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Govt & Politics

From Grove City to Grandview: What poll results will mean for you




The wins of two Muslim women and an openly gay candidate made 2018 another record-breaking year in the United States midterm elections.

But how did things pan out around here?

Thanks to the hardworking reporters who tirelessly monitored the poll numbers throughout the night, we’re able to bring you the unofficial results of both local and statewide ballot issues.


Bexley voters say yes to streets levy

  • A 3.5-mill replacement levy will replace an existing 2.5-mill permanent levy that voters passed in 2002. According to the city’s estimates, the replacement levy will generate approximately $780,000 in new funding per year, and will cost property owners an estimated additional $50 per $100,000 of property valuation. –The Week News


Powell voters shoot down proposed income-tax increase

  • Would have been the city’s first income-tax increase in 27 years –The Week News
  • Would have raised the city’s income tax from 0.75 percent to 1.15 percent while increasing the tax credit from 0.25 percent to 0.5 percent for residents who live in Powell but work in and pay income taxes to another municipality –The Week News

Delaware County library, DD levies pass with ease

  • New library to be built in the Powell area –The Week News
  • Will provide various funding and a new Powell library, and a permanent operating levy for the Delaware County Board of Developmental Disabilities –The Week News
  •  1-mill levy renewal for the library is expected to raise about $5 million in 2018 –The Week News

Delaware County townships: Voters approve funds for new Genoa police station, OK other township issues

  • New building for Genoa Township Police Department at the northwest corner of Big Walnut Road and state Route 3 –This Week News
  •  0.4-mill, four-year replacement fire levy for the Harlem Township Fire Department –This Week News
  • 7.0-mill, three-year fire/EMS renewal levy for the Orange Township Fire Department –This Week News



Dublin City Schools voters overwhelmingly support bond-levy

  • Will build new schools and maintain and improve existing structures –This Week News


Gahanna’s tax issue fails in close vote

  • Would have raised the city’s income-tax rate from 1.5 to 2.5 percent –This Week News
  • Set to generate $2.7 million in additional revenue the first year of collection, $6.4 million in the second year and $9 million when fully implemented in the third year –This Week News

Grandview Heights/Marble Cliff

Grandview Heights Schools will revamp, replace buildings after Issue 6′s close victory

  • The $55.25 million facilities plan will include:
    • construction of a new grade 4-8 building on the current site of Edison Intermediate/Larson Middle School
    • substantial improvements to Grandview Heights High School
    • construction of a connector between the high school and the new 4-8 building.
  • Improvements to Stevenson Elementary School and other school buildings will be limited to safety and security and ADA compliance –This Week News

Issues roundup: Voters in Grandview reject green-space initiative, overturn council’s marijuana decision

  • Would have revised the Green Space Overlay District along Goodale Boulevard –This Week News
  • Overturned the the 4-2 vote in April that banned medical-marijuana dispensaries in the city –This Week News

Grove City

Wise: Promises made, kept helps South-Western City Schools bond issue win

  • The district will move forward with plans to construct new middle school buildings at:
    • Brookpark
    • Finland
    • Norton
    • Pleasant View middle schools
  • Make renovations at Jackson Middle School and East Franklin Elementary School –This Week News


Approved charter amendment means Hilliard will switch from “strong mayor model” to city manager

  • City Council will set a direction for the city and the city manager would be tasked with the day-to-day operations of the city –This Week News
  • The change in governance to a city manager will not begin until Jan. 1, 2020 –This Week News
  • Mayor Don Schonhardt will complete his fourth term as mayor which expires Dec. 31, 2019 –This Week News


Pickerington Public Library’s permanent operations levy headed to passage

  • Voters agreed to renew the 0.75-mill levy and approved adding an additional 0.50 mills. –This Week News
  • The 1.25-mill levy is expected to generate $1.45 million annually to help fund operations, according to Tony Howard, library director. –This Week News

Fix wins Fairfield County commissioner race

  • Jeff Fix, 53, has been on Pickerington City Council for 13 years, is the vice president of business development for RDP Foodservice, and the chairman of the county’s Republican Party. –Columbus Dispatch
  • Fix will take the seat currently held by Republican Mike Kige. –Columbus Dispatch

