MEDINA — State Rep. Bill Batchelder, the incumbent Republican speaker of the Ohio House, and his Democratic challenger, Judith Cross, will have their one and only meeting this evening at the Medina Library.
The candidates are competing for the 69th Ohio House seat. The district covers the eastern portion of Medina County.
The format for the discussion, which begins at 6:30 p.m. in the library’s community Rooms A and B, is informal. The candidates will present their views and opinions on how they best would represent the district. The audience then will be allowed to submit written questions to which the candidates will respond.
The event is being billed as a “discussion” and not a debate because there will be no moderator.
The candidates are at opposite ends of several issues.
Batchelder, 70, of Medina, supported Senate Bill 5, a state law that called for restrictions on collective bargaining rights in Ohio.
Cross, 67, of Medina, said Batchelder’s support for Senate Bill 5, which was struck down by Ohio voters last year in a referendum, prompted her to run for office.
Batchelder also has promised to expand oil and gas exploration in hopes of creating more jobs.
Cross has voiced safety and health concerns about the use of hydraulic fracturing — better known as “fracking” — to extract the oil and gas.