Automatic Voter Registration

We have the opportunity to make our elections here in Ohio more inclusive, accurate, and secure with one simple reform: Automatic Voter Registration (AVR).

Here’s how it works: when any eligible voter visits their BMV or another public state office, their information is automatically verified and securely added to the voter rolls, unless they opt out.

AVR would make our election system much safer, less expensive, and more accessible. It’s a much-needed improvement over our cumbersome, outdated voter registration process. Plus, it’d significantly increase the number of eligible voters who participate in our democracy — and make sure election results more accurately reflect what the people want.

It’s time to bring this simple, groundbreaking solution to Ohio. Add your name and tell your representatives to support AVR!


Automatic Voter Registration is just common sense — and it’s already delivering major results in states across the country.

In those states that have adopted it, hundreds of thousands of eligible voters have already been added to the rolls. In Oregon, AVR was enacted in time for the 2016 elections — and that fall, the state bucked a nationwide low-turnout trend with at least 100,000 newly registered voters showing up to the polls.

Now, we’re leading the fight to bring AVR to Ohio — because every voter here has the right to be heard and to select the people and policies that affect their family, their friends, and their community.

Together, we can reform our electoral process for the better — and make sure every eligible voter in our state can cast a ballot. Sign the petition and show your support for AVR today!

There’s no reason to delay any longer. Let’s bring this simple, groundbreaking solution to Ohio.

Thanks for all you do,
Catherine Turcer, Executive Director
and the team at Common Cause Ohio

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VOTE411 Report for 2019

Throughout the United States, those who use to find information on candidates and issues continues to grow.  Megan Brown, the VOTE411 administrator, recently wrote:

VOTE411 educated more voters than any other off-year election cycle! You all should be extremely proud of all the candidate outreach, VOTE411 publicity, candidate debates/forums, and other voter service work this cycle.

This year VOTE411 had over 1.2 million sessions from Jan 1st through Election Day, and nearly 1.1 million of those sessions included the online voters’ guides! That represents an 84% increase in sessions nationwide to voters’ guides on VOTE411 as compared to the 2017 cycle, and a 264% increase over the 2015 election cycle (technically the most comparable election cycle). These are amazing numbers and show just how much the voters turn to the League to find the information they need on Election Day.

Note that these numbers show sessions, not users; a person may well access this site more than once.  Also, recall that VOTE411 was not available for Licking County voters until the League formed here in late 2017.  We first used it in 2018.

Just as voter turnout is greatly affected by which races are on the ballot, so is VOTE411 usage.  Usage in Ohio was generally greater in the fall of 2018 than this year because we were voting then on a governor and other state-wide races, congressional district representatives, and seats in the Ohio House and Senate.

Turnout in the recent election was expected to be low and it was.  Understanding all that, here are the figures on how much VOTE411 was used.  For perspective I include Columbus along with some Licking County sites. While Licking County’s numbers are okay, given the low interest in this election, we clearly need to continue educating voters – and candidates — about this great online resource.  Seeing the vote411 numbers in 2020 will be very interesting.

VOTE411 Sessions

  2019 2018
Columbus 14,391 61,274
Granville 123 319
Heath 49 110
Pataskala 277 576
Newark 1,082 1,653
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Film Showing and Discussion

  • When: Sunday, November 17, 2019 at 2:00 PM
  • Where: Granville Public Library, 217 E Broadway, Granville, OH

This documentary offers a compelling look at how anonymous campaign contributions, enabled by the Citizens United [2010] decision, undermine democratic elections.  Citizens United also specified thatstates could enact disclosure laws that would pass constitutional muster—and several lower courts have since upheld such laws. Some states, though, including Ohio, have allowed campaign financing to remain in the shadows. After the viewing at the library participants will be invited to join a moderated discussion and to use provided postcards, mailing addresses, and stamps to send their Statehouse legislators a brief request to update Ohio’s campaign finance laws.

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Shine a light post cards

Folks in Granville wrote 140 postcards today for the shine a light on dark money campaign.

Shine the Light postcard writing.
Exposing Cark money
Repeal HB6 in OHIO
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2019 Program Summary

The Women’s Voices Project: Training the Next Gen of Women Leaders

Executive Summary

The LWVLC Development Committee met to determine the approach for this year’s Women’s Voices Project.   The Committee’s plan was to reach out to a targeted list of four high schools and set up a Program Introduction Event at a central location with representatives and students from those schools. Additionally, the goal had been to target a total of 20 students for the Mentoring and Leadership program. For these students, annual membership dues to our League would be paid by LWVLC.