Upper Arlington

Upper Arlington voters OK city charter changes


Blendon Township roundup: Police levy wins easily

  • Will provide and maintain police vehicles and other equipment and covering salaries for officers, communications needs, and operational costs –This Week News
  • The Point liquor store at Otterbein, 60 Collegeview Road, was approved –This Week News


Whitehall schools bond-levy, city charter amendments approved

  • Build an addition to Rosemore Middle School –This Week News
  • Replace natural grass with artificial turf at Whitehall-Yearling High School –This Week News



Worthington Schools’ bond and levy requests approved by large margins

  • Issue 9 will be used to upgrade technology in schools, purchase new buses and help rebuild Perry and Worthingway middle schools –This Week News
  • Issue 10 will be used to pay for operating costs –This Week News
    • estimated to generate $2.9 million in fiscal 2019, $7.9 million in fiscal 2020, $12 million in fiscal 2021, $16 million in fiscal 2022 and $18 million in the years following

Residents give Worthington permission to explore electricity aggregation

  • Will allow city leaders to consider whether to become a governmental aggregator and pool the community’s purchasing power to negotiate a bulk price and potentially lower electricity bills. –This Week News

Perry Township’s renewal levy for roads and streets approved

  • Will help pay for “general construction, reconstruction, resurfacing and repair of streets, roads and bridges,” according to the board of elections. –This Week News


DeWine wins governor’s race, leading GOP repeat sweep Columbus Dispatch

Republicans sweep downticket statewide races Columbus Dispatch

  • Dave Yost won as attorney general
  • Robert Sprague as treasurer
  • Frank LaRose as secretary of state
  • Keith Faber as auditor

U.S. Senate: Democrat Sherrod Brown wins third term Columbus Dispatch

Voters reject statewide Issue 1

  • Would have reduced prison sentences for felony drug offenders and instead offer a quicker path to rehabilitation –Columbus Dispatch

Democrats Michael Donnelly, Melody Stewart win seats on Ohio Supreme Court Columbus Dispatch

Republican Troy Balderson wins U.S. House seat over Danny O’Connor Columbus Dispatch

Franklin County

Democrats win Franklin County commissioner, auditor races

  • Democratic Columbus City Councilman Michael Stinziano beat incumbent Republican Clarence Mingo to win the Franklin County auditor’s race –Columbus Dispatch
  • Democratic county Commissioner Marilyn Brown won a fourth term, defeating Republican challenger Michele Reynolds –Columbus Dispatch

Former social worker wins race for new Franklin County judgeship 

  • Monica Hawkins wins a seat as a magistrate in Franklin County Probate Court –Columbus Dispatch

Democrat defeats state Rep. Jim Hughes in Franklin County judicial race

  • Democrat Karen Phipps beats Republican Jim Hughes –Columbus Dispatch
  • Jaiza Page, a Democratic member of Columbus City Council, ahead of Republican Bill Creedon –Columbus Dispatch
  • Kim Brown, a Democrat completing her first term on the court, beats Republican Michael Cassone –Columbus Dispatch
  • Democrat Stephen L. McIntosh, won without opposition –Columbus Dispatch

Metro Parks levy up big in early voting; would add parks, trails

  • Will allow the district to buy more land and build parks while creating more trails and programs to attract visitors. –Columbus Dispatch
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Govt & Politics

OP-ED: Heartbeat Bill will likely affect 11yo Ohio rape victim

Caitlin Horwatt



The passage of Ohio’s recent “heartbeat bill,” signed by Governor DeWine, marks a massive and distressing win in the conservative quest to outright ban abortion. All parties supporting the bill—from DeWine to legislators and lobbyists—are well aware that the action will be blocked by courts as they uphold Roe v. Wade, which protects the right to abortion until 24 weeks gestation. We should be frightened as we explore whether their big picture goal is to get Roe v. Wade overturned by the decidedly conservative Court.

By banning abortion after a heartbeat is detected, the law prohibits abortion as early as eight weeks, well before many women know they are pregnant. Add in the already mandatory twenty-four hour waiting period between first appointment and procedure, and the likelihood of legal abortion for even a pregnancy detected early seems slim. The law is an blatant attempt to ban women’s right to choose.

