Issue: October 2007 Issue
Anti-Nuisance Bill Becomes Law
Just days after IB's August issue arrived in your mailbox, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled Governor Ted Strickland's veto on a bill prohibiting a type of lawsuit affecting former lead-paint makers was invalid.
The court's 5-to-2 ruling allowed the bill, S.B. 117, passed by the General Assembly late last year, to become law. The law restricts lawsuits against paint companies, like Cleveland's The Sherwin-Williams Co., that claim lead pigment in the paint — not used by the company for 66 years — is a "public nuisance," a broad and imprecise legal definition that critics feared could open the door to widespread suits against companies in other industries.
The court's ruling, however, had little to do with the merit of the bill, but more to do with Strickland not vetoing the bill within the 10-day time limit of when state lawmakers approved it.
We're not certain, but we think our August cover story about this bill and the dangers it poses to Ohio's economy influenced the justices. ...Or, maybe not.
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