Input from members of our community is vitally important to the legislative process here at the Statehouse. In fact, the Senate recently approved legislation following the input from the Avon Lake community.

After hearing from the Avon Lake Municipal Court and the Supreme Court of Ohio about the increased caseload the Lorain County court has experienced over the last several years, I introduced Senate Bill 336 to transition the court’s judgeship from part-time to full-time to ensure our growing community is served as effectively as possible.

The municipal court plays a critical role in our Northeastern Ohio community, hearing cases ranging from traffic and criminal offenses to civil disputes and misdemeanor crimes with jurisdiction in Avon, Avon Lake, and the Sheffield Village. In a report recommending the transition, The Supreme Court of Ohio found that the court saw a ten-year high of 1,430 incoming traffic cases in 2013, an increase of 54 percent over the 927 filings in 2008. Also in 2013, the court reported 1,238 incoming criminal cases, an 81 percent increase over 2004.

This increase in the court’s docket over the last several years has required the court to schedule additional hearings for days on which the current part-time judge has not been scheduled in order to accommodate the volume of cases. Senate Bill 336, approved by the Senate (32 – 0) on May 28, seeks to alleviate this strain on the court brought by the increase in cases.

The Senate Standing Committee on Civil Justice heard testimony in support of S.B. 336 earlier this month from current Avon Lake Municipal Court Judge Darrel Bilancini. In his testimony, Judge Bilancini stated that the judgeship transition will allow the court to better support the citizens of the community it serves, as well as their local police agencies and the staff of the court. Similarly, the Supreme Court states in its recommendation that the transition “ensures that the goals of judicial efficiency and access to justice are maintained and not compromised.”

Working toward this goal, I am pleased to see this bill advance through the legislature. The provisions contained in Senate Bill 336 were also amended into House Bill 483, the Mid-Biennium Review (MBR) legislation. Senate Bill 336 will continue to progress until the MBR is signed by the Governor. With support from our community and The Supreme Court of Ohio, this transition will allow the court to work more effectively to meet its needs and those of the larger Northeast Ohio region.

 
 
 
  
Featured Posts

Manning Works To Increase Penalties For Promoting Prostitution, Stop Human Trafficking

 

COLUMBUS—State Senator Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville) alongside Senator Matt Dolan (R-Chagrin Falls) this week stood before the Senate Judiciary committee and reinforced the critical need to increase criminal penalties for individuals who are convicted of promoting prostitution in Ohio.



 
 

PHOTO: Manning Recognized As "Legislator Of The Year" By Ohio Alliance Of Recovery Providers

 

"I am honored and humbled to receive this award today, and am grateful for the hard work of many coalitions and stakeholders who I have collaborated with on these issues," said Senator Manning. "It takes more than just one person to tackle the challenges Ohio faces, and I am fortunate to work alongside people in our community who are full of passion and caring."



 
 

Historic Congressional Redistricting Reform Plan Passes Ohio Senate With Bipartisan Support

 

COLUMBUS—State Senator Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville) announced that this week the Ohio Senate passed a plan to reform the process for drawing Ohio’s congressional districts with unanimous, bipartisan support. The passage of Substitute Senate Joint Resolution 5 follows weeks of negotiations between the leadership of both parties in the General Assembly and various redistricting reform coalitions.



 
 

PHOTO: Manning Honored For Efforts To Improve Addiction And Mental Health Services In Ohio

 

"I am honored to receive this award today— the goal of our work at the Statehouse is to support our local communities," said Senator Manning. "Our mental health professionals and law enforcement officials need the flexibility and training to effectively deliver critical services and carry out their missions."