COLUMBUS - 

State Senator Jim Hughes (R-Columbus) today issued the following statement regarding the tragic death of Hilliard Police Officer Sean Johnson:

"Today our community lost a devoted father and a courageous public servant. The death of Officer Sean Johnson in the line of duty should make us pause and give thanks for the law enforcement officers who encounter danger on a regular basis to keep our neighborhoods safe. My thoughts and prayers are with Officer Johnson's family and, especially during this National Police Week, with all the men and women in the police force who put themselves in harm's way every day."

 
 
  
COLUMBUS - 

State Senator Frank LaRose (R-Copley Township) today announced the House passage of legislation to grant civil immunity to Ohioans who break into a locked vehicle to save a child or pet from excessive internal temperatures. 

Senate Bill 215, jointly sponsored by State Senator Jim Hughes (R- Columbus), specifies that the rescuer must contact 9-1-1 prior to forcibly entering the vehicle and that no other reasonable method for the child or animal to escape may exist.
 
"The same day I introduced this bill, an eight-month-old child in my district passed away after being left in a hot car," said LaRose. "As the father of three young children, I feel a responsibility to help protect other children from becoming the victims of these tragic, preventable accidents. By passing this commonsense legislation, we can encourage concerned bystanders to save the life of a child or pet without fearing legal repercussions."

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, cars parked in direct sunlight can reach internal temperatures of up to 131° F - 172° F when outside temperatures are 80° F – 100° F. Even outside temperatures in the 60s can cause internal temperature to rise well above 110° F."

600 children have died inside excessively hot vehicles since 1990, according to national child safety advocate Kids and Cars. 

Senate Bill 215 will now proceed to the governor to be signed into law.

 
 
  
COLUMBUS - 

State Senator Jim Hughes (R- Columbus) today announced the House passage of legislation to grant civil immunity to Ohioans who break into a locked vehicle to save a child or pet from excessive internal temperatures. 

Senate Bill 215, jointly sponsored by State Senator Frank LaRose (R-Copley Township), specifies that the rescuer must contact 9-1-1 prior to forcibly entering the vehicle and that no other reasonable method for the child or animal to exit may exist.

"As summer approaches, thousands of children and pets are in danger of being left alone in hot vehicles," said Hughes. "Senate Bill 251 is an important measure to encourage individuals who see a child or pet at risk to take immediate action to save them."

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, cars parked in direct sunlight can reach internal temperatures of up to 131° F - 172° F when outside temperatures are 80° F – 100° F. Even outside temperatures in the 60s can cause internal temperature to rise well above 110° F."

600 children have died inside excessively hot vehicles since 1990, according to national child safety advocate Kids and Cars. 

Senate Bill 215 will now proceed to the governor to be signed into law.

 
 
  
Senator Hughes honors Dublin high school student Michael Zeng for winning the 2016 Ohio High School Fencing Championship
COLUMBUS - 

In today's Senate session, State Senator Jim Hughes (R-Columbus) recognized Dublin high school student Michael Zeng for winning the 2016 Ohio High School Fencing Championship in men's foil for the second consecutive year.

Zeng, a junior at Dublin Jerome High School, finished third in boys foil as an eighth-grader and second as a freshman before capturing his first state title last season.

"It's an honor to recognize Michael Zeng's talent and dedication to the sport of fencing," said Hughes. "He's a truly exceptional young athlete who makes Dublin proud."

 
 
  
COLUMBUS - 
State Senator Shannon Jones (R-Springboro), Chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, today announced the Senate passage of legislation to raise awareness for thyroid health and recognize the contributions made by osteopathic physicians in Ohio. 

House Bill 219 and House Bill 352 previously passed the Health and Human Services Committee with unanimous support.
 

January Designated "Thyroid Health Awareness Month"

House Bill 219 designates the month of January as "Thyroid Health Awareness Month" to draw attention to the thyroid-related diseases and conditions that contribute to heart disease, infertility, osteoporosis and other serious health conditions. 

"Promoting a greater understanding of thyroid-related health conditions is an important step toward helping Ohioans who are affected to maintain a high quality of life," said Jones.

The thyroid gland produces hormones that regulate the body's metabolism and strongly impact an individual's heart rate and energy level. 


April Designated "Osteopathic Medicine Recognition Month"


"Osteopathic physicians' focus on the whole person makes a positive impact on thousands of Ohio patients every year," said Jones. 

House Bill 352, sponsored by Representative Terry Johnson (R-McDermott) recognizes the vast contributions that osteopathic physicians make to the health and wellbeing of Ohioans. According to the American Osteopathic Association, osteopathy is one of the nation's fastest growing fields of medicine. 

Both bills passed the Senate with unanimous support and now proceed to the governor for his signature.

 
 
  
COLUMBUS - 
Senate President Keith Faber (R-Celina) today welcomed Mississinawa Valley's Kuro Taka Taiko Drum Line to Columbus for a special performance on the Statehouse lawn and a visit to the Senate President's office. 
 

“I love when students from back home visit the Statehouse,” said Faber. "Watching this group perform was a real treat for all those working and visiting here today, and I hope the students enjoyed learning a little about state government while they were here."

 
 
  
Senator Beagle (middle) presents a resolution honoring the Troy High School girls bowling team on their state championship
COLUMBUS - 

State Senator Bill Beagle (R-Tipp City) today presented a resolution honoring the Troy High School girls bowling team for their success at the state bowling championship.

