House Democrats today expressed optimism that the latest state budget draft is moving in the right direction, after updates included key Democratic tax priorities that they say make the bill a “more realistic blueprint” for the state’s fiscal future.


“I am proud of our Democratic members and their work to make this a better budget by including our key tax priorities,” said Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron). “Walking back a tax system rigged against working people will help our state better live within our means and let working families have a better chance to get ahead. This draft is a more realistic blueprint for our state’s future.”


Key tax fairness provisions included in the budget by Democrats include lowering the LLC loophole threshold to $100,000 from $250,000 and leveling the playing field for Ohio small businesses by administering online-sales tax collection for large corporations.


The latest budget also eliminates the bottom two income tax brackets and reduces the middle two brackets, saving working people and families more money following a decade of tax shifting that had cost them more to fund giveaways for the wealthiest one-percent. Long-held Democratic priorities of closing tax loopholes, like the corporate jet timeshare exemption, also made it into the budget.


“Our changes bring the budget more into balance and put us in a better position to meet some of the governor’s spending increases,” said Rep. Jack Cera (D-Bellaire), the lead Democrat on the House Budget panel. “Though we’re making progress, there is still a lot of work to make sure this is a balanced plan for more growth and more opportunity in our state.”


Cera and Sykes said Democratic lawmakers will continue to review the changes in advance of next week, when additional changes are expected before a committee vote.


Additional Democratic amendments in the updated version of the state budget, House Bill 166 include:


-         H2Ohio Advisory Council.


-         Double funding for Rape Crisis Centers.


-         Increase textbook assistance for students.


-         Create Ohio FAFSA incentive.


-         Increase minimum wage of direct service providers.


-         Fully fund Adult Protective Services.


-         Add Commission on Minority Health to Pregnancy resk assessment work group and home visiting consortium.


-         Protect workers through increase in BWC wage and hour division.


-         Incentivize online trades education at Eastern Gateway Community College.


-         Increases to kinship care, multi-system youth and foster recruitment.


-         Increase funding for local emergency communication (MARCS).


An anticipated budget vote is expected in the House next week, sending the bill to the Ohio Senate for review before the June 30 deadline.

 
 
 
  
Featured Posts

Dems Unveil Clean Energy Jobs Act As Controversial Corporate Bailout Clears Committee

 

House Democratic lawmakers today unveiled the Clean Energy Jobs Act, their proposal to protect existing jobs, grow new ones and invest in Ohio’s clean energy future. The announcement follows the latest changes to House Bill (HB) 6, which Republican lawmakers amended to bail out more corporations and all but eliminate energy efficiency and renewable energy standards in Ohio. The bill passed out of committee Thursday.



 
 

Dems Unveil Commonsense Solutions To Keep Kids And Communities Safe

 

Ohio House Democratic lawmakers today announced a number of proposals, including safe storage, red-flag and background check laws, commonsense measures they say will better keep kids and communities safe. The package comes amid debate on House Bill (HB) 178, controversial legislation Democrats say is a solution in search of a problem. 



 
 

Democratic Priorities Shape Budget As Bill Clears Ohio House

 

House Democratic lawmakers today voted in favor of the state budget, House Bill 166, which includes a number of key Democratic priorities, including a significant tax cut for working people and families. 



 
 

House Dems Lead Bipartisan Effort To End School Takeovers, Restore Local Control

 

House Democrats today announced the House passage of House Bill (HB) 154, a bipartisan effort to end state takeovers of local schools and restore control to local education officials. The bill comes amid questions of accountability, transparency and lackluster results from district takeovers in Youngstown, Lorain and East Cleveland.