COLUMBUS – Ohio House Speaker Clifford A. Rosenberger, R-Clarksville, and Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof, R-Medina, recently announced the creation of a working group to review and reform Ohio’s congressional redistricting process. 

State Representative Kirk Schuring, R-Canton, and State Senator Matt Huffman, R-Lima, will co-chair the working group.

Also named to the four-person group are Sen. Vernon Sykes, D-Akron, and Rep. Jack Cera, D-Bellaire, who was added today.

According to the Republican majority, the working group will review current law, explore possible reforms, gather public input and make recommendations to the legislative leaders by early December.

The General Assembly would then consider whether to proceed with a redistricting reform resolution to place before Ohio voters. The deadline for considering such a proposal on the 2018 primary election ballot is Feb. 7; however, the General Assembly has the authority to put a proposal on the ballot at any date of its choosing.

“Redistricting has been an issue that several states, including Ohio, have been giving a closer look at in recent years,” said State Rep. Cliff Rosenberger, R-Clarksville.

“With the responsibility of redrawing congressional districts quickly approaching, we feel the issue deserves thorough review and consideration, with the goal of finding common-sense reforms that will lead to a redistricting process that all interested parties can agree on. I believe the creation of this panel, which I hope will be bipartisan, will yield an open exchange of ideas and input from varying perspectives.”

“I'm confident we can have a meaningful, bipartisan conversation about redistricting that can potentially show us a path forward to reform,” said Senate President Obhof. “I know that because we've been here before, particularly in the Senate, where we've been able to pass bipartisan congressional redistricting reforms twice in the last decade. I'm hopeful this dialogue will lead us again to a fair, constitutional process that we can take to Ohioans for consideration.”