Week in Review - 11/02/2018

Week in Review - 11/02/2018

EDUCATION

New faces and new leadership are coming to the State Board of Education following November's election, a further shakeup of the 19-person body that's already seen more than half its members join within the past two years. Neither of the board's two leadership positions will be held by the same person come January. President Tess Elshoff, one of Gov. John Kasich's first appointees to the board, is term-limited. Vice President Nancy Hollister, meanwhile, declined to run for re-election.


Ohio voters will consider 176 school funding issues on the Tuesday, Nov. 6 ballot, according to a database compiled by the Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA). The majority of the requests are property tax levies for school operations, but the list also includes two-dozen plus school income tax issues, as well as bond issues and combination requests for school construction, renovation, maintenance, and permanent improvements.


More Ohio school districts want court permission to become parties in a lawsuit seeking to recoup money from Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) founder William Lager and others. After Attorney General Mike DeWine filed suit against Lager, other ECOT officials, and affiliated companies, two Ohio school districts sought to intervene, arguing DeWine's political history with Lager and his record on charter school enforcement make him ill-suited to represent their interests. DeWine's office disputed that assertion, saying it's been aggressive in pursuing charter school cases. The Dayton and Logan-Hocking boards of education initially filed the request to intervene in late September. Since then, Springfield City, Lake Local, and Toledo City schools have filed, with Toledo joining late last week.


Franklin County Common Pleas Court added East Cleveland Schools' challenge to its new Academic Distress Commission to the docket this week, after a Cuyahoga County judge agreed earlier in October with the state's request to transfer the case.


ELECTIONS 2018

The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Wednesday ordered the state to continue to allow certain voters who had been purged through the state's supplemental process to cast a provisional ballot in the upcoming Nov. 6, 2018 General Election as the court considers a challenge to the notification that is sent to purged voters.


Secretary of State Jon Husted announced that as of Friday, Oct. 26, an estimated 1,211,557 absentee ballots had been requested and 737,157 had been cast statewide -- outpacing absentee voting in 2014 at this same point when more than 881,000 absentee ballots had been requested and more than 477,000 ballots had already been cast.


GENERAL ASSEMBLY/STATEHOUSE

The Senate will hold one of two sessions set for the week after the Nov. 6 election, the clerk's office said Wednesday. The Senate confirmed its voting session set for Wednesday, Nov. 14 but cancelled an if-needed session set for Tuesday, Nov. 13.


MEDICAID

Rural areas in Medicaid expansion states saw a greater reduction in their uninsured rates than metro areas, while rural areas in non-expansion states experienced a lesser reduction in their uninsured rates than metro areas, according to a new report from the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families (CCF).

The Ohio Department of Public Safety (ODPS)/Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) announced that, effective Oct. 29, HB95 (Hughes-Seitz) became law, enacting "a significant distracted driving deterrent and an effective tool for law enforcement to enforce dangerous driving." Specifically, HB95 addresses distracted driving by no longer requiring law enforcement officers to prove a driver was texting, only that a moving violation occurred and that the driver was distracted at the time.