Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Ohio Senate Update

At today’s session (1:30 pm), the Senate will consider the following legislation:

* Marketing Opportunities for Farmers: Sponsored by State Senator Cliff Hite (R – Findlay), Senate Bill 309 would allow Ohio’s farmers to collaborate in marketing their products while working to better meet food safety standards. These voluntary marketing agreements will provide stable markets for products like fruits, vegetables, and dairy products. This program also creates the opportunity for further job growth within the industry.

* Tracking Arsonists: Data shows most arsonists are repeat offenders and currently there is no system in place that can track where these individuals live. Senate Bill 70, sponsored by State Senator Tim Schaffer (R-Lancaster), would require anyone who is convicted of arson or arson-related crimes to register with the Attorney General within 10 days of release and then every year after. This registry would assist fire investigators and law enforcement in their efforts to prevent future arsons and enhance the efficiency of investigations.

* Chemical Dependency Certification Requirements: State Senator Frank LaRose (R-Copley) and State Senator Capri Cafaro (D-Hubbard) co-sponsored Senate Bill 287, to makes changes to the Chemical Dependency licensure law to provide more reasonable requirements for people who want to work in the addictions field. One change includes realigning work experience and education requirements for certain credentials. Recommendations included in the bill were made by the Ohio Alcohol and Other Drug Addiction Workforce Development Project.

* Salvaged Car Claims: By opening the salvage car market, Senate Bill 273, sponsored by State Senator Keith Faber (R-Celina) would offset the loss of claims which has the potential to affect insurance costs, as claims are part of the ingredient which consumer insurance rates are determined.

* Benefiting Charitable Organizations: House Bill 152, Sponsored by State Representative Dale Mallory (D-Cincinnati) would exempt licensing requirements for amateur boxing, kick boxing, karate, wrestling events or exhibitions that are conducted under the supervision of the Fraternal Order of Police of Ohio, the Ohio Association of Professional Firefighters, and the Northern Ohio Fire Fighters when the even proceeds are benefiting a charitable organization. This bill would allow the organizations to continue and expand their charitable work.

The Senate will also recognize the following visitors on the floor:

State Senator Bill Beagle will congratulate the Dayton Dunbar boys’ basketball team on their State Champion title.

State Senator Tim Schaffer will congratulate the Pickerington Central Boys’ State Basketball Champions.