The Ohio General Assembly is expected to wrap up its work this week. Both the Ohio House and Senate have tentatively scheduled a session day on December 27th, with the stated purpose of overriding some expected vetoes by the Governor.  After that, the legislature is expected to adjourn. Newly elected and re-elected members will be sworn into office and a new General Assembly will convene in early January. All pending legislation that has not been enacted will have to be re-introduced and start the legislative process all over again.

One of the last bills passed by the current General Assembly has special interest to Ohio Lakefront Group members: Senate Bill 51. SB 51 is expected to be signed into law. Although numerous provisions (predominantly capital expenditures unrelated to the original proposal) were added to the bill, those of the most interest to OLG members would expand the scope of public improvements that may be funded and completed by a special improvement district (SID) to include shoreline improvement projects along Lake Erie.

A SID is an economic development tool that may be used to facilitate the development and implementation of services within a defined district located within one or more cities, villages, or townships. The improvements and services are funded through a special assessment levied against property in the district. The SID is administered by the board of directors of a nonprofit corporation that is created for the purpose of governing the district. Simplified, a SID would allow property owners to band together to form a public-private partnership for the purposes of lakefront repairs, improvements, and protection. Supporters of the bill are hopeful that creation of a SID could allow property owners to take on restoration and protection efforts that are immediately necessary as a group, financed over up to 30 years. Unlike most other SIDs, those for coastal management purposes must have the consent of 100% of impacted property owners.

Once the Governor has signed the bill (and assuming he does), the Ohio Lakefront Group will work with local groups and local governments to disseminate additional information for those interested in forming a SID.

2 Comments

  1. Mary Lou Giovanelli says:

    The “100% consent” action part of this Legislation sounds like a wonderful piece. Unfortunately, comes too late for me in North Kingsville. My shoreline and property north edge has been irreversibly damaged by the “shoreline improvement” of another, following two (2) detailed letters written by me on the topic to the Oho DNR when asked for input. Army Corp allowed ‘landscape company’, (so called) to root out twocentury plus old piers that reached out over 100 plus yards into Lake Erie. These broke incoming West waves and untold various other harmful wave action to which I have no defense of recourse.

  2. Hi Mary Lou – I am so sorry to hear that. I’ve forwarded your comments on to leadership to be in touch, but it could be a few days; quite a few people are out of town or traveling for the Holidays. – BV