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Ohio News

Bill Aims To Shine Light On Dark Money

Screenshots of ads from the pro-bailout group that's trying to stop the referendum, Ohioans For Energy Security, and the anti-bailout group that wants the referendum, Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts
Screenshots of ads from the pro-bailout group that's trying to stop the referendum, Ohioans For Energy Security, and the anti-bailout group that wants the referendum, Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts

Dark money has played a role in Ohio politics for years – including in the scandal involving the nuclear bailout law at the center of an alleged $60 million bribery scheme.  There’s a bill under consideration at the Statehouse that attempts to shine light on political donors. 

Republican Rep Diane Grendell (R-Chesterland) says her bill requires nonprofits and corporations to file a disclosure with the state showing sources of all funds received and used in a political campaign. 

“Ohioans are entitled to the full picture so that they are able to make the best-informed decisions in any campaign," Grendell says.

The bill also calls for groups to keep their political arms separate from their charitable purposes so that people who want to donate for the cause don’t inadvertently end up being political donors. 

The bill would also require social welfare nonprofits known as 501(c)4s to disclose donors and spending several times a year, the same as other political groups. Generation Now, the group that has pleaded guilty in the nuclear bailout scandal, is a 501(c)4.

 A bill with similar elements that was proposed last year never received a hearing.

Copyright 2021 The Statehouse News Bureau