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January 4, 2021
January 2021 Legislative Report

LEGISLATIVE REPORT

By Mark Totman, Legislation Representative

The November General Elections are over, and Republicans still have complete control in the Ohio House and Senate (article written in early December).

After the January 2021 swearing-in ceremony, the Ohio House of Representatives will be comprised of 64 Republicans and 35 Democrats. The Ohio Senate will be comprised of 25 Republicans and 8 Democrats.

In the U.S. Congress, the House will be controlled by the Democrats with 222 seats to the Republicans with 212 seats, and one Independent. The Senate is still up for grabs, with the Republicans controlling 50 seats and the Democrats with 48 seats. Two Senate seats in Georgia are involved in a runoff election. The outcome of these two Senate races will determine if Republicans or Democrats will control the U.S. Senate. The runoff vote will be held in January 2021.

As of this article’s writing, President-Elect Biden has been the projected winner of the Presidential Election by the process of Electoral College votes (President Trump has not conceded the election at this time).

The electors who comprise the Electoral College will cast their official votes on December 14, 2020. On January 06, 2021, Congress will count them with the Presidential Inauguration and swearing-in to be held on January 20, 2021.

After the November General Election, our focus has turned to the lame-duck session at the statehouse with our coalition of Labor Legislative Mark Totman and Contractor Associations. We will fend off any legislation or last-minute amendments to bills that would negatively affect our prevailing wage law, competitive bidding laws, unemployment compensation, apprenticeship standards, etc., as this article is being written in early December.

Also, the Legislature is looking at a Capitol Budget Bill of over $2 billion for projects of state-owned buildings and infrastructure, etc., during this lame-duck session. This would be a welcome boost to the construction industry going into 2021. We expect some reduction of gas tax revenue, which funds our ODOT infrastructure projects for the upcoming 2021 year, due to fewer miles driven by civilian and commercial drivers during the COVID-19 pandemic. We will be able to update you more on these possible shortfalls as we get into the ODOT Budget process in January.

At this time, 2021 still looks like a good year with a decent ODOT Budget and the added boost of a Capitol Budget passage for our members. Hopefully, we can put COVID19 in the rearview mirror in 2021 and get back to business here in Ohio!

Thank you for your continued support of Local 18’s PEP Program!

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