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Home Rule

Kroger, the largest grocery chain in the country, will phase out the use of plastic bags in its stores by 2025.
Rogelio V. Solis / AP

Voting mostly along party lines, the Ohio House has passed a bill banning local communities from restricting the use of plastic bags, sending it on to the Senate.

 Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine
Paul Vernon / Associated Press

Ohio lawmakers are considering a pair of Republican-backed bills that would toss out current and future bans on single-use plastic bags passed by local governments. But there’s a critic who could potentially trash the “ban the bans” idea: Gov. Mike DeWine.

Kroger, the largest grocery chain in the country, will phase out the use of plastic bags in its stores by 2025.
Rogelio V. Solis / AP

State senators considering one of two bills to ban local bans on plastic bags heard from around 40 opponents, who either came to a committee hearing or sent in written testimony.

Ohio Supreme Court chambers.
Dan Konik / Ohio Public Radio

The home rule provision was added to the Ohio constitution by voters in 1912, and the struggles between local officials and state lawmakers have raged almost since then.

Dan Konik / Statehouse News Bureau

A split Ohio Supreme Court has upheld a state law that invalidates a Cleveland ordinance requiring public works construction projects to hire city residents for 20% of the work. If the construction projects didn’t meet that threshold, the city could cut their contract price by 2.5%. 

Ohio lawmakers passed a law in 2006 that prevented local governments from passing any gun laws that are more restrictive than those enacted at the state level, and when cities challenged it, the Ohio Supreme Court upheld the law. Now, there’s a move afoot to change it.

In this Dec. 16, 2014, file photo, a truck passes a red light photo enforcement sign that is placed below a red light camera at the intersection of Route 1 and Franklin Corner Road in Lawrence Township, N.J.
Mel Evans / Associated Press

While the new statewide gas tax went into effect on Monday, there are more rules in the transportation budget that go into effect July 3. Restrictions on red light cameras are among them.

Cincinnati is filing a lawsuit against the State of Ohio over Ohio House Bill 228, which Mayor John Cranley said preempts cities from enacting legislation to reduce gun violence.  

Kroger, the largest grocery chain in the country, will phase out the use of plastic bags in its stores by 2025.
Rogelio V. Solis / AP

Cuyahoga County, the city of Bexley in Central Ohio, and the village of Orange in Northeast Ohio have all voted to ban plastic bags at retailers. A state lawmaker is pushing a bill that would negate such bans by outlawing the fees imposed on violators.

After years of tension over expanded oil and gas drilling, including a deadly explosion that galvanized critics, Colorado is moving to tighten regulations on the booming industry. In a sweeping overhaul the governor is expected to sign, regulators will now have to consider public health, safety and the environment in decisions about permitting and local land use.

The state must still hammer out the details of how to implement the new law over the next year. But the impending changes are already fueling hope for some, and fear for others.

 Lake County Commissioner Dan Troy and Shelby County Commissioner Julie Ehemann call for future governor to support county governments by restoring revenue.
Andy Chow / Ohio Public Radio

Leaders from Ohio’s 88 counties are calling on two gubernatorial hopefuls to help mend the relationship between state and county governments. 

Findlay Mayor Lydia Mihalik speaks at the Ohio Mayors Alliance press conference.
Jo Ingles / Ohio Public Radio

Mayors from the 30 largest cities in the state have laid out an agenda they’d like to see Ohio’s next governor and new legislature follow.

Motorists drive past a sign warning of upcoming traffic cameras in Cleveland.
Tony Dejak / AP

The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled four times previously that cities have the right to operate traffic cameras. Now the court is deciding whether a lower court can block a plan to cut state funding to certain communities who use those cameras.

Brennan Linsley / Associated Press

Columbus and several other Ohio cities are considering legislation on guns if state lawmakers don’t pass gun law reforms – despite a state law from that prevents them from passing stricter laws.

A Franklin County, Ohio Common Pleas Court judge ruled Wednesday the state of Ohio can setup a centralized collection system for municipal income taxes.

Cincinnati and several other Ohio cities and villages filed a lawsuit challenging a recent state law on the issue.

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