"This team's hard work and perseverance paid dividends when they made school history earlier this spring by winning Troy's first-ever girls state bowling championship," said Beagle. "We look forward to these young athletes throwing another round of strikes at next year's state championship." 

Troy denied the Beavercreek Beavers a third team title after defeating North Olmsted and Mentor en route to the 2016 state title.

 
 
  
Senator Larry Obhof presents a resolution to Richard Guggisberg (second from right) who was joined by his daughter Ursula Guggisberg (far right) and Senator Jay Hottinger (far left)
COLUMBUS - 

State Senators Larry Obhof (R-Medina) today joined his Senate colleagues in recognizing Richard and Ursula Guggisberg of Guggisberg Cheese on winning top honors at the 2016 World Championship Cheese Contest. A prior national champion, Guggisberg defeated a crowded field of artisans from around the world participating in this year's competition. 

"I am pleased to once again recognize Guggisberg Cheese and the Guggisberg family,” Obhof said. “The story of their hard work and success continues to be a model to small business owners and a source of pride for Ohioans."

On March 8, the reigning U.S. champion earned the world's highest honors at the World Championship Cheese Contest held in Madison, Wisconsin. A record-setting 2,948 competitors from 23 countries participated in this year's contest. Guggisberg topped the Swiss category with a nearly perfect score on their 200-pound block of Swiss cheese.

Last year, Guggisberg was recognized by the Ohio Senate when they won the U.S. Championship Cheese Contest with a 200-pound Swiss cheese wheel at the biennial U.S. Championship Cheese Contest held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 

Guggisberg Cheese was founded in 1950, after Alfred Guggisberg immigrated to the United States from Switzerland. The company – locally-owned and operated in Holmes County – invented its award-winning Baby Swiss in the 1960s. The company has grown and now sells its products across the United States and Europe.

 
 
  
State Senator Bob Peterson presents a Senate Resolution to the Ohio Valley Christian Boys basketball team during today's Senate session
COLUMBUS - 

State Senator Bob Peterson (R-Washington Court House) today recognized the Ohio Valley Christian Boys basketball team as the 2016 Ohio Christian School Athletic Association state champions.

Finishing the season with a record of 21-6, the Defenders defeated Dayton Temple Christian in the OCSAA State Championship by a score of 49-28 to bring home their first state title since 2004.

"I'm honored to recognize these student-athletes from Ohio Valley Christian as they continue the school's tradition of success on and off the court," said Peterson. "Their resounding victory in this year's state championship has made the community proud and I look forward to seeing them back on the court next season."

Similar to the Ohio High School Athletic Association, the OCSAA opens it's tournaments for all Christian and Religious Based schools regardless of conference affiliation.

 
 
  
COLUMBUS - 

State Senator Larry Obhof (R-Medina) today announced the Senate's passage of legislation allowing parents to freeze their child's credit record in order to protect minors from becoming victims of identity theft.

Current law allows Ohioans to freeze their own credit, but not for parents or legal guardians to do so on behalf of their minor children. House Bill 317, co-sponsored by Senator Obhof, would allow parents to take preventative steps to improve their child's financial security. 

"This bill helps better equip parents to protect their children from the looming danger of identity theft," said Obhof.

Ohio will join 23 other states in adopting such credit protections for minors.

House Bill 317 passed the Senate by a unanimous vote of 32-0, and now goes to the governor for his signature. 

In other business, the Senate passed legislation updating retirement plan options for non-teaching university employees of the University of Akron. That bill, House Bill 305, co-sponsored by Senator Obhof, also expands the availability of certain benefits for officers and deputies, or their families, through the Volunteer Police Officer’s Dependent Fund. 

The Senate passed legislation last October, establishing the fund. House Bill 305 will retroactively extend eligibility to survivors of volunteer peace officers killed in the line of duty on or after December 22, 2015 (instead of March 23, 2016). 

House Bill 305 will now return to the House of Representatives for a concurrence vote on the Senate's amendments, and will then go to the Governor for his signature. 

 
 
  
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LaRose Announces House Passage Of Bill To Protect Children And Pets From Excessive Temperatures In Vehicles

 
COLUMBUS - 

 "As the father of three young children, I feel a responsibility to help protect other children from becoming the victims of these tragic, preventable accidents. By passing this commonsense legislation, we can encourage concerned bystanders to save the life of a child or pet without fearing legal repercussions."



 
 

Hughes Announces House Passage Of Bill To Protect Children And Pets From Excessive Temperatures In Vehicles

 
COLUMBUS - 

"As summer approaches, thousands of children and pets are in danger of being left alone in hot vehicles," said Hughes. "Senate Bill 251 is an important measure to encourage individuals who see a child or pet at risk to take immediate action to save them."



 
 

Hughes Recognizes 2016 Ohio High School Fencing Champion

 
COLUMBUS - 

"It's an honor to recognize Michael Zeng's talent and dedication to the sport of fencing," said Hughes. "He's a truly exceptional young athlete who makes Dublin proud."



 
 

Jones Announces Passage Of Bills Recognizing Thyroid Health & Osteopathic Medicine

 
COLUMBUS - 

State Senator Shannon Jones (R-Springboro), Chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, today announced the Senate passage of legislation to raise awareness for thyroid health and recognize the contributions made by osteopathic physicians in Ohio.