Ohio Internet cafe backers testify at Statehouse
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio Internet cafe owners and employees are fighting legislation they say would effectively put the operations out of business.
Supporters packed a Statehouse hearing room Tuesday to register opposition to a proposal to impose new regulations on more than 820 storefront sweepstakes operations doing business in Ohio. Some wore matching T-shirts reading "Save My Job."
A newspaper investigation found most Internet cafes filed incomplete state paperwork and most operators who can be identified have spotty financial backgrounds or criminal histories.
Marvin L. Carrel (KAYR'-uhl) Jr., a cafe manager from Ashville, got emotional when asking lawmakers not to punish him and his employees for a few bad actors in the business. Ralph Rosenberger, the operator of three cafes near Cleveland, said his stores are safe and lawful.