action required on House Bill 602 - Update #3
We received the following e-mail on May 17, 2000:
UPDATE ON HB602
PHONE CALLS ARE STILL NEEDED.
The Ohio House Education Committee met last night [May
16th]. HB602 was on the agenda for a vote. At the
beginning of the meeting, Committee Chair Charles Brading
announced that he had decided once again to remove HB602
from the agenda.
What does this mean?
1. There are 21 total members on the committee: 13
Republicans and 8 Democrats. At least 11 votes are needed
for a majority vote. All eight Democratic members have
determined to vote "no" on the bill. Three
Republican votes are needed to defeat the bill.
Republican members Roman and Jordan have determined to
vote "no" -- against considerable pressure from
the Governor. Therefore, only one more Republican vote is
needed to defeat HB602.
2. Chairman Brading has determined that he didn't have
the 11th "yes" vote needed to approve the bill,
so he pulled it from the agenda.
3. There will be one more meeting of the House Education
Committee: May 23.It is likely that HB602 will be placed
on the agenda for a vote one last time. We need to
continue to let key Republican legislators know that the
public wants our elected board restored.
Again, it also can't be stressed enough that restoring
the board to an elected board is CRITICAL to all
families: HOME EDUCATED students, PRIVATELY EDUCATED
students, and PUBLICLY EDUCATED students. Everyone who
understands the impact that the State Board of Education
has on all children pre-kindergarten through twelfth
grade and on the post-secondary education system, knows
the CRITICAL IMPORTANCE of RESTORING the State Board of
Education to a completely elected board -- accountable to
the people they represent.
Please consider making additional phone calls to the
Republican committee members only. Please review the list
below and ask them to VOTE NO.
Chuck Calvert [R-Medina]
Representative Calvert at this time is our third vote
champion. PLEASE express your appreciation to him and
encourage him to stand firm.
Jim Hoops [R-Napoleon]:
Rep. Hoops is a very important swing vote.
Cheryl Winkler [R-Cincinnati]
Rep. Winkler is a very important swing vote.
Please be respectful, but firm, in making your calls.
Suggested points to make with legislators:
1. Keeping the Governor in control of the State Board of
Education completely ERODES the "separation of
powers" between the executive branch and legislative
branch of state government.
2. There are other ways the Governor can INFLUENCE
education policies without controlling the State Board of
Education. (A) He appoints most of the members of the
Joint Council between the State Board of Education and
the Ohio Board of Regents. (B) He appoints all of the
members of his own Governor's Commission on Student
Success.(C) He has considerable influence over the
legislature which is controlled by his own Republican
3. Additional control over the State Board of Education
gives the Governor a MONOPOLY over education policy. NO
ONE PERSON should have that much control over education
4. NOBODY from the general public or professional
organizations testified in favor of this bill. Only 4
people testified to support HB602 [three weeks ago].
Three were members of the State Board of Education. One
was a representative of the Governor. A VOTE TO SUPPORT
THIS BILL IS A VOTE AGAINST THE PEOPLE.
5. The Governor's staff has stated that if we don't like
who the Governor appoints we can elect a new Governor.
This is a poor response. There are many issues that
contribute to the election of a Governor, not just
education. It is also more likely that voters can call
and actually speak to an elected State Board of Education
member if they have a concern. It is NEVER possible to
speak with the Governor directly if his appointees are
making poor decisions.
6. Please ask legislators to make a WISE DECISION NOT A
POLITICALLY CONVENIENT DECISION.
7. The pressure Gov. Taft is placing on Republican
legislators is a CLEAR DEMONSTRATION of the pressure he
places on his State Board appointees if the issue on the
table is important to him and exemplifies why HB602 needs
to be turned down.
Thank you very much for your help on this issue. Please
continue to be in prayer for our legislators. Their
decisions have tremendous impact on our families.