Ohio Republicans’ New State Budget -- SEIZES Local Funding, SLASHES Schools, SELLS State Assets

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.

Share

8 comments to Ohio Republicans’ New State Budget — SEIZES Local Funding, SLASHES Schools, SELLS State Assets

  • Robert Vigh

    Policy Matters is a deeply, democratic and socialist leaning institution without much knowledge of Economics in general. Their report is rather terrible in its analysis with its STATED GOAL, that it believes the GOVERNMENT provides jobs.

    It is really bad.

  • Eric Weber

    Mike: Do you really believe this? Both Republican and Democrat parties have spent us into oblivion. We, the STATE of OHIO and the US are BROKE. Can we at least agree on that much?

    Taxing the RICH is not the answer. It is the mantra used by politicians to distract the public from the real problem….TOO MUCH SPENDING by our elected officials. It is just a fact of life that you can only soak the rich so much before they decide to vote with their feet. Eventually they will relocate to a neighboring state that have been better stewards with the taxpayers money or…they move their money so it is out of reach. So who do we tax then?

    The middle class is the next economic strata with a target on their back. Is that the solution? I don’t think so. Increasing taxes on a middle class that is already financially tapped out only increases the stress and results in more financial failures. Financial failures lead to more financial stress that leads to more failures and the circle spirals downward. Eventually, you create a financial depression that sinks the whole country. That is where the State of Ohio and the US is headed unless we make significant changes in the way we SPEND. You can only take from one and give to another so long. In the end, that ponzi scheme fails and you create a Weimar Republic

    Efforts to change the way SPEND have been delayed so long that we now have a real crisis. Crisis always creates upheaval and resentment by those that think they are being unjustly targeted. Sorry to say, but those being placed in the cross-hairs for cuts have enjoyed pay, benefits and over-stuffed budgets for many years. If we expect to survive this crisis, everyone and I mean everyone needs to eliminate the word “I” from their vocabulary and insert the words “WE and US”. Our parents and grandparents practiced this during the depression and two World Wars, it is time the selfish baby-boomers (of which I am a member) did the same!

    In medical terms, it is highly preferable to aggressively treat a local bacterial infection than ignore the symptoms and allow the onset of SEPSIS. The first is difficult, but curable. The second, leads to eventual death!! You make the choice.

  • Mike Bock

    Robert, Thanks for commenting. This report from Policy Matters, I judged to be a good summary of Ohio’s new biennial budget. If there is something in the report that is untrue, or if there is additional info that should be included, I would like to know. Regardless that you disagree with Policy Matters’ philosophical POV, you give no reason to dispute the facts summarized in their report.

    Eric, Good to hear from you. I respect what you are saying, though I disagree with your conclusions. In this matter, I would imagine that we have a different set of beginning principles or assumptions. The whole issue of economics is one that deserves a lot of analysis. See a post I wrote some time ago: Why Are We Rich?

    If we were state legislators, on different sides of the aisle, working together would be tough, because we would be impinged by expectations of the political process. But, I imagine we share a lot of common values and principles that would allow us to work thoughtfully together in a local setting. Our hope to maintain a democracy is via thoughtful democratic communities. For such a community of individuals, one big opportunity is to assert local control of public education. I agree with David Matthews of the Kettering Foundation that vitalizing democracy is the key to transforming pubic education. The fact that public education is far from what it should or could be is directly related to the fact that our democracy is far from what it should or could be. If there is any place on the planet where democracy should be vital and effective it is in Kettering, Ohio. We may never agree on some big picture issues, but, my suggestion is that we find the energy and motivation to work together for the vitalization of democracy in Kettering based on the pressing need that public education must be transformed, and based on the unprecedented opportunity for a local community to show leadership in doing so.

  • Eric

    I agree with David Matthews of the Kettering Foundation that vitalizing democracy is the key to transforming pubic education. The fact that public education is far from what it should or could be is directly related to the fact that our democracy is far from what it should or could be.

    Since you agree with David Mathews, how have you used the Kettering Foundation work to support public education in Kettering? If you aren’t going to use the Kettering Foundation work, you might (at least) mention that work to district school board members.

    I don’t see much promise in the “letting schools languish while working on my book” platform in Novembers school board race.

  • Mike Bock

    Eric, I believe that David Matthews articulates a key insight in his book, “Reclaiming Public Education by Reclaiming Our Democracy,” that a strong democracy is a prerequisite for vitalizing a community’s system of public education. I’ve never spoken with Mr. Matthews in person.

