Fiscal Note & Local Impact Statement

124 th General Assembly of Ohio

Ohio Legislative Service Commission

77 South High Street, 9th Floor, Columbus, OH 43215-6136 ˛ Phone: (614) 466-3615

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Am. Sub. H.B. 394


January 4, 2002


As Passed by the House


Rep. Damschroder


No —

No local cost



To require the board of education of a school district to provide for a minute of silence each day for reflection or meditation upon a moral, philosophical or patriotic theme. To require school district boards of education to set aside a period of time each day for the oral recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.


State Fiscal Highlights


·        No direct fiscal effect on the state.

Local Fiscal Highlights



FY 2002

FY 2003


School Districts


- 0 -

- 0 -

- 0 -


- Potential increase-

- Potential increase-

- Potential increase-

Note: For most local governments, the fiscal year is the calendar year. The school district fiscal year is July 1 through June 30.


·        There is a possible increase in expenditures if local school districts have to buy flags for every classroom. The expenditures may be minor if a proper representation of the flag is used (i.e. a picture) or several millions of dollars if an actual flag is used.  There are about 100,000 classrooms in the state.



Detailed Fiscal Analysis



This bill requires the board of education of local school districts to provide for a minute of silence that is of a reasonable duration every day. This bill would also require that time be set aside for daily oral recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance. While students are required to participate in the minute of silence, there is no such provision for the Pledge of Allegiance.  Under current law, school districts cannot prohibit a teacher from providing for a moment of silence, and cannot require students to participate. Also, current law requires each city, local, exempted village and joint vocational school district to adopt a policy specifying whether or not the Pledge of Allegiance must be recited orally in its schools.


There is no fiscal effect on the state government, as the state is not required to do anything.


There may be local costs for school districts if they decide to buy flags for every classroom. Title 36, Section 172 of the United States Code states that the Pledge of Allegiance should be recited while “standing attention facing the flag.” However, it does not say whether this flag is required to be a cloth flag, or a proper representation of the flag (13 red and white stripes and 50 white stars on a blue background).  After consulting with various veterans groups, there seems to be no answer as to which of these options are proper. Section 3313.80 of the Ohio Revised Code states that every schoolhouse must display a flag “over, near, or within” their property but does not stipulate that it be displayed in every classroom. Therefore, a rise in expenditures can range from minimal if color copies of a United States flag are made, to several millions of dollars if actual flags are purchased.  The cost of flags could also depend on the quality, size, and display method chosen by the school district.  According to the American Legion, some veterans groups do donate flags for classrooms if requested. There are approximately 100,000 classrooms in Ohio, but the proportion with flags is unknown.



LSC fiscal staff:  Meegan M. Michalek, Economist