House Democratic lawmakers today voted against Substitute Senate Bill 331, legislation that lets the state grab more power from local communities by overriding local bans on unlicensed puppy mill sales to pet stores and prohibiting local communities from taking up ballot issues on policies like minimum wage and paid family leave.
“Local communities are best positioned to set their own priorities and shape their future through local decision-making and consensus.” –State Rep. Michele Lepore-Hagan (D-Youngstown)
The last-minute power grab comes as Toledo and Grove City pursue local ordinances banning puppy mill sales, and Cleveland and other metropolitan areas study local ordinances to raise wages and benefits within city limits.
Here is what other House Democratic Lawmakers are saying:
“As Americans and Ohioans, we hold close the value and right of self-determination. A one-size-fits-all approach from the state just doesn’t work for our local communities.” –House Democratic Leader Fred Strahorn (D-Dayton)
“Columbus continues to centralize power when local communities take action to benefit their citizens, but when the state is faced with tough decisions, like funding our schools and fighting heroin, the state punts to locals.” –State Rep. Denise Driehaus (D-Clifton)
“As wages sink across Ohio we are practicing deny-side economics in this legislature,” –State Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid)
“This top-down, one-size-fits-all approach coming from the Statehouse tramples Ohio values of self-determination and self-government.” –State Rep. Kevin Boyce (D-Columbus)
“Over 100 years after the ink dried on the home rule guarantee of the Ohio constitution, state lawmakers in the majority are threatening to upend the enduring principle of self-government enshrined in our state’s founding document. Locally elected officials and leaders on the ground in their communities have the best perspective on what’s important to their neighbors and constituents, not professional politicians in Columbus.” –State Rep. Greta Johnson (D-Akron)
“By defunding local communities and taking away power from locally elected officials, the state is making it that much more important for voters to pay attention to who their state legislators are and how they vote.” –State Rep. Mike O’Brien (D-Warren)