Steve Stivers

Steve Stivers


Combatting Opiate Abuse


I sincerely hope the readers of this column have never been impacted by, or witness to, the utter destruction caused by drug abuse. The unfortunate truth is that most of us do know of someone who has struggled with addiction. Opiate abuse in the United States has reached epidemic proportions, and it is a disease that does not discriminate. It impacts men and women, rich and poor, young and old, all races, faiths and ethnicities. For some, the habit begins because of previous experimentation with other drugs, but for many, it begins with a prescription for treating a toothache or mitigating back problems.

With so many impacted by this problem, it is going to take a coordinated and comprehensive effort to combat it. Recently, I held my third annual Opiates Roundtable in Lancaster, where I brought together law enforcement, health care and treatment experts from around the 15th Congressional District for an open discussion about strategies and solutions we can work on together. These are the people on the front lines, who see the impact of the opiate epidemic every day. I was struck both by the frustration they expressed at the magnitude of the problem and endless need for resources, but also by the commitment each of them had to continuing the fight and making the best of what they do have.

For example, Judge Fred Moses of Hocking County talked about the successes he and his team of dedicated counselors have had with their local drug court. Through the program, they are helping addicts get off drugs and back on their feet and have only seen one instance of recidivism since 2012. It is important to recognize that while we need to support law enforcement, we can’t just lock up addicts to solve this problem.

While in Lancaster for the Roundtable, I had an opportunity to tour the Pearl House, which represents another facet of the battle against opiates. Pearl House provides “supportive housing” to recovering addicts and their children. We know that those who have the courage to face their addictions need a lot of support after they get off drugs to maintain sober lives and get back into the workforce. To that end, Pearl House provides services such as counseling and treatment to keep former addicts on the right track, in recovery and living with their families.

Representatives of the Adena Medical Center in Chillicothe were also represented. They have a program which serves pregnant women. The goal is to reduce the number of babies born addicted to opiates and to support and keep families together. This is an issue that is very important to me. In fact, in the days following the Roundtable, I was pleased the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Protecting Our Infants Act. I cosponsored this legislation with Rep. Katherine Clark (D-MA), which takes proactive steps to help hospitals diagnose and treat newborns suffering from opiate dependency by requiring better tracking and data. The bill passed with unanimous, bipartisan support and I hope to see the Senate pass it in coming months.

These are just a few examples of the good work being done in our region to combat opiate abuse. Recently, the Ohio Department of Health reported a rise in drug overdose deaths of nearly 18 percent in our state. It’s a sobering reminder that, as with any struggle, there are highs and lows. We have a lot more work to do, but what gives me hope is the dedication and hard work of the people in our region who are making a difference, one addict at a time.

As always, I am grateful for the opportunity to serve Ohio’s 15th Congressional District and I look forward to hearing from you about any federal issues facing our nation.  Please do not hesitate to call my Washington D.C. Office at (202) 225-2015, Hilliard Office at (614) 771-4968, Lancaster Office at (740) 654-2654, or Wilmington Office at (937) 283-7049 to share your thoughts with me.

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Stivers, Walz Legislation to Establish an Inspector General at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Passes Committee


WASHINGTON, D.C. – Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Congressman Steve Stivers (R–OH) and Congressman Tim Walz (D-MN) that would create the position of an independent Inspector General (IG) at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) passed out of committee on Wednesday.

“The CFPB has been given broad authority and must be accountable to the American people,” Stivers said. “More than 30 other federal departments and agencies have an independent Inspector General. This bill would bring the CFPB in line with these agencies and provide the necessary oversight and transparency.”

“The CFPB is an important agency that works to ensure that you, the consumer, are protected from things like predatory payday lenders, shoddy mortgage bankers and defective products. Their work is important, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t need oversight,” Walz said. “I believe the appointment of an independent Inspector General will only increase their ability to fulfill their important mission and I am pleased this legislation passed out of committee.”

The CFPB receives its operating funds from the Federal Reserve. Currently, it has very little Congressional oversight and does not have an independent Inspector General solely dedicated to the Bureau. Instead, the CFPB shares an Inspector General with the Federal Reserve, which is appointed by the Fed Chairman. The bill sponsored by Congressman Stivers and Walz would amend the Inspector General Act of 1978 to establish an independent Inspector General for the CFPB.

