By MICHAEL O'BRIEN Like Us on Facebook
Sept 4, DeWine’s
a written petition
for initiated statute, entitled “The
Access to Healthcare Act,” from the committee to
represent the petitioners, Healthy Ohioans Work . The submission was certified as containing
both the necessary 1,000 valid
signatures from registered Ohio voters and
a “fair and truthful” summary of the proposed amendment.
“Without passing upon the advisability of the approval or rejection of the measure to be referred, I hereby certify
that the summary
is a fair and truthful statement of the proposed constitutional amendment,”
DeWine stated in a letter to
According to the
group’s website, Healthy
Ohioans Work is a coalition of individuals, community organizations, labor
unions, businesses, associations, coalitions, health care
providers, insurers, medical professionals, philanthropic organizations,
religious organizations, consumer groups and advocates who support Ohio Medicaid
providers and labor unions together proved their dedication
to this vital public policy issue by collecting more than 5,800 signatures
in four days’
time and over a holiday weekend,” said
Jon Allison, spokesperson for
Healthy Ohioans Work. “These devoted individuals and organizations have been
advocating for Medicaid
extension for many months and will continue to
press for legislative action,” Allison added.
Debbie Silverstein, Director of the Single Payer Action Network Ohio (SPAN) welcomed the attorney general’s action while citing the need for the initiative.
“We find it necessary to use the initiative process because the Legislature has failed to do its job,” Silverste
SPAN is a statewide coalition of organizations and individuals in
fundamental health care reform in our state and country so that every resident
is guaranteed full and comprehensive coverage.
“Many people think that if you are poor enough, you get Medicaid, but that isn't always true. Non-disabled adults without children are generally excluded from Medicaid, no matter how little they make. Many of those eligible for the Medicaid expansion are employed in low paying jobs without health insurance, and their unreimbursed care is a cost driver for everyone. We must expand coverage to those who are eligible under the Affordable Care Act,” Silverstein added.
According to the attorney general's office, once the summary language and initial signatures are certified, the
Ohio Ballot Board must
determine if the amendment contains a single issue or multiple issues . The petitioners must then
collect signatures for each issue from
registered voters in each of 44 of Ohio’s 88
counties, equal to 1.5 percent of the total vote cast in the county for the office of governor at the last gubernatorial
fails to pass the law, either in original or
amended form, supplemental petitions may be circulated to have the proposal
placed upon the next general election
ballot, subject to the
same signature requirements.
The full text of today’s letter and of the amendment petitions submitted can be found at www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov/Ballotinitiatives.