What We’re Reading – Wednesday Oct. 5

This is a daily roundup of news that has an impact on the economy and other legislative issues here in the state of Ohio.  On a few occasions, we’ll even link to national news that is pertinent to the Fight for a Fair Economy.

Articles we’re reading:

Ohio Union Law Vote Has Business Groups Lining Up Against Public Workers
By Mark Niquette for Bloomberg News

Ohio business groups are joining Governor John Kasich in a Nov. 8 referendum fight to uphold a law limiting collective bargaining for government unions, pitting private might against public workers.  Organizations whose members include Procter & Gamble Co (PG), Kroger Co. (KO) and Bob Evans Farms Inc. have endorsed keeping the law, contributed to an undisclosed amount to the campaign and sent information to its members, according to Building a Better Ohio, the group supporting the measure.  Click here to continue reading.

Anti-SB 5 coalition kicks off road tour today
By Joe Vardon for the Columbus Dispatch

CINCINNATI — The labor coalition seeking to repeal Senate Bill 5 kicked off its four-day road trip today with a multipurpose rally outside of the Hamilton County Board of Elections.  Standing next to an RV, a Cincinnati policeman and firefighter representing “We Are Ohio” encouraged people to vote early against State Issue 2 – the ballot measure which will decide the fate of Republican-backed limits on collective bargaining contained in Senate Bill 5.  Click here to continue reading.

Ohio union law tops issue as early voting begins
By Ann Sanner for the Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Campaigns on each side of Ohio’s contentious collective bargaining law are seeking to sway voters to support their cause through town-hall style telephone calls and events across the state, as early voting for this fall’s election began Tuesday.  Among other ballot issues, voters will decide in the Nov. 8 election whether the state should toss out a law governing public employee unions’ negotiations.  Click here to continue reading.

Opponents march against proposed changes to state’s election laws
By Tom Troy for the Toledo Blade

Opponents of a new law aimed at reforming Ohio’s voting rules marched Tuesday morning from a near-downtown church to the lucas County early voting center to push for voting rights.  The march coincided with the opening day of early voting in Ohio.  About 70 people joined the 20-minute walk from 3rd Baptist Church on Pinewood Street to the voting office at 1302 Washington Street.  Click here to continue reading.

Ohio is the New Wisconsin
By David Weigel for Slate.com

The battle of Wisconsin will be won in Ohio,’ said [Natioan write John] Nichols. It was victory in Ohio, or nothing, as Scott Walker had implied in the crank phone call from ‘David Koch’ way back in February. “He said, ‘We got to keep [Gov. John] Kasich’s spine strong,’ Nichols reminded us. This was the cause. Organizers flitted around the room passing out cards with volunteer info. Courtney Foley, one of the organizers, warned me that polling was getting slightly tougher (a common occurence with ballot measures) as the other side’s money came in. ‘We have to put [Kasich] in this place,’ she said, ‘or they’re just going to continue this attack on labor.  Click here to continue reading.

Most Ohio Union Workers Affected By SB5 Insurance Rule
By Julie Carr Smyth for the Associated Press

State data reviewed by The Associated Press show eight in 10 unionized government workers in Ohio would pay more toward their health insurance premiums if voters retain a new collective bargaining law in November.  Figured from the State Employment Relations Board show state workers and many county and heath-district employees already pay more than the 15% share required under law.  Unionized township and fire district employees pay the lowest percentages on average, between 2.2 percent and 5.6 percent.  They would see the biggest jump in costs.  Click here to continue reading.

Democrats in Congress question use of federal money to study privatizing Ohio Turnpike
By Sabrina Eaton for the Plain Dealer

A group of congressional Democrats led by Rep. Tim Ryan of Niles is questioning whether it’s proper for Ohio’s transportation department to use federal funds to explore privatizing the Ohio Turnpike.  Ryan is sending a letter to U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood that contends that federal tax dollars shouldn’t be used to privatize a public asset.  Click here to continue reading.

Tech job losses hamper Ohio
By Thomas Gnau for the Dayton Daily News

DAYTON — Ohio’s high-tech industry lost 1,400 jobs last year that paid an average $68,000 per year, according to a report released today.  But Ohio still ranks 12th in the nation with nearly 163,000 high-tech jobs, the report from the TechAmerica Foundation.  Click here to continue reading.

Avoidance Behavior
An editorial published by the Akron Beacon Journal

Good news on the foreclosure crisis has been hard to come by the past few years.  With the number of foreclosures rising across Ohio and the nation during the past decade, it has proved a continuing challenge to put together policies and resources that can help thousands of struggling families keep their homes.  Click here to continue reading.

The Hidden Power of Occupy Wall Street
By Edward Murray for the Huffington Post

Thousands of individuals currently inhabiting Liberty Square for the Occupy Wall Street protest have succeeded in garnering enough attention to force the following question upon our nation: “What exactly are they doing?”  Those protesting would probably have a tough time agreeing on a well-made, media-friendly, singular objective; and herein, oddly enough, lies the impressive, hidden and unifying strength of their protest.  Occupy Wall Street is asking for sweeping reform of an entrenched system, and this is something that nearly all Americans support, whether they will admit it or not.  Click here to continue readying.

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