Larry Obhof

The nativity display at Ohio Statehouse
Jo Ingles

A small nativity, complete with a figure representing newborn Jesus, is on display at the Ohio Statehouse right now. And the private group and lawmakers who want it there say it’s perfectly constitutional.

One of the Ohio House’s top agenda items known as priority bills was passed in the Senate on Wednesday. But Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) said he’s still frustrated with the pace of legislation moving from his chamber through to the other one.

House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) with Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina)
Andy Chow

Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) is throwing shots at the Ohio Senate, claiming they're taking too much time to pass bills that are priority issues in the House. Householder says his fellow Republicans in the Senate need to pick up the pace on issues that could help Ohioans.

Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford), Gov. Mike DeWine, Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) speak at a news conference in April 2019.
Andy Chow

It's been more than six weeks since Gov. Mike DeWine unveiled a 17-point approach to reducing gun violence, which included expanded background checks and a version of the red flag confiscation law. But so far lawmakers have yet to see those specific plans in the form of proposed legislation. 

Ohio Statehouse
Statehouse News Bureau

Finally, Ohio has a new two-year operating budget. Gov. Mike DeWine signed it into law this morning.

Inside the Perry Nuclear Power Plant in Perry, OH
Dan Konik

FirstEnergy Solutions says it will continue its plans to deactivate and decommission Ohio's two nuclear power plants since lawmakers were not able to pass a bail out measure before the June 30 deadline. However, the energy company says there’s still time to reverse course.

Ohio House approves temporary budget as both chamber miss June 30 budget deadline.
Andy Chow

Ohio lawmakers failed to reach a state budget agreement by the midnight deadline, missing the mark for a spending deal for the new two-year cycle. Because the House and Senate couldn’t reach a compromise, both chambers passed a temporary budget extension to keep the government running. 

Andy Chow

With hours to go before the deadline for a two-year operating budget to be signed, the Ohio Senate approved a deal that would extend it for 17 days.

Birthright is among the pregnancy resource centers operating in Ohio.
Karen Kasler

Among the changes the Senate made to the House version of the budget was a $5 million boost to a program that funds centers that counsel pregnant women against abortion.

State lawmakers have been advised by their economic researchers to cut the spending in Gov. Mike DeWine’s budget. And they may try to add something into the House version of the budget set to be released on Wednesday that DeWine deliberately left out.

The so-called "Heartbeat Bill", before it was signed by Gov. Mike DeWine.
Dan Konik

It’s taken eight years and many hours of testimony, but the so-called “Heartbeat Bill” has been signed into law. Gov. Mike DeWine delivered on his campaign promise to sign the controversial legislation that bans abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detected. But where does it go from here?

Supporters of the "Heartbeat Bill" chanted outside the Ohio House chamber before the vote.
Karen Kasler

For the third time, a bill that bans abortion from the point a fetal heartbeat is detected has passed the Ohio House and Senate.  But this time will likely be the last for what's been called the "Heartbeat Bill", because Gov. Mike DeWine says he’ll sign it into law. 

Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina, left) stands alongside Gov. Mike DeWine during DeWine's first State of the State speech in March. House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) is on DeWine's right.
Statehouse News Bureau

The deadline for a new state transportation budget with a gas tax hike came and went at midnight – without a new spending plan being signed. Lawmakers are coming back to the Statehouse this week hoping to work it out.

As lawmakers are working out differences in their transportation budgets, there’s one thing in the Senate’s version that doesn’t seem to have anything to do with transportation – a change in a tax credit designed for low-income people. But it’s being tied to the increase in the gas tax.

Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof
Jo Ingles

The president of the Ohio Senate doesn’t think lawmakers infringed on cities’ rights with legislation that supersedes local gun ordinances and gives citizens the right to challenge those local laws in court. 

Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) spoke to a gathering of the County Commissioners' Association of Ohio in December 2018.
Karen Kasler

Gov. Mike DeWine’s proposed 18-cent hike in the gas tax is still before state lawmakers. They would have to approve it as part of the transportation budget, which must be signed into law by March 31.

Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) appears on "The State of Ohio" this weekend.
Daniel Konik

State lawmakers are now considering Gov. Mike DeWine’s 18-cent gas tax increase, to plug a hole of more than a billion dollars in the Department of Transportation’s budget. But one legislative leader says they’re also looking for ways to cut taxes – again.

Andy Chow

The so-called Heartbeat Bill abortion ban is on its fifth try through the legislature, after being passed and vetoed in the lame duck session.

Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina)
Andy Chow

The leader of the Ohio Senate says the so-called Heartbeat Bill, which would ban abortion when a fetal heartbeat is detected, is one of his chamber’s priorities, but that it’s not at the top of the list. 

Andy Chow

Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) said he's open to discussing two high-profile gun laws when the General Assembly returns next year, the "Stand Your Ground" bill and the "red flag law." These two issues caused a rift among members of the House and Senate, along with Gov. John Kasich.

Gov. John Kasich (left), Speaker Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell) and Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) all spoke at the unveiling of the permanent display of Ohio's two constitutions at the Statehouse in November. But they did not appear together.
Karen Kasler

As state lawmakers race toward the end of this lame duck legislative session, they’ve been considering two bills that Gov. John Kasich opposes – the six-week “Heartbeat Bill” abortion ban and the “Stand Your Ground” self-defense bill.  And if he vetoes them as promised, lawmakers would have to come back to vote on them again during the holiday break.

Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) speaks at the winter gathering of the County Commissioners Association of Ohio and the County Engineers Association of Ohio.
Karen Kasler

The Ohio House and Senate are preparing for a busy week of legislating in Columbus with a couple of controversial measures up for debate.

Statehouse News Bureau

This week lawmakers are returning for a lame duck session, with hearings set on a so-called right to work bill and a Republican-backed bill on free speech on college campuses.  Republican legislative leaders are talking about other priorities but suggesting action on controversial measures is possible.

Jo Ingles

Leaders of the Ohio Legislature say it’s time to look at changing the methods citizens groups are using to try to change the state’s constitution. 

Karen Kasler

The Republican leader of the Ohio Senate says while he and many others didn’t support Issue 1, the criminal sentencing and drug treatment reform plan that failed Tuesday. But he suggests there is a will to make the issue a top priority in the newly elected Senate next year. 

Andy Chow

Republican leaders in the Ohio House and Senate are criticizing Democrat Rich Cordray and his campaign for governor. GOP lawmakers who control the Legislature say Cordray is making expensive promises.

Jo Ingles

The Republican leader of the state Senate says he’s confident that new central Ohio Congressman Troy Balderson will win in November, even as he’s announcing that Balderson’s replacement in the Senate won’t be picked until after the election.

Statehouse News Bureau

Gov. John Kasich has been urging lawmakers to pass a bill that would put a red flag law in place to prevent people deemed dangerous by a court from buying guns. It would also ban bump stock attachments for guns and make other reforms. But it appears it won’t be easy to get it passed.

Jo Ingles

The Republican leader of Ohio’s Senate says the short term goals of his caucus have been accomplished. But some lawmakers disagree.

Karen Kasler

Gov. John Kasich has put out a package of gun law changes he hopes to get through the Republican-dominated state legislature. This comes after several weeks of talking about a private group he convened to discuss gun laws, and after a very public pivot on gun regulations after the Florida high school shooting on Valentine’s Day.

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