Latest Ohio State General Assembly News

Lawmakers approve ear protection for Ohio motorcyclists

Jan. 24, 2020 1:10 AM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Motorcyclists in Ohio would be allowed to wear earphones or earplugs while riding under a measure meant to ward off hearing loss, under a bill on its way to Gov. Mike DeWine. The House and Senate have both approved the legislation, which would prohibit motorcyclists from listening to...

Senate lawmakers consider public defender loan repayments

Jan. 20, 2020 10:33 AM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio Senate committee is considering a bill that would create a student loan repayment program to help recruit and retain attorneys to serve as much needed public defenders in the state. The proposed program is similar to those in Ohio aimed at encouraging physicians, dentists and...

Farmers one step closer to hemp planting after rule approval

Jan. 17, 2020 8:17 AM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio farmers are one step closer to planting hemp as soon as this spring following a vote Thursday by a legislative rule-making committee. The rules approved by the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review were required by last year's Ohio legislative hemp legalization bill, and should...

Jack Marchbanks, right, the Ohio Transportation Department director, reflects on the damage caused by distracted driving in the state, at a news conference promoting safe holiday driving and also attended by Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, on Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, in Columbus, Ohio. DeWine said he wants distracted driving made a primary offense and promised a legislative proposal soon. (AP Photo/Andrew Welsh-Huggins)

Bill would make driver cellphone use enough for traffic stop

Jan. 15, 2020 9:48 AM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Using a cellphone while driving would be reason enough to pull someone over under a bill introduced Tuesday at the Ohio Statehouse. State Rep. Mary Lightbody, a Democrat from Westerville, introduced the measure. “The number of drivers I see using their smartphones while...

Bill would put judicial candidates' party label on ballot

Dec. 30, 2019 7:25 PM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A bill would allow judicial candidates in Ohio to determine whether to list their party affiliation on general election ballots. The bipartisan-sponsored Ohio House bill that was introduced Friday would go into effect in 2021, reported. The bill sponsored by Republican...

Editorial Roundup: Ohio

Dec. 30, 2019 3:55 PM EST

Recent editorials of statewide and national interest from Ohio newspapers: Akron officer’s reinstatement raises troubling questions The Akron Beacon Journal Dec. 28 The reinstatement of a fired Akron police officer for making numerous inappropriate social media comments disappointed many in our community....

Speaker: Taking sides in contested GOP primaries possible

Dec. 28, 2019 8:13 AM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio House Republican caucus could take sides in some contested GOP primaries next year, House Speaker Larry Householder said. Householder, a Republican from Perry County, holds the purse strings to the House Republican Campaign Committee. Although it currently reports only...

Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder speaks to journalists Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, in his legislative office in downtown Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julie Carr Smyth)

Speaker: Ohio House GOP discussing repeal of death penalty

Dec. 19, 2019 4:41 PM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — House Republicans in Ohio are discussing a repeal of the death penalty, as executions remain on hold amid the state's struggles to obtain lethal injection drugs. GOP House Speaker Larry Householder told reporters Thursday that members of his majority caucus are discussing various...

FILE - In this Nov. 6, 2018, file photo, voters cast their ballots, in Gates Mills, Ohio. An Associated Press review has found that thousands of Ohio voters were held up or stymied in their efforts to get absentee ballots by mail in 2018's general election because of a missing or mismatched signature on their ballot application. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File)

AP Exclusive: Thousands of Ohio absentee applications denied

Dec. 16, 2019 1:38 PM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Thousands of Ohio voters were held up or stymied in their efforts to get absentee ballots for last year’s general election because of missing or mismatched signatures on their ballot applications, an Associated Press review has found. The signature requirement on such...

Lobbyist had hand in bill sparking ectopic pregnancy flap

Dec. 11, 2019 1:59 PM EST

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio lawmaker who proposed legislation extending insurance coverage to a procedure considered medically impossible as a way of fighting abortion worked closely on the bill with a conservative lobbyist, newly released emails show. State Rep. John Becker, a southwestern Ohio...