130th Ohio General Assembly
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H. B. No. 271  As Introduced
As Introduced

129th General Assembly
Regular Session
2011-2012
H. B. No. 271


Representatives Antonio, Foley 

Cosponsors: Representatives Hagan, R., Ramos, Celeste, Lundy, Murray, Barnes, Garland, Okey, Williams, Gerberry, Weddington, Boyd, Driehaus, Luckie, Letson, O'Brien, Stinziano, Pillich, Phillips 



A BILL
To enact sections 6302.01, 6302.02, 6302.03, 6302.04, and 6302.05 of the Revised Code to create the Ohio Works Progress Administration, and to require the General Revenue Fund surplus revenue to be used for operation of the Ohio Works Progress Administration.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF OHIO:
Section 1.  That sections 6302.01, 6302.02, 6302.03, 6302.04, and 6302.05 of the Revised Code be enacted to read as follows:
Sec. 6302.01.  The Ohio works progress administration (OWPA) shall perform work for the public good, improve public property, provide needed public services, and provide participants with work experience. Examples of these purposes include:
(A) Planting, pruning, and cutting trees.
(B) Litter removal.
(C) Cleaning and repair of drainage ditches.
(D) Roadway, waterway, and community beautification.
(E) Demolition or renovation of foreclosed or abandoned homes, or other properties, in the possession of the state or of a political subdivision, for the purpose of preparing the property for use by the state or a political subdivision, or for sale.
(F) Renovation of foreclosed or abandoned homes, or other properties, in the possession of the state or of a political subdivision, for the purpose of creating residential housing for OWPA field workers.
(G) Assisting with an environmental remediation program managed by the Ohio environmental protection agency or the United States environmental protection agency.
(H) Designing, installing, and maintaining public art projects.
(I) Providing basic home maintenance and repair services to senior citizens.
(J) Providing home weatherization services to citizens.
(K) Maintaining the grounds and facilities of public cemeteries.
(L) Maintaining the grounds and facilities of public parks.
(M) Development and maintenance of community gardens.
(N) Lead paint abatement.
Sec. 6302.02. There is the Ohio works progress administration. The Ohio works progress administration may be referred to by its initials, OWPA.
OWPA shall be administered by the director of OWPA, who shall be appointed by the governor with advice and consent of the senate. The director is entitled to a salary of seventy-five thousand dollars per year.
The director shall appoint field workers under section 6302.03 of the Revised Code and other professional, technical, clerical, and supervisory personnel as are necessary to achieve the purposes of OWPA.
The director and the employees of OWPA are in the unclassified service.
OWPA may apply for, and may receive and accept grants, and may receive and accept gifts and contributions, from public and private sources, including agencies and instrumentalities of the United States and of this state, and shall deposit the grants, gifts, or contributions into the Ohio works progress administration fund.
Sec. 6302.03. (A) There shall be field worker positions in OWPA. Application for a field worker position shall be in writing and on a form prescribed by the director of OWPA. An individual may be employed as an OWPA field worker if the individual meets all the following qualifications:
(1) The individual is a resident of this state;
(2) The individual is at least eighteen years of age;
(3) The individual is unemployed, as that term is defined in section 4141.01 of the Revised Code; and
(4) The individual has been awarded a high school diploma or a certificate of high school equivalence issued for achievement of specified minimum scores on the general educational development test of the American council on education.
An individual may obtain a three-month exemption from the educational requirement by providing a signed affidavit stating that the individual is preparing to take the general educational development test.
An individual may be employed as an artist field worker if the director determines that the individual has skill and experience as a fine artist in one or more media, including painting, drawing, or sculpture.
The director may not rely on a person's prior conviction of a felony as the sole reason for not employing a person as a field worker.
(B)(1) A minimum of fifty field workers shall be employed in each county, at least two of whom are artists. The artists may engage in work projects to fulfill the public art purpose of OWPA.
The director shall establish policies and procedures for assigning field workers to the several counties. The policies and procedures shall be designed to achieve a gender and racial demographic of OWPA field workers within a county that closely matches the gender and racial demographic of the county.
(2) In addition to the field workers assigned to the several counties, the director shall employ and assign to each county supervisory personnel as are necessary to schedule, direct, and supervise field workers. The supervisory personnel shall be knowledgeable and experienced in the types of work projects that the field workers under their supervision will be engaged in. The supervisory personnel are responsible, under the director's guidance, for identifying, and assigning field workers to, work projects that fulfill the purposes of OWPA.
(C) The director shall procure housing in each county and shall make the housing available to field workers. The housing shall include necessary utilities for heat, water, and cooking. Field workers residing in the housing are not obligated to pay rent or to pay for the utilities. Field workers shall provide their own food, necessities, and work clothing. Field workers who choose not to live in the housing are not entitled to a housing allowance. Field workers are responsible for their own transportation to and from the OWPA job site to which they are assigned.
(D) OWPA field workers are entitled to a salary of twenty seven thousand five hundred dollars per year.
Sec. 6302.04.  The director of OWPA shall adopt rules under Chapter 119. of the Revised Code on the following subjects:
(A) Standards to govern work assignments;
(B) Job descriptions and responsibilities for professional, technical, and clerical employees of OWPA, and for supervisory personnel;
(C) Field worker standards of conduct;
(D) Eligibility standards for senior citizens to receive basic home maintenance and repair services from OWPA field workers;
(E) Eligibility standards for citizens to receive home weatherization services from OWPA field workers;
(F) Any other subjects that will help to achieve the purposes of OWPA.
Sec. 6302.05.  There is the Ohio works progress administration fund in the state treasury. The fund shall consist of general revenue fund surplus revenue transferred to the fund, and of gifts, grants, and contributions. Investment earnings of the fund shall be deposited into the fund. The director shall use money in the fund to operate OWPA.
Section 2. As used in this section, "surplus revenue" and "required year-end balance" have the meanings defined in section 131.44 of the Revised Code.
Notwithstanding divisions (B) and (C) of section 131.44 of the Revised Code, the Director of Budget and Management shall determine the General Revenue Fund surplus revenue that existed on June 30, 2011, in excess of the required year-end balance, and transfer that amount from the General Revenue Fund to the Ohio Works Progress Administration Fund.
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