Guns, school funding, gay rights: The topics lawmakers keep debating year and year

Guns, school funding, gay rights: The topics lawmakers keep debating year and year

Revamping school funding, regulating vicious dogs, legalizing concealed weapons without training or permits, banning LGBT discrimination — these disparate topics are among the bills Ohio lawmakers have repeatedly tried and failed to pass year after year. Some advocates never give up hope that this will be the time they’ll get a breakthrough. Dog attacks too common in Ohio: “It’s insanity and you can’t imagine why this goes on.” “It remains the single top priority for the Buckeye Firearms Association. I can tell you there will be a ‘constitutional’ carry bill this year,” association lobbyist Rob Sexton said. State Rep. Tom Brinkman, R-Cincinnati, said bills to allow Ohioans to carry concealed weapons without permits or training mandates have been introduced nearly every legislative session since 1995. The value in introducing such bills is to strive for the ideal but then settle for incremental improvements to gun laws, he said. The retread bills tend to fall into three categories: hot button social issues that address abortion, guns, the death penalty or gay rights; complex policies such as school funding reform or fixing the state unemployment compensation fund; and a hodge podge of ideas such as strengthening vicious dog laws or legalizing backyard fireworks. In February 2014, two neighborhood dogs fatally attacked Klonda Richey, leaving her to die on her Dayton front yard and prompting state lawmakers to call for changes in Ohio’s vicious dog laws. Since then, six state lawmakers have taken up the cause. All six have failed. State Sen. […]

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