It is hard for me to believe, but another year has already passed. The end of 2016 marks more than just the end of a year for me, however — it also signifies the end of the 131st General Assembly and my first term as House Speaker.

It has been a busy couple of years for both myself and the state of Ohio, and I am truly proud of all we have accomplished.

From improving water quality to cutting taxes, the legislature has tackled a wide range of issues during this legislative term. All of our efforts have had one common interest—to improve the lives of all Ohioans and make our state a better place to live, work, and raise a family. I am confident that our work has done just that.

Some of our priorities have included encouraging small business growth, enacting policies that help curtail Ohio’s opioid epidemic, and protecting our most vulnerable populations. We reduced the filing fees for starting a new business and repaid Ohio’s unemployment compensation debt, two measures that promote the development and success of Ohio businesses. We increased access to naloxone, medication that reverses the effects of a drug overdose, and provided immunity from minor offenses to those who contact emergency medical services in the event of an overdose.

Additionally, we passed provisions that aid in the fight against the infant mortality crisis and created an address confidentiality program that protects victims of stalking and domestic violence.

These bills are only a small portion of the legislation we passed and that has been signed into law by Governor Kasich. Our efforts not only reflect a dedication to conservative principles and sound fiscal policy, but they also demonstrate a commitment to helping Ohioans and local businesses thrive when they need it most.

Our purpose has been to enact initiatives that give our citizens and communities a stepping stone to success, inspiring a self-sufficient and self-sustaining future for Ohio.

As January nears, I can’t help but to reflect and contemplate back on my first term as Speaker. It has been a learning experience and a great opportunity for personal growth as Speaker. I’ve learned so much more than I expected from the vast number of people I have met and interacted with all across Ohio.

As I continue to absorb all I can from my mentors, colleagues, and acquaintances, I am looking forward to using my experiences to hit the ground running at the beginning of the 132nd General Assembly. Ohio has come a long way, but there is more to be done. I am hopeful we can achieve that for you, your family, and community.

Best wishes for a happy new year and a blessed 2017!

Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville) represents the 91st District, which includes Clinton County.

Cliff Rosenberger

Ohio House Speaker