Republican Governor John Kasich seems to be getting everything he wants from the Republican controlled Ohio Assembly. Kasich calls Ohio’s new biennial budget a “Jobs Budget.” Policy Matters Ohio calls it a “Seize, Slash and Sell Budget.”
Policy Matters Ohio is a “nonprofit policy research organization founded in January 2000 to broaden the debate about economic policy in Ohio.”
About Ohio’s new budget, Policy Matters Ohio says, “The budget seizes funding that usually goes to local government, libraries and schools, instead using it to fill gaps at the state level. It makes deep cuts to public education and diverts more public money for private schools. And it gives this governor and the administration much more power to privatize, reducing legislative oversight. The slash, seize and sell budget sells state assets financed by generations of Ohioans without assuring savings, a market rate of return or adequate service delivery.”
Policy Matters Ohio reports, that the biennial budget slashes:
- $2.1 billion from K12 education over the biennium
- $490 million from higher education’s state share of instruction.
- Kinship permanency program, which helped 8000 kids stay with grandparents and other kin, reduced by $2.7 million.
- Funding to counties for services for families who have adopted special needs kids.
- Early learning initiative cut $24.4 million.
- Child, family and adult protective services cut by 10%, $1.5 million.
- More seniors may receive care in their homes but face 23% cut in home service levels, 15% cuts to the Area Agencies on Aging that manage their care, plus cuts to provider rates.
- Low-level offenders are expected to serve sentences in the community instead of institutions, but the budget for community and parole services is reduced.
- Local government funds cut by 25% in 2012 and an additional 25% in 2013, reducing allocation by 50% and taking $441 million from municipalities, counties and townships.
- Another $563.4 million is seized from tax replacements for local governments, compared with prior biennium.
- $1.1 billion seized from tax replacements for schools, compared with prior biennium.
The budgets calls for the sale of state assets:
- Six prisons are to be sold.
- The state’s liquor wholesale business will be privatized.
- Provisions to privatize the turnpike are placed in the budget
- Privatization of economic development services is already in place through JobsOhio; actual outsourcing of funds and services pending.
Policy Matters notes In Ohio, “The largest tax cut in 70 years preceded the Great Recession. This tax cut took $2.1 billion a year from Ohio’s budget, but it did not bring jobs and economic activity.” Policy Matters says that Ohio needs to raise taxes on the wealthy and on businesses and should close tax loopholes. See report here.