Ohio Ends 2020 Fiscal Year with General Tax Revenue Down $1.1 Billion

Ohio concluded the 2020 fiscal year with General Revenue Fund tax revenues of $1.1 billion, or 4.6 percent, below estimates, a clear indication of the impact the COVID-19 restrictions have had on the state.

Tax revenues in June were $50.5 million, or 2.2 percent, below estimate. However, state officials noted that revenues were better than a month earlier when they were 13 percent below expectations.

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Armstrong Williams Commentary: It’s Time to Talk About Recession

Is America in a recession? It’s an unpopular question to ask, but it has now been over 3 months since COVID-19 restrictions were initiated and it is time for us to get realistic about where we are economically so that we can take the proper steps to minimize further damage to our economy. At this point, the unfortunate reality is that regardless of what we do, it is likely that it will take at least several years to see a partial recovery of economic loss and the time that it will take for a complete recovery remains unknown at this point. 

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State Board of Education Gets Budget Update from Superintendent with No Mention of Planned Parenthood Being a ‘Community Partner’

Upon their return from break, State Board of Education Members received a report from Superintendent Paolo DeMaria about the changes made in Ohio’s budget. DeMaria said he was going to, “Put a ribbon around it and also dig into a couple of key areas.”

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Analysis: State Spending in Ohio Rises 6 Times Faster than Population Growth Over Past 30 Years

Among the U.S. states, Ohio is the sixth-most populated with more than 11.6 million people, many of them located in major population centers like Cleveland, Cincinnati and Columbus. But the rate of population growth in the Buckeye State has been largely stagnant for decades, lagging far behind that seen by the nation as a whole.

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Planned Parenthood Targets Crisis Pregnancy Centers After They Receive $7 Million Boost in Ohio Budget

  Crisis pregnancy centers in Ohio are set to receive $7.5 million in funding over the next two fiscal years under Ohio’s new state budget, and Planned Parenthood isn’t pleased. During Wednesday’s House floor debate on the budget, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio sent out a number of tweets attacking…

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While the Budget Remains Unfinished, DeWine and Some Legislators Go Fishing

  Gov. Mike DeWine and some legislators had fun celebrating the 40th Fish Ohio Day on Lake Erie last week. It was a grand celebration of fishing just before the Independence Day holiday, but there was business left unfinished in Columbus. At the 40th #FishOhio day with @LtGovHusted @boblatta @JayHottinger…

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Governor Mike DeWine Signs Interim Spending Plan, Gives Ohio Lawmakers 17 Days to Agree on a Budget

by Todd DeFeo   Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine signed an interim operating budget that funds the state government for 17 days, giving lawmakers additional time to debate a two-year spending plan. DeWine signed both Senate Bill 171, the interim state budget, and Senate Bill 172, a one-month funding extension for…

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Ohio’s Public Defender Recruitment Program Could Cost $3 Million Over Two Years

by Todd DeFeo   The House Finance Committee is expected to allocate $3 million over the next two years to fund a program aimed at attracting more public defenders throughout Ohio. With little discussion, the state Criminal Justice Committee passed House Bill 5 to create the Public Defender State Loan…

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Ohio’s Future Foundation Pushes Pro-Business Policies to Help All Residents Prosper

  YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Former Congressman Jim Renacci and Ohio’s Future Foundation (OHFF) were hosted by the Mahoning County Republican Party Tuesday evening.  The GOP group held a social for OHFF in their meeting room in Youngstown. Rick Barron, the Mahoning County Leader, announced that, ‘Tom (Weyand – OHFF’s Outreach…

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Anti-Smoking Groups Actually Testified Against DeWine’s Proposal to Raise Minimum Age to 21

  Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has called for raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco from 18 to 21, a proposal that’s included in Ohio’s biennial budget bill. But anti-smoking groups in the state have actually testified against the proposal. These groups believe that the proposal would mostly punish youth…

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Ohio House Passes Tax Increases on Small Businesses During Small Business Week

