A northeast Ohio lawmaker doesn’t want the state to miss out on an opportunity as the business climate throughout the Buckeye State improves and the overall economy continues to grow.
Sen. Frank LaRose, R-Hudson, earlier this week introduced a bill to create a committee to study the possibility of a separate business court, similar to the state of Delaware’s chancery court.
Senate Bill 183 would examine how a specialized business court could help Ohio’s businesses and assist in the attraction of new enterprises, LaRose said in a press release.
“Ohio’s business climate is on the rise, now is the time to think of ways to continue the upward trend,” he said in the prepared statement. “A separate business court could prove to be a useful tool in attracting more businesses to our state, as well as be a valuable resource to our current business community.”
Business dockets have been established in two counties — Lucas and Hamilton — upon completion of an Ohio Supreme Court-led pilot program of the practice.
Two additional pilot participants, Franklin and Cuyahoga counties, effectively have abandoned the program, according to published accounts.
SB 183 would create the committee charged with examining how such a court could positively affect Ohio’s business climate.
The committee would consist of legislators, judges, business leaders and individuals from organizations that represent the state’s business interests.
“Together, this team of knowledgeable individuals will determine if a separate business court would be beneficial and sustainable in Ohio,” LaRose continued. “They will study its potential effects on attracting new companies to Ohio.”
Additionally, SB 183 would require the committee study how current businesses could benefit from having a court system that is solely dedicated to settling business disputes.
LaRose noted that such a court has existed in Delaware for more than a hundred years and is often cited as a key reason why businesses register there.
Delaware is home to more than 300 Fortune 500 companies, overwhelmingly more than any other state, the press release detailed.
The committee also would be charged with consideration of the impact of development of a chancery court on the state’s existing judicial system.
Upon completion of the committee’s work, if members deem a separate business court viable, they would be tasked with proposing draft legislation to the General Assembly for the creation of this new court.
The bill awaits committee referral.