Opponents of a controversial anti-union law in Ohio have collected more than five times the necessary signatures to put repeal question in front of voters on the November ballot. Union members and supporters paraded triumphantly through Columbus to the Secretary of State’s office behind a truck carrying some 1,500 boxes of petitions. The number set a new state record for the number of signatures gathered in a statewide petition drive.
“The governor has trampled all over our rights,” said Mahoning County Sheriff’s Sgt. T.J. Assion, president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 141, who was among the marchers. “We’ve collected…over 1 million signatures on petitions, and it’s time to turn those in and show the governor that he’s not as popular as he thinks he is, he’s not as smart as he thinks he is and that he’s dead wrong.”
Governor John Kasich signed Senate Bill 5 into law in March, but the petition filing blocks it from taking effect Friday as scheduled. The measure would limit collective bargaining on health care, sick time, and pension benefits, and would ban public employees from striking, affecting over than 350,000 teachers, police officers, firefighters, state employees and other public workers.
Media Resources: Vindy.com 6/30/2011; Columbus Dispatch 6/29/2011; Cincinatti.com 6/29/2011