by Luke Martel
Visitors to the Ohio Statehouse will now be required to wear shoes. According to the Columbus Dispatch, at a recent meeting the Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board, the agency that controls the Statehouse and grounds, ruled that all Statehouse visitors must wear “shoes or comparable footwear.” The policy follows attempts to visit the Statehouse by a barefoot activist who says going shoeless is a healthy lifestyle. Bob Neinast of the Columbus suburb of Pickerington attended the meeting to protest the new rule, claiming that his feet hurt when he wears shoes, so he goes barefoot nearly everywhere, even in winter. Mr. Neinast has a couple of weeks left to visit the Statehouse barefooted, as the new rule will not take effect until March 23.
Had Ohio's policy been in effect in Kentucky earlier this year, students would not have been able to conduct their barefoot protest against higher education cuts. And Oklahoma legislators would not have been able to shed their shoes for charity, as they did a couple of years ago.
Luke Martel covers fiscal policy issues for NCSL.