Governor Signs HB 197

Legislation provides emergency relief to Ohioans during the COVID-19 pandemic

(March 27, 2020) Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine today signed House Bill 197 which provides emergency relief to Ohioans during the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill:

  • Waives state testing requirements for school children this year.
  • Extends professional licenses for those who cannot get them renewed.
  • Allows local governments to hold public meetings remotely and with transparency.
  • Extends the income tax deadline to July 15, 2020.
  • Extends absentee voting by mail until April 28, 2020.
  • Provides funding for small businesses, such as day cares and services for the disabled.  

Specific provisions related to health care include:

  • Medicaid community providers and workforce support: The bill authorizes the Ohio Medicaid Director to classify certain providers as COVID-19 community providers, which allows the Medicaid Director to direct Medicaid funds to these providers. It also authorizes the Medicaid Director to request that the Office of Budget and Management designate additional funds related to the COVID-19 outbreak for Medicaid payments to these COVID-19 community providers.
  • Licensure extensions during the state of emergency: The bill defers requirements for licensure renewal for providers until either 90 days after the state of emergency ends or until December 1, 2020, whichever comes first. Disciplinary actions against license holders, including suspension and potential revocation of licenses, will generally be allowed to continue during the state of emergency.

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