OML UPDATE AT-A-GLANCE
Here are the top three things you need to know from this past week:
- Newark City Councilman Mark Frazier has been selected to replace former Rep. Ryan Smith (R - Newark) for the 71st House District Seat which covers Licking County. Mr. Frazier is a senior project manager in information technology at Huntington National Bank.
- The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded approximately $45 million in grants for lead paint abatement efforts in low-income housing. Ohio cities that received grants funds are Columbus, Cleveland, Lima, Akron and Canton.
- Attorney General Yost has announced $1.3 million in grants to 30 local drug abuse response teams across the state. The teams connect drug overdose survivors with treatment and recovery options.
SENATE PREEMPTION BILL RECEIVES PROPONENT TESTIMONY
During its second hearing before the Senate Local Government, Public Safety and Veterans Affairs Committee, proponents of SB 222 testified in support of the bill. SB 222, sponsored by Sen. Rulli (R - Salem), would preempt municipalities from imposing a tax or fee on auxiliary containers such as plastic bags or takeout boxes. This is a companion bill to HB 242, which is awaiting action by the full House.
The Ohio Council of Retail Merchants, the American Progressive Bag Alliance, the Ohio Chamber of Commerce and the Ohio Manufacturers' Association testified before the committee while the Ohio Chemistry Technology Council, the Ohio Grocers Association, NFIB-Ohio and the Greater Cleveland Partnership submitted written-only testimony. Those testified voice opposition to local jurisdictions taxing auxiliary containers as it would create a "patchwork" of local ordinances and make compliance complicated for business.
Like its companion in the House, SB 222 is a blatant preemption of the right to local authority granted to municipalities in the Ohio Constitution. We urge our members to contact their senators and voice their opposition to this bill. This bill is not up for a hearing next week, but when it is up for opponent testimony we will alert our members with a Call-to-Action.
NATIONAL LEAGUE OF CITIES 2019 CITY SUMMIT ANNUAL CONFERENCE STARTS NEXT WEEK
Next week, from November 20th - 23rd, the National League of Cities (NLC) will host its annual City Summit in San Antonio, TX. Attending Ohio local officials, both elected and staff, will join over 3,500 other cities officials for workshops, networking and exclusive presentations from special guests.
The City Summit will host over 100 educational workshops, training seminars and networking opportunities, plus more than ten mobile workshops that give those attending the opportunity to explore San Antonio and learn about the various successful initiatives developed by the city.
Oscar and Grammy Award-winning hip-hop artist and author Common will be presenting as one of the keynote speakers. Peter Kageyama, author of "For the Love of Cities: The Love Affair Between People and Their Places" and "Love Where You Live: Creating Emotionally Engaging Places", will be featured as a keynote speaker as well.
The Ohio Municipal League will also be hosting a reception sponsored by American Fidelity and CareWorks on the evening of Friday, Nov. 22nd at the Grand Hyatt hotel where the conference is being held. The San Antonio City Summit is a unique educational and networking opportunity for Ohio's local officials and we're looking forward to seeing everyone there!
COMMITTEE RECAP: BILLS OF MUNICIPAL INTEREST
Here are the bills impacting municipalities that received committee hearings this week:
- HB 10 - DRUG POLICY OFFICE. Sponsored by Rep. Brown (D - Canal Winchester) and Rep. Stoltzfus (R - Minerva), would establish the Governor's Office of Drug Policy and make an appropriation. During its first bearing before the Senate Finance Committee, the bill's sponsored explained that the office would coordinate drug policy, run a hotline and develop educational campaigns.
- SB 221 - FIREARMS LAWS. Sponsored by Sen. Dolan (R - Chagrin Falls), is Gov. DeWine's legislative "STRONG Ohio" initiative aimed at curbing gun violence including provisions such as issuing a Safety Protection Order in certain circumstances for a person who a court determines is under a drug dependency, chronic alcoholic, or mental health-related firearms disability and instating a statewide background check mechanism. During its second hearing before the Senate Government Oversight and Reform Committee, proponents including police chiefs and representatives from religious groups testified in support of the bill, saying it would help save lives. The League is neutral on this legislation.
- HB 312 - INTRASTATE EQUITY CROWDFUNDING. Sponsored by Rep. Powell (R - Laura), would permit intrastate equity crowdfunding under certain circumstances. During its third hearing before the House Financial Institutions Committee, the bill was reported out of committee. The League is supportive of this legislation.