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Latest from Laura A. Bischoff

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Ohio to raise smoking age to 21
 Across Ohio, the legal purchase age for tobacco and vaping products will increase from 18 to 21 when Gov. Mike DeWine signs the state budget bill. >> Read more trending news  The new restriction will apply to anyone who hasn’t turned 18 by Oct. 1, 2019 – allowing those who are already between 18 and 21 to ...

Posted: 2 hours ago

Across Ohio, the legal purchase age for tobacco and vaping products will increase from 18 to 21 when Gov. Mike DeWine signs the state budget bill. >> Read more trending news  The new restriction will apply to anyone who hasn’t turned 18 by Oct. 1, 2019 – allowing those who are already between 18 and 21 to ...
DeWine signs state budget bill, vetoes 25 items
 Gov. Mike DeWine signed the 3,200-page, two-year state operating budget into law on Thursday but used his veto pen on 25 items, including mandates that Ohio Medicaid pick a single pharmacy benefit manager to oversee the $2.5 billion prescription drug program and re-bid managed care contracts by July 1. DeWine said Thursday that he shares...

Posted: 6 hours ago

Gov. Mike DeWine signed the 3,200-page, two-year state operating budget into law on Thursday but used his veto pen on 25 items, including mandates that Ohio Medicaid pick a single pharmacy benefit manager to oversee the $2.5 billion prescription drug program and re-bid managed care contracts by July 1. DeWine said Thursday that he shares...
Ohio Senate approves controversial energy bill; final approval still pending
 The Ohio Senate voted 19-12 in favor of a controversial energy bill that will provide bailouts for nuclear power plants and will dramatically scale back energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. Senate Energy Committee Chairman Steve Wilson, R-Mainville, said the legislation would keep the nuclear plants open and reduce montjly electricity...

Posted: 20 hours ago

The Ohio Senate voted 19-12 in favor of a controversial energy bill that will provide bailouts for nuclear power plants and will dramatically scale back energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. Senate Energy Committee Chairman Steve Wilson, R-Mainville, said the legislation would keep the nuclear plants open and reduce montjly electricity...
Tornado Recovery: FEMA approves public assistance for local governments, private organizations
 Four counties, state government and some private organizations are eligible for federal money to defray the costs of tornado response and recovery, Gov. Mike DeWine announced late Wednesday. “Responding to the Memorial Day storms cost local governments millions of dollars, straining local budgets,” DeWine said in a written statement...

Posted: 21 hours ago

Four counties, state government and some private organizations are eligible for federal money to defray the costs of tornado response and recovery, Gov. Mike DeWine announced late Wednesday. “Responding to the Memorial Day storms cost local governments millions of dollars, straining local budgets,” DeWine said in a written statement...
Ohio to raise smoking age to 21
 Across Ohio the legal purchase age for tobacco and vaping products will increase to 21, up from 18, when Gov. Mike DeWine signs the state budget bill. The new restriction will apply to anyone who hasn’t turned 18 by Oct. 1, 2019 – allowing those who are already between 18 and 21 to continue purchasing tobacco and vaping products...

Posted: 21 hours ago

Across Ohio the legal purchase age for tobacco and vaping products will increase to 21, up from 18, when Gov. Mike DeWine signs the state budget bill. The new restriction will apply to anyone who hasn’t turned 18 by Oct. 1, 2019 – allowing those who are already between 18 and 21 to continue purchasing tobacco and vaping products...
Ohio lawmakers OK income tax cut, education changes
 Seventeen days past the constitutional deadline, Ohio lawmakers approved a two-year, operational budget bill that includes tax cuts, education reforms and changes to health care. The bill lays out how Ohio will spend more than $142 billion over two years and makes scores of policy changes. The GOP-controlled General Assembly delivered on...

Posted: 23 hours ago

Seventeen days past the constitutional deadline, Ohio lawmakers approved a two-year, operational budget bill that includes tax cuts, education reforms and changes to health care. The bill lays out how Ohio will spend more than $142 billion over two years and makes scores of policy changes. The GOP-controlled General Assembly delivered on...
Ohio cops, firefighters won’t get PTSD coverage in worker’s comp budget
 State lawmakers on Wednesday gave final approval to a two-year budget bill to operate the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. The version adopted Wednesday stripped out proposed policy changes, such as requiring injured workers to state their immigration status before getting benefits or recognizing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as an...

