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Rep. Robinson concerned with high court's decision

Lawmaker says ruling conflicts with home rule rights
September 25, 2019
Phillip M. Robinson, Jr. News

State Reps. Phil Robinson (D-Solon) today released the following statement regarding the Ohio Supreme Court’s controversial split ruling that the state did not overstep its constitutional authority when it sought to block local hiring laws around the state: 

“Maintaining Ohio’s status as a Home Rule state and supporting local communities is one of my top concerns that propelled me to run for office. It’s troubling that some of the same people who advocate for state’s rights to federal power show inconsistency in supporting local community’s rights to state power,” said Rep. Robinson. “Cities, towns, and villages have the right to help aid efforts to hire locally and support the members of their communities.”

In 2016, the state legislature passed House Bill (HB) 180, which prohibits residence requirements in public improvement contracts. This invalidated Cleveland’s ordinance that required public construction contractors to hire city residents, known as the Fannie M. Lewis Cleveland Employment Law.

The City of Cleveland challenged this and in a 4-3 decision, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled against the city. Four of the court’s Republicans make up the majority, but Republican Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor wrote the dissent and was joined by the court’s two Democrats.