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As Black Maternal Health Week 2019 comes to a close, House Democratic Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) and state Rep. Janine Boyd (D-Cleveland Heights) today announced the initial meeting of the Ohio Black Maternal Health Caucus, the state’s first-ever group of state lawmakers dedicated to improving black maternal health across the state. Members will meet in Columbus early next month to discuss the group’s mission and shared vision to strengthen Ohio women, children, families and communities.

 
 
Plan to benefit working people, families and small businesses
April 11, 2019

House Democrats today announced a series of proposals to modernize Ohio’s tax system to benefit working people, families and small businesses. The comprehensive plan would put more than $400 million back in the pockets of working people, seniors and families in each of the next two years, a move that Democrats say will bring growth and investment to Ohio.

 
 

State Reps. Janine R. Boyd (D-Cleveland Heights) and Stephanie Howse (D-Cleveland) today announced the creation of Ohio’s first ever Black Maternal Health Caucus, a group of state lawmakers dedicated to improve black maternal health outcomes across the state.

 
 
Most extreme abortion ban in the nation clears Ohio House
April 10, 2019

COLUMBUS—House Democrats today voted against Senate Bill (SB) 23, a GOP-backed near-total abortion ban that would prohibit abortions in Ohio long before most women know they are pregnant. SB 23 would become the most extreme abortion ban in the country if signed into law.

 
 

State Rep. and Ohio Legislative Black Caucus (OLBC) President Stephanie Howse (D-Cleveland) today released the following statement looking to the future and reflecting on the 2019 OLBC Legislative Day of Action held today at the Statehouse:

“For too many in our communities, Ohio’s promise of opportunity is fading. The annual OLBC Day of Action empowers our community to use their voices to hold their elected officials accountable and demand change on the issues that keep working people and families from getting ahead.

 
 

State Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus) today released the following statement in response to the report on clean energy jobs in the Midwest released Tuesday by the Clean Energy Trust and Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2):

“We are the first generation to understand the human causes of climate change—and the last generation to be able to stop it. The results of this report are clear: clean energy powers Ohio’s economy, creates good paying jobs and contributes to a cleaner environment and happier, healthier families and communities.

 
 
Near-total abortion ban abandons maternal health, provides no exceptions for rape and incest
April 9, 2019

State Rep. Janine R. Boyd (D-Cleveland Heights), the highest ranking Democrat on the House Health Committee, issued the following statement after GOP lawmakers rejected Democratic efforts to include protections for Ohio women in Senate Bill (SB) 23, a bill that would implement a near-total ban on abortion in Ohio.

“I submit to citizens that this bill is not about ‘life.’ It proposes that the state will force nearly all pregnant women to carry their pregnancies to term, regardless of how that might threaten her health and her economic security, and it erodes the fundamental freedom we all have as Americans to make important medical and health decisions.” 

 
 
Lawmaker seeks more hearings and open committee process
April 4, 2019

State Rep. Janine R. Boyd (D-Cleveland Heights), Ranking Member of the House Health Committee, sent a letter Wednesday to the committee chairman demanding more hearings on Senate Bill (SB) 23, the six-week abortion ban, which was rushed through committee this week during the busiest part of the state budget season. Boyd also seeks explanations of last-minute changes in the latest version of the bill. She issued the following statement: 

 
 
Defrays county costs of extraordinary capital cases
April 3, 2019
Rep. Rogers' and Wilkins' bipartisan bill passes House

State Reps. John Rogers (D-Mentor-on-the-Lake) and Shane Wilkin (R-Piketon) announced the House passage of House Bill 85 today, which creates a methodology for Ohio counties to petition the State for additional funding in capital cases which exceed a threshold that might otherwise place the county in financial distress, if not fiscal ruin. 

Described by Rep. Rogers and Rep. Wilkin as one of Ohio’s largest homicide investigations, the costs associated with prosecuting the recent capital crimes in Pike County could exceed $5 million. Pike County, with a annual budget of less than $10 million, is nevertheless mandated to enforce Ohio law, pursue justice on behalf of the State, and hold those responsible to account.   

“Ohio is charged with a great responsibility – to seek justice, to protect the rights of its citizens, and protect our communities, all the while ensuring that those who commit horrendous acts of violence, including murder, are held accountable,” Rogers said.

 
 
Says legislation threatens public safety, home rule for local communities
April 3, 2019

House Assistant Minority Whip and state Rep. Paula Hicks-Hudson (D-Toledo) today sent a letter to Republican Governor Mike DeWine urging him to veto provisions in House Bill (HB) 62, the state’s two-year transportation budget, that would penalize cities using traffic safety cameras.