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Guest Column: A Legislative Update by Representative Scott Oelslager

September 21, 2021
Scott Oelslager News

Oftentimes, great bills and policy are overlooked within our state. This is why I wanted to highlight some of the legislation passed this year that was bipartisan and focuses on the diligent work done at the Statehouse on behalf of Ohioans.

These bills range from education to healthcare and more as they all are a reflection of both caucuses working together to provide solutions to make Ohio a better place to live. The bills I’d like to highlight below include:

Removing State Testing Requirements: Under House Bill 82, this bipartisan education overhaul focused on eliminating the requirements for every Ohio high school junior to take the ACT or SAT in order to graduate. Additionally, it creates a new state school report card plan – this included modifying the report card metrics for K-12 schools by creating a system with five-graded components and a five-star ratings system instead of letter grades.

The bill was supported by several education groups and was signed into law.

Ensuring Protections for Living Organ Donors: A unanimously passed bill by representatives on both sides of the aisle was House Bill 188, which protects organ donors by prohibiting insurers from denying or limiting disability insurance, life insurance, and long-term care insurance to living donors.

Additionally, the legislation stops insurers from charging higher premiums based solely on a person’s living organ donor status. I look forward to its progression over in the Senate.

Buffalo Soldiers Day: Back in June, the Ohio House also unanimously passed the bipartisan House Bill 238 that designates July 28 as Buffalo Soldiers Day. This highlights the importance of our nation’s first Army regiments of African American soldiers back in 1866. As a cosponsor of the bill, I hope this advances over in the Senate.

Helping State Sports Officials: With a recurring trend of violence against state sports officials due to fan violence, the Ohio House moved to pass House Bill 44. The bipartisan bill seeks to increase assault penalties against our referees and sports officials across the state. It now awaits further consideration in the Senate.

In everything I do, whether it is in Columbus or back in my home district of Stark County, I will continue to make your priorities my priorities. With that goal in mind, I welcome your feedback and opinions at any time. Please do not hesitate to contact me by calling (614) 752-2438, emailing, or by writing me at 77 South High St., Columbus, Ohio 43215.