  The Ohio House passed House Bill 166 Thursday, its version of the state’s biennial budget. While the bill includes substantial income tax reductions, some groups aren’t pleased with the impact it will have on small businesses. Under the bill, Ohio’s Business Investment Income Deduction would be lowered to $100,000.…

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DeWine Proposed Budget Includes New Taxes for Ohio’s Tattoo Artists and Body Piercers

Governor Mike DeWine’s proposed budget for Ohio includes a provision that will raise taxes and regulations on all tattoo artists and body piercers throughout the state. The new provision would require that all current and future tattoo artists and body piercers register with the state for as long as they…

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Ohio Future Foundation’s Chairman Jim Renacci Hosts Facebook Live Budget Forum with State Rep. Powell and Buckeye State Fellow Greg Lawson

The Ohio Future Foundation hosted a wide-ranging Facebook live interview that reviewed the March 15 budget biennial 2020-2021 proposed by  Governor DeWine. Ohio Future Foundation Chairman Jim Renacci was joined by Republican State Representative Jena Powell of Ohio’s 80th district and Senior Fellow Greg Lawson of the Buckeye Institute, a…

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Lawmakers Eye a Huge Backdoor Spending Increase

US Capitol

by David Ditch   Members of Congress are promoting the concept of changing three programs from the discretionary category (requiring annual appropriations) into mandatory (auto-pilot) spending. Such changes would become a huge backdoor spending increase. Spending limits have come under relentless attack from both parties. In 2013, 2015, and 2018,…

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Smoking Age Will Jump to 21 Under DeWine Budget

In a move to improve health quality in the state, Ohio Republican Gov. Mike DeWine has included a provision in his proposed 2020-2021 Executive Budget that would increase the age for purchasing cigarettes from 18 to 21. The intent is to further discourage the use of cigarettes overall throughout the…

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Ohio Senate Breaks Even Further from Governor DeWine, Lowering Gas Tax to Six Cents

The Republican-held Ohio Senate joined Republicans in the House of Representatives in opposing Gov. Mike DeWine on his proposed gas-tax hike. House Bill 62 (HB 62), the 2020-21 Ohio transportation budget, first proposed by DeWine on Feb. 12, originally called for an 18 cent increase to the current gas tax. This was…

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Ohio Governor Mike DeWine Cites Bible in Budget Proposal That Increases Spending by Seven Percent

Gov. Mike DeWine (R-OH) released his first two-year budget proposal Friday morning in what he is describing as a $69 billion investment in “Ohio’s future.” “As I shared in my State of the State address, the Bible tells us that there is a time and a place for everything. Now…

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DeWine Budget Calls for Raising Minimum Age to Buy Cigarettes to 21

Gov. Mike DeWine’s (R-OH) first budget proposal calls for raising the minimum age to purchase cigarettes and other tobacco products from 18 to 21. “The first proposed change is a health policy initiative that would raise the legal age to purchase cigarettes from 18 years old to 21,” the 676-page…

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Governor DeWine Blasts Republican Controlled House for Lowering Gas Tax Proposal

Governor Mike DeWine aggressively condemned his fellow Republicans Monday for not supporting his gas tax increase in a candid interview with the Cleveland Plain Dealer Editorial Board. During the interview, he accused them of outright endangering the safety of Ohioans statewide by not supporting his plan. DeWine, in one of…

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DeWine Praised by Democrats for Giving ‘Democratic State-of-the-State’

Gov. Mike DeWine (R-OH) recently delivered his first State of the State address, and Democrats in attendance loved what they heard. Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley attended the occasion and was surprised at what she was hearing from the new Republican governor. “When a Republican governor gives a Democratic state-of-the-state speech,…

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Ohio Governor Mike DeWine Announces Plan for 30 New Drug Courts to Combat Opioid Epidemic

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine unveiled the latest aspect of his plan Tuesday to fight opioid addiction by creating more specialty courts statewide. The plan is the latest announced component of his upcoming budget proposal for the 2020-2021 fiscal year.  If approved, it would allocate $2.5 million in 2020 for the creation of “15 specialty…

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Report: Returning State Tax Surplus to Ohioans Could Create 2,100 New Jobs

