Week in review - August 19, 2011 -- Our top "5" subjects you should know

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In This Issue:

1. GOP leaders approach public union leaders for compromise

Governor John Kasich, House Speaker William Batchelder (R-Medina), and Senate President Tom Niehaus (R-New Richmond) held a press conference Wednesday, August 17, 2011, asking for union leaders to come to the table to negotiate a compromise on Issue 2-- the referendum on Senate Bill 5, the controversial collective bargaining law. During the press conference Governor Kasich confirmed having knowledge of meetings that took place with his confidants and union leadership focused on the potential for a compromise.

2. Administration prepares to roll out JobsOhio II

The Department of Development (DOD) released a report to the General Assembly this week that included a review of its operations to determine which functions should remain within the state agency structure and which functions should transfer to JobsOhio, the nonprofit corporation established through legislation, responsible for the promotion of economic development, job creation, job retention, and the recruitment of businesses to Ohio.

3. House to hold study committees

House Republicans announced this week the creation of bipartisan, ad hoc study committees on tax policy, workforce development, and improving state government's use of technology. The committees will hold field hearings in the coming weeks to gather public input that could inspire legislation in the fall.

4. Small Business Advisory Council holds inaugural meeting

The Small Business Advisory Council, housed in the Common Sense Initiative Office (CSIO), held its first meeting on Thursday, August 18, 2011. Lt. Governor Mary Taylor welcomed the council and shared background information on the formation of the council. She indicated that in reviewing the state’s regulatory system, there should be a focus on creating economic development opportunities, ensuring a transparent and responsive review process, providing easy and inexpensive mechanisms for businesses to comply, and ensuring fair and consistent rules and regulations. The council has not yet been assigned any goals or timelines, but Lt. Governor Taylor said she hopes they will establish them on their own.

5. Carraher named executive director of OPERS

Karen Carraher has been named the executive director of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS). Carraher has been the interim director with the state’s largest pension system since February 2011. During that time, Carraher was involved in budget debates centering on a proposal to shift more contribution costs to employees, which was ultimately not included in the bill. Carraher has worked for OPERS since 2002. Previously, she worked as business services director for the Ohio Education Association, controller for both Mount Carmel Health and Riverside Methodist Hospitals, and as an audit manager for Ernst & Young.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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