On the one-year anniversary of the Oregon District shooting, Gov. Mike DeWine pleaded with state lawmakers to take action on his gun reform package.
“Sadly, Ohio’s laws are exactly where they were a year ago,” DeWine said. “Ohioans are saying to the state legislature: Do Something. I’m calling on the General Assembly to advance the Strong Ohio bill. We must not let the deaths of these nine people be forgotten. Nor can we continue to ignore the fact that we have a generation of young people who have been murdered on the streets of our cities on a daily basis.”
DeWine called for a moment of silence to remember the nine people killed, dozens injured and those who were emotionally scarred by the Aug. 4, 2019, massacre.
“For Fran and for me, this is still a very emotional memory as I know it is for so many. Emotions are still raw,” he said, recounting seeing the crime scene, the funerals and the candlelight vigil where hundreds of mourners packed Fifth Street and angrily shouted, “Do something!”
“The words certainly moved me. We vowed to answer that call,” he said.
His administration enhanced safety services, added grants for improving safety at churches and nonprofits, allocated $675 million in state money for K-12 wraparound services, including mental health wellness, and took steps to add outstanding warrants to background check systems.
But the bulk of DeWine’s reforms are languishing in Senate Bill 221, which hasn’t had a hearing in the Ohio Senate since December.
Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof, R-Medina, told the Dayton Daily News last week that DeWine’s gun reform package in Senate Bill 221 isn’t likely to pass this year.
“I’d say in general, my caucus is not comfortable with any limitations on the right to bear arms,” Obhof said.