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Sponsors state Reps. David Leland (D-Columbus) and Thomas West (D-Canton) today announced the Senate passage of their legislation designating October 7 as “Moses Fleetwood Walker Day” in the state of Ohio to honor the nation’s first professional African American baseball player.

“Honoring Moses ‘Fleetwood’ Walker is more than just honoring a baseball player, because anytime we recognize and celebrate the fight for equality in our society, it moves the whole country forward,” said Leland, who also serves on the board of trustees for the Columbus Clippers, the Cleveland Indians’ Triple A farm team. 

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Wed, Sep 20, 2017

A new, bipartisan effort to end Ohio’s Marriage Penalty – extra income taxes on married couples who file jointly in Ohio – will get attention from the House Ways and Means Committee tomorrow, Tuesday, Sept. 19 at 9:00 a.m. in Room 121 of the Statehouse.

Because Ohio is the only state in the Midwest to require married couples to file state tax returns mirroring their federal filing status, married couples in Ohio pay at least an extra $159 per year according to the Ohio Department of Taxation. State Reps. David Leland (D-Columbus) and John Becker (R-Union Township) are hoping to change that by allowing married people in the Buckeye State to choose the state filing status that suits them best.

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Mon, Sep 18, 2017
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State Reps. John Becker (R-Union Township) and David Leland (D-Columbus) today introduced House Bill 333 to eliminate Ohio’s marriage penalty tax by allowing married couples to file separately on their state tax returns. A married couple with each person working full time and earning minimum wage pays an Ohio Marriage Penalty of $159, according to the Ohio Department of Taxation.

“Ohioans shouldn’t be forced to pay higher taxes just because they get married,” said Leland, who introduced the same bill in 1983.* “This bipartisan legislation will eliminate the Ohio marriage penalty and allow over two-and-a-half-million Ohioans to keep more of their hard-earned dollars.”

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Thu, Aug 31, 2017

State Rep. David J. Leland (D-Columbus) today announced he is introducing legislation pushing Ohio lawmakers to officially denounce white nationalists and neo-Nazis and recognize white supremacist groups as terrorist organizations in Ohio.

“We have a responsibility as keepers of the public trust to stand against violent hate, bigotry and racism in our society and to fight back against domestic terrorism that seeks to threaten our very way of life as Americans,” said Leland. “It’s on us as elected officials to ensure tyranny and oppression have no place in a free and democratic society.”

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Thu, Aug 17, 2017

State Reps. Michele Lepore-Hagan (D-Youngstown) and David Leland (D-Columbus) today introduced legislation urging fellow Ohio House members to affirm the state’s commitment to the international Paris Agreement. The lawmakers’ action follows recent news out of Washington that the United States will withdraw from the historic climate change pact, joining Syria and Nicaragua as the only nations not participating.  

“The Paris Agreement delivers a powerful signal that the nations of the world are committed to curbing emissions and accelerating the transition to a low-carbon, cleaner energy economy,” said Leland. “In addition, the agreement is a clarion call for all to embrace the biggest job creating opportunity of this century.” 

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Mon, Jul 24, 2017

State Reps. Michele Lepore-Hagan (D-Youngstown) and David Leland (D-Columbus) today introduced legislation urging fellow Ohio House members to affirm the state’s commitment to the international Paris Agreement. The lawmakers’ action follows recent news out of Washington that the United States will withdraw from the historic climate change pact, joining Syria and Nicaragua as the only nations not participating. 

“Instead of taking the global back seat on charting a sustainable and secure energy future, Ohio and our nation should be a driving force for the good-paying jobs and economic growth that come with advanced energy development and manufacturing,” said Lepore-Hagan. “We can’t afford to let other nations lead while we fall behind and miss out on the good jobs, growth and national security that come from common sense renewable energy policy.”

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Mon, Jul 24, 2017

State Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus) recently joined Jewish lawmakers from across the country in urging President Donald Trump to appoint and adequately fund a Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat anti-Semitism. The U.S. State Department position, created in 2004 with bipartisan congressional support, is currently vacant following the transition in presidential administrations. 

Recent news reports indicated that the State Department’s anti-Semitism office would be entirely unstaffed as of July 1, 2017. 

“At a time when we have witnessed a rise in anti-Semitism both abroad and even here at home, I believe it is critical that the United States take the lead in combatting insidious acts of prejudice and hate,” said Leland. “Filling this important State Department post will send a clear message to the international community that the United States believes anti-Semitism and other acts of discrimination cannot and will not be tolerated.” 

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Fri, Jul 14, 2017
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State Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus) will offer testimony during Education and Career Readiness Committee TODAY, Tuesday, June 20 at 3:00 p.m. in the Statehouse on House Bill (HB) 220, legislation to shine a light on how charter schools spend taxpayer dollars. The Columbus lawmaker’s testimony follows the Columbus Dispatch’s recent editorial reporting of nearly $200 million tax dollars that ECOT, the state’s largest online charter school, spent on management fees to companies owned by its founder.

“Just as Ohio parents want to know that their children are receiving the highest quality possible education in school, Ohio taxpayers deserve to know how their hard-earned dollars are being used,” said Leland. “Our Constitutional mandate to create a “thorough” and “efficient” public school system demands nothing less.”

WHO:              State Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus)

WHAT:            Education and Career Readiness Committee

Sponsor testimony for HB 220

WHEN:            TODAY, Tuesday, June 20 at 3:00 p.m.

WHERE:          Ohio Statehouse, Room 121

 

 

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Tue, Jun 20, 2017

State Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus) today introduced legislation to improve charter school transparency and accountability by permitting the state auditor to track all taxpayer money received by the private, for-profit schools. The proposed legislation follows a state ruling against ECOT, Ohio’s largest, failing online charter school, for misappropriating at least $60 million in taxpayer funds by falsely inflating student attendance.

“Ohio taxpayers deserve a full and complete accounting for every one of their hard-earned dollars invested in education, whether the money is directed to public school districts or charter schools,” said Leland. “Charter schools and their management companies shouldn’t be able to hide their spending of public funds behind closed doors. This bill will close a loophole in state law and help ensure charter schools in Ohio operate in a transparent, accountable manner.”

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Fri, May 12, 2017

Before new state economic indicators come out Thursday, the Ohio House today passed a version of the state’s two-year budget, House Bill (HB) 49, that remains hundreds of millions of dollars out of balance, if not more. The vote comes a little more than two weeks after Gov. Kasich and GOP legislative leaders announced they would need to cut close to $1 billion from the bill to maintain a stable, balanced budget. Still, the final version of House Bill 49 approved largely along party lines today fell over $400 million short of being a balanced budget bill by that standard. 

Democratic members argued that passing an unbalanced budget not only violated their constitutional oath, but was fiscally irresponsible and would jeopardize Ohio’s already weak economy.

“This budget violates the oath we took to uphold the Ohio Constitution – and because it’s not balanced – all budget items are at risk,” said state Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus). “It is a fantasy budget.” 

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Tue, May 2, 2017