    The Kettering Foundation identifies itself as a “research organization” and its mission is to research this question: “What does it take to make democracy work as it should?” The Foundation has a beautiful facility here in Kettering where people from over the world attend seminars and conduct studies. On the basis of its research, the Foundation publishes periodicals and books.

    The key word describing the Foundation is “research.” So far as I can tell, the Foundation never works directly with local schools or community organizations. As recently as two months ago, I spoke with one of the staff members of the Foundation, as to whether the Foundation might be interested in not only studying democracy, but also whether the Foundation might be interested in finding some way to be proactive in vitalizing the local democracy where it is geographically located. The answer I got was “No.” Such activity would not align with the Foundation’s mission of research.

    The Foundation is affiliated with the National Issues Forums (NIF) described as “a network of civic, educational, and other organizations, and individuals, whose common interest is to promote public deliberation in America.” The idea of “deliberating,” or “reasoning together” is a powerful idea and at the heart of an active democracy.

    The materials for NIF are produced by the Kettering Foundation, a project which, BTW, seems, to me, not aligned with the Foundation’s mission statement. I have studied the materials for one NIF forum entitled, “Too Many Children Left Behind: How Can We Close the Achievement Gap?” My own conclusion was that organizing such a forum in Kettering would not be worthwhile. I write about my analysis here “Let’s Frame the Question of “Achievement Gap” to Include All Schools and All Students.”

    These NIF forums are set up to be “locally organized, moderated, and financed.” And, if I am going to put the effort into organizing and finding funding for a community discussion, my idea of how such a discussion should be framed is much different from what the NIF suggests.

    In connection with the November school board contest, I would like to help create some meaningful community deliberation. There is a lot to deliberate about — and I soon will be putting some thoughts together about that general idea. I’ve not yet decided, but I am right now thinking that in this election cycle my best contribution might be to direct my efforts to help create community events — perhaps working in tandem with the League of Women Voters — rather than standing as a board candidate myself, hopefully helping to demonstrate the validity of David Matthews insight that a vitalized democracy will lead to quality public education.

  • Rick

    Mike, sometimes I get the feeling that to you “vitalizing democracy” means to keep talking until everybody is a socialist.

    BTW, whether you like it or not, the government of the State of Ohio is broke.

  • Mike Bock

    Rick — Thanks. I got a good laugh, about the meaning of “vitalizing democracy”

    Yes, Ohio is broke, and Policy Matters points out that this broke-ness is directly related to the 2005 Tax Reform Act that cut a lot of state revenue: “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.”

    The democratic representative form of government, of our republic, allows us to ask the question: “What is the best way that, as a democracy, we can organize ourselves?” The pressure is on for those who advocate free markets, small government, etc., to show that a system built on those principles will create a structure where there is “liberty and justice for all.” We have a system where a person with little or no money has little liberty or justice — so the issue is: How can we make a system that works better to achieve the goal we state every time we say the pledge to the flag? This question has been around for a long time and the solutions, like the 16th Amendment, have contradicted the POV of a lot of the founding fathers — Boo Hoo — So was ending slavery and giving women the right to vote. We need to be ever forward thinking, and it seems most likely that after this era of conservative dominance, if in the next few years there is not more wide-spread prosperity, that the pendulum will swing very far in the opposite direction as our democracy seeks solutions.

  • Ice Bandit

    The pressure is on for those who advocate free markets, small government, etc., to show that a system built on those principles will create a structure where there is “liberty and justice for all.” (Mike Bock)

    …beg to differ. Methinks the pressure is on the big government advocates to fess’ up and admit the American experiment with gargantuan government has been an expensive and disastrous failure. For what liberty is there when a nanny government can dictate such minutiae as what toilet is allowable and which light bulbs are permitted? And where, pray tell, is the justice of appropriating the money of one citizen and giving it to another? And perhaps the folks in this society with the greatest amount of freedom is the underclass. Unencumbered by jobs or societal censure, this leisure class procreates, involves itself in daily drama and makes horrendous lifestyle choices with a safety net provided by the taxpayers. No, dear Mike, the pressure is on the apologists of the leviathan state to justify their actions for the past 40 years and convince an ever-more-skeptical and pissed-off electorate that we should support this for even one more day…..

Leave a Reply

 

 

 

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>