Having passed Committee, H.R. 957, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection-Inspector General Reform Act of 2015, will soon head to the House floor.


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Stivers Statement on the Approved EDA Grant for Buckeye Lake


WASHINGTON – The following statement can be attributed to Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) about the approved grant for the economic recovery of the Buckeye Lake region impacted by low water levels:

“I am happy to have supported this grant and see it approved because it will help the people and businesses affected by the low water levels in Buckeye Lake,” Stivers said. “Moving forward, we need to focus on safety and rebuild the dam as quickly as possible to preserve the Buckeye Lake economy.”

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Stivers Statement on the announcement by Speaker of the House John Boehner


WASHINGTON- All of the following can be attributed to Congressman Steve Stivers regarding today’s announcement by Speaker of the House John Boehner:

“I was surprised and sorry to hear that John Boehner will be stepping down as Speaker of the House. He is a friend and the person who talked me into running for Congress.
“He has been a leader who is always willing to make the tough decisions and do the right thing for our country, even when it was not in his own personal best interests.
“After yesterday’s moving visit by the Pope and today’s selfless act by Speaker Boehner, I think all of us need to look inward and come together as a team, putting our petty differences aside to do what is best for the American people.”
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Emotional Boehner after pope visit: ‘What a day’


WASHINGTON — For House Speaker John Boehner, every second of this day was special — personally thrilling, politically historic, spiritually fulfilling, and most of all, emotionally overwhelming.

"What a day," Boehner said Thursday, at the end of the first papal address to a joint session of Congress. "What a moment for our country. ... The Holy Father's visit is surely a blessing for all of us."

For Boehner, it was not just a blessing but a lifelong dream come true. He had asked three popes to speak to Congress, extending the first invitation more than 20 years ago, and he was overjoyed when Pope Francis became the first to accept.

Boehner and an army of his aides planned every detail of the day. The speaker rose early and carefully picked out a green tie, his favorite color, to go with his usual well-cut dark suit. He skipped his regular stop at Pete's Diner, where he grabs breakfast on most days he's in Washington, to get something lighter at his office.

By 9:15, the speaker was in his ceremonial office across from the House floor, ready for a personal meeting with the pontiff. Five minutes later, Pope Francis entered and Boehner greeted him with a handshake and a smile.

"Your holiness, welcome, really glad that you're here," the former altar boy from Reading told Pope Francis.

Boehner's eyes moistened as the pope told him he, too, was glad to be there, according to an account of the meeting distributed to reporters.

The two men sat down next to each other, accompanied by Vatican and church officials and Boehner aides. With photographers' cameras whirring, Boehner told the pontiff that his staff urged him to wear the green tie. Pope Francis complimented the speaker's choice, through his interpreter.

"He says it's a tie with the color of hope," the interpreter told Boehner.

"I need a lot of hope today," Boehner responded.

Indeed, the backdrop for this carefully choreographed, uplifting moment could not be more incongruous: Congress mired in partisan muck over funding for Planned Parenthood, which could trigger a chaotic government shutdown.

Boehner appeared to be trying to push that conflict — which also threatens his speakership, as conservatives push him to take a hard line — to the back of his mind Thursday. He wanted no talk of shutdown politics, although he clearly hoped the pope's remarkable speech would cause lawmakers to take a deep breath and to heed "our higher callings," as he put in an exclusive interview with the Enquirer Monday.

"With great blessings, of course, come great responsibility," Boehner said in his post-pope speech statement. "Let us all go forth with gratitude and reflect on how we can better serve one another."

In their meeting, Pope Francis gave Boehner a framed Liberty Bell commemorating the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia this week — the same gift the pope gave to President Obama.

Boehner gave Pope Francis a sterling silver water pitcher with the seal of the speaker on one side. Engraved on the other side was this: "His Holiness Pope Francis, Holy See, September 24, 2015."

Then, at 9:46 sharp, Boehner arrived in the speaker's chair and called the House to order. His specially selected guests -- including his wife, Debbie, his childhood friend Jerry Vanden Eynden, and former Speaker Newt Gingrich -- were seated in the House gallery. And 15 minutes later, the House sergeant-at-arms made this announcement: "Mr. Speaker, the pope of the Holy See."

