. I want to thank my colleagues in supporting my efforts to find a solution to our healthcare crisis. Ohioans are demanding actions, not just words, and today the Ohio House took that step.”
The Health Care Compact included a set of core principles, inspired by the goals of personal freedom and federalism. The principles include:
  • The separation of powers, both between the branches of the federal government and between federal and state authority, is essential to the preservation of individual liberty
  • The Constitution creates a federal government of limited and enumerated powers, and reserves to the states or to the people those powers not granted to the federal government
  • The member states seek to protect individual liberty and personal control over healthcare decisions, and believe the best method to achieve these ends is by vesting regulatory authority over health care in the states
House Bill 34 now goes to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.

BUCKEYE INSTITUTE: Energy Mandates Study Committee Recommends Indefinite Freeze

COLUMBUS, OHIO--The Buckeye Institute's energy policy expert today praised a special legislative committee's recommendation that the General Assembly indefinitely freeze Ohio's renewable energy and energy efficiency mandates.
However, the free market think tank expressed serious concern about Gov. John Kasich's statement that he might not support the recommended freeze on the alternative energy mandates, also known as Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards.
"Ohioans would experience higher energy prices and weaker economic growth if these mandates remain," said Joe Nichols, the Institute's William & Helen Diehl Energy and Transparency Fellow.  "The government should not be picking winners and losers, which hurts Ohioans who can afford it the least -- poor and middle class families, minorities, and those who live on fixed incomes.  Reintroducing mandates also makes it more difficult for companies to create jobs in Ohio."
On the governor's indication that he may not support the committee's recommended indefinite freeze, Robert Alt, President and CEO of The Buckeye Institute, said: "We shouldn't return to the policy mistakes of the Strickland administration by embracing another costly government mandate."
The energy mandates force Ohio utilities to buy increasing amounts of renewable energy and implement energy efficiency programs.  The bipartisan, bicameral Energy Mandates Study Committee heard testimony from The Buckeye Institute about how these mandates negatively impact the state's economy and energy production.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Today in the Ohio Senate

Today in the Ohio Senate
Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Senate will consider the following during today’s session (1:30 p.m.): 
  • Protecting Kids with Asthma: Substitute House Bill 39, sponsored by Representatives Mike Duffey (R-Worthington) and Anthony DeVitis (R-Green), prepares staff to respond in the event that a child has an asthma attack by permitting schools to stock inhalers and allows trained personnel to respond.
  • Safeguarding Victims of Domestic Violence: Following an Ohio Supreme Court decision, SB 76 was introduced by Senators Kevin Bacon (R-Minerva Park) and Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville), to better protect victims of domestic violence by clarifying Ohio law to permit the prosecution of offenders who had actual notice of a protection order and recklessly violated the terms of the order. 
  • Raising Awareness about Asthma: Sponsored by Senator Cecil Thomas (D-Cincinnati) Senate Bill 124 designates May as "Asthma Awareness Month" and May 5 as "Childhood Asthma Awareness Day". According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, asthma affects 20 million Americans. Asthma is a chronic, incurable disease that can be serious—even life-threatening.
  • Raising Awareness about Bartter Syndrome: Senate Bill 128, sponsored by Senators Capri Cafaro (D-Hubbard) and Joe Schiavoni (D-Boardman), designates May 30 as "Bartter Syndrome Awareness Day". Bartter Syndrome is a rare disorder that affects the kidneys, causing an imbalance of potassium, sodium, chloride and other substances in the body. The incurable disease can result in premature birth and other life-threatening circumstances.