Chairman’s Update 3-22-2020

Good Evening,
In the interest of public health and safety, Governor DeWine issued a stay-at-home order this afternoon. The order goes into effect at 11:59 p.m. Monday, March 23rd and will last until April 6th. Ohioans may still leave their homes to obtain necessary supplies and services, for outdoor activity, for certain types of work, if it is a matter of health and safety, and to care for others.
In the midst of all that is happening in our own state, nation and around the world, we have truly seen great leadership from Governor DeWine and his administration. Consulting with health officials, he took the COVID-19 outbreak seriously from the beginning. His leadership has united Ohioans from both sides of the aisle, and has set an example for other states to follow. Winning praise from multiple news outlets, like The Dayton Daily News, Governor DeWine has shown that leadership is not partisan.
The Cincinnati Enquirer published an article bearing that same praise. Reading along, Ohioans may gain more insight into how and why the Governor has made such bold decisions. It becomes easy to understand how Governor DeWine is an empathetic leader, outlining measures such as the closure of schools and senior centers to protect those very same populations. One thing is clear above all else – Ohio is very lucky to have Governor DeWine leading us in the midst of something we have never before encountered.
ICYMI: I wrote an Op-Ed published in the Columbus Dispatch touching on the tough times Ohioans are going through and the importance of the strict measures taken in Ohio.
Jane M. Timken
Chairman, Ohio Republican Party
Portman Continues to Fight for Assistance for Ohioans During the Coronavirus Crisis
Last week, Senator Portman voted in support of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which provides free coronavirus testing, paid sick leave, small business aid and additional help for individuals and families in Ohio and across the nation. The measure has already been signed into law by the President.
Throughout last week, Portman hosted a number of conference calls with outsidestakeholders, such as employers, hospitals and health care providers, foodbanks, small business owners, workers and more. Portman is using the ideas and concerns to help inform his discussions with his colleagues in the Senate as well as the Trump Administration as they work to finalize the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. This legislation takes bold action to direct financial help for the American people; provide rapid relief for small businesses and their employees; take significant steps to stabilize our economy and protect jobs; and, most importantly, provide more support for the brave healthcare professionals and patients who are fighting the coronavirus on the front lines. Portman believes the Senate must stay in session until they pass another robust economic package to help workers, families, and our economy.
Portman has been in consistent contact with Governor DeWine and Ohio Department of Health Director Acton to ensure the federal government is providing everything they need. Portman praised Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza’s quick approval of Ohio’s application to qualify for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, which allows small businesses to apply for up to $2 million in low-interest loans. The approved application will help the state get critical resources to Ohio’s small businesses and non-profit organizations.
Additionally, Portman introduced a bipartisan resolution to amend the Standing Rules of the Senate to allow senators to vote remotely during a national crisis. On Thursday, Portman discussed the resolution on Fox Business with Stuart Varney.
Governor DeWine Provides Resources for Latest Updates on COVID-19 Preparedness
For the latest updates on COVID -19 preparedness in Ohio, please visit Coronavirus.Ohio.govor call 833-4-ASK-ODH (833-427-5634). Ohio Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted are also providing daily briefings at around 2:00 p,m. to the public and the news media with the latest COVID-19 updates. These briefings are broadcast on the Ohio Channel (available online at and on many local PBS and NPR affiliates.
Lt. Governor Husted Highlights Assistance for Businesses & Workers
Lt. Governor Jon Husted has helped spearhead the state’s economic response to the COVID-19 Pandemic by collecting resources for businesses and workers who are being impacted by the outbreak. Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted applied for and were granted entry into the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program to get businesses access to up to $2 million in low-interest federal loans to help them stay afloat during the crisis. The DeWine-Husted Administration also implemented immediate changes to the state’s unemployment system to get more workers quick access to income while they are temporarily displaced. The Lt. Governor also made available resources to help employees who may wish to use this time to obtain online job training in order to qualify them for a different position once work can resume. You can find that information at and selecting “Training Resources.”
Yost Works with Lawmakers to Strengthen Anti-Price Gouging Laws Amid COVID-19 Outbreak
Attorney General Dave Yost announced plans to seek an anti-price gouging law amid the coronavirus pandemic when the Ohio General Assembly meets next week. State law currently bans unconscionable sales practices, but does not have a statue that directly addresses price gouging.
