News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Don Drumm Studios

The Holden Arboretum


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Economy and Business


Internet cafe law takeseffect while opponents review legal options
Ohio group says restrictions will kill Ohio jobs; but Ohio's AG says they are simply clamping down onillegal gambling
by WKSU's ANDY CHOW


Reporter
Andy Chow
 
Internet cafes like Lin-Dee's in Streetsboro will now have to register with the state, and cap prizes at $10, thanks to enforcement of House Bill 7
Courtesy of K. Bhatia
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is calling for a crackdown on so-called "internet cafes," now that efforts to repeal the regulation of them have fallen short.

Opponents say the new laws will kill thousands of jobs. But supporters tell Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow that the state had to put a stop to what the new law says is illegal gambling.

Hear full story on internet cafe regulations take effect,opponents review legal options

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:04)


A team is now considering possible legal challenges to a new state law strictly regulating internet cafes. The Committee to Protect Ohio Jobs led the fight against the restrictions created in HB7, ones they say effectively ban internet cafes.

On Thursday, the committee announced that it fell short of the required amount of signatures to put a referendum on the November 2014 ballot.

Representatives for the Committee to Protect Ohio Jobs would not comment on the situation; its legal team is reviewing options. However,  the committee did release a statement claiming the laws will eliminate thousands of jobs.

All jobs are not equal
Lima Republican Rep. Matt Huffman sponsored the bill and has no problem admitting that the new law will put people out of work. But he insists that these are jobs connected to illegal gambling and Ohio lawmakers made the decision to crack down on these operations.

“We could create many many jobs in Ohio if we wanted to legalize prostitution, if we wanted to legalize marijuana, heroin, and other drugs. You’d have people flocking to Ohio,” Huffman said. “Of course you’d have to pay the social price and economic price.”

The internet cafe issue was the first referendum effort to be subjected to the new signature collecting laws, and says it was hampered by this new system created by another state law.

Too far short?
The committee had 90 days to collect about 231,000 valid signatures. The Secretary of State’s office determined that the committee fell short, so the group had another 10 days to meet its quota. In the past, groups could collect signatures while the Secretary of State’s office was still counting the first batch. Starting this year that process is banned.

Huffman predicts—judging by early numbers—that the cafe backers wouldn’t have been able to make its mark even if it did have more time.

“You can’t really complain about the 10 days when you did such a bad job in the initial portion of that—in that initial signature gathering effort,” Huffman. “They were so far away even if they had another 10 or 20 days, so I think that’s sort of an excuse.”

Other legal fronts
The group fighting against the internet café regulations would not go into detail about what kind of legal challenge it could mount. But supporters of the new laws say they aren’t worried. Carlo LoParo, spokesman for Ohioans Against Illegal Gambling, says the lack of signatures shows a clear lack of support.

“News reports — you see it throughout the state  —are talking about these places being raided by police, their owners being prosecuted on illegal gambling charges,” LoParo said. “I think Ohioans saw right through that activity I don’t think it had anything to do with requirements in the law or any constraints. Ohioans just saw right through what they were doing.”

Since the referendum effort failed, the restriction in HB 7 are now in effect. The Ohio Attorney General’s office announced that it will now begin enforcing these regulations and seeking out any illegal activity.

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Cuyahoga Valley National Park OK's sharpshooters to thin deer herds
In this article you mention that the Mule Deer Foundation is a "hunting group" in reality the Mule Deer Foundation is a conservation group that is over 25 years...

In the driver's seat of history
I believe he was a teacher of mine as James Ford Rhodes. My favorite teacher of all time! Loved learning this part of his amazing history.

Cleveland RTA is moving Public Square bus stops beginning this week
I am very confused. Why are you taking one or more of the park and ride 246 out of service in the morning. I looking over the new schedule I see that there ar...

Canton school board will vote Wednesday on its high school merger
Great to see that THE REPOSITORY is advising a 'no' vote for now! Another point, besides all the Very accurate points already made against this move is the fac...

Some parents opting their students out of Common Core test
I am an 8th grader at a school in Allen County. I have just recently taken the ELA performance based assessment and found it extremely difficult. It asked me a ...

Fallout from the Ohio Supreme Court Munroe Falls ruling
The comment by Nathan Johnson from OEC is confusing. Instead of cities being 'emboldened' to craft zoning laws that were just stricken down by this ruling, comm...

Stopping sediment dumping in Lake Erie
Ah, yes, the Army Coro of Engineers, the geniuses that designed the levee system in New Orleans that has made the flooding worse due to no sediment reaching the...

Ohio charter school critic says reform bills are a good step
The cold truth is that these charter schools are offering services beyond the what the state tests can guage. Parents and students have a choice and they are ch...

State law trumps restrictions on oil and gas drilling in Munroe Falls
Justice O'Neill's quote brings up a point I wish WKSU would address: since, unlike for Federal judges, our judges here in Ohio are elected, and therefore respo...

Ohio Supreme Court invalidates local fracking bans
If Ohio has their way, Fracking Wells will be planted in the courtyard of every town. That is if the State of Ohio can profit by it...for more on how the court ...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University