"To see the pope come in the chamber was amazing," said Rep. Brad Wenstrup, a Republican from Columbia-Tusculum. It filled him with pride for his Catholic faith, he said, "to know the leader of my religion is so well revered."

Wenstrup said he also loved the pope's speech, saying "he right off the bat embraced the American spirit."

As the pope opened his speech, Boehner already had tears welling in his eyes and a handkerchief at the ready. The pope's speech tested not just Boehner's emotional state, but many lawmakers' political beliefs as well.

He made forceful pleas for lawmakers to address climate change, to welcome immigrants, to abolish the death penalty — all messages that sparked warm applause from Democrats and cautious claps from Republicans.

The pope also touched on issues important to conservatives, suggesting traditional marriage was under attack and calling for the protection of "human life at every stage of development."

Boehner and his aides had warned lawmakers to be on their best behavior — hoping they would not turn the pope's address into a partisan clapping match. And for the most part, they obeyed — giving him several standing ovations at key moments without dividing into polarized camps over certain catch-phrases.

That came right after, though, as lawmakers singled out their favorite lines from the pope's address in flurry of dueling press releases.

"I was struck by his simple defense of the unborn," said Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Urbana, who is leading the charge to defund Planned Parenthood and pushing Boehner into a showdown with Obama over the issue. "It has been one of my greatest priorities in office to do just that, and I am glad that the pope specifically focused on this great moral issue as we look ahead to funding the government this fall."

Sen. Sherrod Brown, a liberal Democrat from Ohio, highlighted the pope's pitch to care for the poor.

"Pope Francis' address to Congress today outlined why it's critical that we embrace all people in our global community ... especially the poor and overlooked ... with understanding and compassion," Brown said. "His unifying message should remind us all to serve our neighbors and embrace the 'golden rule' present in most of the world's major religions."

Rep. Steve Stivers, R-Columbus, said he hoped the pope's address would reignite a spirit of cooperation and civility in Congress

"In a city where partisanship too often rules the day, his words of humility, hope and peace remind us that there can be common ground on the values we share," Stivers said. "This is a day I won't soon forget."

For his part, Boehner steered clear of the political commentary and tried to focus on the spiritual. After the pope concluded his 45-minute address, Boehner and Vice President Joe Biden escorted the pope out of the chamber and onto the speaker's balcony.

There, the pope greeted a throng of well-wishers gathered on the Capitol's west lawn. Biden smiled broadly and looked out at the adoring crowd, but Boehner kept his teary eyes glued to the pope. Appearing overcome with emotion, he seemed to want that moment to last forever.

"I'm so proud that so many came to greet the pope here at our Capitol, the world's greatest symbol of democracy," he said afterward.

But political reality returned quickly, once the pope went off to lunch with Washington's homeless and lawmakers turned their attention back to the divisive spending fight. A few hours after the pope left the Capitol, Boehner called Jordan and other conservatives to a meeting in his office to talk about their demand to defund Planned Parenthood in the government spending bill — a tactic Boehner fears will fail and will hurt the GOP.

Jordan declined to comment on the discussion. But another lawmaker, Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C., said he thought the speaker would lose 50 Republican votes if he pushes for a "clean" spending bill that does not strip Planned Parenthood of its funding.

Asked if conservatives would push for Boehner's ouster if he doesn't take a hard line on Planned Parenthood, Mulvaney demurred. "All I know is any member — any member — can bring up that motion" to remove Boehner from the speaker's chair, he said. Read More

Stivers Statement on the Pope's Visit to Washington, DC


WASHINGTON- The following statement can be attributed to Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) regarding the Pope’s visit to Washington D.C.

“It was an honor to be part of Pope Francis’ historic visit to Capitol Hill.

“In a city where partisanship too often rules the day, his words of humility, hope and peace remind us that there can be common ground on the values we share.

“This is a day I won’t soon forget.”


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Rep. Stivers makes CC stops; backs corridor project


WILMINGTON — U.S. Rep. Steve Stivers (R-Ohio, 15th District) made several local stops Monday, holding office hours for constituents, and visiting the manufacturer Ferno, Clinton Memorial Hospital and the News Journal.

“We need a long-term transportation bill. We need one that’s paid for; we need one that allows us to do projects like the Brent Spence Bridge down in Cincinnati that is going to be a billion dollar project by itself,” said Stivers in an interview.

The bridge is a part of the Interstates 71 and 75 corridor that “is a backbone” which goes from Detroit to Florida, Stivers said.

