Ohio House Speaker Stephens Denies Debate or Amendments on GOP Leadership or House Rules

The Ohio House approved a new rules package Tuesday despite objections from Republican lawmakers. The provisions set the guidelines for the upcoming session. House Speaker Jason Stephens (R-Kitts Hill) advanced the House rules to a vote without allowing for any debate or amendments. Republicans who supported state Representative Derek Merrin (R-Monclova) for speaker argued that Stephens excluded them from the process.

Lawmakers controversially elected Stephens as speaker earlier this month to succeed state Representative Bob Cupp (R-Lima). The choice came despite the Republican Caucus‘ previous selection in November of Merrin as the new speaker. Although the GOP caucus voted for Merrin as Speaker of the House in December, Stephen fought in collaboration with the Democrats to collect votes and garner a win.

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State Representative Derek Merrin Elected to Lead Ohio House Republican Caucus

On Tuesday, state Representative Derek Merrin (R-Monclova) was chosen by the majority of GOP members to serve as the formal chairman of the House Republican Caucus and Vice-Chair of its campaign arm, giving him authority over the group’s spending.

Usually, the majority caucus chair would be the same person chosen to lead the 99-member House, but state Representative Jason Stephens (R-Kitts Hill) was controversially elected as Speaker to succeed state Representative Bob Cupp (R-Lima). The choice came despite the Republican Caucus‘ previous selection in November of Merrin as the new Speaker. Although the GOP caucus voted for Merrin as Speaker of the House in December, Stephen fought in collaboration with the Democrats to collect votes and garner a win.

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Ohio Speaker Stephens Announces Committee Chairs and House Leadership Team

New Ohio House Speaker Jason Stephens (R-Kitts Hill) has released his list of committee chairs and vice chairs with about 50 percent of those positions going to 20 of the 22 Republicans who supported him for speaker including most of the major committees, such as finance.

Earlier this month, lawmakers elected moderate Republican Stephens as the new Speaker of the Ohio House to succeed state Representative Bob Cupp (R-Lima). The choice came despite the Republican Caucus‘ previous selection in November of state Representative Derek Merrin (R-Moncolva) as the new Speaker. Although the GOP caucus voted for Merrin as Speaker of the House in December, Stephen fought in collaboration with the Democrats to collect votes and garner a win.

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Ohio GOP Majority Discusses Next Steps Following Election of Jason Stephens for House Speaker

About a week after 22 Republicans sided with the Democrats to elect moderate State Representative Jason Stephens (R-Kitts Hill) as Speaker of the Ohio House, State Representative Derek Merrin (R-Monclova) invited his 45 supporters to a closed-door meeting Wednesday at the Ohio Statehouse to discuss their next steps.

This follows Merrin losing the vote for speaker over Stephens, who won with 22 Republicans and all 32 Democrats voting for him despite the Republican Caucus‘ previous selection in November of Merrin as the new speaker.

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Governor Mike DeWine Signs 19 Bills into Ohio Law

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed 19 bills into law on Monday, the start of the new legislative session, that lawmakers approved during the lame duck session last year.

On December 22nd, DeWine’s office received a raft of 24 bills. He signed 18 of those 24 into law.

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Ohio Lawmakers Approve Over 30 Bills During Culmination of Legislative Session

During the legislature’s overnight culminating session, Ohio lawmakers approved over 30 pieces of legislation that now head to Governor Mike DeWine’s desk for approval. If DeWine does nothing the legislation will take effect without his signature. However, he has ten days, with the exception of Sundays, following the acquisition of the bills to approve or veto the legislation if he so chooses.

On December 22nd, DeWine’s office received a raft of 24 bills. The deadline for DeWine to take action on those bills to either sign or veto is January 3rd.

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Ohio Senate Passes Legislation to Transport Injured Police Dogs by Ambulance

A Republican-backed bill that will authorize emergency medical personnel to transport injured police dogs by ambulance heads to Governor Mike DeWine’s desk for signature.

House Bill (HB) 392 sponsored by state Representatives Ron Ferguson (R-Wintersville) and Kevin Miller (R-Newark) expands the ability of a medical professional to allow for life-saving transportation of a K-9 to a veterinarian center for treatment. 

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