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Ohio Ballot Issue 1 (2007)

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Not on Ballot
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This measure did not
appear on a ballot.

Ohio Ballot Issue 1, also known as the adult entertainment referendum, was an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to use the veto referendum process to try to overturn a law passed by the Ohio State Legislature in early 2007.

The law that opponents sought to overturn was Ohio Senate Bill 16, the so-called "Stripper Law." The law was set to go into effect on September 4, 2007 when opponents starting collecting signatures on petitions to place the law on the November 2007 ballot for a statewide vote.

Senate Bill 16 would have required most adult businesses to close their doors between midnight and 6 a.m., and would have banned all contact between staff and customers by imposing the "6 foot rule." Those who violate the rule can be found guilty of a first-degree misdemeanor.

Petition drive fails

It was touch-and-go throughout the summer of 2007 as to whether supporters had collected enough signatures to put the measure on the ballot. The Ohio Secretary of State at one point determined that there were enough signatures, and printed up ballots. However, ultimately it was determined that the number of valid signatures collected had fallen short.[1],Proposals Being Considered:Ohio Ballot Board</ref>

Background

Citizens for Community Standards and "Dancers for Democracy" were the two groups sponsoring the referendum. On Monday, September 4, they turned in 382,508 signatures to the Ohio Secretary of State. 241,366 of these signatures had to be valid in order for the referendum to make the ballot.[2]

Phil Burress, head of Citizens for Community Values, which opposes the referendum, questioned whether the group had in fact collected enough signatures:

We were shocked to hear the number is so low. I wouldn't have stopped short of 500,000 if I was in their campaign," he said. "They are hurting."[3]

A $120,000 payment went to The Craig Group on June 26, 2007 for paid signature collection.[4]

Allegations of circulator misrepresentation

Bill Cohen, a reporter for the Ohio Statehouse News Bureau, reported in July that circulators were misrepresenting to potential signers what the petition would do. On an audio recording made by Cohen, a circulator appears to be saying that the effect of the petition would be to restrict hours at adult businesses in the state. Citizens for Community Values--the group opposing the referendum--ran statewide radio ads and placed 500,000 robocalls to urge Ohio residents not to sign the petition.[5][6][7]

Legal battle over similar names

The supporters of a "yes" vote on the referendum ("Citizens for Community Standards") and those who want voters to pull the "no" lever ("Citizens for Community Values") have very similar names. CCV has sued CCS in an attempt to force it to stop using a name so similar to that of CCV.[8][9]

Financial support

Citizens for Community Standards has received $60,000 from the Buckeye Association of Club Executives[10]

See also

Type Title Subject Description Outcome
VR Issue 1 Adult entertainment Sought to overturn new law that restricts dancers from being within 6 feet of patrons Printed on ballot but disqualified for insufficient signatures
CI Public Education Act Education Funding commitments for public education Effort abandoned

External links

References