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Section 149.309 | Ohio commission for the United States semiquincentennial.

 

(A) The Ohio commission for the United States semiquincentennial is established to plan, encourage, develop, and coordinate the commemoration of the two hundred fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the United States and the impact of Ohioans on the nation's past, present, and future.

(B) The commission shall consist of the following twenty-nine members:

(1) Two members of the senate appointed by the president of the senate, one of whom shall be recommended by the minority leader of the senate;

(2) Two members of the house of representatives appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives, one of whom shall be recommended by the minority leader of the house of representatives;

(3) The governor or the governor's designee;

(4) The chief justice of the supreme court of Ohio;

(5) The president of the board of trustees of the Ohio history connection;

(6) The president of the Ohio local history alliance's designee;

(7) The president of the Ohio county commissioners association's designee;

(8) The chairperson of the board of the Ohio arts council;

(9) The director of TourismOhio;

(10) The executive director of the Ohio travel association;

(11) Seventeen members who are private citizens, of whom:

(a) Eight shall be appointed by the governor;

(b) Four shall be appointed by the president of the senate, two of whom shall be recommended by the minority leader of the senate;

(c) Four shall be appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives, two of whom shall be recommended by the minority leader of the house of representatives;

(d) One shall be appointed by the chief justice of the supreme court of Ohio.

(C) The governor shall designate one of the private citizen members as the chairperson of the commission and a different private citizen member as the vice chairperson of the commission.

The executive director or the deputy executive director of the Ohio history connection shall serve as the secretary of the commission and shall be an ex officio, nonvoting member of the commission.

(D) A member shall be appointed for the duration of the commission, so long as the member continues to hold the office that entitled the member to the position on the commission. A vacancy on the commission shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment. The members of the commission shall receive no compensation for service on the commission, except for reimbursement for reasonable travel expenses.

(E) Meetings of the commission shall be held throughout this state at times and locations determined by the chairperson. A majority of the members of the commission shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number of members may hold hearings or meetings for the purpose of furthering the commission's work.

(F) The commission shall do all of the following:

(1) Plan, coordinate, and implement an overall program to build public awareness and foster public participation to celebrate and commemorate the two hundred fiftieth anniversary of the independence and founding of the United States;

(2) Coordinate with all federal, state, and local agencies and private organizations on infrastructural improvements and projects or programs to welcome and encourage regional, national, and international tourists;

(3) Establish and maintain an official web site that is available and accessible to the public.

(G) In preparing plans and an overall program, the commission shall do all of the following:

(1) Give due consideration to related plans and programs developed by federal, other state, local, and private groups;

(2) Conduct extensive public engagement throughout this state to develop programs of its own or with or by other agencies, communities, or organizations that may take place to mark the semiquincentennial by December 31, 2026;

(3) Aim to involve and showcase all counties in this state;

(4) Draw attention to the achievements, struggles, honors, innovations, and significance of all people in this state since before its founding to the present day.

(H) The commission may designate special committees with representatives from stakeholding groups to plan, develop, and coordinate specific activities.

(I)(1) Not later than September 30, 2022, the commission shall submit to the governor and the general assembly a comprehensive report that includes the specific recommendations of the commission for the commemoration of the two hundred fiftieth anniversary of the independence and founding of the United States and related events, as well as a timeline of the plans and overall program and estimates of all costs associated with the plans and overall program.

(2) The report may include recommendations for the following:

(a) Improvements to the infrastructure of the state or for capital projects necessary for the successful delivery of the commission's plan and overall program;

(b) Legislation needed to effectuate the plan and overall program.

(3) The report shall be available on the commission's official web site.

(4) The commission may, from time to time, expand upon or revise its initial report as events warrant.

(J) The commission may secure directly from a state agency information as the commission considers necessary to carry out its duties. On the request of the chairperson of the commission or the commission's executive director, the head of a state agency shall provide the information to the commission.

(K) The commission may accept, use, and dispose of gifts and donations of money, property, or personal services and may request personnel or other supportive resources from state agencies, local governments, and public universities.

(L) As determined necessary by the commission, the commission may do any of the following:

(1) Procure supplies, services, and property;

(2) Take actions as are necessary to enable the commission to carry out efficiently and in the public interest the purpose of this section.

(M)(1) The chairperson of the commission shall appoint an executive director who may, in turn, hire personnel as are necessary to enable the commission to perform its powers and duties. With approval from the commission, the executive director may authorize the Ohio history connection to enter into contracts with vendersand consultants to undertake work commensurate with the commission's public functions. All commission employees shall be employees of the Ohio history connection and shall be subject to its customary personnel policies and procedures.

(2) The employment of an executive director shall be subject to confirmation by majority vote of the commission.

(3) The commission, from time to time, may request operating and capital appropriations from the general assembly. Such appropriated money shall be received by the Ohio history connection and held for the use of the commission. Such money shall be audited annually in the ordinary manner and commensurate with the Ohio history connection's audit by the auditor of state.

(N) Once each year on or before the thirty-first day of December, during the period beginning on the effective date of this section through December 31, 2026, the commission shall submit to the governor and the general assembly a report of the activities of the commission, including a summary of funds received and expended during the year covered by the report, the outputs and outcomes achieved, and whether those achievements meet the commission's plan and overall program. The report shall be available on the commission's official web site. The commission shall publish a final report of its activities on or before June 30, 2027.

(O) The commission terminates on June 30, 2027.

Last updated July 14, 2021 at 12:54 PM

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