RACINE — The Racine Grange took a stance on numerous legislative matters, as well as holding its annual baking contest at its recent meeting.
The legislative director presented several resolutions for consideration. The Ohio Legislature is considering a bill to allow alcoholic beverages to be used in ice cream. Since such beverages are already available to adults, members felt it would be a huge temptation to youth. Therefore, members voted to oppose this. Gov. Kasich is pushing a new requirement for licensing teachers to shadow workers in businesses for a year. Since the teaching profession is the only profession which does not get paid for interning and since student teaching is now required for a full year for new teachers, thus costing them tuition to do this as well as sacrificing pay, the Grange voted to oppose this proposed new requirement.
Due to recent turmoil in approval of a U.S. Supreme Court judge due to a century-old Senate requirement of a 60 percent vote to end cloture, the Grange voted to ask to end this practice and return to the Constitutional simple majority vote.
The Ohio Legislature is looking at instituting a complicated new system of assessing vehicle registration fees due to the need for more money for roads. The Grange voted to oppose a change in the fees and instead recommend an increase in the Ohio gasoline tax.
From 2010 to 2015, Ivy League colleges and universities garnered $25 billion in federal contracts and grants, which is more than they receive in tuition income. The Grange voted to oppose the massive amount of federal grants and contracts to Ivy League schools. Many of the high U.S. government officials graduated from these institutions and have a bias toward them.
The members discussed current problems with Obamacare. One item in it which members felt was an abuse of the federally-mandated system is the ability of children ages 23 to 26 to obtain their health care insurance through their parents’ policies. These children could be married or be totally financially independent of their parents and still get this benefit. The Grange voted to oppose insurance for these children.
President Donald Trump has indicated support for federally-funded child daycare. This is socialistic program. Members opposed this proposal.
During the recent presidential campaign, democrats proposed paying off debts of college students. When discussing this issue, members pointed out that a college education is optional and not required. Students often do not major in subjects that have good chances at employment. Also, some students are legally using their college loans to take vacations on spring break. The members voted to oppose any government repayment of student debt.
Emma Ashley thanked the Yost family for its assistance at the county grange banquet.
Racine Grange held its annual baking contest for its members with Peggy Yost, Meigs County Treasurer, acting as judge.
Olivia Yost placed first in the youth apple cheesecake bars. Hannah Yost won first place in the youth/adults brownies contest. Keith Ashley won first place in the men’s baking with apple crisp. Emma Ashley won first in cheddar cheese biscuits. The winners then compete in the county grange contest.
Olivia Yost gave a report on her recent trip to Washington D.C. for the National Grange Legislative Fly-in. Grangers attend this conference during a morning session to discuss Grange positions and actions on legislative issues. In the afternoon, the attendees then visit the offices of their U.S. Senators and Representatives to discuss issues.
The agriculture chairman reported on the continuing threat to agriculture from the loss of honey bees. The bees are needed to pollinate crops. It was further reported that the federal government is considering stripping the food stamp program out of the agriculture budget and moving it elsewhere.
Submitted by Keith Ashley, Racine Grange.