Columbus -- If you were hoping to spend time in the near-future mixing your own alcoholic beverages using water and a specialty powdered product, you better think again.
If you want to pay less in business filing fees or draw attention to a genetic disorder that causes emphysema, you're in luck.
In addition to the biennial budget bill, which has received much attention over the past six months, lawmakers moved a flurry of other bills in recent weeks, sending some to Gov. John Kasich for his signature and eventual enactment.
Several were signed into law late last month, before deliberations on the budget bill were completed.
Included in that mix (no pun intended) was SB 7, which bans the sale of both powdered caffeine and powdered alcohol in the state.
The legislation initially focused on the former, but the Ohio House added language to accomplish the latter to ensure adoption of prohibitions sought since last general assembly.
SB 7 blocks the sale of "pure caffeine" products sold in a powder, liquid or crystalline form. Those caught selling the products could face misdemeanor criminal charges. The bill includes exceptions for pills that contain up to 250 milligrams of caffeine or coffee, tea and other products that contain caffeine combined with other ingredients.
SB 7 also blocks the sale of powdered alcohol, sold under the brand name Palcohol, which can be added to water to create an alcoholic beverage. The legislation defines "powdered or crystalline alcohol" as "a product that is manufactured in powdered or crystalline form and that contains any amount of alcohol" and prohibits its sale for human consumption.
The federal government gave its approval earlier this year for the sale of powdered alcohol. More than a dozen states have since banned its sale, and others are considering comparable prohibitions.
The provisions will take effect in late September, about 90 days after the governor added his signature.
Proponents of the bill voiced concern about the potential injury and death that can occur from use or misuse of the products. Testimony on the caffeine bill included accounts of a Lorain County teen-ager who died after ingesting a small amount of the substance.
Separate legislation signed by Kasich and to take effect in a little less than three months will reduce business filing fees in the state to $99 from $125.
Certain business name registrations will drop to $39 from $50. Additional language will ensure access for companies in good standing with the state to OhioMeansJobs, the website that includes job postings and other business support.
Backers say those changes will save businesses about $2 million annually.
Kasich signed a few other bills into law late last month, including:
HB 29, which will take effect a little more than a month before November, designating that month as Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency Awareness Month.
The state's Legislative Service Commission notes the condition affects people whose bodies do "not make enough of a protein that protects the lungs and liver from damage. It is caused by a genetic defect and can lead to emphysema and liver disease."
HB 51 and 52, the operating budgets for the state industrial commission and the Bureau of Workers' Compensation.
HB 141, which changes the name of the Ohio Historical Society to the Ohio History Connection.
Kovac is the Dix Capital Bureau Chief. Email him at email@example.com or on Twitter at OhioCapitalBlog.