Even though the 129th Ohio General Assembly has accomplished a lot during this term and legislators for the next session of the legislature have been chosen, we are continuing our work at the Statehouse for the rest of this year. I have been privileged to have a role in many of the reforms that have been put in place over the past two years, in addition to getting Ohio out of its $8 billion budget hole without raising taxes.

The period from the election until the end of the session is often called the “lame duck” session, which is a term dating back to the 18th century in London. Although many lame duck sessions are marked by inactivity, this is not the case at the Ohio House this year.

Just last week, the House passed several more bills, including one dealing with high-volume dog breeding operations that received a lot of attention. The legislation better regulates high-volume breeders, including raising care standards and increasing penalties. This is to ensure that dogs are not being kept in operations with inhumane conditions, often referred to as “puppy mills.”

Although more conversations are taking place on what bills will definitely be put up for a vote yet this year, there are many issues that we have been taking a closer look at for many months, including such topics as tax reform, internet sweepstakes, and what Ohio should do about having a healthcare exchange under Obamacare.

We have also already started to toss around ideas for the upcoming budget that will be passed next year. Even though I will not be in office because I am limited to four terms, the budget is a massive piece of legislation that requires many months of work in advance of its passage. The sooner we start working on it, the better, and I’m pleased to have a role in this.

Even though the members of the Ohio House are staying busy, we were sure to recognize the sacrifice of Ohio’s fallen service members from 2011. The General Assembly gathers for the purpose of presenting their families with the Ohio Military Medal of Distinction every year. As a veteran myself, I cannot say enough about how moving this ceremony is.

Unfortunately, one of the 28 service members we honored was from the 88th House District that I represent. This was Army Specialist Seth Blevins, from Sardinia, who died serving his country in May of last year. I’m pleased that we were able to present his family with the medal on behalf of the State of Ohio, and I thank them for making the trip to the Statehouse.

Over the next few weeks, I will be sure to keep you informed on what legislation is being considered at the Statehouse. Be sure to contact my office if you have any questions of concerns on the issues that Ohio is facing. I also hope that you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Please enjoy the day and remember how grateful we are to be living in this country.


Post a Comment