Government cannot directly create private-sector jobs, but it can create conditions that incentivize job creation. In particular, lowering taxes can drive economic growth and encourage businesses to expand. Am. Sub. House Bill 64, the recently passed state operating budget, continues Ohio’s pro-growth policies by lowering taxes for all Ohioans by nearly $1.9 billion. Since 2011, the Republican-led General Assembly and Governor Kasich have reduced taxes by approximately $5 billion.


Reducing the overall tax burden gives Ohio families more control over their financial situation. By implementing an across-the-board income tax reduction of 6.3 percent and lowering the top marginal rate to less than 5 percent for the first time since 1982, this budget will allow Ohioans to keep more of their hard-earned dollars. This most recent income tax cut builds on previous reforms, such as the repeal of Ohio’s estate tax, which punished farmers and small businesses.


Since January 2011, Ohio has created approximately 350,000 private-sector jobs. If Ohio is to continue its trend of strong economic growth and job creation, it is crucial that we continue to ease the tax burden on small businesses. The recently passed budget continues the current 75-percent tax cut for small businesses earning under $250,000 in business income, and, in FY ’17, will eliminate these taxes altogether. Small businesses that make over $250,000 will now pay a new, low flat tax rate of 3-percent.


In addition to cutting taxes across the board, the General Assembly has continued its responsible management of Ohioans’ tax dollars. In the past four years, we have closed an $8 billion budget deficit while setting aside almost $2 billion in our state’s rainy day fund.


While I believe that this budget takes many important steps towards reducing the tax burden in Ohio, it is important to remain vigilant in order to determine the tax code that will make Ohio economically stable and competitive in the long term. I was pleased to see the budget include the creation of the Ohio 2020 Tax Policy Study Commission, which will examine all aspects of Ohio’s tax code and make recommendations outside of the time constraints of the two-year budget cycle.


The tax reforms enacted by the General Assembly since 2011 have created an environment in our state that encourages job creation and economic growth. With Ohio back on the right track, it is important that we work together to carry forward our strong momentum and ensure that our state continues to be a place where families and businesses can thrive.

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