Richardson restates support: Sprague's Democratic opponent Rob Richardson affirmed his support of Issue 1 hours before the DeWine event. Richardson acknowledged the treasurer can't directly do much about criminal justice reform and civil rights. But he said he would use the statewide position to urge the state pension systems to divest their dollars from private prison corporations. "Civil rights are not only the right thing to do but in our best economic interests," Richardson said on a phone call with reporters following a news conference touting his ideas.
Billions. With a 'b': That's how many reasons Dan Gilbert might have to sell his stake in Ohio casinos, writes cleveland.com data guru Rich Exner. Gilbert's three operations in Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati have generated $3.1 billion since their founding, and Exner took a look at the history of Gilbert's involvement in gaming in the state.
Plus a little more: Gilbert can add a little more to that total as well. Exner reports casino and racino gambling revenue was up 8 percent in August.
More money for medical marijuana: The Ohio State Board of Pharmacy, which oversees medical marijuana dispensaries and the patient and caregiver registry, got approval Monday to spend an additional $2.49 million as it moves into the regulatory phase of Ohio's new program. The Controlling Board request brings the total two-year budget for the pharmacy board's work to more than $4.1 million, expected to be repaid with various licensing fees. The agency plans to hire a handful of employees and has set aside about $1 million to handle dispensary license appeals through 51 requested administrative hearings and, possibly, in court.
Note to Ohio lawmakers or legislative staff: If you share an Uber with a lobbyist, make sure to chip in for the fare from now on. A Joint Legislative Ethics Committee advisory opinion issued Monday states that legislators and staff can only let a lobbyist pay for a trip in a ridesharing vehicle if they reimburse the lobbyist for their portion of the cost within a week. The opinion makes exceptions for lawmakers and staff who are headed to/from a seminar, speaking engagement, or an event held by a national organization to which a state agency or public university pays dues.
Primary concerns: Gabriel Debenedetti, writing for New York Magazine's Daily Intelligencer, says a 2020 primary challenge to Republican President Donald Trump is growing more likely. The top prospective candidates? Outgoing Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse and — of course — outgoing Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who will continue his love affair with New Hampshire right after the election with a visit to the same dinner that was seen as the kickoff for John McCain's 2008 run.
Yes we cannabis: U.S. Rep. Dave Joyce told a conference at the Cannabis Law Institute that he expects the federal government will pass a law deferring to the states on marijuana legalization, according to Leafly, a marijuana trade publication. Congress is likely to pass something even if the Republicans retain control, he said.
Mister Peepers: U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan can now brag to his kids that he's featured in a Ben Folds song — though maybe not for the reasons he wants. The Washington Post caught up with Folds, who recorded "Mr. Peepers" — a satirical song about Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and bullying.
Cleveland Ba-rocks: Cordray released more details about the upcoming Cleveland visit for President Barack Obama. The public rally will be Thursday night at a gymnasium on the east side of town.
The election environment: Tom Henry of The (Toledo) Blade took a closer look at an issue that matters to almost anyone who lives along the north coast of the state — the health of Lake Erie — and the gubernatorial candidates' plans for its survival.
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