Posted: a day ago

State lawmakers on Wednesday gave final approval to a two-year budget bill to operate the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. The version adopted Wednesday stripped out proposed policy changes, such as requiring injured workers to state their immigration status before getting benefits or recognizing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as an...
Ohioans could face higher fees at the BMV
 Transaction fees at the Ohio BMV for driver’s licenses, plate renewals and more will increase to $5 from $3.50, under a provision tucked into the 3,200-page state budget bill this week. In previous years, lawmakers have granted permissive authority for the fee bump but governors haven’t invoked it. Language added to the budget...

Posted: a day ago

Transaction fees at the Ohio BMV for driver’s licenses, plate renewals and more will increase to $5 from $3.50, under a provision tucked into the 3,200-page state budget bill this week. In previous years, lawmakers have granted permissive authority for the fee bump but governors haven’t invoked it. Language added to the budget...
Ohioans would get 4% income tax cut as part of state budget deal
 Ohio lawmakers reached a deal on the two-year state budget bill that includes a $680 million net tax cut over two years, new high school graduation requirements, a one-year moratorium on state takeovers of struggling school districts and reforms to Ohio Medicaid. The six-member conference committee voted 5-1 to send the new version of the...

Posted: a day ago

Ohio lawmakers reached a deal on the two-year state budget bill that includes a $680 million net tax cut over two years, new high school graduation requirements, a one-year moratorium on state takeovers of struggling school districts and reforms to Ohio Medicaid. The six-member conference committee voted 5-1 to send the new version of the...
Private v. public school sports legal fight: Ohio Supreme Court weighs in
 The Ohio Supreme Court has weighed in on a lawsuit filed by Catholic schools in southwest Ohio challenging new rules intended to level the playing field between private and public school athletic teams. The court ruled 5-2 on Tuesday that Hamilton County Common Pleas Court is the right place for that legal challenge to be considered. Roger...

Posted: a day ago

The Ohio Supreme Court has weighed in on a lawsuit filed by Catholic schools in southwest Ohio challenging new rules intended to level the playing field between private and public school athletic teams. The court ruled 5-2 on Tuesday that Hamilton County Common Pleas Court is the right place for that legal challenge to be considered. Roger...
Ohio State reviews financial donations it received from Jeffrey Epstein
 Ohio State University is reviewing donations it received from Jeffrey Epstein and affiliated entities, including $2.5 million contributed in May 2007 just four months before Epstein was indicted on federal charges in a child sex case. “In light of recent news surrounding Jeffrey Epstein, Ohio State initiated a review of gifts and...

Posted: 2 days ago

Ohio State University is reviewing donations it received from Jeffrey Epstein and affiliated entities, including $2.5 million contributed in May 2007 just four months before Epstein was indicted on federal charges in a child sex case. “In light of recent news surrounding Jeffrey Epstein, Ohio State initiated a review of gifts and...
Tax cuts, education policy, health care key issues in state budget debate
 Lawmakers in the Ohio House got word late Monday to plan for a long day on Wednesday — the deadline for adopting a new, two-year $141 billion operating budget — signaling that legislative leaders are close to reaching a deal on more than 500 points of contention including on major issues such as education, taxes and health care...

Posted: 2 days ago

Lawmakers in the Ohio House got word late Monday to plan for a long day on Wednesday — the deadline for adopting a new, two-year $141 billion operating budget — signaling that legislative leaders are close to reaching a deal on more than 500 points of contention including on major issues such as education, taxes and health care...
Ohio’s public pension systems lost money in 2018, returns show
 Each of Ohio’s five public pension systems, which serve nearly 1.9 million workers, retirees and beneficiaries, lost money on their investment portfolios in 2018, putting more pressure on the retirement systems. The Ohio Highway Patrol Retirement System took a 4.73 percent hit, which is worse than its benchmark comparison did at a 3...

Posted: 2 days ago

Each of Ohio’s five public pension systems, which serve nearly 1.9 million workers, retirees and beneficiaries, lost money on their investment portfolios in 2018, putting more pressure on the retirement systems. The Ohio Highway Patrol Retirement System took a 4.73 percent hit, which is worse than its benchmark comparison did at a 3...
Ohio lawmakers vote to  move 2020 primary election to St. Patrick’s Day
 The Ohio House and Senate voted Wednesday to move the 2020  presidential primary to St. Patrick’s Day as part of the state budget. The issue is now up to Gov. Mike DeWine. The Republican who is Ohio’s elections chief says the state can handle having its presidential primary on St. Patrick’s Day next year if lawmakers...

