Emily Bacha, Communications Director, November 14, 2019
Even though House Bill 6 has now gone into effect, a chance to overturn Ohio’s disastrous energy policy still exists in the courts. On November 13, 2019, the Ohio Environmental Council, Moms Clean Air Force, Ohio Citizen Action, and Ohio Voice filed an amicus brief in the Ohio Supreme Court in support of the Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts’ lawsuit. In late October, the U.S. Federal District Court certified five questions to the Ohio Supreme Court, including whether the Ohio Constitution guarantees 90 days for referendum signature gathering.
Due to lengthy procedural requirements enacted by the General Assembly, referendum efforts to overturn House Bill 6 only had 52 days to gather signatures, rather than 90.
The following quote can be attributed, in whole or in part, to Miranda Leppla, Vice President of Energy Policy and Lead Energy Counsel at the Ohio Environmental Council:
“Ohioans deserve the right to a fair and robust democratic process. The procedures and political fallout of the House Bill 6 referendum have revealed a flaw in our democracy—and the Ohio Supreme Court has the opportunity to reinvigorate the right to a citizens’ referendum guaranteed by the Ohio Constitution. Every day matters in the fight against climate change, just like every day matters for gathering signatures for a referendum—and Ohioans should have had a full 90 days to reject House Bill 6 by placing it on the ballot.”
The following quote can be attributed, in whole or in part, to Tracy Sabetta on behalf of Moms Clean Air Force in Ohio:
“Ohio parents who wish to protect their children’s health from increased coal plant emissions deserved the opportunity to sign the petition putting the House Bill 6 referendum on the ballot. We are hopeful that the Ohio Supreme Court will address the questions before them and ensure that what is provided in the Ohio constitution for the referendum process is fully available to Ohio voters.”
The following quote can be attributed, in whole or in part, to Rachael Belz, Executive Director of Ohio Citizen Action:
“Ohio citizens deserve every protection and opportunity afforded to them by our state’s constitution. We urge the Ohio Supreme Court to address the questions presented in the case to ensure that those who wish to petition their government have ample time to do so. Given the interference and potentially criminal activity that kept many Ohioans from signing the House Bill 6 referendum petition, the time is right to confront this issue and protect the democratic process.”