Non-profit

Ohio Public Interest Research Group (Ohio PIRG) Citizen Lobby

Website:

ohiopirg.org/

Location:

COLUMBUS, OH

Tax ID:

13-4262363

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(4)

Budget (2019):

Revenue: $43,294
Expenses: $81,496
Assets: $289,599

Formation:

2004

Type:

Left-of-center advocacy group

President/CEO:

Amy Floyd

Ohio Public Interest Research Group Citizen Lobby (Ohio PIRG) is the advocacy arm of the Ohio Public Interest Research Group Education Fund based in Columbus, Ohio. It is the Ohio state affiliate of the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (US-PIRG) and the successor organization to the Ohio Public Interest Research Group, Inc.

The Ohio PIRG Citizen Lobby works in conjunction with other state PIRGs and the U.S. PIRG to promote left-of-center policies on issues such as public health, environmentalism, economics, voting, and health care.

Founding and History

The first public interest research groups (PIRGs) were founded in 1970 in Oregon and Minnesota as student action groups, which were documented by Ralph Nader and Donald Ross in their 1971 book Action for Change: A Student’s Manual for Public Interest Organizing. [1] Action for Change inspired the formation of PIRGs across the country, including the Ohio Public Interest Research Group, Inc. in 1975. [2]

In 2002, the Ohio PIRG Education Fund was founded to manage the education aspects of the PIRG, [3] and in 2004 the Ohio PIRG Citizen Lobby was formed to direct activism and lobbying efforts. [4] The Citizen Lobby officially replaced Ohio PIRG, Inc. in 2013 when the latter disbanded. [5]

Activism and Lawsuits

The Ohio PIRG lists dozens of policy proposals for which it advocates under 11 different areas, including Covid-19, voting issues, environmental issues, higher education, and health care. It consistently argues for left of center positions. [6]

On Covid-19, the group links to the U.S. PIRG website, which argues for increased masking and vaccination mandates and opposes states lifting restrictions. [7] Other policy proposals include government-provided broadband internet, overturning Citizens United v. FEC, providing taxpayer funds to candidates for office, automatic voter registration, and ending subsidies for the domestic oil and natural gas industry. [8]

Ohio PIRG also has a history of filing lawsuits against businesses and government agencies in order to require more strict environmental controls. In 1996, Ohio PIRG Inc. sued Laidlaw Environmental Services, alleging that they had failed to properly dispose of pollutants. [9]  This case was settled out of court and never fully decided. Similarly, in 2004, Ohio PIRG Inc. sued the Environmental Protection Agency, alleging that it failed to provide a notice of deficiency to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency over its implementation of the Clean Air Act. The U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals decided against the Ohio PIRG on the grounds that agencies have discretion in issuing notices of deficiency under the statute. [10]

References

  1. Nader, Ralph, Donald Ross, and Joseph Highland. Action for Change: A Student’s Manual for Public Interest Organizing. Grossman, 1972. ^
  2. “Ohio Public Interest Research Group, Inc.” GuideStar. Accessed August 12, 2022. https://www.guidestar.org/profile/34-1165210#financials ^
  3. “Ohio PIRG Education Fund.” GuideStar. Accessed August 12, 2022. https://www.guidestar.org/profile/34-1960773 ^
  4. “Ohio PIRG Citizen Lobby.” GuideStar. Accessed August 12, 2022. https://www.guidestar.org/profile/13-4262363 ^
  5. “Ohio Public Interest Research Group, Inc.” GuideStar. Accessed August 12, 2022. https://www.guidestar.org/profile/34-1165210#financials ^
  6. “Our Work.” Ohio PIRG. Accessed August 22, 2022. https://pirg.org/ohio/our-work/ ^
  7. Wellington, Matt. “COVID-19 is on the run in much of the U.S. How we got here.” June 16, 2021. Accessed August 22, 2022.  https://pirg.org/articles/covid-19-is-on-the-run-in-much-of-the-u-s-how-we-got-here/ ^
  8. “Our Work.” Ohio PIRG. Accessed August 22, 2022. https://pirg.org/ohio/our-work/ ^
  9.  [1] Ohio Public Interest Research Group v. Laidlaw Env. Servs. September 3, 1996. https://law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/FSupp/963/635/1644902/ ^
  10.  Ohio Public Interest Group, Inc v. State of Ohio, Intervenor. October 21, 2004.  https://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-6th-circuit/1459177.html ^
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: June - May
  • Tax Exemption Received: April 1, 2004

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2019 Jun Form 990EZ $43,294 $81,496 $289,599 $75,318 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2018 Jun Form 990EZ $47,651 $27,908 $273,183 $26,815 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2017 Jun Form 990EZ $53,019 $31,821 $229,293 $7,257 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2016 Jun Form 990EZ $55,015 $46,576 $222,158 $28,803 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2015 Jun Form 990EZ $70,674 $32,657 $204,259 $19,343 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2014 Jun Form 990EZ $103,387 $107,447 $164,514 $18,353 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2013 Jun Form 990EZ $91,435 $84,664 $185,335 $37,210 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2012 Jun Form 990EZ $87,342 $76,908 $177,182 $38,507 $0 $0 $0 $0
    2011 Jun Form 990EZ $64,777 $57,405 $161,325 $33,084 $0 $0 $0 $0

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Ohio Public Interest Research Group (Ohio PIRG) Citizen Lobby

    692 N HIGH ST STE 202
    COLUMBUS, OH 43215-1899