The Guttmacher Institute found that ​1 in 4 women​ has had an abortion before age 45. The Pew Research Center found that ​58% of Americans support legal abortion ​in all or most cases, with polarizing views against abortion coming mostly from Republican and religious Americans. These statistics fail to depict, though, how traumatic the impact can be for women forced to carry a child to term when she does not have the means or support to do so. The law is meant to protect the fetus at a term that is far earlier than the 22 to 24 weeks at which it is viable, all at the cost of the mother.


The bill notably does not give exceptions for cases of rape and incest, only allowing exceptions for medical necessity to save the mother’s life. This means an ​11 year-old rape victim from Massillon​ will likely have to carry her rapist’s baby to term.

Heartbeat bills do not ban abortion; they ban legal abortion. I think of a sign I saw during the 2017 Women’s March: a metal coat hanger with the words “WE WON’T GO BACK” scrawled below. The passage of this recent law achingly raises questions of whether or not we will go back.

Women who now find themselves pregnant could have their lives forever changed. Even if they choose to surrender the baby after birth, the cost of a pregnancy is astronomical and healthcare is far from a certainty in this country. If the pregnancy was caused by rape, the potential for trauma only escalates. Women will have few places to turn, with the most vulnerable unable to seek safe healthcare and the potential high for maternal deaths as part of botched abortions.

The ACLU and other organizations are already moving to challenge the ban in court. I can’t shake the looming feeling that these challenges will only play into the hands of those anti-abortion supporters, and that we may be entering the most important fight of our generation in this fight for a woman’s right to choose.

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Govt & Politics

OP-ED: ‘Red flag’ is far cry from where Ohio gun law should be

Joanne Strasser



Last weekend, a man entered a synagogue in Poway, California armed with a rifle. The Washington Post reports that prior to him entering the place of worship, the accused shooter wrote a 7-page letter about his hatred for Jewish people. He believed killing them would “glorify God.” Below is an op-ed from one Columbus mother who believes Ohio should be taking a stronger stance against guns following of the Poway tragedy.

Even in light of this past weekend’s synagogue shooting, DeWine is still unwilling to change Ohio’s gun laws. He is, however, advocating for Ohio to pass a red flag law, which would allow law enforcement to seize guns from individuals deemed a societal risk.

This isn’t the first time the red flag law was floated in the Ohio Legislature.  In the wake of last year’s Parkland High School shooting in Florida, former Gov. Kasich backed the proposed law, which ultimately failed to gain support.

Opposition to the legislation stems from Republican lawmakers’ belief that it infringes on the constitution rights to bear arms and proper due process of law. However, 14 other states have already implemented the red flag law.


Moms Demand Action, a national gun control organization, notes that 42% of attackers exhibit warning signs before shootings occur. And although this legislation would only be a small step in the right direction, it could help save lives.

But ultimately, statistics don’t matter to politicians, who are dependent on dollars from the gun lobby.  And until our elected officials decide that Ohioans‘ safety comes first, any measure, regardless of how small and sensible, will fail. 

Ohio Republicans need to take a long hard look at their agenda and ask themselves if it truly serves our needs. Which is more important: our children feeling safe at school or campaign contributions? 

The red flag law is a common-sense measure, and while it’s a far cry from where Ohio gun restriction needs to be, it’s certainly a start.

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Govt & Politics

Daily double: New legislation calls for huge minimum wage hike




If new legislation passes, Ohio’s minimum wage could nearly double in the next several years. Two Democratic senators are working to increase hourly pay from $8.55 to $15.

State Senators Cecil Thomas (D-Cincinnati) and Hearcel Craig (D-Columbus) introduced the legislation Wednesday, reports 10TV.


The new legislation stipulates a $12 minimum per hour beginning in January 2020 and a $1 yearly increase until 2023 to keep up with inflation.

“We have an obligation to make life better for the people in our state and that includes providing living wages,” said Sen. Thomas, per 10TV. “This increase to the minimum wage will help workers and their families have a better life. And when people have more money, it also benefits the local economy from increased spending in the community.”

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