Biz & Labor

Ohio lobbyist Matt Borges accused of paying $15K to spy on effort to repeal corrupt utility bailout

BY: - February 6, 2023

CINCINNATI — A lobbyist with ties to Ohio’s top Republicans in 2019 paid $15,000 for inside information about a campaign to repeal $1.3 billion in utility subsidies that were later determined to be corruptly passed, according to an FBI agent’s testimony Monday. The agent also said that Secretary of State Frank LaRose wanted to meet […]

Corruption trial texts: OH AG Yost didn’t speak out against bailout because of utility support

BY: - February 3, 2023

CINCINNATI — In June of 2019, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost thought a proposed utility bailout was a bad law, but he didn’t publicly oppose it because of support he’d received from the bailout’s primary beneficiary, FirstEnergy, according to lobbyists’ text messages displayed in court on Friday. Prosecutors displayed the messages as part of the […]

Texts show close consultation between Householder and FirstEnergy execs on utility bailout

BY: - February 2, 2023

A series of text messages displayed in federal court Thursday showed close consultation between executives of an electric utility and a lawmaker after the utility made huge contributions to make him Ohio House speaker. The consultations occurred as the lawmaker and the utility worked furiously to pass a huge bailout favoring the company.

Commission advances rules, leasing forms for drilling on Ohio’s state lands

BY: - February 2, 2023

Environmentalists demanded public input and oversight before oil and gas companies gain clearance to drill on public lands. The five-member oil and gas land management commission heard public comment Wednesday before approving a new standard lease form and rules. The process to lease public lands for oil and gas exploration has been exceptionally slow. Lawmakers […]

Householder trial: Millions in dark money used to call dark money “dirty”

BY: - February 1, 2023

CINCINNATI — In politics, logical and moral consistency often aren’t the highest priorities. That was starkly true in the 2018 campaign to make then-Rep. Larry Householder speaker in the legislative session that would begin the following January, according to evidence presented in federal court on Wednesday. Householder is accused of racketeering in a scheme to […]

Angling for appeal? Householder attorneys go after judge in corruption trial

BY: - February 1, 2023

CINCINNATI — There has been speculation since the start of a massive public corruption trial that lawyers for the main defendant — former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder — were banking on getting any conviction tossed out on appeal. There might have been evidence of that on Tuesday when one of the attorneys took the […]

DeWine prioritizes children, mental health, and attracting business in state of the state

BY: - January 31, 2023

Ohio Gov.Mike DeWine made clear Tuesday that his priorities during this budget cycle center on child literacy, mental health, and spending to bring in big business. In his annual State of the State address to a joint meeting of the General Assembly, DeWine announced big money moves included in his proposed budget, including $2.5 billion […]

Fate of former Ohio House speaker could hinge on whether he took an “official act”

BY: - January 31, 2023

It appears that federal prosecutors have a mountain of evidence they want to present to the jury in their racketeering case against former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder and former Ohio GOP Chairman Matt Borges.  They have emails, text messages, wiretap transcripts, and the testimony of undercover agents and confidential informants. They have so much […]

Study: Ohio could have more in budget for families with tax changes

BY: - January 31, 2023

An Ohio-based think tank said changes to the tax system in the state could bring home more money for families and represent better budgetary priorities. The analysis came as Gov. Mike DeWine is set to give his “State of the State” on Tuesday, followed by a formal introduction of his budget priorities to the state’s […]

Ohio hands out final round of demolition grants

BY: - January 31, 2023

The DeWine administration is handing out $54.5 million to fund demolition projects around Ohio. The money comes from a $150 million revitalization program set up in the 2021 budget. Friday’s announcement covers nearly 600 sites in 15 counties. The majority of those projects are vacant single family homes — many in Montgomery and Trumbull counties. […]

PUCO approves big hike in gas charges

BY: - January 28, 2023

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio on Thursday agreed to a measure that could increase fixed monthly charges to 1.4 million Ohio natural gas customers by more than 50% over the next five years. Regulators approved a compromise that was agreed to by Columbia Gas and the Office of the Ohio Consumer’s Counsel, the state’s […]

Corruption trial delayed by COVID

BY: - January 26, 2023

CINCINNATI — A federal court trial over allegations of epic public corruption has been interrupted at least until Monday after a juror was diagnosed with COVID on Wednesday. “The Court was advised this afternoon that a juror has tested positive for COVID-19,” U.S. District Judge Timothy Black wrote in an order Wednesday evening. “In an […]