Big changes are being implemented that will make Ohio a better place to start a business. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose announced more options are now in place for limited liability companies (LLCs) to manage and structure themselves in ways that will provide the certainty and confidence they require to be successful. In January of 2021, the Ohio General Assembly passed and the Governor subsequently signed into law the Revised Limited Liability Company Act, SB 276. This important piece of legislation serves as the first major revision since 1994. The new law addresses the ambiguity in state law regarding the governance of limited liability companies.
The changes include:
- Implementing flexibility for structuring LLCs.
- Allowing a single LLC to establish one or more "series" of assets.
- Providing clarity and predictability for Ohioans looking to start and grow their limited liability company.
“Ohio job creators have been creating new businesses at a record-breaking pace,” said LaRose. “As our state economy evolves, we’ve seen a big surge in the number of businesses filing as an LLC, and these improvements are going to go a long way toward solidifying Ohio as a destination state for entrepreneurs."
Learn more about how the modernization of Ohio’s limited liability companies better serves Ohio business owners with this fact sheet.
Maintaining Accurate Voter Lists and Strengthening Election Security
This week, Secretary LaRose issued Directive 2022-23, acting on his legal responsibility to conduct voter list maintenance pursuant to both federal and state law. This process was carried out previously by Secretaries Brown, Blackwell, Taft, Brunner, and Husted.
In 2018, the previous administration issued two directives, one under the National Change of Address process and one under the Supplemental process, which ordered local boards of elections to mail notices to electors who have moved or are inactive to confirm their status as a registered voter. This action started the four-year clock for the cancellation of inactive or inaccurate registrations.
Directive 2022-23 puts in place procedures for local boards of elections to contact identified, inactive registrants. Registrants may become fully active by taking just one of the following actions:
- Voting in the upcoming primary election;
- Responding to the 2018 confirmation notices from the county board of elections;
- Submitting an absentee ballot application;
- Updating or confirming their address online, by mail, or in-person;
- Updating their registration online, by mail, or in-person;
- Engaging in a BMV transaction; and
- Responding to the forthcoming mailing advising them of their pending cancellation.
Registrations under consideration for removal have been inactive for at least the past 12 elections under the supplemental process and eight under the NCOA process. Additionally, failure to conduct a General Voter Records Maintenance process would result in Secretary LaRose violating both federal and state law.
“One of the best ways to fight fraud and protect the ability of our county boards to run successful elections is by keeping our voting rolls accurate,” said LaRose. “It’s all about election integrity. Ohioans need to trust that their elections will be secure and their boards are working at peak levels of efficiency. We’re going to make sure that happens.”
Secretary LaRose is once again taking actions designed to reach registrants who may wish to continue as registered voters, despite their inactivity.
Read more about this process here.
Ohio Entrepreneurs Start Off 2022 With a Bang
Following another record-breaking year of new business filings, Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose announced 16,571 new businesses were created in the first month of 2022. This is a 32% increase from December (12,516), higher than January 2021, and serves as a remarkable start to the new year for new Ohio businesses. In 2021, 197,010 new businesses formed in Ohio, breaking 2020’s record numbers by more than 25,000 filings.
“The pandemic and record-breaking inflation are certainly making it a challenge for job creation, but Ohio entrepreneurs are showing that they are optimistic about what they can accomplish in our great state,” said LaRose. “As I travel Ohio, I’m always on the lookout for new small businesses to support. That’s what it’s all about – supporting your community and the people in it who are taking a chance to realize their dream, and more people than ever are doing it right here in Ohio.”
- 16,571 new businesses were created in Ohio in January 2022
- New business filings in January of this year show a 32% increase over December 2021 (12,516)
- 197,010 new businesses were created in 2021, averaging 16,417 per month
- Ohio entrepreneurs can visit OhioSoS.gov/BusinessResources to discover the helpful opportunities available to them that can help them start and grow their business
- Read more here.
Connecting With Ohio Entrepreneurs and Business Leaders
The Secretary is dedicated to meeting with local chambers, entrepreneurs and other business leaders throughout Ohio to learn more about their operations, successes, and challenges. As the front door for new business, the Ohio Secretary of State’s office has a unique opportunity to help better position new and existing businesses for success. Through information on business identity theft and cyber security protection, connecting job creators with resources to help them succeed, and listening to their needs, Ohio can continue to be a beacon for entrepreneurship. With that goal in mind, Secretary LaRose met with the Brecksville Broadview Heights and Tallmadge Chambers of Commerce this week, and learned more about what keeps Ohio’s economic engine humming.