As such, the corridor is “super-important to anybody who wants to get north-south in America,” added Stivers.

According to Stivers, an obstacle to a Brent Spence Bridge replacement project is that in the United States, “only about $30 billion a year” is spent on infrastructure. With that amount, it makes it hard to do “big, important transportation projects,” said the congressman.

A Brent Spence Bridge replacement project is “really important” to him, Stivers said. I-71, of course, crosses northern Clinton County.

Also of importance to him is changing federal tax policy, but he said it probably won’t happen this year.

“We’ve got to get our economy moving again,” said Stivers.

He went on to say this country has the highest corporate tax rate in the world, and that successful small businesses are taxed more than successful big businesses.

Though the effects on the overall U.S. economy would be less than a change in tax policy, Stivers said the export-import bank needs to be reauthorized. After the U.S. export-import bank expired June 30, America is the only major trading country in the world that doesn’t have one, according to Stivers.

“We compete against about 30 to 40 industrialized countries, and every single one has an export credit finance agency like the bank. It is pretty silly for us not to have an export credit finance agency,” he added.

Elaborating on the issue, Stivers said, “There are some folks who believe the private marketplace can do this all by itself, but our experience since June is that it can’t.”

The Republican lawmaker said, “I’m all for privatizing when it works. But if it can’t work, we need to have a way that helps our businesses export.”

He said he is working on a lot of proposed bills, including one that would expand off-shore energy production and help to fund roads and bridges.

Another bill he is the prime sponsor for has passed the U.S. House of Representatives. It would allow privately insured credit unions to join the federal home loan bank, thus increasing the amount of available mortgage money, Stivers said.

Stivers said he talked “a little bit” about workforce development programming when he visited Ferno.

He said he favors a more flexible approach on workforce development, one that provides funds to employers with unfilled jobs, instead of having workforce training dollars go to educational institutions. Read More

Washington offers little help in heroin epidemic


WASHINGTON — Shawn Ryan needs Congress to lift the federal cap on the number of heroin addicts he can treat, so he and other Ohio physicians don't have to turn away patients desperate to stop using.

Charmaine McGuffey needs funding for a medical detox unit, so she and other officials at the Hamilton County Jail don't have to rely on flu medicine for inmates in severe withdrawal.

Kimberly Wright needs more treatment beds, so she and other advocates don't have to tell terrified parents there's a three-to-six month wait for their sick children.

What is Congress doing to respond to these people on the front lines of the heroin epidemic that has Ohio in its grip?

None of the above. At least, not yet.

"This is the No. 1 public health epidemic right now, and I've seen very little from our leaders in Washington," said Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann.

As heroin use has doubled over the past decade and the fatal overdose toll has climbed in every state, Congress and the administration have started paying attention. But their response has been slow and sometimes counterproductive.

That's partly because the heroin epidemic is a complex problem, requiring difficult and sometimes controversial solutions. Treatment is expensive, and lawmakers are reluctant to shift limited federal dollars from law enforcement to public health programs.

And there's no powerful lobby for addicts, most of whom want to stay anonymous and rebuild broken lives, not become a poster child for drug policy reform.

"We don't have a pink ribbon," says Stuart Gitlow, past president of the American Society of Addiction Medicine and a physician in Rhode Island. "There is no nationwide 'Walk for Addiction,' no celebrity spokesperson. We're not that kind of disease."

Without that kind of political pull, Gitlow adds, "we often lack the ability to get even the most basic legislation passed."

The role that stigma plays in stalling congressional action seems obvious to Wright, who started Kentucky Parents Against Heroin after her daughter fell into the grip of the drug.

"We get one case of Ebola and everybody's going nuts (in Washington)," says the Cold Spring, Ky., mother, who spends most days trying to help parents in the Cincinnati area find treatment beds for their children. "But we're losing all these kids (to heroin), and nobody's doing anything."

Or at least nothing very effective so far.

Lawmakers have convened hearings, issued press releases, and introduced a slew of legislative proposals. At least 20 bills aimed at curbing opioid and heroin addiction are now pending in Congress.

Just this month, the House passed a bill aimed at improving care for newborns suffering from opioid dependency. The legislation, sponsored by Reps. Steve Stivers, R-Columbus, and Katherine Clark, D-Mass., would require the Department of Health and Human Services to study best practices for preventing and treating prenatal opioid abuse and share recommendations on how to best prevent and treat opioid dependency in pregnant women.