“I’m outraged that anybody would try to profiteer on a crisis, particularly on items that are necessary for the health and safety of Ohioans,” Yost said. “We don’t have a price gouging law in Ohio because we believe in free markets, but free markets don’t include the idea of holding toilet paper and surgical masks hostage. We need a law that can tell the difference between someone who’s price gouging and somebody who’s reacting to normal price pressure in the market.”
During the coronavirus outbreak, the Ohio Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Section has received more than 150 complaints of price gouging. Yost’s office is reviewing every complaint, and working with the business community to protect consumers. If you suspect unfair business practices, please contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office or 1-800-282-0515.
LaRose Takes Necessary Steps to Ensure Safe, Fair Election
In response to the new information regarding the dangers of the Coronavirus, the governor ordered polling locations closed on March 17th to keep Ohioans safe. Secretary LaRose then took decisive action to protect the integrity of our democracy by extending the March 17th election so voters can safely have their voices heard. Voters can learn more about what’s being done to safely bring Ohio’s primary election to a conclusion at
We are in unprecedented times and the health and safety of Ohioans must come first. Secretary LaRose is working with legislators to ensure that every Ohioan will have the opportunity to make their voice heard in this election. The actions taken this week will ensure that will be done so safely.
Auditor of State Keith Faber Promotes Electronic Public Meetings to Ensure Transparency
In an oped in the Cincinnati Enquirer this weekend, Auditor of State Keith Faber highlighted the importance of government transparency throughout the ongoing health crisis.
“Public officials are still making enormous decisions as we all discuss how to move forward during this pandemic.” Faber wrote, “Our leaders will be answering many important questions in the coming weeks. As a citizen, you have the right to be witness to the meetings where leaders make the hard choices.”
Auditor Faber encourages all public officials to take advantage of electronic meetings, open to the public, to make sure they are complying with Ohio’s Open Meeting Laws.
To read the full oped, click here. 
Treasurer Sprague Reminds Families that STABLE is Here to Help
The COVID-19 situation has brought no shortage of unforeseen challenges here at home and across the country. But, Ohioans have stepped up at every turn.
During this time, Ohio Treasurer Robert Sprague is asking that we remember our friends and loved ones living with disabilities. Earlier in the month, Treasurer Sprague touted the themes of empowerment, inclusion, and employment in marking March as Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. The STABLE Account program, which has become a hallmark program of the Treasurer’s office, provides people living with disabilities low-risk, FDIC-insured savings options that allow them to save and remain eligible for benefits like Medicaid and SSI. In challenging times like these, the STABLE Account program can be especially helpful in providing individuals and families added peace of mind, while also ensuring health care expenses and needs are met.
For more information about STABLE Account:
Kennedy Reflects On Her Travels From Last Week
Last week, Justice Sharon L. Kennedy made the most of her days before choosing to take her campaign remote. Between touring businesses, speaking to Rotary Clubs, and meeting with local media outlets about her initiative Lean Forward: Advancing Veterans Treatment Across Ohio, she found time to speak at several Lincoln Day dinners.
During her keynote address at the Knox County Lincoln Day dinner, Sharon discussed the importance of the judiciary.
“Imagine, if you can, living in a country, where you do not have the rights to free speech; free exercise of religion; to bear arms; or the ability to live in your homes free of government intrusion. Here, in the greatest country on the earth, our tripartite system of government protects our God given rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness from the overreach of government. The primary role of judges who serve the third branch of government – an independent and co-equal branch – is to protect the Republic by upholding the law, not rewriting it or legislating from the bench. And their second commandment is to protect our constitutional rights and strike down laws as unconstitutional when those laws strip us of our constitutional rights of free speech; free exercise of religion; and the right to bear arms; and to live free without government intrusion.”
Sharon concluded by thanking the Knox County Republican Party for hosting the event, and reminded everyone in attendance to vote all the way down the ticket on November 3rd and to vote for a Kennedy.
Please stay safe and healthy during these unprecedented times.
Justice French Speaks at Lincoln Day Dinners
Justice French was featured in an article by the Advertiser Tribune where she discussed her race, the office and more importantly the toll the past several weeks have taken on Ohioans:
“In this extraordinary moment, like the rest of Ohio, I am staying home as much as possible,” she said. “It’s a big change from traveling the state at a fast pace. But it’s also an opportunity to catch my breath and keep the campaign in perspective,” she said.
“My heart is with the individuals and families around Ohio who are struggling, physically and financially.”