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Ohio House Could Vote on Calamity Days Extension, Election Bills

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After being shelved during the last House session, a measure to extend calamity days for schools could make it to the floor next week. Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow has more on what else the Legislature will be working on.

Friday, February 14, 2014 at 5:27 pm

When a storm hits and roads are flooded, there are still drivers who try to drive through high water, leaving people and their vehicles stranded. That’s why Republican Sen. Tim Schaffer of Lancaster has introduced a bill that would it illegal for drivers to ignore “High Water” and “Road Closed” signs.

The bill, which is scheduled for a possible vote in the House, was created after a water rescuer died saving the lives of two others who were trapped after ignoring a road closure.

Two controversial election bills could get a full House vote. One bill would shorten the early voting period and eliminate the so-called “golden week,” and the other would allow only the Secretary of State to send out unsolicited absentee ballot applications, not individual county boards of elections.

Also in the House, a committee could vote on a bill that makes changes to provisional ballot laws in Ohio. Republican Senator Bill Seitz of Cincinnati, who sponsors the bill, says the measure codifies recent rulings made in federal court. However, Democrats believe the bill transfers too much responsibility from a trained poll worker to the voter.

Senator Seitz's controversial bill to overhaul the state’s energy standards and policies is scheduled to a make a return in committee. The bill hasn’t been seen since early November, when a meeting for a possible vote was cancelled.

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