Stivers and others in Ohio's congressional delegation have been at the forefront of the legislative push. Republican Sen. Rob Portman is championing a bill that would increase funding for prevention and treatment, among other steps. And Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown is pressing legislation that would lift the federal cap that limits doctors to treating 100 opioid addicts at a time with buprenorphine, which has been proven far more effective than detox or abstinence.

Advocates say both bills would make a significant impact on the epidemic by expanding access to evidence-based treatment.

"I'm excited to see significant movement from multiple political forces in the right direction," said Ryan, an addiction expert at BrightView Health and an emergency room physician at the University of Cincinnati. "What I would love to see is meaningful action and delivery of financial support that results in true expansion of treatment access."

Ryan said he understands the issue is a tough sell politically, and there's not a lot of public support for spending money on patients with drug addiction.

"It's almost easier to avoid it than to address it," he said, except that "people are dying every day in every major city and we need (action) yesterday."

In the meantime, Congress has continued to pour money into interdiction and enforcement, even though experts say incarceration is not an effective solution to the heroin crisis. They say the buprenorphine limit has fueled a crisis in treatment access, and lawmakers have avoided big solutions in favor of legislative tweaks that make little or no difference.

"It's quite often one step forward and two steps back," said Michael Collins, policy manager at the Drug Policy Alliance, an advocacy group.

Take, for example, the White House's latest initiative targeting the surge in heroin trafficking. Unveiled last month, White House officials said the effort would channel $5 million to combating trafficking, distribution and use of heroin, and would foster new partnerships between police and health policy experts to better track the flow of heroin.

The announcement was met with a shrug in Cincinnati.

"That kind of funding level is almost insulting to the crisis we face," said Hartmann. It will accomplish "little to nothing." Read More

House goes on record against Iran nuclear pact


WASHINGTON — The Republican-led House cast largely symbolic votes against the Iran nuclear deal on Friday and sought to restrict President Barack Obama’s authority to lift sanctions against Tehran, one day after the Senate ensured that the administration can implement the accord without congressional interference.

After three hours of hot-tempered debate, the House voted 269-162 to reject the deal; 25 Democrats broke with Obama to register their disapproval.

Among Ohio lawmakers, Republican Reps. Pat Tiberi of Genoa Township, Steve Stivers of Upper Arlington, Bob Gibbs of Lakeville and Bill Johnson of Marietta opposed the deal. Democratic Rep. Joyce Beatty of Jefferson Township supported it.

“This agreement leaves us with unknown side deals, an empowered Iranian regime, the risk of an arms race, an increased possibility of war, continued imprisonment of American hostages and an Iran that will still have nuclear capabilities that are consequences of this agreement,” Tiberi said. “ The president’s wrong.”

“The choice we have is not between this deal and war. We can and should negotiate a better deal, one that includes robust inspections and denies Iran nuclear capabilities.”

Gibbs said “we cannot allow the enactment of a deal that rewards Iran with sanctions relief and the ability to inspect itself.”

House Speaker John Boehner, R-West Chester, said “this is such a bad deal the ayatollah won’t even have to cheat to be steps away from a nuclear weapon.”

Beatty acknowledged that the decision was “not easy,” but she said “ultimately, I decided to vote for the agreement and pledge to continue to support taking every necessary step to preclude Iran from becoming a nuclear threshold nation and from being able to promote and finance terrorism in the Middle East and elsewhere.”

The fate of the agreement on Capitol Hill, however, was sealed on Thursday when Senate Democrats voted to uphold the accord, overcoming heavy GOP opposition to hand Obama a victory on his top foreign-policy priority. The Senate action guaranteed that legislation disapproving of the accord will never reach Obama’s desk.

Obama marked the end of the House votes with a statement saying it is time to turn the page.

“Now, we must turn to the critical work of implementing and verifying this deal so that Iran cannot pursue a nuclear weapon,” the president said. “In doing so, we’ll write the latest chapter of American leadership in the pursuit of a safer, more hopeful world.”

During the debate, Democrats argued that the agreement would stabilize the Mideast, stop Iran from rushing to develop a nuclear bomb and offer a chance to end the standoff with Iran diplomatically, while retaining a U.S. threat of military action.

