Legislative Update: No on Issue 1 in August, dental bill, SB 83

Posted May 18, 2023 by

Legislative update: Protecting the voices and rights of workers, all Ohioans

One Person One Vote Campaign launches: Vote No on Issue 1 in August

The One Person One Vote campaign launched last week, and OCSEA is on board with all of Ohio's labor groups to Vote No on Issue 1 in August. The proposal before voters on August 8 would upend majority rule in Ohio by increasing the threshold to pass citizens-led ballot initiatives to 60 percent instead of the current 50 percent +1. The coalition, made up of over 240 groups, including nearly every labor union in Ohio and many other nonpartisan groups, urges a NO VOTE ON ISSUE 1 IN AUGUST to preserve democratic principle of “one person one vote.” Learn more at

Additionally, the One Person One Vote coalition has filed a lawsuit in the Ohio Supreme Court challenging the $20 million August special election "being held at the behest of special interests." August elections have “embarrassingly low” turnout and are bad for taxpayers, election officials, voters, and the civic health of our state, said the coalition. Additionally, just five months ago, the General Assembly specifically prohibited all statewide special elections in August.

“The question every voter should be asking themselves is––why August, when there was already an election scheduled for November? The answer is simple: because that’s what special interests wanted. Special interests spent millions lobbying for an August election––which will cost taxpayers $20 million––specifically because that’s when turnout is the lowest. This is an illegal special election for special interests. Period,” declared the One Person One Vote coalition.

Dangerous dental bill is back

As we mentioned last week, the State legislature's harmful dental legislation is back in both houses of the General Assembly. This session, the dangerous dental legislation can be found in Senate Bill 115 and House Bill 160. If passed, the dental bill would give dentists the freedom to charge Ohioans, including OCSEA members, whatever they want for non-covered dental services. Not only would it increase dental costs for OCSEA members and families covered under the Union Benefits Trust (your dental administrator), it would increase costs for EVERY Ohioan who has dental insurance.

We continue to watch for any movement on the dental bills. Stay tuned here for updates and actions around protecting your dental benefits.

Public university employees' collective bargaining rights under attack

Not only are extreme Ohio lawmakers trying to tell public university and college staff how they should do their jobs, they are also trying desperately to silence their voices on the job by weakening the collective bargaining rights of faculty members and everyone who works at our local colleges and universities.

"They weren’t around when we came together to fight for collective bargaining rights and against Senate Bill 5 in 2011," wrote We Are Ohio in a press release this week. Referring to the bills' creators, Sen. Jerry Cirino and state Rep. Steve Demetriou, We Are Ohio wrote: "Maybe both lawmakers could use a course in how not to kick the hornet’s nest that are frontline public servants in this state."

Hearings on both bills are scheduled for this week. Cirino’s Sub. SB 83 could see an Ohio Senate floor vote today, Wednesday. Demetriou’s equally bad bill, HB 151, will have a hearing only. Cirino’s statehouse office number is 614-644-7718 and Demetriou’s statehouse office at 614-644.5088. Contact these legislators and tell them to leave public union rights alone!