All About Richland

Ex-House Speaker Runs For Reelection Despite Federal Charges

18 Oct , 2020  

By FARNOUSH AMIRI Report for America/Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The race in the rural Ohio district of disgraced ex-Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder now includes four write-in candidates attempting to unseat the once-powerful politician ,who has refused to step aside from his reelection bid despite facing charges in a $60 million bribery scheme.

The four challengers — of varied parties and backgrounds — are unified in their attacks on Householder’s questionable ethics and his role in passing a nuclear bailout bill at the center of the scandal that now faces renewed scrutiny at the Statehouse. Still, a Householder victory appears likely in District 72, given his strong ties in his native Perry County and an endorsement by the local Republican Party. More…

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Schools

Ohio Schools See Largest Weekly COVID Increase; Richland Has 9 New Cases

16 Oct , 2020  

By 1812Blockhouse

When updated numbers were released by the State of Ohio on Thursday, it was revealed that Ohio schools have experienced the largest weekly increase in cases of COVID-19 to date.

The state has 869 new cases, which in turn means that there have been 2,739 cases during the 2020-2021 school year.

The report reflects both new and also cumulative cases reported to schools by parents/guardians and staff. Schools are then required to report those cases to their assigned local health department which, in turns, reports the same to the Ohio Department of Health. More…

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All About Richland

The Seven Political States Of Ohio: Where Does Richland Sit?

13 Oct , 2020  

By 1812Blockhouse

Let’s pose a hypothetical. Divide the state of Ohio into seven regions of similar political views. Would you group Richland County with the Cleveland region? With Columbus? Eastern or Central Ohio?

The Washington Post did just that earlier this week in a post written by David Weigel entitled “The Seven Political States of Ohio.” The piece, the latest in The Post’s profiles of key swing states, sets out to identify how Ohio “ticks” in regard to partisan politics.

If you guessed “Central,” by the way, good for you. Our county was grouped with the entire Columbus exurban area (not including Franklin and Delaware Counties), which also extends west to the Indiana border. More…

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All About Richland

Forecasters Predict Few Close Congressional Races In Ohio In 2020

11 Oct , 2020  

By Tyler Buchanan, Ohio Capital Journal

Ohio is looking like a toss-up state in next month’s presidential election, with numerous polls showing the two candidates in a virtual tie.

The congressional races, meanwhile, are a different story. Few of the results are in doubt, the result of a carefully crafted congressional map that all but ensures uncompetitive elections throughout the state.

That may change when the districts are redrawn next year (following this year’s census) and enacted for the 2022 election.

Until then, political forecasters are predicting few close congressional races in Ohio this fall. More…

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All About Richland

Richland Stays Red

9 Oct , 2020  

By 1812Blockhouse

When numbers were released Thursday afternoon by the Ohio Department of Health, Richland County found itself in very much the same place it was last week.

Fortunately, that meant that the county did not become the first in the state to reach the highest, or “Purple” level, during the current COVID-19 pandemic. The county was one of 18 statewide at the Red level.

That said, the margin by which it missed that level was very small. More…

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All Things Business

DeWine Addresses Possible Purple Level For Richland County

7 Oct , 2020  

By 1812Blockhouse

At Tuesday’s Governor DeWine’s COVID-19 Update, the question was posed as to what actions would be taken, if any, by state officials should Richland County’s Public Health Advisory Level reach the highest, or “Purple” Level this week.

Carl Hunnell, City Editor for Richland Source, asked DeWine about possible local ramifications in light of the fact that no Ohio county has been moved to that highest level.

As we shared last week (see below), the county was moved to the “Red” Level last Thursday with additional placement on a “Watch List” because of the levels recorded for each indicator. More…

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All About Richland

Judge: Energy Company Can Continue Donations To Lawmakers

3 Oct , 2020  

By FARNOUSH AMIRI Report for America/Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An effort by Ohio’s attorney general to block an energy company and its affiliated entities from donating to lawmakers is an infringement of First Amendment rights, a judge ruled Friday.

A Franklin County judge denied Attorney General Dave Yost’s attempt to stop campaign contributions to Ohio lawmakers from First Energy while the House is considering a repeal of a $1.3 billion bailout of two nuclear plants formerly owned by the company’s subsidiary.

The lawsuit sought to freeze the assets of former House Speaker Larry Householder’s $1 million campaign fund and dissolve the dark money groups involved in the bribery scheme. More…

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All About Richland

Richland County Moves to Red Level, On State Watch List

2 Oct , 2020  

By 1812Blockhouse

The State of Ohio’s Public Health Advisory System monitoring local levels of COVID-19 moved Richland County on a “Red,” or “3” Level when statistics were released on Thursday afternoon.

