During every even-numbered year, Ohio’s General Assembly creates the capital budget, a bill that distributes funds to projects all over Ohio. This is no small undertaking. Each time we tackle this budget we hear many different perspectives on where our state’s funds should go, ranging from university construction projects to improvements for local parks. I would like to highlight some of this year’s approved projects in Summit County, which are just a few from an exciting list of investments.

The Akron Battered Women’s Shelter received $500,000 for its improvement projects. This organization provides extraordinary community support by offering emergency shelter for men, women and children, and focuses particularly on intervening in situations of abuse and domestic violence. The shelter partners with agencies and programs in Summit County to offer both transitional housing and rapid re-housing. Court advocate services are another resource, offering assistance from those who have crisis intervention training and can help with steps such as filing for protection orders.

Summit County benefits greatly from the shelter’s local advocacy and education efforts. Through these outreach opportunities and resources, our families and culture can be changed for the better. The organization’s goal is to ultimately break cycles of violence and abuse, and appropriations from the capital budget support this mission.

Additionally, $100,000 in capital appropriations went to Finish Line Park, and $50,000 was distributed to the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad for improvements to the parking lot. Funds were also directed to improvement projects for sites that are local favorites: Stan Hwyet Hall and Hale Farm & Village, which received $550,000 and $250,000 respectively.

Arts are a staple of our culture here in Northeast Ohio, and I am pleased that $1.3 million in funds were invested in Blossom Music Center, a beloved venue that hosts many different artists, ranging from the Cleveland Orchestra and Yo-Yo Ma to Ed Sheeran and Brad Paisley. Improvements to Blossom ensure that the venue will remain a boost for our local tourism industry and economy, as well as a popular site for family outings. Another locale for the arts, the Akron Civic Theater, received $675,000 for restoration and expansion.

Overall, Summit County received nearly $31 million to improve our communities and facilities. I know these investments will go a long way toward the continued growth of our district and as your state representative, it was an honor to participate in this process.

For a complete list of capital appropriations in Summit County, please refer to the official funding breakdown by county, available here.


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