Second Opposition Testimony is scheduled for Wednesday, March 14; details below!

First Opposition Testimony Very Well Attended!

The Government Accountability and Oversight Committee held their first Opponent hearing on Wednesday, March 7th with crowds packing out the main hearing room (approx 60 seats), the hallway, and four additional hearing rooms of various sizes.  A large group of 75+/- people were there on another issue so a conservative estimate suggests 250-350 people came to Columbus to demonstrate their opposition to HB 512.

Thank you to everyone who took the time out of their busy day to come!

Your presence definitely sent a message – I had state representatives from other committees asking what all the excitement was about and it provided an opportunity to share about our concerns with HB 512.

HearingRoom122a  HearingRoom122  outside311

HearingRoom311a  HearingRoom311  hallway314

Second Opposition Testimony Opportunity – Wednesday, March 14 @ 9:30am

If you were unable to come to Columbus this week, please plan to attend the hearing on HB 512 on Wednesday, March 14th.  Come for as long as you can, depending on the amount of testimony for each bill (there are seven prior to HB512) this could be an all day commitment.  Stay up to date with changes to the agenda here.

The hearing room was moved to 313 – the largest available so we will need more people to attend!

Additional Action Points

  1. Continue to both call and write to your state representative.  If you have already done this call several friends and neighbors each day and ask them to call as well.
  2. Submit “written only” testimony to GovernmentAccountability&
  3. Offer written and oral testimony (be prepared for questions from Committee Members) by sending prepared remarks to the e-mail address above 24 hours in advance of the hearing and completing a witness slip as requested through the chairman’s office.
  4. Attend the hearing to quietly demonstrate your opposition to the massive overhaul of Ohio’s education system, consolidation of power under the governor and elimination of voter’s voice in education policy!

    (Please note, proper committee protocol prohibits clapping, cheering or commenting.  Attendees have the opportunity to OBSERVE the work of the committee and for the committee to listen to our concerns and ask questions. We do not wish to distract committee members from the substance of our issue by failing to observe official protocol, additionally the Sergeant at Arms can ask uncooperative people to leave and we need everyone to be present!)
     Bonus: Schedule a personal meeting with your state representative while you are in town and explain your concerns with HB 512 face to face.
  5. Share this information with your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, teachers, and favorite radio personalities… We need to get the word out!
Also please understand that we are at the point in the process where the proponents will want to separate the concerns and try to appease the public and lessen pressure on members to vote.  Please consider expressing the constitutional principle of keeping the State Board of Education as an elected body as was intended when it was formed in 1953.  This will be the best way to protect freedoms for ALL students long term.
Note: HB 512 is listed as being for proponent, opponent, and interested parties (these are usually neutral). It is common practice that by inviting all parties to testify, this could indicate it is the final hearing… although this is at Chairman Blessing’s discretion.
See previous posts for committee member contact information, statehouse address and parking information, and background on the substance of HB 512.