The county was also put on the “Watch List,” meaning that if Richland County has six or more indicators triggered next week, it will move to the “Purple” Level, the highest in the advisory system.

Richland was one of 11 counties on the Red Level, including next-door Ashland County.

The indicators which were triggered this week include: More…

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All About Richland

Federal Judge Rejects Changes To Ohio Ballot Signature Rules

29 Sep , 2020  

By FARNOUSH AMIRI Report for America/Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The signature-matching requirement for ballots and ballot applications in Ohio are burdensome to voters, but changing the process close to the election could be “particularly damaging,” a federal judge has ruled.

U.S. District Judge Michael H. Watson sided Sunday with Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose when he ruled that LaRose’s July directive ensures integrity in the state’s election procedures.
“Some public officials have unfortunately regularly cast doubt on the security and legitimacy of voting by mail,” Watson wrote in his rejection of a preliminary injunction. “A federal court enjoining part of the State’s procedure for maintaining the security of mail-in voting in the weeks leading up to the election could further undermine public confidence in elections.”

He wrote, “Changing the rules regarding verification of signatures on ballots at this time would be particularly damaging.” More…

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All About Richland

Ohio Closing In On 2 Million Absentee Ballot Requests

24 Sep , 2020  

By Tyler Buchanan, Ohio Capital Journal

More Ohioans are embracing absentee voting this year than ever before, figures provided by Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose show.

A total of 1,784,004 absentee ballot applications had been received by the 88 county boards of elections offices as of Sept. 18, LaRose announced. That includes nearly 400,000 in just the week leading up to that date, meaning Ohio is well on pace to surpass 2 million absentee ballots requested.

The 1.78 million ballot applications received thus far in 2020 is already more than twice as many as received at the same point in 2016, according to LaRose.

Secretary of State Frank LaRose provided this chart showing that absentee ballot requests are way up (at this point in the election cycle) compared to previous years. More…

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All About Richland

State Of Ohio Talks Halloween And Coronavirus

19 Sep , 2020  

Special to 1812Blockhouse

On Friday, the State of Ohio issued guidance for Ohio communities and families related to trick or treating and other Halloween events.

The communication began as follows:

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to use caution and plan ahead for Halloween festivities. Decisions on whether to participate should be made by local communities, individuals, and parents/ guardians.

Always follow current state public health orders and rules/regulations established by your local community, and check the Ohio Public Health Advisory System to determine COVID-19 risk levels in your county before making decisions about Halloween activities. Some communities may choose to cancel Halloween events, so check with local sources before making plans. More…

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All About Richland

Ohio Judge Derides Restriction Of One Ballot Box Per County

16 Sep , 2020  

By FARNOUSH AMIRI and JULIE CARR SMYTH Report for America/Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A directive that restricted Ohio counties to one ballot drop box in November was arbitrary and unreasonable, a county judge ruled Tuesday, delivering the Republican secretary of state in the presidential battleground another in a series of blows to his policies.

The office of Secretary of State Frank LaRose said he would soon appeal the decision by Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Richard Frye, assuming the judge follows through and invalidates the secretary’s drop-box order. More…

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All About Richland

House Committee Holds Hearing On Repeal Of Bailout Law

11 Sep , 2020  

By FARNOUSH AMIRI and ANDREW WELSH-HUGGINS Report for America/Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The alleged corruption that led to passage of a nuclear plant bailout law and questions about whether the bailout was financially necessary demand the law’s immediate repeal and replacement, Democratic and Republican lawmakers testified Thursday.

Supporters of the energy policy contained within the law who worry a repeal throws the baby “out with the bath water” overlook the enormous problems with the law, said Rep. Laura Lanese. More…

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Sports

DeWine Announces Attendance Limits For Browns, Bengals Home Games

6 Sep , 2020  

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced on Saturday that the Cleveland Browns and the Cincinnati Bengals have been granted a variance to the state sports order that will allow a total of up to 6000 spectators at two home games.

The variances allow no more than 1500 spectators in each side of the stadium. Fans must use the designated entrance for their ticket. In addition, all fans must wear a mask in accordance with state regulations. Games included in the variance include: More…

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All About Richland

HB 6 Costs Go Well Beyond Claimed Harm To Public Trust

4 Sep , 2020  

Here’s what’s at stake as Ohio lawmakers debate whether and how to repeal the bailout law at the heart of an alleged $60 million conspiracy case.

By Kathiann M. Kowalski, Eye on Ohio

This article provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join our free mailing list or the mailing list for the Energy News Network as this helps us provide more public service reporting.

A bill to repeal Ohio’s nuclear bailout law has languished for more than a month so far, and signs suggest that House leadership may be angling to defer or stop such efforts as Election Day draws near. Lawmakers filed repeal bills soon after the arrest of former speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) and others in July. More…

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