The Buckeye Institute, an established think tank based in Ohio, has released its latest economic report, assessing the current state of economic affairs in Ohio and making recommendations to improve the overall financial health of the state. In the report, The Buckeye Institute discovered that the current state budget surplus could create…

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Ohio Governor DeWine to Announce Gas Tax Hike

At an annual forum sponsored by the Associated Press, Ohio Republican Gov. Mike DeWine announced Wednesday he intends to formally recommend raising the current gas tax. The recommendation will come as he introduces his first two-year transportation budget on Friday. Despite appointing an Advisory Committee on Transportation Infrastructure Issues specifically to explore…

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President Trump’s Executive Order Freezing Federal Pay Saves Taxpayers from Double-Digit Pay Increases

US Capitol

by Rachel Greszler   President Donald Trump issued an executive order effectively freezing federal pay for 2019 at current 2018 levels. Had the president not issued this executive order (and lacking congressional action on federal pay), federal workers would have received a 2.1 percent across-the-board pay increase, as well as a…

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Commentary: Only Two Weeks Left for Republicans to Get It

by Rachel Bovard   There’s only one area where bipartisanship still reigns in Washington: avoidance. Republican and Democrat leaders this week held hands and used the funeral events for President George H. W. Bush as an excuse to move their funding deadline—which previously expired on December 7—two weeks forward, to December…

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REPORT: EPA Paid $14.5 Million For Foreign Nationals, Not Americans, To Work In Government Labs

scientist

by Michael Bastach   The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) paid $14.5 million to foreign nationals to work at agency laboratories over the past 11 years that could have been awarded to U.S. citizens and permanent residents, according to federal investigators. EPA’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) found the agency’s cooperative…

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With the End of the Fiscal Year September 30, Congress Is Running Out of Time to Fund ‘The Wall’

Donald Trump, The Wall

By Robert Romano   The 2018 fiscal year will end on Sept. 30 but Congress is no closer to achieving key Trump administration priorities including fully funding the southern border wall, something President Donald Trump has been demanding since 2017 and campaigned on extensively in 2016. So far, both the House…

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Three Budget ‘Reforms’ That Would Make Matters Worse, Not Better

by Dody Eid and Romina Boccia   A congressional select committee on reforming the budget process recently held another public hearing, supposedly with the ultimate aim of designing a more transparent, accountable, and responsible budgetary process. Any such changes should also re-establish and enhance Congress’ power of the purse. But if those are…

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‘Pig Book’ Spotlights 232 Earmarks Amid Pork That Wastes Taxpayers’ Money

Ted Cruz

by Katherine Rohloff   All but a relative few farmers and other rural residents have had electricity and telephone service for a generation, but the U.S. government devoted $10 million in the current budget to a duplicative Rural Utilities Service program designed to help pay for energy costs. Taxpayers continue to finance the…

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Nashville Metro Council Asks Citizens to Critique Future Budgets

Nashville Budget

Nashville residents soon will have a voice in Metro Council’s spending habits. Metro Council voted 34-4 to create a “Blue Ribbon Commission” like a popular one in Atlanta in which private citizens may critique the budget, Nashville Public Radio WPLN reports. The commission will form by October. Councilman Fabian Bedne…

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Congress Can Cut Billions in Wasteful Spending by Following This Blueprint

Washington DC

by Romina Boccia   The Senate Budget Committee met May 23 to consider the Government Accountability Office’s annual report on Government Efficiency and Effectiveness, which identifies areas of unnecessary overlap, fragmentation, and duplication among federal programs. The Government Accountability Office supplements that identification of waste with recommendations of what to do about it, presenting…

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Trump’s ‘Rescission’ Package Would Save Unspent Tax Dollars

Trump-captial-spending-money

by Justin Bogie   President Donald Trump on Tuesday submitted a special message to Congress requesting that $15 billion in unspent funding be rescinded. That’s a good first step toward re-establishing fiscal responsibility. Congress should embrace it and quickly adopt the president’s rescission package. Still, the package does nothing to claw back the…

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