Five Watkins Memorial High School and one Heath High School student made the commitment to the program and were paired with LWVLC mentors.  Mentors and mentees met to design a personalized program of three events or activities to meet the grant requirements.

Challenges were created due to the late start in organizing and gaining access to the high schools.  Further, once into the Spring Semester the students engaged were also committed to other curricular and co-curricular activities.  Scheduling time for mentor/mentee meetings and activities was often difficult.  However, the girls engaged in a variety of political and issue-based activities that included observing city council meetings, attending LWVO Statehouse Day, and attending panel discussions. Both mentees and mentors expressed satisfaction with the experience but all desired more time.  Our experiences this year have helped inform our recommendations for next year.  This includes beginning outreach to the High Schools early in the year (August/ September).  Additionally, we believe that a liaison at the school, who can assist in providing a space for the students to share their experiences, coordinate activities, and highlight concerns would be highly beneficial.

Link to the Full Report:


Student Recruitment

Student Engagement

Lessons Learned


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Losing our local newspaper, an essential part of this community, would be a huge loss for the League but also for citizens in general.

Dear Members and Friends,

Over the last few weeks, Ben Lanka, Editor of the Newark Advocate, has held informational talks on The Future of the Advocate.  Five of us in the League attended the one at the Granville Public Library on May 21st

We learned that the Advocate (and its affiliated papers in Granville and Pataskala) are not in imminent danger of disappearing, but the ever-declining percentage of the population that subscribe and the crash in advertising revenues over the decades paint a telling picture.  The staff is greatly reduced compared to the past, and other cost-savings, such as reduced frequency of publication or pricing that relies on bundling, are being considered.

This picture is far from unique to Licking County.  Many local newspapers across the country have disappeared in the onslaught of digital information, much of it for free.  More and more people access the news through their mobile devices, which is also true of the Advocate’s readership. Over 33,600 follow it on Facebook while an estimated 20,000 readers per day see the print version.  In fact, by measures of this and other online traffic to the Advocate’s digital pages, interest in the local news remains in high.

Since covering our first organizing meeting in August of 2017, the Advocate has been a good friend to the League in Licking County.  It is it hard to imagine how we could have grown as we did and become so widely known without it.  Here are some specific ways the Advocate has partnered with us:

  • Published brief announcements of coming events
  • Collaborated with us on the voter guide for the November 2018 election
  • Wrote a detailed and balanced story about our candidates’ night ahead of the May primary
  • Published several of my voter education columns – about gerrymandering, HR1, and recently, legislation to stop the take-over of “failing” schools from locally elected Boards of Education

Like us, the Advocate also promotes elections and voting.  For example, the editorial board interviewed each of the candidates running  in the primary for Municipal Judge and published profiles of each.  Because the League is not allowed to profile judicial candidates due to an agreement with Judicial Votes Count, this was an especially significant service.  The editorial board endorsed one Republican and one Democratic candidate. 

Another recent article — on the Newark mayoral race—explained why that race is important but then declined to endorse either candidate, urging voters instead to study their options carefully before the fall election.

Licking County enjoyed a high profile at the recent LWV Ohio state convention due to winning the award for Voter Outreach.  Our rapid growth and accomplishments are now well known in League circles across the state.  When people ask me, “How did you do it?” my explanations usually include the use of social media and the press to build name recognition.

Losing our local newspaper, an essential part of this community for almost 200 years (!), would be a huge loss for the League but also for citizens in general.  There is no other reliable source for local news.  Recent stories about Newark City Council’s response to the homeless, and the continuing controversy over the future of the Newark Earthworks are the kinds of stories that hit closest to home and that we would miss if our local paper were to disappear. 

Bottom line? Subscribe!  The regular digital subscription is very reasonable, and for a limited time, you can get a three-month digital subscription for just 99 cents.  Find the link at the end of the piece linked here.

Limited time offer, 3-month digital subscription

Rita 5/23/2019

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Poverty, Addiction, Recovery

Volunteer –

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Action Alert


THE ISSUE: A bailout of Ohio’s two old, noncompetitive nuclear power plants is being disguised as a “Clean Air Program” in House Bill 6. This bill:

  • imposes a monthly charge on all Ohio electric consumers to bailout outdated, money-losing nuclear plants, even if they don’t get electricity from those plants. 
  • weakens Ohio’s renewable energy and energy efficiency standards.
  • favors greenhouse gas producers, such as coal and natural gas.

