If vacancies are able filled in the manner proposed within this legislation, then literally hundreds of seats in many counties could be stuffed with hand picked cronies who do not represent the people in the jurisdiction to which they are appointed.

Call to Action: We are asking you to reach out to your legislatures and
1) Ask them to remove this part of the budget
2) Attend the hearing in support of those testifying against this legislation

Fellow Patriots,

It has come to my attention that legislation has been introduced to change the way county central committee vacancies are filled.  It has been inserted into the massive state budget bill, House Bill 33, a 5000-page monstrosity, and has passed the House.  We need to get this language removed before the Senate version of the budget is passed and goes to a conference committee in early June.

It is now under consideration in the Senate Finance Committee, which will have a Committee Hearing for Public Testimony TUESDAY, MAY 30 AT 2:00 PM.  (Notice attached below)
Senate Finance Committee
Public Hearing on HB 33 (Appropriations)
Topic; General Government
Tuesday, May 30
2:00 PM

Finance Hearing Room


Here is the entire text of HB 33:  hb33_02_PH (


The language of note amends Sections 3517.02-3517.03 of the Ohio Revised Code.  [HB 33:  page 1497, line 46001 through page 1500, line 46082] 

The central text in question is as follows:

(2) Each member of a controlling committee shall be a resident and qualified elector of this state and, except as otherwise provided in division (A)(3) of this section, shall be a resident and qualified elector of the district, ward, or precinct that the member is elected to represent. All 46009 46010 46011 46012 46013 (3) A county controlling committee may adopt a bylaw specifying that a person who is appointed to fill a vacancy on the committee under section 3517.05 of the Revised Code is not required to be a resident of the precinct the person is to represent, so long as the person is a resident of the township or municipal corporation in which the precinct is located. A member of a county controlling committee who is appointed pursuant to such a bylaw shall have the same duties and privileges as a member of the committee who resides in the precinct the member represents. A county controlling committee that adopts such a bylaw shall file a copy of its updated constitution and bylaws with the board of elections. 46014 46015 46016 46017 46018 46019 46020 46021 46022 46023 46024 46025


To compare this to current Ohio law, see attachment below. (ORC sections)

My short version response to hearing about this was as follows:


This proposed language not only contradicts and nullifies existing Ohio law, but fundamentally alters the way County Central Committees are constituted by taking the choice out of the hands of the electors (voters) of a party to directly choose a person from their geographical jurisdiction (precinct, city ward, or township) to represent them to the County Party, and places in the hands of party bosses to select people who do not reside in the jurisdiction they are to represent.  

This would also make bylaws of a county party superior to state law.  The state law is clear, that the central committee member must reside in the jurisdiction he or she represents.  

If vacancies could be filled in this proposed manner, then Literally hundreds of seats in many counties could be stuffed with hand picked cronies who do not represent the people in the jurisdiction to which they are appointed.  


For example, if there is a vacancy in any one of Columbus’s 87 wards, some one who lives and works downtown (Ward 8) for the political and legal establishment can be appointed to fill the central Committee seat for a ward in Clintonville, the Hilltop, the Southside, etc.

In Stark County or Montgomery County, where the County Central Committee members are elected by precinct, it would be even more ridiculous, where literally hundreds of precincts could be filled with persons not residing in the precinct they are appointed to represent.

In any case, the fundamental tenet of direct representation is overthrown.

Furthermore, this proposal contradicts the existing state law which requires the list of members of controlling committees be filed with the Secretary of State.  Again, this appears to be an attempt of local party bosses seeking to keep a tight rein over the processes governing party business in their counties. 

It is an affront to Republican and American principles.


Attached below is a more in-depth analysis which I have submitted and will verbally give as testimony before the Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday, May 30 at 2 PM.  (See attached doc, Filling Vacancies on County Central Committees) Please consider attending this hearing in support of those who will be testifying. If you are interested in testifying, please contact me.  You will need to submit a witness form in advance. And we can coordinate our testimony.  You can also contact Sen. Dolan’s office if you are interested in testifying.


Please call the members of this Committee and ask them to remove this language from the Budget bill.

Senate Finance Committee:
Matt Dolan, Chair             614-466-8056
Jerry Cirino, Vice-chair      614-644-7718
Louis Blessing                  614-466-8068
Theresa Gavarone            614-466-8060
George Lang                    614-466-8072
Nathan Manning               614-644-7613
Bill Reineke                      614-466-8049
Mark Romanchuk              614-466-7505
Kirk Schuring                  614-466-0626
Vernon Sykes, Ranking Minority Member      614-466-7041
Hearcel Craig                  614-466-5131
Paula Hicks                        614-466-5204
Andrew Brenner                  614-466-8086

Also pass along the word to all Senate Members and House Members, Party Officials, County Central Committee Members, State Central Committee Members, and activists across Ohio.  All political power is inherent in the people. (Ohio Constitution) Let’s make sure it is!

Joe Healy

Click here to read Joe Healy’s testimony/ Filling Vacancies on CCC

Click here to read Committee Notice

Click here to read ORC Sections

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