Secretary LaRose speaks to members of the Tallmadge and Brecksville Broadview Heights Chambers.
Secretary LaRose also hosted a minority business roundtable with a remarkable assembly of student entrepreneurs, business leaders, and others at Cleveland State University’s Small Business Development Center. They discussed Ohio’s ongoing support for new business development and innovation, and resources that may be available to minority business startups and existing businesses to help them succeed. Each of the students described their innovative business startup, and the Secretary applauded them for their ingenuity and courage for becoming an entrepreneur. Read more about this visit here.
Secretary LaRose speaks to student entrepreneurs, business leaders, and others at Cleveland State University’s Small Business Development Center.
On Tuesday, Secretary LaRose visited with the owner of Zanzibar Soul Fusion in Cleveland to present the business with a proclamation recognizing its success as part of Secretary LaRose’s Ohio Business Spotlight Initiative. Owner Johnny Hutton hosted the Secretary for lunch and discussed his experience and insights as a Black entrepreneur.
Each month, LaRose honors a handful of businesses and entrepreneurs that are creating jobs and making a profound difference in Ohio’s economy. For February, the Secretary honored Black-owned businesses in recognition of Black History Month.
That same day, Secretary LaRose visited SGT Clean Car Wash in Strongsville, a veteran-owned business previously recognized by the Ohio Business Spotlight Initiative in November, in honor of Veteran’s Day. The Secretary met with owner Brain Krusz, a Marine Corps veteran, and discussed how other veterans can apply their skills, knowledge and discipline to get their start as entrepreneurs.
Supporting Ohio Veterans
Secretary LaRose met with the Cuyahoga County Veteran Service Commission this week to discuss a continued partnership with the veteran community in Ohio. During the 2020 election, Ohio veterans continued their service in a new way, working as poll workers for the election through the “Second Call to Duty” initiative. Additionally, the group discussed ways to support veterans looking to take the skills they learned in the military and apply them to starting a new business.
Secretary LaRose speaks to members of the Cuyahoga County Veteran Service Commission.
Honoring an Ohio Legend
Secretary LaRose offered the following thoughts on the passing of his former mentor, Ohio statesman and former Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives, William Batchelder:
“For so many of us who served in the Ohio General Assembly alongside and under Speaker Batchelder, he was our true north. He was passionate about public service, true to his conservative beliefs, and wickedly smart with an encyclopedic understanding of Ohio law and history. Equally important, Speaker Batchelder was a legislator for the people. He sought nothing other than good government, and as legislator, he comported himself in a civil, collegial manner – a decorum that is in short supply today. Rest in Peace, Speaker Batchelder, and God bless his wife Alice and his family.”
The Secretary joined friends, colleagues and family of Speaker Batchelder Friday to pay his respects and honor Speaker Batchelder’s legacy. Speaker Batchelder’s obituary can be found here.
In Case You Missed It:
Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose visited the Columbus Torah Academy Feb. 8 to discuss the importance of civic engagement and various ways students can become involved.
“There’s no age too early to start talking about civic engagement and voting,” LaRose told the Columbus Jewish News Feb. 9. “I love interacting with groups of students whenever I can. We’ve made that a focal point of my time as secretary of state.”
LaRose met with students from kindergarten to high school seniors, discussing the importance of registering to vote, voting and being engaged in that process in other ways, including serving as poll workers. This included reading a “Cat in the Hat”-style book about voting to younger students and talking about various Ohio engagement programs with older ones.
Because it's Black History Month, Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose spent Tuesday, Feb. 15, in Northeast Ohio highlighting minority businesses and talking to minority business owners and students, at Shaker Square and Cleveland State University about what his office can do to help entrepreneurs. The trip is a part of LaRose's monthly tour of businesses and business organizations around the state.
"It's the hardest thing you'll ever do," he told a group of minority student/entrepreneurs at CSU's Small Business Development Center. "What this is all about is encouraging people to start their own business and know that (starting a business) is accessible to them."
Starting a new business, said LaRose, who grew up in a family business, "takes a 100% commitment. So whatever your dream and your passion is, pursue it as hard as you can."
LaRose offered the young entrepreneurs’ suggestions on how to navigate state government and the financing world, but he said finding someone they could turn to for advice was key.