Dem Lawmakers Introduce Legislation To Improve Lake Erie Water Quality
HB 460 encourages more landowners to protect agriculture from waste run-off
Posted January 16, 2018 by Minority Caucus
 
 

State Reps. John Patterson (D-Jefferson) and Michael Sheehy (D-Oregon) recently announced the introduction of House Bill (HB) 460, legislation to exempt riparian buffers from property taxes in an effort to encourage more landowners in the western basin of Lake Erie to install these agricultural barriers, known for filtering nutrients that cause harmful algal blooms.


“Extensive research has proven that riparian buffers are effective filters for nutrients, including nitrogen, phosphorus, calcium, potassium, sulfur and magnesium,” said Patterson. “Excessive levels of nitrogen and phosphorus are of particular concern in the nation’s streams and lakes due to their ability to cause harmful algal blooms. Understanding the tight profit margins associated with farming, removing land from agricultural production is not financially possible for most farmers in Ohio. By removing the tax burden, we hope HB 460 will enable landowners to help address Lake Erie water quality issues.”


Consisting of non-invasive, perennial vegetation, HB 460 defines riparian buffers as strips of land between 35 and 100 feet in width that border a permanent body of water or wetlands. To ensure the legislation will not negatively affect local governments and schools, HB 460 requires the state to reimburse local taxing units for any resulting revenue losses.


“Hidden within this piece of tax legislation lies a real opportunity to do some good for our Great Lake,” said Sheehy. “It’s no secret that Ohio’s northern coast is under threat from harmful, man-made pollutants— a threat which, unfortunately, environmental regulation alone cannot solve. With this legislation, we begin the process of rebuilding Lake Erie’s complex system of biodiversity and interdependence right here in Columbus. Of course, all over the Great Lakes region, you’ll see a fierce pride in our natural surroundings. In that spirit, Rep. Patterson and I join a national effort to protect our water resources for generations to come.”


HB 460 was introduced earlier this week and is currently awaiting committee assignment.

 
 
 
  
Featured Posts

Clyde Commemorates 53rd Anniversary Of VRA With Voting Facts For Tomorrow's Special Congressional Election

 

State Rep. Kathleen Clyde (D-Kent) today issued a statement commemorating the 53rd anniversary of the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965 and putting out information on frequently asked voting questions in advance of tomorrow’s August 7 special congressional election in central Ohio.



 
 

Clyde Statement On Court Order Reinstating Voting Rights For Purged Voters

 

State Rep. Kathleen Clyde (D-Kent) today issued a statement following a recent federal court order requiring Secretary Husted to issue a directive reinstating the “APRI exception.” The court-ordered directive will require purged voters’ ballots to be counted in the upcoming central Ohio congressional race that will occur next Tuesday, August 7. 



 
 

Ashford's Bipartisan Predatory Lending Reform Bill To Become Law

 

State Rep. Michael Ashford (D-Toledo), a joint sponsor of House Bill 123, today issued the following statement in response to Gov. Kasich’s signing of the bill to crack down on predatory short-term lenders in Ohio:



 
 

With Fair Season In Full Swing, Amusement Ride Safety Protections Linger At Ohio Statehouse

 

As summer heats up and families flock to fairs and festivals, including the Ohio State Fair which opened this week, beefed up safety standards for amusement rides sit dormant in the Ohio House.

After last year’s Fireball amusement ride failure at the Ohio State Fair tragically claimed the life of Tyler Jarrell and sent seven others to the hospital with serious injuries, state Rep. John Patterson’s (D-Jefferson) attention turned to ensuring such a tragedy never takes place in Ohio again.