COLUMBUS -- The Ohio House has officially adjourned its two-year session, closing the door on any attempt to override Gov. John Kasich's vetoes of bills weakening renewable energy and efficiency mandates, banning abortions within weeks of conception, requiring regular reviews of state agencies and clarifying how oil and gas production equipment is treated for sales tax purposes.
Wednesday's "sine die" declaration effectively ended lawmakers' work and blocked any further veto overrides. The next scheduled session day is Tuesday, when new and returning members of the general assembly will take their oaths of office.
"After considering the logistics of having members return on short notice and attaining the number of votes required to override the governor's vetoes, Speaker Rosenberger and the caucus determined that the preferred course of action would be to adjourn for the year and return to many of these priorities during the next General Assembly," Brad Miller, a spokesman for House Republicans, said in a released statement. "As the Speaker said yesterday, there exist some clear differences of opinion between the caucus and the administration on certain policy areas. He is confident that the caucus will revisit several of these issues during the next legislative term, and he looks forward to working with the administration on promoting policies that improve the quality of life for all Ohioans."
Late last week, Speaker Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville) had signaled a possible override effort, scheduling two is-needed days for Wednesday and Thursday. But those days were canceled after Kasich issued three vetoes on Tuesday. The Ohio Senate also subsequently canceled an if-needed day on Thursday.
Overrides would have been challenging, regardless, requiring 60 members of the House.
Only one of the four bills that were vetoed outright or in part had enough support on initial passage to merit an override -- SB 235 passed both chambers by wide margins. The governor line-item vetoed several sections of the final bill, including sales tax provisions for oil and gas industry-related equipment, including pipelines and wells.
The other three bills, however, did not have veto-proof majorities in the Ohio House.
HB 493, the legislation that included the Heartbeat Bill language, passed 56-39.
SB 329, which would have required regular review of state agencies and lawmaker action for them to continue to operate, passed 59-33.
And HB 554, which would have made former energy mandates voluntary and soften annual energy efficiency targets, passed 56-34.