Court News Ohio
Court News Ohio
Court News Ohio

Senate Also Votes to Consolidate Fostoria, Tiffin Courts

Image of a map of Ohio counties with the cities of Tiffin and Fostoria highlighted

A bill to merge the Fostoria and Tiffin municipal courts and have one judge serve the consolidated court moves on to the governor after passing the Ohio Senate June 20.

Image of a map of Ohio counties with the cities of Tiffin and Fostoria highlighted

A bill to merge the Fostoria and Tiffin municipal courts and have one judge serve the consolidated court moves on to the governor after passing the Ohio Senate June 20.

The Ohio Senate today voted to merge the Fostoria and Tiffin municipal courts and have one judge serve the consolidated court. Last month, the Ohio House of Representatives voted to combine the courts.

Sponsored by Rep. Rex Damshroder (R-Fremont), House Bill 141 passed the Senate 32-0 and 30-2 on an emergency basis. The bill now moves to the governor for his signature.

The bill includes a provision that the consolidated court’s judge would be elected in this November’s general election. Current Tiffin Municipal Court Judge Mark E. Repp has been serving as a visiting judge in the Fostoria Municipal Court since July following the death of former Judge Barbara L. Marley on April 14, 2012. The vacancy remains unfilled.

The Ohio Supreme Court testified in favor of the merger in the House and upon request provided local officials and legislators with a case management analysis about the case volume in both courts.

In her testimony before the House Judiciary Committee on May 8, Government Relations Counsel Jo Ellen Cline said the House bill “ensures the goals of judicial economy and access to justice” through the proposed consolidation.

“HB 141 would not alter the territorial jurisdiction of the current courts making the newly formed Tiffin-Fostoria Municipal Court one of the largest geographically configured municipal courts in the state,” she testified.

“It should be noted that safeguards in the legislation, including appointment of a special deputy clerk for Fostoria and a provision that the judge shall sit in both cities weekly, alleviate any concerns that the large territory will negatively impact access to justice.”

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