State Rep. Emilia Sykes (D-Akron), state Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) and state Sen. Vernon Sykes (D-Akron) hosted a local Small Business Summit on Friday, August 24th, at Alpha Phi Alpha Homes, Inc.
“It is our job as state lawmakers to ensure that all small businesses have fair opportunities for advancement in Ohio,” said Rep. Galonski. “However, I believe it is also our duty as black legislators to make sure that minority business owners are being represented, heard and assisted when necessary. I look forward to continuing to uplift Akron’s minority community and businesses while serving the Statehouse.”
State Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) today announced Ohio’s back-to-school sales tax-free holiday scheduled for this weekend, August 3-5, as a result of the passage of Senate Bill (SB) 226. The annual event helps lessen the sting of the 4.5 percent statewide sales tax hike passed by Republican lawmakers in the 2013 state budget. The hike has cost taxpayers almost $2 billion more since then, according to state revenue numbers.
“With so many Ohio families struggling to make ends meet already, the tax free holiday alleviates a bit of the financial burden that comes with back to school shopping,” said Galonski. “To be successful during the school year students and their families not only need to purchase class specific items, but also replace everyday use items. While a family may save a relatively small amount this weekend, those dollars add up so a student can have lunch money or be able to replace something later in the school year. Every little bit helps.”
State Rep. Tavia Galonski today voiced her concerns for future high school graduates after an amendment to Senate Bill (SB) 216 that included language from her House Bill (HB) 630 to extend the current high school graduation requirements for two more years was tabled during Wednesday’s House session.
Galonski introduced HB 630 in May, and the bill did not receive a public hearing before the legislative summer break.
“As we continue to research the most reasonable requirements for students to graduate high school, we need to offer future graduating seniors the same alternative pathways so that they are not subjected to narrow requirements that still need improved upon,” said Galonski. “This is not giving an easy pass to the classes of 2019 and 2020, but rather a means to ensure that the expectations are streamlined between them and prior graduating classes while final decision making is still in progress.”
State Reps. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) and Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) today reacted to the closing of Akron Digital Academy after the State of Ohio required the online school to repay $2.8 million of mismanaged funds after failing to properly keep track of enrollment.
“Hearing about the closure of Akron Digital Academy reaffirms my concern about online schools, and more importantly the education our youth is receiving,” said Sykes. “How many children are we going to let fall by the way side because of poor administration? The students are being affected the most.”
State Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) today responded to Babcock & Wilcox Enterprises Inc. announcing the layoff of 51 workers in Barberton and Copley on Thursday.
B&W primarily makes and services coal-fired boilers and pollution control equipment for power plants. With more power plants fueled by natural gas over coal, B&W has struggled to overcome the competition. The job cuts were a result of efforts to align costs with revenue.
State Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) issued the following statement in response to the news that Secretary of State Husted is directing counties not to purge voters before the August and November 2018 elections:
State Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) today applauded the passage of Senate Bill (SB) 135, which would invest more than $100 million in state funds for Ohio counties to purchase new, modern voting equipment. SB 135 also appropriates $10 million to reimburse counties who purchased new voting systems on or after January 1, 2014. Voting systems, including voting machines, marking devices, automatic tabulating equipment, direct recording electronic voting machines and associated allowable expenditures, would be covered under the bill.
State Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) today responded to the House session vote for a new Speaker after seven weeks of a legislative deadlock.
“Today’s session was embarrassing for this General Assembly and is a disgrace towards our constituents,” Galonski said. “This entire process has been a long, drawn out fight within the Republican majority who still could not put up a candidate that could garner a majority vote. Speaker Smith won on a plurality, not a majority. The fact of the matter is the majority of the House does not believe Smith should lead. Democrats and Republicans alike are apprehensive and demonstrated so with their votes today."
State Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) today decried House Republican leadership’s decision to schedule committee hearings for four Republican-sponsored gun expansion bills while stalling hearings on previously introduced Democratic gun safety legislation.
“We have legislation that offers a more holistic approach to commonsense gun safety,” said Galonski. “But instead of keeping guns out the hands of criminals or people with mental illness, Ohio Republicans want to put more guns in more public places and give people more legal protection to use deadly force.”
State Reps. Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo) and Tavia Galonski (D-Akron) today sent a letter asking Attorney General Mike DeWine to appoint special state prosecutor to determine the extent of criminal activities of the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) publicized by Auditor Dave Yost in a stalled audit released today. The lawmakers are also asking that a special prosecutor determine whether state negligence contributed to additional taxpayer fraud, and whether or not state officials are liable for any additional fraud that developed as a result of their negligence or malfeasance.