Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Senator Joe Schiavoni - E-Newsletter Available

State Senator Joe Schiavoni's December 2010 E-Newsletter is available online to view and download.

To download, a free copy of Adobe Reader is required. Click here to get Adobe Reader.

Schiavoni - Dec 2010 ENews

Monday, December 20, 2010

Ohio Senate Should Confirm Appointments Based on Qualifications Not Partisan Politics

Columbus – Senate Democratic Leader Capri S. Cafaro (D-Hubbard) issued the following statement today urging the Ohio Senate to confirm Governor Ted Strickland’s appointments when the Senate convenes on Tuesday, December 21st:

“Many of Governor Ted Strickland’s pending appointments to boards and commissions have been languishing for months in the Ohio Senate. Now, in the waning days of the 128th General Assembly, it appears likely that some of these highly qualified appointees will be rejected because the Governor-elect wants the power to make appointments even before taking the oath of office.

“The Senate confirmed nearly 200 appointments made by outgoing Governor Bob Taft during lame duck session in 2006 without regard to the wishes of then Governor-elect Ted Strickland. The last minute confirmations included key appointments to the State Board of Education and the Third Frontier Commission.

“I am deeply troubled that the Ohio Senate is prepared to reject Ohioans who have served this state with honor and distinction. We must do all we can to maintain public trust through an appointment process that is based on qualifications and experience, not partisan politics and chicanery.”

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Senator Turner Concerned by Apparent Politicizing of Confirmation Process

Columbus –State Senator Nina Turner (D-Cleveland) expressed great disappointment today that a Republican Senator has acknowledged campaign politics were involved in the Senate’s rejection of Cathy Collins-Taylor as Director of the Ohio Department of Public Safety. Last May the Senate voted not to confirm Collins-Taylor after an unfavorable recommendation from the Judiciary-Criminal Justice Committee. All the members of the Senate Democratic Caucus supported her confirmation.

The chairman of the Criminal Justice Committee, Senator Tim Grendell (R-Chesterland), said in a letter this week that he “…worked hard to facilitate John Kasich’s election,” and “…[the investigation] had a detrimental impact on Governor Strickland’s re-election effort.” The hearings were supposed to gather information about a drug sting operation at the Governor’s mansion but turned into an attack on the administration and on Collins-Taylor’s honesty and integrity.

“It’s scary to think someone’s outstanding law enforcement career would be destroyed for purely political reasons,” said Senator Nina Turner (D-Cleveland), the ranking member of the Criminal Justice Committee. “We said all along that Cathy Collins-Taylor did not get a fair hearing and this confirms it. This entire episode was shameful and not in the best interest of the people of Ohio. ”

Witnesses who would have supported Collins-Taylor were never called to testify and very little time was spent discussing her qualifications for the job. The following statement is part of an official journal protest filed by Senate Democrats on May 25, 2010 (page 2739):

“…we want to protest what we perceive as the politicizing of the confirmation process. We believe that the public perception will be that the Ohio Senate has wasted time and taxpayer dollars at the tail end of this Great Recession to focus on what resembles to be a political smear campaign…”

“As the Senate prepares to hold more confirmation votes on Governor Strickland’s latest appointments, it is my hope that no more highly qualified candidates are rejected for political reasons,” said Senator Turner. “Ohioans are tired of political maneuvering. It is time for us to cease and desist and focus on dealing with the challenges our state faces.”

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Ohio Senate Passes Senator Fedor’s Human Trafficking Legislation

Senate Bill 235 goes to House of Representatives

Columbus – State Senator Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo) is pleased to announce that the Ohio Senate unanimously passed Senate Bill 235 today. The bill, jointly sponsored by Senators Fedor and Tim Grendell (R-Chesterland), makes Human Trafficking a stand-alone felony in Ohio.

“Today’s victory is the result of five years of work,” Senator Fedor said. “In 2005, we were first awakened to the width and breadth of human trafficking in Ohio when more than 30 minors from Toledo were caught in a prostitution ring.

“For years, we as legislators have worked with key people from across the State to gather data, identify sources of the problem and to draft legislation to combat it.”

Milestones in Senator Fedor’s fight against Human Trafficking:
  • During the 127th General Assembly, Senator Fedor introduced Senate Bill 205, increasing the penalty for crimes that include trafficking in persons. Senate Bill 205 was amended into House Bill 280, which was signed into law by Governor Ted Strickland in January, 2009

  • The Trafficking in Persons Study Commission was created through the 2009 legislation described above.

  • In November, 2010, over one hundred supporters of Senate Bill 235 gathered at the Ohio Statehouse for Senator Fedor’s Human Trafficking Advocacy Day. Advocates visited the offices of Ohio Legislators urging their support for the bill.
In Senate session today, advocates of Senate Bill 235 wore buttons designed by Senator Fedor’s staff to show their support for the legislation.

“Freedom from slavery is a fundamental human right, recognized worldwide,” Alex Kreidenweis, Chairman of the Ohio Abolitionist Coalition, said today after session. “Unfortunately, it is a human right that is violated across the world, and Ohio is no exception. Attaining a slave-free world requires intelligent policy action like Senate Bill 235. Forty-four other states have enacted strong laws concerning human trafficking, and now Ohio has done the same.”

On January 11, 2011, Senator Teresa Fedor will hold a Human Trafficking Awareness Day at the Ohio Statehouse. Details of the event will be released by her office at a later date.

“The struggle is not yet over,” Senator Fedor said. “There is much left to do in the fight against Human Trafficking.”

*Watch video of Senator Fedor speaking to SB 235 here:


The Caucus

Minority Leader Eric H. Kearney - Cincinnati - 9th District
Assistant Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni - Canfield - 33rd District
Minority Whip Nina Turner - Cleveland - 25th District
Assistant Minority Whip Edna Brown - Toledo - 11th District
Senator Tom Sawyer - Akron - 28th District
Senator Charleta B. Tavares - Columbus - 15th District
Senator Shirley Smith - Cleveland - 21st District
Senator Michael J. Skindell - Cleveland - 23rd District
Senator Lou Gentile - Steubenville - 30th District
Senator Capri S. Cafaro - Hubbard - 32nd District

This page may operate better if you download a free copy of Adobe Flash Player, found here.