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Regional Office History
The Ohio Attorney General’s Office has maintained a presence in Cleveland since the 1950’s. “Special Counsel” was utilized to represent the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation in Regional Board Hearings and the Department of Transportation for eminent domain proceedings during a prolific time of interstate road system expansion. Work for other sections of the Attorney General’s Office was done primarily through special counsel, part-time Assistant Attorneys General, or by Assistant Attorneys General assigned to Columbus.
In the mid 1970’s, Attorney General William Brown officially established the Cleveland Regional Office in the Leader Building. The office at that time housed a number of different sections: Transportation, Unemployment Compensation, Executive Agencies and Workers’ Compensation. There were approximately 20 employees in that first office.
When the Lausche State Office Building was opened in 1979 at the corners of West Superior and Prospect Avenue, the Cleveland Regional Office was among the first tenants and began operation on the 8th floor. A later consolidation of a number of part-time Assistant Attorneys General in northeast and north central Ohio required more space, so a move was made to the 12th floor of the Lausche Building, formerly occupied by the Standard Oil Company. The office was shared, at that time, with the Governor, State Auditor, State Treasurer and the State Health Department.
Between 1986 and 1999, the Cleveland Regional Office expanded from a staff of 30 to approximately 65 employees representing about 20 counties in northern Ohio. In 2000, the office moved to its current home on the 11th floor of the Lausche Building, occupying the entire floor. Presently the office is comprised of over 80 employees, 40 of which are attorneys, with the remainder comprised of paralegals, investigators, field specialists and support staff. The current Cleveland Office represents 14 sections and services over 24 counties.
Ohio Attorney General Anthony J. Celebrezze, Jr. first opened offices in the Youngstown area in 1990. At that time, the office functioned solely as a regional location of the Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) and was located in the Youngstown-area suburb of Boardman.
When the Youngstown Regional Office relocated to downtown Youngstown in July 2007, three Assistant Attorneys General and three support staff were added to the office. In 2008, Collections Enforcement was added to the Youngstown Regional Office, and by 2012, the Collections Enforcement Staff had expanded to house six Claims Account Representatives, an Assistant Attorney General, and a local debt supervisor.
The Youngstown Regional Office encompasses approximately 18,000 square feet and has been specifically equipped for the investigation of computer crimes, evidence drop off/retrieval for regional police forces, regional OPOTA training, and task force operations. Currently, the Youngstown Office houses employees of BCI and 6 additional sections of the Attorney General’s Office and has a total staff of 38.
The Ohio Attorney General’s Office expanded into northwest Ohio when the Toledo Regional Office opened in May 1992 during the Lee Fisher administration. The office opened with five Assistant Attorneys General, representing the Transportation, Workers’ Compensation, Health and Human Services, and Civil Rights sections. Two support-staff members and a regional liaison were also part of the inaugural staff. The office also housed five BCI special agents.
The Toledo Regional Office now houses 10 Assistant Attorneys General, three support staff, a paralegal, an account representative, and two investigators. New sections represented include Environmental Enforcement, Consumer, Crime Victim, and Collections Enforcement.
The Toledo Regional Office, first located at the former Fifth Third Bank building, was moved to One SeaGate under Attorney General Betty Montgomery. In September 2004, the office was relocated to its current home in One Government Center, which places employees close to local courts and to the regional offices of state agencies.
The Cincinnati Regional Office was opened in February 1983 under Attorney General Anthony J. Celebrezze, Jr. When the office first opened, it had 3 full time employees. The office remained at its opening location on Eighth Street for one year. Afterward, the office moved to Seventh Street in downtown Cincinnati in the Executive Building to accommodate an expanding staff.
The Cincinnati Regional Office remained in the Executive Building until January 1992, when it relocated to its current location in the Carew Tower. Currently, the Cincinnati Regional office has 40 employees and represents more than 10 sections of the Attorney General’s Office.