With local hiring ban out, Sykes votes for state transportation budget 

COLUMBUS— Today the Ohio House voted to approve the final version of the state’s transportation budget. House Bill 53 is a $7 billion bill that largely funds the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT), infrastructure projects, and public safety programs over the next two fiscal years. 

“My primary concern in voting for the transportation budget was ensuring the people in the 34th district have the opportunity to achieve the American dream through quality high paying jobs,” said Rep. Emilia Sykes (D-Akron). “I am pleased that the negotiations I held with members of the Ohio House and Senate were successful in removing a local hiring ban that would have been devastating for Akron families, jobs and our state’s economy. Our families and communities will be stronger because of our combined efforts with local leaders, and residents of Akron can have faith that good government and common sense can help strengthen our economy.”

Democrats applauded the removal of a local hiring ban for construction projects, a move they believe will strengthen the state’s commitment to local Ohio workers over out-of-state businesses. The bill also added language supporting increased driver training and allowing local license branches to begin accepting debit and credit cards for payment. 

Democratic lawmakers remained critical of a controversial budget change that would require anyone who registers to vote in Ohio to surrender their driver’s license if it’s from another state, obtain an Ohio driver’s license and register their vehicle with the state. Failure to do so within 30 days results in a criminal offense. The amendment appears to be aimed at the over 100,000 out-of-state students who come to Ohio each year and exercise their fundamental freedom to vote.

Having passed both chambers, the bill now moves to Governor Kasich’s desk for approval.

Featured Posts