From the monthly archives: September 2011

Last night I had the opportunity to directly participate in the legislative process when I provided testimony in front of the House Education Committee.  I was privileged to listen to numerous amazing individuals from all over Ohio speak about the adverse effects of this legislation on their schools and community.  Sadly, too many Republicans on the committee ignored cold, hard facts and passed the bill, 12-10, moving it to a floor vote.  In the end, two Republican committee members went against their party, Representatives Anielski and Baker.

Printed below is the written testimony I submitted to the committee for their […]

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According to documents obtained from the Auditor of State’s office, Ohio’s charter schools currently owe a total of $2,044,392 in unpaid auditor fees. Over $1.7 million of these fees are at least 120 days late.

A quick review of some of the top offenders reveals some not-so-surprising results to anyone familiar with Ohio’s disastrous charter school system.

A 2011 audit of The Legacy Academy for Leaders and the Arts (#2 in our list) resulted in unpaid fees totaling $148,029.32. The audit revealed a long list of violations including $483,923 in checks written by the school treasurer, Carl Shye, […]

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The GOP spin on the retroactive raises the GOP gave its staffers in July and then began giving the Democratic staffers this month continues to circle the drain into FailLand.  The Senate GOP defended Senate staffer raises and making them retroactive despite their rhetoric on Issue 2 about keeping government employees’ compensation in check due to our austere times by saying they were required to keep key Senate staffers, like the Senate GOP caucus’ chief-of-staff, Matt Schuler, from leaving them for other government posts and how the whole thing just show why merit pay under Issue 2 […]

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128 days. That is how late Josh Mandel is in filing his personal financial disclosure forms with the United State Senate. Senate rules require every candidate who declares to run for a Senate seat must file their disclosure forms within 30 days of doing so. Back in April Mandel declared his candidacy for Sherrod Brown’s Senate seat and he we are almost five months later and he has still yet to file them.

While this probably isn’t news to people who frequent this blog it seems to be brand spanking new to newspapers around the state. Just this weekend the […]

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According to Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Jean Schmidt is one of 14 Democrats and Republicans in congress “whose actions violated the law or who otherwise engaged in serious misconduct.”

CREW’s latest report identified Schmidt as the only Ohioan worthy of this high honor:

Rep. Schmidt accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars in free legal services from lawyers hired by an interest group that appreciated her legislative assistance.

The ethically challenged congresswoman also failed to report the free legal services as gifts in her disclosure forms.

Congratulations, Jean! Keep up the good work.

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To say John Kasich has a muddled history on the issue of Video Lottery Terminals (VLTs—i.e.- video slot machines) at horseracing tracks. 

Kasich was highly critical of Governor Ted Strickland’s initial decision to permit VLTs as a way to avoid freezing planned income tax cuts and still balance the budget.

Kasich largely refused to take an actual position on VLTs during the campaign.  Then in February, Kasich told the Youngstown Vindicator:

As for a time frame for a decision on legalizing slots, Kasich said, “Haste makes waste. I want to make sure we do everything we’re doing […]

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NOTE: The letter has been updated. It seems there were some transcription errors in the copy I posted last night that were not in the original. My apologies to Dr. Shreffler.

About a week ago I was forwarded an email written by Dr. Mike Shreffler, the Superintendent of Southeast Local Schools. In the letter Dr. Shreffler recounts a invitation-only event he attended with Governor Kasich and the many false and often downright nasty statements made by the Governor regarding public employees in Ohio.

I was forwarded the letter again and again over the past week from good friends, casual acquaintances, […]

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Apparently, we now know what one of the criteria is not considered by JobsOhio:  has the company been accused of millions of Medicaid fraud?

According to the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1998, OmniCare moved out of the Cincinnati area to move to northern Kentucky to the new RiverCenter II office complex being built in Covington, Kentucky right off the Ohio River:

In November, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority approved a $4.1 million package of tax incentives to lure Omnicare from its current headquarters in Chemed Center to Northern Kentucky.

[Source: Cincinnati Enquirer, (May 3, 1997) “Omnicare moving to […]

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Today, Senator Sawyer introduced SB 225 as an alternative to the one speedily past by the Republican majority in the House (HB 319).  The map was actually an entry by a Republican Illinois state lawmaker with apparently a love of political cartography and a massive amount of free time on his hands.  His was one of the top entries in the redistricting contest sponsored by the League of Women Voters (who, I’m told, is nothing like the Justice League) and other civic minded groups.

Here’s what the map under SB 225 would look like:


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I’ve had some productive conversations with my far-right State Representative (self-described Libertarian) lately about working on a budget correction bill to remove the teacher testing provision.  It is likely the only item he and I will agree on, but I’ve offered to provide all the support I can if he can introduce the change, and since he is on the Education committee it seems like a good fit.  While he seems to be mostly put off by the ridiculous price tag, his belief in less government, not more, is certainly contrary to the law’s overreaching requirements.

Recently, he has engaged […]

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Plunderbund hits 4,192

On September 17, 2011 By

September 11, 1985:  Pete Rose hits his 4,192th career hit, besting Ty Cobb as the all-time career hit leader in professional baseball.

September 17, 2011:  Plunderbund gets its 4,192th follower on Facebook.  It’s Facebook following having grown by nearly a factor of FIFTEEN since the November election.

Facebook has become a place of good place to add additional content and for marketing our posts.  It’s lead to dynamic growth in our traffic and reach.

We take pride in the content we generate, which must be done as we all balance our actual paying jobs and our families.  But we […]

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