Ensuring the Integrity of Ohio's Elections
In Ohio, without fail, we conduct a post-election audit in each county every election and we do it right so that Ohioans can be confident that their elections are honest! This means bipartisan teams of sworn-election officials ensure that the paper ballots match the electronic results through a thorough percentage-based or risk-limiting audit. This week, Secretary of State Frank LaRose held a public event and invited the press to visit the Franklin County Board of Elections to observe their audit of the August Congressional Special Election for Ohio’s 15th Congressional District. Director Antone White, Deputy Director David Payne, and Board of Election staff walked the public through the painstaking process, highlighting the many steps they take to ensure the audit is secure, bi-partisan and accurate. Following the 2020 Presidential election, Ohio’s post-election audit revealed a 99.98% accuracy rate.
Watch the full press conference here.
Supporting Ohio's Warriors
The end of our nation's involvement in Afghanistan and the tragedies surrounding the exit have taken a heavy toll on the veteran community. In light of the situation, Secretary LaRose joined Governor Mike DeWine, Ohio National Guard Adjutant General John Harris, Ohio Department of Veterans Services Director Deborah Ashenhurst, and Ohio Department of Mental Health Director Lori Criss for a press conference announcing state support for veteran mental health. Secretary LaRose, along with State Representative Haraz Ghanbari and State Senator Frank Hoagland, shared a message to their fellow veterans who are struggling that it is okay to ask for help and there are resources available to support them through these challenges. Secretary LaRose is a combat veteran serving over a decade in the United States Army and as a Special Forces Green Beret. He continues to serve in the US Army Reserves.
Watch Secretary LaRose's Remarks here.
Spotlighting Ohio's Skilled Trades
With Labor Day right around the corner, Secretary LaRose shined a spotlight on the businesses in Ohio whose workers demonstrate the hard work, grit and talent that help our state grow through the skilled trades. The businesses selected represent a wide range of skilled trades including carpentry, plumbing and pipefitting and steelworkers – each playing a critical role in strengthening their communities and in growing Ohio’s economy.
Learn more about these and other incredible Ohio businesses at OhioSoS.gov/Spotlight.
Ensuring Fair Legislative Maps
The Ohio Redistricting Commission met this week to adopt rules for the process as required by Article XI of the Ohio Constitution. The Secretary serves as a member of the seven-person commission, which also includes the Governor, State Auditor and Republican and Democrat legislators from both the House and the Senate. During his time in the Ohio Senate, Secretary LaRose was a vocal advocate for reforming the redistricting process. He helped author Ohio’s constitutional amendments to improve the process, and continues to advocate for bipartisan collegiality and cooperation as new district lines are created.
Watch the full meeting here.
Convening of the Ohio Ballot Board
Secretary LaRose serves as Chairman of the Ohio Ballot Board, which certifies the ballot language for proposed Constitutional amendments, initiatives, and referenda and oversees efforts to inform voters of proposed ballot issues. Among their responsibilities is to vote at a meeting determining if a proposal before them constitutes a single issue. Approval does not signify an endorsement of the initiative. This week, the Ballot Board unanimously agreed the citizen initiative petition entitled “An Act to Control and Regulate Adult Use Cannabis” was a single subject, allowing for its proponents to begin circulating petitions to put the proposal before the Ohio General Assembly. If the proponents obtain the necessary valid petition signatures and the legislature fails to act upon it, the measure could appear on statewide ballots in 2022. Learn more about how issues can be placed on the Ohio ballot here.
Watch the full meeting here.
Important Election Dates & Reminders:
- Underway: Early Voting Began on August 17 for the Toledo and Cleveland Municipal Elections
- Secretary LaRose helped the citizens of Bellefontaine celebrate the bicentennial of their community over the weekend. The Secretary presented a proclamation from the State of Ohio as hundreds gathered to show pride in their city.
- While on the road this weekend, the Secretary stopped by the Allen County Fair with his daughters. He met with local businesses at their booths, toured the fairgrounds and his daughters enjoyed the entertaining rides.
- The Secretary gathered with a group of local farmers and members of several county Farm Bureaus in northwest Ohio at Genter Farms in Defiance County. He shared important updates, listened to their concerns and priorities, and toured the family farm. Last month, Secretary LaRose featured the hardworking agricultural businesses in the monthly Ohio Business Spotlight.
- Rotarians have a long history of supporting their communities. This week, Secretary LaRose joined the Upper Arlington Rotary Club to enlist their help in spreading accurate information about elections and sharing the resources available for entrepreneurs.
- Carfagna’s Market, a central Ohio staple for authentic Italian food, held the grand opening of their new location on Gemini Place in the northside of Columbus. Secretary LaRose stopped by the celebration of this Ohio success story to congratulate them and offer a proclamation from the State of Ohio.
In Case You Missed It:
Ohio attorneys can once again earn credit as poll workers as part of Lawyers for Liberty
Since taking office in 2019, Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose has made poll worker recruitment a priority. Innovative outreach programs were initiated to ensure polling locations were fully staffed each election day. With the impact of COVID-19, recruitment efforts became exponentially more important as a high percentage of poll workers were older Ohioans. On Tuesday, the Ohio Supreme Court announced one of these pioneering programs will continue through the November 2021 election.
In the summer of 2020, Secretary LaRose first won the approval of the Ohio Supreme Court to allow Ohio lawyers to receive required Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit for serving as a precinct election official (PEO) in the November election. The program, known as Lawyers for Liberty, contributed more than 1,000 new poll workers last fall as Ohio broke the record for trained PEOs. The nation noticed and other states followed Ohio’s lead, prompting the National Association of State Election Directors to present Secretary LaRose with the 2021 “Innovators Award.”
“Unique challenges require creative solutions, and that’s exactly what happened when we created Lawyers for Liberty last year,” said LaRose. “We appreciate the Ohio Supreme Court recognizing the high value of this program to both Ohio lawyers and the communities they will serve as poll workers.”
Read more here.