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Ohio Supreme Court Candidates Have Already Raised $3 Million

October 23, 2020

Among many other things, at stake in the Nov. 3 election is political control of the Supreme Court of Ohio. As the Akron Beacon Journal reported, Republicans have controlled the court since 1987 and “hope at least one of the pair of Justices Judith French and Sharon Kennedy win re-election to preserve at least a 4-3 GOP advantage.”

Nearly $3 million had been raised by the four Supreme Court candidates through the end of September — a sign that both political parties are heavily involved. The OMA and other major business groups have endorsed Justices French and Kennedy. 10/20/2020

NAM Files Suit Against H-1B Rules

October 23, 2020

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) has joined several business groups in filing a lawsuit in federal court against harmful rules on H-1B visas. If left in place, the rules would negatively affect hundreds of thousands of U.S.-based workers and disrupt manufacturers’ ability to hire and retain critical high-skilled talent. Earlier this month, the NAM secured an injunction against the Trump administration’s restrictions on non-immigrant visas. Read more. 10/20/2020

Tracking Your Mailed Ballot

October 23, 2020

The number of Ohioans who already have cast their ballots in the presidential election is more than double the total compared to this point in 2016, according to Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose.

If you are voting by mail this election — or have done so already — you can track your ballot electronically. Simply visit the Ohio Secretary of State’s website, click on your county, enter the requested information, and you will receive updates on your ballot via email, voice mail, or text.

Saturday, Oct. 31 is the deadline to request an absentee ballot, while Monday, Nov. 2 is the postmark deadline for returning absentee ballots. Nov. 2 is also the final day for early in-person voting (8 a.m. to 2 p.m.). For more, see the OMA’s 2020 Election page. 10/20/2020

Ohio No. 10 in ‘Back to Normal’ Index

October 16, 2020

Moody’s Analytics and CNN recently created the “Back-to-Normal” Index to track the economic recovery in every state. Index values range from zero to 100%, which would indicate full economic recovery to pre-pandemic levels. As of Oct. 9, the index indicated that Ohio’s economy was operating at 87% of where it was in early March. The Buckeye State’s recovery is tenth best in the U.S., according to the index. 10/13/2020

What Matters to Manufacturers in This Year’s Election?

October 16, 2020

According to Forbes contributor Lisa Caldwell, manufacturing policies will play a large role in determining who wins the upcoming elections. Candidates’ proposals to enhance the workforce, increase U.S. innovation, restructure trade relationships, and hasten the arrival of Industry 4.0 are key themes in the 2020 election.

As a reminder, the OMA has published its list of OMA-PAC endorsements for a number of General Assembly races, as well as the two Supreme Court of Ohio contests. This list is included on the OMA’s Election 2020 website, which offers several Ohio-specific voter resources, including information on how to vote early, absentee, or in person.

By the way, if you’re voting by mail, you can now track your ballot electronically. 10/14/2020

At a Glance: Presidential Polls at Two Weeks Out

October 16, 2020

With just over two weeks until Election Day, here’s a summary of the latest general election polling:

  • The RealClearPolitics average of Ohio polling shows the presidential contest at a statistical dead heat, with Joe Biden leading President Trump by 0.6%. That’s compared to a sizeable advantage for Biden in the national average of polls, including in key battleground states.
  • RealClearPolitics has also published a comparison of the presidential polls in 2020 and 2016. Nationwide, Biden is ahead of Hillary Clinton’s lead over Trump at this time in the 2016 race.
  • Gallup surveys have found that a majority (54%) rate Trump positively for his job performance on the economy, and 55% consider themselves and their family to be better off than they were four years ago.

Meanwhile, for information on Ohio’s House and Senate races, as well as congressional and select judicial contests, be sure to see the OMA’s Ohio Election Guide. 10/15/2020

Magazine Profiles Ohio’s Manufacturing Sector

October 16, 2020

In its latest issue, Business Facilities magazine spotlights Ohio’s manufacturing sector, as well as the state’s actions under Gov. Mike DeWine during COVID-19. The national publication writes: “What used to be derisively called the ‘Rust Belt’ is now a thriving hub of advanced manufacturing,” as “Ohio stands ready to welcome back manufacturers who opt for reshoring.”

The article highlights the state’s workforce development initiatives, as well as the Ohio Manufacturing Alliance to Fight COVID-19, created in the pandemic’s early days “to coordinate an all-hands-on-deck effort by manufacturers around the state to produce PPE.” 10/13/2020

Temporary Relief for Employers Using H-1B Visas

October 16, 2020

Earlier this month, a federal judge placed an immediate hold on a series of damaging visa restrictions that would prevent manufacturers from filling crucial jobs with H-1B visas.

The favorable ruling was the result of a complaint led by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) following the Trump administration’s actions to restrict the issuance of H-1B visas to highly skilled foreign workers for temporary employment.

H-1B visas are commonly utilized by manufacturers and specialty equipment contractors trying to compete with the rest of the world for skilled labor. This guidance document was recently updated by the U.S. Department of State to summarize the court order. Contact OMA staff to learn more. 10/12/2020

Event Aims to Match Small Businesses With Government Contracts

October 16, 2020

The Ohio Business Matchmaker — Ohio’s largest small business-to-government contracting event — has been rescheduled for Nov. 17-18 as an online event due to COVID-19. The online platform will allow small businesses to meet with federal, state, and local government buyers, as well as large prime contractors that represent billions of dollars of upcoming contracts. Learn more or register. 10/12/2020

Cybersecurity Questions You Should Be Asking

October 16, 2020

According to a recent IBM study, the average cost of a data breach is $3.86 million. The average time it takes to identify and contain a breach is 280 days. Because cybersecurity is a vital part of every company’s operating plan, OMA Connections Partner Clark Schaefer Hackett has published these five questions to evaluate your company’s cybersecurity preparedness. 10/12/2020