THE ASK: Call your rep and tell them that you OPPOSE House Bill 6 – The Clean Air Program – because: 

  • The way forward for an environmentally AND economically healthier Ohio is by supporting safe and affordable clean energy like wind, solar, and energy efficiency.  
  • Subsidizing noncompetitive, outdated nuclear plants will cause Ohio to fall behind neighboring states in job and economic growth.

Thank you, 

Jen Miller LWV Ohio Executive Director

League of Women Voters of Ohio | 614-469-1505 |

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Hearing Notice: Senate Bill 23, The Six-Week Abortion Ban

Next week, the Ohio Senate Health, Human Services & Medicaid Committee will hold a third hearing for opponent testimony on Senate Bill 23, the six-week abortion ban.    Hearing Details 3rd hearing on six-week abortion ban, opponent testimony Tuesday, February 26 3:00 pm (or after session) South Hearing Room of the Ohio Statehouse   Senate Bill 23 would criminalize doctors and ban abortion as early as six weeks – at a time before most women even know that they are pregnant. This extreme, dangerous, and cruel bill is a direct attack on reproductive health care access – and we need your help to stop it.
Here are 3 ways you can take action:
1.) Testify against the six-week abortion ban   Members of the Senate Health Committee need to hear from Ohioans who stand against this ban. At the next public hearing, on Tuesday, February 26 at 3:00 pm, opponents of the six-week ban will have an opportunity to present in-person testimony or submit written testimony. Testimony will need to be submitted 24-hours in advance of the hearing. Contact us if you are interested in testifying against the bill. 
2.) Attend Tuesday’s hearing at the Statehouse   On Tuesday, witnesses who support access to safe and legal abortion will be testifying before the committee to express their opposition to Senate Bill 23. The hearing on the six-week ban will begin at 3:00 pm or after session in the South Hearing Room. Join us at the hearing to show the legislators that Ohioans stand against this harmful bill.
3.) Contact your State Senator   Send a message to your State Senator: Stop The Bans. Use the letter-writing tool from our partners at NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio to send a message directly to your State Senator’s inbox telling them to stop the attacks on abortion access. 
The Ohio Women’s Public Policy Network is a coalition or more than 30 organizations working collaboratively to advance policies that create economic security for women and strengthen families. Using a collective voice that represents the women of our state, this network works to ensure that public policy reflects the true needs of women and families.   FIND OUT MORE
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Job Guarantee Teach-in Day at Denison University on Friday, Jan 25th

Friday, January 25, 2019
9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Denison University, Granville, OH
Burton Morgan Hall (room 115)

Event is Free & Open to the Public
Hosted by Fadhel Kaboub

Job Guarantee Now!
Teach-in for Economic Rights

9:30-10:20: “What’s a Job Guarantee?” by Fadhel Kaboub

10:30-11:20: “Can We afford a Green New Deal? [Hint: Yes We Can!]” by Fadhel Kaboub

11:30-12:20: “Ohio-based Green Jobs to Fight Climate Change,” panel discussion with Olivia Aguilar & Fadhel Kaboub

12:30-1:30: Lunch break (Slayter Hall)

1:30-2:45: “Social Justice, Inequality, and the Job Guarantee,” panel discussion with Johan Uribe, Lesha Farias, and Allen Schwartz

3-4:15: “Embracing a Job Guarantee for Shared Prosperity & Participatory Democracy,” panel discussion with Melinda Miller, Jeremy Blake, and Stephanie Agosta

4:15-4:30: Closing remarks


  • Stephanie Eaton Agosta: Community activist, and Habitat volunteer
  • Olivia Aguilar: Associate professor of environmental studies at Denison University
  • Jeremy Blake: Councilmember at City of Newark
  • Lesha Farias: Community organizer at the Newark Think Tank on Poverty
  • Fadhel Kaboub: Associate professor of economics at Denison University
  • Melinda Miller for Ohio: Former candidate for Ohio Senate District 31
  • Allen Schwartz: Community organizer at the Newark Think Tank on Poverty
  • Johan Andres Uribe Perez: Assistant professor of economics at Denison University

Light refreshments will be available throughout the day.

Event co-sponsored by the

  • Modern Money Network,
  • Denison University economics department, &
  • Global Institute for Sustainable Prosperity – GISP

Information about the Job Guarantee:


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