Republicans countered that the agreement’s inspection regimen in Iran, a state sponsor of terrorism, is weak, and they repeatedly recalled how Islamic extremists attacked America on Sept. 11, 2001. They said the deal will allow Iran to eventually possess a nuclear weapon and that the billions it will receive through sanctions relief will end up in the hands of terrorist groups that Tehran supports.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said that if the Iranians cheat, inspectors using advanced technology will know it. She noted that Iran already is on the threshold of being a nuclear-armed state and that the agreement delays this from becoming a reality for at least a decade.

In a second vote, the House passed 247-186 a measure to suspend until Jan. 21, 2017 — a day after a new president is sworn into office — the president’s authority to waive, suspend or reduce sanctions on Iran.

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., spoke vehemently against the deal but acknowledged that the vote will not stop the president from implementing the agreement. The House measures could come up in the Senate next week but would face a filibuster by Senate Democrats, and Sept. 17 — the date slated for the close of congressional review of the deal — is less than a week away.

“I know the president may have already lined up enough support to save his deal. But with this vote, we need to send a message to both Iran and the world,” Ryan said.

“The regime may have bamboozled this administration, but the American people know that this is a rotten deal.”

As part of the last-ditch effort to snarl the deal, the House on Thursday adopted a resolution on a vote of 245-186 saying that Obama had not complied with the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act.

Supporters of the resolution claimed the act required the president to supply Congress with all documents relevant to the deal but the administration did not give lawmakers texts of two agreements that the U.N. nuclear-inspection agency negotiated separately with Tehran.

The administration says it doesn’t have the bilateral agreements, and the nuclear inspection agency says confidentiality provisions prevent it from releasing them. Read More

Congressman Stivers visits health center, East Elementary


U. S. Representative Steve Stivers visited Morgan County Friday, Sept. 4. Congressman Stivers stopped in Malta for a tour of the Muskingum Valley Health Center (MVHC). Stivers also dropped in on students, at East Elementary School, in McConnelsville.

Congressman Stivers first met with MVHC CEO Dan Atkinson, Chief Development Officer Randy Cochrane and staff. State Representative Troy Balderson also toured the MVHC facility with the group.

“It is great to have a medical home for the people of Morgan County,” Congress­man Stivers said. “Having a local health care facility alone is good, but having a dental facility included is huge.”

Congressman Stivers mentioned that he is happy to support places like MVHC. Many residents can benefit from a health center such as this, because so many working people can’t afford insurance.

“MVHC can help provide a safety net for the under-served,” Stivers commented. “Working people sometimes do without health and dental care because their income prevents them from getting benefits that people in poverty get.”

Stivers says he prefers to subsidize work rather than poverty.

“For years we have subsidized poverty, and we have gotten more poverty, Congressman Stivers stated. “I like to encourage work, and subsidize work. It is an American tradition to work hard and climb the ladder of success. Workers should get good health care and dental care, too.”

Cochrane related to Stivers that MVHC saves money, because people can visit MVHC instead of traveling to an emergency room for regular treatment.

“Emergency room care is the most expensive care, because the ER doctors usually do not have a patient’s history, and they have to perform all the tests to reach a diagnosis,” Stivers concluded. “If a person comes to this facility, you will have his medical history and be able to give great care. We should leave the emergency rooms for emergencies.”

MVHC collaborates with the local hospitals, both Genesis in Zanesville and Memorial Health in Marietta, according to CEO Atkinson.

“We are the primary care for the community,” Cochrane said. “We are it.”

Congressman Stivers thanked the entire staff of MVHC for their commitment to Morgan County.

“I will be helpful and support your program here in any way I can,” announced Congressman Stivers. “You can reach out to me for anything. I will help supply what MVHC needs, to be the health and dental provider for the Muskingum Valley and Morgan County.”   

Congressman Stivers visits Morgan East Elementary School

School Superintendent Lori Snyder-Lowe welcomed Congressman Stivers as he visited East Elementary School last Friday afternoon.

Stivers visited Mrs. McClain’s fourth grade class and taught the students how a bill becomes a law.

Stivers divided the students into two groups. He selected some pupils to be House members, some Senate members and picked a girl to be the first female President.

