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STATEHOUSE HAPPENINGS THIS WEEK

HB 2 Performance Audits (Snitchler)

This bill was not voted out of committee this week, nor were any amendments accepted.  The bill is scheduled for amendments and a vote in State Government Committee and then will head to the Finance Committee for a hearing and vote.

HB 3 Estate Tax (Grossman)

This week the bill had proponent testimony.  A recap of the testimony is attached.  Should you want the actual written testimony of the speakers, please feel free to e-mail me.  It is a rather large file.

It is our understanding that a potential sub bill will be introduced next Wednesday in the House Ways & Means Committee.  The sub bill will change the repeal date from January 1, 2011 to January 1, 2013.  This, in effect, buys local governments 2 years of estate tax revenue.

The Chairman has scheduled HB 3 for proponent and opponent testimony next Wednesday, February 9.  If you are interested in testifying on this bill, please let me know and I will make arrangements with the Chairman of the committee.  You will need 35 copies of written testimony.

Additionally, if you are attending the OTA conference next week and will be coming in on Wednesday, you are encouraged to attend the hearing on HB 3, which is scheduled for 3:30 pm in room 114 of the Ohio Statehouse. 

When the OTA testifies, we will submit testimonials from townships that may not be able to attend the hearings and testify in person.  We encourage you to send us information!

Finally, the OTA has put together some basic talking points on the Estate Tax.  These will be included in conference materials and so please feel free to use the information when speaking to legislators.  We will update these talking points as needed.

HB 69 Retirement Bill (Wachtmann)

This bill is the large retirement system bill that encompasses all the changes proposed by the five retirement systems.  The bill had a sponsor hearing in the Health & Aging Committee and then was referred to the Pension Reform Subcommittee.

THIS BILL DOES INCLUDE LANGUAGE THAT WOULD REQUIRE A PERSON EARN $1000 PER MONTH IN ORDER TO QUALIFY FOR 1 FULL YEAR OF SERVICE CREDIT.  The language can be found on pages 21-22 of the bill or lines 624-672.  You may read the full bill or the analysis at http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/bills.cfm?ID=129_HB_69. 

The OTA will be sending letters to legislators opposing this section of the bill.

SENATE BILLS

The Senate introduced the first bills of the session this week most notably, Senate Bills 3 and 5.  Senate Bill 3 is likely to be the companion bill to House Bill 69 (above) and SB 5 will deal with collective bargaining.  While the bills do not give details at this time, please watch future legislative updates for more information.

FEDERAL HAPPENINGS

Our national association (NATaT) has distributed their Federal Report for February.  Please find it attached.

1099 REQUIREMENT

Also, this week the US Senate passed legislation that would repeal the 1099 requirement that was included in the federal health care bill last year.  The amendment would repeal a provision in the health care overhaul law (PL 111-148, PL 111-152) requiring businesses (including local governments) to submit a 1099 form to the IRS for each vendor to whom they pay more than $600 each year for goods.  Democrats and Republicans, as well as the president, have said the 1099 provision is too burdensome and should be eliminated.  A House committee is scheduled to take this issue up next week.  Stay tuned for future updates.

OTA CONFERENCE

At the conference next Saturday, the OTA will be sponsoring a panel that will include several think tanks that have issued reports pertaining to transforming government in Ohio, including local government.  The panel will include a representative from Greater Ohio, Center for Community Solutions and Policy Matters Ohio.  If you are attending the conference next week, we encourage you to attend session on Saturday!

OTHER

Due to the OTA conference next week, there will likely not be a legislative update next week.  I will try and compile all legislative happenings the following week.  Thank you for your understanding.

   

Heidi M. Fought Director of Governmental Affairs Ohio Township Association 6500 Taylor Road, Suite A Blacklick, OH 43004 (614) 863-0045 (614) 863-9751 Fax