Posted: 3 days ago

The Ohio House and Senate voted Wednesday to move the 2020  presidential primary to St. Patrick’s Day as part of the state budget. The issue is now up to Gov. Mike DeWine. The Republican who is Ohio’s elections chief says the state can handle having its presidential primary on St. Patrick’s Day next year if lawmakers...
Ohio chief justice looks to make major changes to criminal justice system in final years of term
 Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor used her considerable power to campaign last fall against state Issue 1, a criminal drug sentencing reform proposal, prompting critics to say she was lobbying from the bench. “It’s appropriate for the judiciary to speak out on issues that affect the administration of justice...

Posted: 5 days ago

Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor used her considerable power to campaign last fall against state Issue 1, a criminal drug sentencing reform proposal, prompting critics to say she was lobbying from the bench. “It’s appropriate for the judiciary to speak out on issues that affect the administration of justice...
Harmful algae bloom already at Grand Lake St. Marys, one predicted for Lake Erie
 Bad news for Ohioans looking to swim and play in area lakes: algae blooms are already taking hold and expected to get worse. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists on Thursday predicted that western Lake Erie will see a significant algae bloom this season and environmentalists noted that the harmful algae blooms are already...

Posted: 7 days ago

Bad news for Ohioans looking to swim and play in area lakes: algae blooms are already taking hold and expected to get worse. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists on Thursday predicted that western Lake Erie will see a significant algae bloom this season and environmentalists noted that the harmful algae blooms are already...
Trustees blast county hotel tax hike plan to help Dayton Convention Center
 Miami Twp. trustees are opposing a state change that would allow Montgomery County to increase a lodging tax, calling it an additional tax on Dayton’s suburbs. The latest version of the state budget bill includes a path for charging an additional 3 percent hotel bed tax in the county to fund renovations of the Dayton Convention Center...

Posted: 7 days ago

Miami Twp. trustees are opposing a state change that would allow Montgomery County to increase a lodging tax, calling it an additional tax on Dayton’s suburbs. The latest version of the state budget bill includes a path for charging an additional 3 percent hotel bed tax in the county to fund renovations of the Dayton Convention Center...
$45M autonomous vehicle testing center opens
 Everything about the intersection at the new autonomous vehicle testing center looks ordinary — asphalt, traffic lights, road signs, two sedans, an SUV and a bus — until a fake car wrapped in foam and canvas runs a red light and nearly gets t-boned by a speeding Tesla. The Tesla automatically brakes, swerves and avoids a collision...

Posted: 8 days ago

Everything about the intersection at the new autonomous vehicle testing center looks ordinary — asphalt, traffic lights, road signs, two sedans, an SUV and a bus — until a fake car wrapped in foam and canvas runs a red light and nearly gets t-boned by a speeding Tesla. The Tesla automatically brakes, swerves and avoids a collision...
5 things to know about latest Ohio vaccine exemption bill
 A local legislator is pushing a bill to only allow Ohio children to skip vaccinations for medical reasons. The legislation follows several other bills concerning vaccines and also comes amid a measles outbreak in 28 states. As the proposals are considered by the Ohio General Assembly, here’s five things you need to know. The new bill...

Posted: 12 days ago

A local legislator is pushing a bill to only allow Ohio children to skip vaccinations for medical reasons. The legislation follows several other bills concerning vaccines and also comes amid a measles outbreak in 28 states. As the proposals are considered by the Ohio General Assembly, here’s five things you need to know. The new bill...
Local lawmaker wants to only allow kids to skip vaccinations for medical reasons
 Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Peggy Lehner, R-Kettering, is pushing a bill to only allow Ohio children to skip vaccinations for medical reasons — a move that is expected to bring opposition from anti-vaccination groups as well as conservative lawmakers who place a premium on individual rights. Lehner and state Sen. Sandra Williams...

Posted: 12 days ago

Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Peggy Lehner, R-Kettering, is pushing a bill to only allow Ohio children to skip vaccinations for medical reasons — a move that is expected to bring opposition from anti-vaccination groups as well as conservative lawmakers who place a premium on individual rights. Lehner and state Sen. Sandra Williams...
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