Date: January 16, 2019
CC: Ohio General Assembly, Statehouse Press Corps
Dear Speaker Householder:
We, the undersigned organizations, wish to congratulate you on your election as Speaker and thank you for your push to increase openness and transparency at the Statehouse. We are particularly pleased and grateful that you have committed to turn on the cameras in all the Ohio House committee rooms–an important step forward for all of Ohio.
Ohioans are continually growing more interested in the actions of the General Assembly and how the legislature impact their lives, and the lives of their Ohio neighbors. We are excited that you agree that now is the time to fully open up the Statehouse to all of Ohio.
Streaming Ohio House committee hearings via the Ohio Channel, and archiving the meetings for at least the entire legislative session in which they take place, will allow those with an interest in the legislative process and its impact on our state to be able to witness how our Ohio House committees operate.
In order to ensure that the cameras stay on, we are also committed to having legislation introduced and passed that will enshrine this requirement in law. This will ensure that future House and Senate leaders cannot unilaterally reverse course.
Thank you again for this important first step towards increased openness at the Statehouse. We look forward to working with you on additional ways to improve transparency during the 133rd General Assembly.
Catherine Turcer, Common Cause Ohio
Gary Daniels, ACLU of Ohio
Khaled Salehi, America Votes
Usjid Hameed, CAIR-Ohio
Jen Miller, League of Women Voters of Ohio
Tom Roberts, NAACP Ohio Chapter
Kelly Copeland, NARAL Pro-choice Ohio
Sarah Schregardus, Ohio Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
Stephen Johnson Grove, Ohio Justice and Policy Center
Carolyn Casper, Ohio National Organization of Women
Dennis Hetzel, Ohio News Media Association
Camille Wimbish, Ohio Voter Rights Coalition
Kalitha Williams, Policy Matters Ohio
Niki Clum, Office of the Ohio Public Defender
John Pudner, Take Back Our Republic
Support for Turn On the Cameras includes many other local organizations.