June 5, 2020

Cedar Point, Kings Island, Kalahari Sue to Open

Ohio Dept. of Health has no Constitutional Authority to Keep these Businesses Closed

Columbus, OH – The 1851 Center for Constitutional Law today filed suit to enjoin the Ohio Department of Health from continuing to enforce its criminalization of Ohio’s amusement and water parks, as implemented through the Director’s May 29, 2020 Order.

The cases are filed on behalf of Ohio’s three largest amusement and water parks: Cedar Point, Kings Island, and Kalahari Resorts.

The May 29 Order singles out amusement and water parks even as nearly all other Ohio businesses are permitted to operate. The Order provides no opening dates for these seasonal businesses that employ thousands and generate the bulk of the economic activity in their respective counties, even though these businesses are safe to operate.

The 1851 Center’s Complaints assert that the Health Director maintains no power to close otherwise lawful Ohio businesses or create her own sanctions to enforce those closures.

Further, the Order permits businesses with similar features, such as pools and large crowds, to open, while singling out amusement and water parks for disfavored treatment. Also, the Governor announced on June 4, 2020 the opening of many like-kind businesses.

“The Ohio Constitution’s protections apply to all, including those businesses that the state’s highest public officials view as non-essential.  The Governor and his Health Director must end their unnecessary and unconstitutional assault on Ohioans’ businesses and traditions,” explained 1851 Center Executive Director Maurice Thompson. “We and our clients remain committed to ensuring that these arbitrary policies never again recur.”

The cases are pending in the Erie County Courts of Common Pleas before Judge Binette, and the Warren County Court of Common Pleas, before Judge Oda.

Read the 1851 Center’s Complaints Here and Here.

The 1851 Center for Constitutional Law is a non-profit, non-partisan legal center dedicated to protecting the constitutional rights of Ohioans from government abuse. The 1851 Center litigates constitutional issues related to property rights, regulation, taxation, and search and seizures.