The Senate and then the House unanimously passed Amended Substitute HB 197, the Tax Code Streamlining and Correction Act. This existing tax bill was amended to address many subjects brought on by the COVID-19 emergency.
The legislation passed with an emergency clause and goes into effect immediately. However, many of the changes listed below are temporary and are set to expire on December 1, 2020, or at the rescission of the Governor’s March 9, 2020 order, whichever happens first. Among the more noteworthy changes, the bill does the following:
- Extends the mail-in ballot period for the March 17 primary election to April 28. All absentee ballots must be postmarked by April 28 to be counted, with certain exceptions for individuals with disabilities to do limited in-person voting.
- Allow courts to extend statutes of limitations from March 9-July 30.
- Provides leeway for professional license renewals.
- Permits public entities to meet remotely provided there is sufficient public access to video or telephone communications.
- Freezes EdChoice voucher eligibility at school year 2019-2020 levels.
- Provides extensive flexibility in several K-12 areas including testing and report cards, senior graduations, special education and JFS payments to child care centers.
- Aligns Ohio’s tax return deadline to the federal government’s July 15 date.
- Delays the Step Up To Quality requirement.
- Allows the administration to make transfers from the Budget Stabilization Fund in FY 2020 with Controlling Board approval.
Attached is a list of all the changes made by the bill to Ohio Law.