Commerce and Labor Committee, Ohio State Senate (Decommissioned)

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The Commerce and Labor Committee (formerly, the Insurance, Commerce and Labor Committee) was a standing committee of the Ohio State Senate. In 2015, this committee was combined with the Transportation Committee to form the Transportation, Commerce and Labor Committee.

Per the Senate Rules, committees of the Ohio State Senate are appointed by the President of the Senate. The rules do not give a specific date to which committees are assigned but committee appointments occur after the organization of the Senate.[1] The President shall appoint a chair and vice-chair of each standing committee as well as a ranking minority member.[2] The Minority Leader can recommend minority membership and a ranking minority member for each committee.[1] The President can be substituted as a voting member on any standing committee. The Minority Leader shall be an ex-officio nonvoting member of each committee, and at the Minority Leader's request, the President can substitute for the Minority Leader as a voting member on any committee.[2] A majority of members in a committee is considered quorum.[3]

DocumentIcon.jpg See rules: Rules of the Senate


The Senate Commerce and Labor Committee focuses on bills, policies and issues that directly impact the commerce and the labor market. 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 commerce or labor-related subjects.[4][5]



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.[6] 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.[7] 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.[8]

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.[9] 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.[10][11]Kasich argues the bill is not meant to destroy unions, but rather is aimed at restoring "balance to the system."[12]

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.”[13][14]

Committee members


Commerce and Labor Members, 2013
Democratic members (3)Republican members (7)
Edna Brown, Ranking Minority MemberKevin Bacon, Chair
Joe SchiavoniJohn Eklund, Vice Chair
Nina TurnerShannon Jones
Kris Jordan
Scott Oelslager
Bill Seitz
Joe Uecker


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.[15]

Pre-March 2011 Change


External links