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Government & Politics

Democratic Set Their Priorities for the Ohio Statehouse

photo of the Ohio Statehouse
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Democrats, who are in the minority in the Ohio House and Senate, have set their priorities for the coming year.  Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler reports.

 

When lawmakers come back to the Statehouse, Republicans in the House are likely to push a bill changing the rules for unemployment compensation and on fetal remains from abortions.

Meanwhile, Minority Leader Fred Strahorn of Dayton says his caucus is worried about college affordability and the state’s shift in reliance from income to consumption or sales taxes. While headline-making bills often come from the House, Strahorn says that may not be the case this year….

“I can tell you traditionally, we don’t do a ton of controversial, heavy-duty stuff in an election year. That doesn’t mean that we can’t do some significant things.”

And he says in this campaign year, Democrats will also pay special attention to explaining how actions lawmakers take on taxes and other issues affect average Ohioans.

 

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Democratic priorities in the Ohio Senate in 2016

In the Senate, Republican priorities include items related to public records, the mission of state agencies, and abortion.  Senate Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni of the Youngstown area says his caucus, like the Republican one, will have a retreat to set its priorities.

“We do one every year at the beginning of the year, dealing with not only the legislative piece but also the campaign piece because you have to make sure everybody understands what’s coming up with the campaign.”

Likely priority items are a water quality infrastructure bond issue to take to voters this fall, along with medical marijuana and changing the way federal lawmakers’ districts are drawn.