Stivers explained about hearings, committees, and testifying for or against a bill. He talked about how easily a bill can be stopped, in several places, on the route to becoming a law.

Stivers explained that the President has three options when it comes to making a bill into a law. The President can pass and sign a bill into a law, veto or pocket veto a bill. Stivers talked about overriding vetoes. He also discussed how a regular veto can go back to the Senate, and if two-thirds of the Senate votes to override the President’s veto, the bill can still become a law.

The students were very receptive to the Con­gressman’s program, and they all learned something about the democratic process.

Congressman Stivers explained to the students that he became a U.S. Representative because he likes to meet and help the people of Ohio.

Stivers told the children that he represents 726,000 people, in 12 counties, in his part of the state. He mentioned that Ohio has two Senators, Rob Portman and Sherrod Brown, and 16 Congressmen.

Stivers explained the government of the U.S. is made up of three branches, the executive, legislative and judicial.

Stivers said he has passed four laws in about four years. Overall, the country passes from about two or three hundred laws a year, out of about 2,000 bills introduced.

Soon after Stivers left the fourth graders, he stopped at Mrs. Camp’s sixth grade class to say hello to those busy students.

A boy in the back of the class asked Congressman Stivers if he was famous.

“Relatively,” joked Congressman Stivers.

The boy then asked if he could take a “selfie” with the Congressman.

“Of course you can,” Stivers replied.

Before long, every student in the sixth grade class had a selfie taken with the Congressman and those students who asked for an autograph received his signature in a personal message..

Stivers then wished the students a happy Labor Day weekend, and reminded them to enjoy the Morgan County Fair. Read More

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Contact Information

1022 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2015
Fax 202-225-3529

Committee Assignments

Financial Services


Raised in Ripley, Ohio, Steve Stivers learned from his mother and father the importance of family, hard work and public service, which have been the values he has carried with him through his life, whether as a student at The Ohio State University, a soldier serving overseas, as a State Senator, or as a Member of Congress.

Stivers is currently serving his third term as a Member of Congress and represents Ohio’s 15th Congressional District, which is made up of 12 counties including: all of Athens, Clinton, Fairfield, Hocking, Madison, Morgan, Perry, Pickaway, and Vinton counties, and parts of: Fayette, Franklin, and Ross counties.

Stivers is serving his third term his third term on the Financial Services Committee, which oversees the banking, insurance, real estate, public and assisted housing, and securities industries. Members who serve on the committee also work on housing and consumer protection legislation and oversee Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Reserve Bank.

In addition, Stivers has been tapped to serve on the Committee on Rules, which is charged with determining which bills reach the House Floor for a vote. Historically, the Committee is often known as “The Speaker’s Committee” because it was chaired by the Speaker up until 1910 and is the means through which the Speaker of the House manages the House Floor. The Committee also determines how long and under what rules the full body of the House will debate each bill.

Throughout his career, Steve Stivers has led the way supporting programs and initiatives to encourage job creation, promote economic development, and put our country’s fiscal house in order. As he wrapped up a successful first term in office, two of Stivers veterans bills, the HIRE at Home Act and TRICARE for Kids, were rolled into the National Defense Authorization Act and signed into law by the President. In his second term in office, Stivers had two bills make their way to the President’s desk. These two bills, H.R. 1391 and H.R. 4189,would re-name two postal facilities located in Ohio’s 15th Congressional District after our fallen veterans. These bills are a small measure Congress can take to honor the lives of brave service members who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms.

Prior to running for Congress, Stivers served in the Ohio Senate and before that worked in the private sector for the Ohio Company and Bank One, where he focused on promoting economic development and encouraging job creation.

A career soldier, Stivers has served 29 years in the Ohio Army National Guard and holds the rank of Colonel. He served the United States overseas during Operation Iraqi Freedom in Kuwait, Iraq, Qatar and Djibouti where he led 400 soldiers and contractors and is proud that each and every one returned home safely to the United States. Stivers received the Bronze Star for his leadership throughout the deployment.

Stivers received both his bachelor’s degree and his MBA from The Ohio State University and resides in Columbus with his wife, Karen, and children, Sarah and Sam.

Serving With

Steve Chabot


Brad Wenstrup


Jim Jordan


Bob Latta


Bill Johnson


Bob Gibbs


John Boehner


Michael Turner


Pat Tiberi


David Joyce


Jim Renacci


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