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OSBA President Judge Patrick Fischer appointed to Constitution Commission

Judge Patrick FischerOhio State Bar Association President and First District Court of Appeals Judge Patrick F. Fischer  was  among 20 public members appointed to the Ohio Constitutional Modernization Commission.

Fischer and OSBA member and Tenth District Court of Appeals Judge Judith L. French will join a 32-member group charged with conducting a detailed review of the current provisions of the Ohio Constitution, identifying perceived problem areas and submitting a report by the end of 2012 proposing specific amendments for consideration by the General Assembly. The 12 legislative commission members were appointed last year.

Judge Fischer won election to an unexpired term on the appeals court in 2010. He will compete for a full six-year term in November’s general election.

Judge French was appointed to the appeals court in 2004, and won election to a full six-year term later that year. She was re-elected to the seat in 2010.

Article 16, Section 3 of the Ohio Constitution, adopted in 1912, requires that as of 1932 and every 20th year thereafter the statewide general election ballot must offer voters the opportunity to convene a convention “to revise, alter or amend” the state constitution. Pursuant to that requirement, when Ohioans go to the polls in November, they will be asked to vote “yes” or “no” on a ballot issue asking whether a constitutional convention should be convened.

Each previous time the question has appeared on the statewide ballot, in 1932, 1952, 1972 and 1992, voters have rejected calls for a convention. As an alternative to a convention, however, in the 1970s the General Assembly created a bipartisan constitutional review commission that recommended a number of amendments, 15 of which were ultimately adopted by the state’s voters between 1971 and 1977.

In July 2011, in anticipation of the 2012 ballot issue, the General Assembly enacted H.B. 188, which created the commission.

Content courtesy of Court News Ohio.

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