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House Bill 180--Residency Bill Ruled Invalid

In a decision that was issued in a comparatively short time period, the Eighth Appellate District Court of Appeals' in Cuyahoga County affirmed the trial court's decision that the Local Hire law passed by the Ohio legislature and signed into law by the Governor, R.C. 9.75, is a not a valid exercise of the legislature' constitutional authority, and that the statute unconstitutionally infringes on the city's Home-Rule authority. Click Here for Court Opinion

The Court of Appeals found that Art. II, Section 34 of the Ohio Constitution which the legislature relied upon in enacting R.C. 9.75, does not reach Cleveland's Fannie Lewis law. According to the Court, R.C. 9.75 does not relate to any residency requirement imposed as a condition of employment by employers upon public employees. The Appeals Court did not find that R.C. 9.75 relates to the right of a person to choose where to live and that the statute does not relate to the comfort, health, safety or general welfare of the contractors.

The Court of Appeals said:

"It is readily apparent that R.C. 9.75 is no more than an attempt to preempt powers of local self-government and to restrict the contract terms between public authorities and contractors who choose to bid on local public improvement contracts. H.B. 180 was not advanced by a labor or worker group. It was advanced by a contractor association, not for the benefit of workers, but to benefit their interests. The contractors' interest is in streamlining interactions with municipalities by limiting the ability of municipal governments to place terms or requirements on public contracts that are awarded within those municipal jurisdictions."


While this ruling is a disappointment, it was not surprising. The state of Ohio has 45 days from today to file an appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court. We will keep you posted.

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