The Commerce and Labor Committee
(formerly, the Insurance, Commerce and Labor Committee) is a standing committee
of the Ohio State Senate
According to the committee's website, "The Senate Insurance, Commerce and Labor Committee focuses on bills, policies and issues that directly impact the insurance industry, commerce and the labor market. The committee conducts public hearings on the budgets of the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation and the Ohio Industrial Commission. In addition, the committee makes recommendations to the full Senate for the advice and consent of governor's appointments to the boards and commissions, which deal with insurance, commerce or labor-related subjects."
- See also: Ohio State Senate Bill 5 (2011) and Ohio Senate Bill 5 Veto Referendum (2011)
Shannon Jones introduced Senate Bill 5 on February 8 to the Senate Insurance, Commerce and Labor Committee. The legislation is designed to give state and local governments more control over finances during fiscal crises, according to Jones. Several protests have taken place throughout Ohio, as unions fear that the legislation will effectively kill collective bargaining rights of state workers. Thousands were at a protest on February 22, 2011 outside of the statehouse building in Columbus. On February 23, Republicans legislators announced that the bill would be modified to permit state employee unions to collectively bargain over wages. The bill will also permit police and firefighters to bargain for safety equipment.
On March 2, the bill passed the Ohio State Senate by a margin of 17-16, and on March 30, the bill passed the house by a margin of 53-44. The house-modified bill was then referred back the senate. On March 31, 2011, the Ohio State Senate voted to approve house changes to Senate Bill 5 by a margin of 17-16. The bill was signed into law that night by Governor Kasich.Kasich argues the bill is not meant to destroy unions, but rather is aimed at restoring "balance to the system."
As of July 21, opponents have collected enough signatures to place a repeal of the legislation on the November 8 statewide ballot. After the measure was certified, state officials such as the Ohio Governor offered to negotiate with repeal supporters regarding Senate Bill 5. However, Fazekas of the We Are Ohio coalition, stated: “While we thank the governor, Senate president and Speaker of the House for reaching out and recognizing that the bill is flawed, we are asking for a fresh start. That fresh start must begin with a full repeal of Senate Bill 5.”
March 2011 Change
On March 2, 2011, Bill Seitz (R) was removed the committee. Seitz opposed Senate Bill S 5, which overhauls state's collective bargaining rights. Kevin Bacon made the switch.
Pre-March 2011 Change
- ↑ Insurance, Commerce and Labor Committee
- ↑ New York Times "Ohio and Wisconsin Brace for Protests Over Public Workers," February 22, 2011
- ↑ New York Times "Thousands gather to protest bill in Ohio," February 22, 2011
- ↑ Columbus Dispatch, "Tension builds over collective-bargaining bill in Ohio Senate," February 28, 2011
- ↑ Cincinnati, "Ohio House approves Senate Bill 5," March 30, 2011
- ↑ CNN, "Bill restricting public-sector unions passes in Ohio," March 31, 2011
- ↑ Columbus Dispatch, "Kasich signs SB5, but fight isn't over," April 1, 2011
- ↑ CNN "Ohio governor says collective bargaining bill not meant to kill unions," February 21, 2011
- ↑ Toledo Blade, "Coalition rejects Kasich’s offer for meeting over SB 5", August 18, 2011
- ↑ Vindy.com, "Union leaders: We will not negotiate on SB 5 repeal", August 19, 2011
- ↑ Cleveland Plain Dealer "Ohio Senate Republicans remove committee member to ensure approval of collective bargaining bill," March 2, 2011