COLUMBUS– Senate Joint Resolution 5, sponsored Ohio Senate President Keith Faber (R–Celina), cleared the Ohio Senate with bipartisan support. The resolution calls for the formation of a federal constitutional convention to amend the United States Constitution in order to require a balanced budget.
“Just two years ago, we made a series of very difficult decisions in the Statehouse to balanced a mounting budget shortfall and we did so without raising taxes,” said Faber. “The years continue to go by and the federal government continues to buck those tough choices and kick the can down the road. I, for one, want to see us reverse this course before we leave a far more serious problem for our children and grandchildren.”
Article V of the U.S. Constitution allows for two means by which the constitution can be amended. The first requires a supermajority of the U.S. Congress (House and Senate) to vote in favor of an amendment and for that amendment to be ratified by three-fourths of the 50 state legislatures. The second allows for the calling of a convention by two-thirds of the 50 state legislatures and ratification of the resulting amendment by three-fourths of the legislatures.
Senate Joint Resolution 5 calls for a constitutional convention by invoking the second option outlined by Article V.
Approximately 20 other states have outstanding resolutions that call for a constitutional convention for the purpose of enacting a balanced budget amendment. The Ohio General Assembly has considered similar resolutions in the past, including one by Senator Faber in 2008, and one by then-State Senator John Kasich in 1981.
Senate Joint Resolution 5 also specifies that if a convention is called, the Ohio Delegates will be prohibited from voting on any constitutional changes beyond the proposed balanced budget amendment.
The resolution will now proceed to the Ohio House of Representatives for further consideration.
“The issues we work on in our respective committees often overlap, yet the solutions are frequently discussed through narrow lenses,” said Jones. “The purpose of this joint informational hearing is to provide members of these committees with an opportunity to learn about the successes of other states and to explore different avenues for investing in Ohio's children. Innovative strategies have the potential to improve overall health and help lower costs for Ohio taxpayers."
"I'm grateful for the investment Edison State is making in Darke County," said Faber. "Because of their vision and leadership, educational opportunities are being created that mirror the economic needs of our community. I'm particularly excited about the launch of their new agribusiness program. It's a testament to the partnership between our local schools, businesses and government to equip Ohioans with the tools they need to be successful."
"Ohio's kit testing initiative allows our prosecutors to pursue offenders, helping to deliver justice for the victims of these heinous crimes," said Obhof. "Hundreds of indictments have resulted from the initiative already."
Last month we took another step forward in this battle with the passage of Senate Bill 332. This legislation reflects the important work of Ohio’s Commission on Infant Mortality, chaired by my Senate colleague Shannon Jones, which was tasked with taking inventory of the state’s response to infant mortality and making recommendations for future steps our state can take. The Commission identified several critical needs: that Ohio improve the collection and sharing of data as it relates to infant deaths, make reforms in how we deliver health care services, and perhaps most importantly, investigate the social determinants of health or why some mothers and babies are more at risk than others.