Guest Column From State Representative Tim Ginter
Ohio 2020: Planning for Long-Term Success
February 23, 2015
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Since I’ve been given the chance to represent Columbiana County in the Ohio House, I think it is very important that we as state legislators take care to prepare Ohio for the future. By focusing on policy that can build our state a strong foundation for continued growth, we ensure that future generations will have a better place to call home.

This brings us to our Ohio 2020 vision, which focuses on four crucial areas of policy: competitiveness, energy, education and healthcare. This initiative stems from our House Speaker, Cliff Rosenberger. When he was elected to lead the Ohio House, it was made clear to all members and the public that one of our main priorities would be to better prepare our state for the years ahead, long after most of us have left office.  This thoughtful approach is something I am proud to be apart of.

The competitiveness portion focuses on pushing Ohio to compete nationally and even worldwide. By improving areas of economic development, we can keep profitable businesses in our state and attract new ones to come here. A major step is to reduce the business filing fee to 21 percent, which I believe is a huge benefit to entrepreneurs. But we must also have an educated workforce to fill jobs in these new businesses. This can be addressed through the Higher Education Workforce Grant Program, which helps our students to obtain degrees and workforce training by incentivizing some of our programs.

Building off of competitiveness, another focus in Ohio 2020 will be to continue boosting Ohio’s reputation as an energy-producing state. By keeping reliable sources of energy in the hands of Ohioans and using our natural resources safely and affordably, we can continue to grow in this area. In addition, our House Agriculture and Rural Development Committee will address water quality issues to make sure we are keeping our lakes and streams clean.

The education component of this initiative will focus on providing our students with a quality education that encourages a strong future.  Keeping our classrooms well-staffed and well-equipped will best serve these students. Improving the quality of our charter schools is also a priority in this area.

Healthcare policy issues make up the final area of focus. Ohio 2020 will focus on keeping reliable healthcare at the disposal of all Ohioans. By helping our citizens to move off of government support systems, we can allow them to choose the care they need.

Keeping our state on the right track for the future will require a continued effort by the state legislature. I believe that we are up to the challenge and will see many benefits from this vision, now and as we move forward. I hope you will contact my office with questions and suggestions about this and any other state government related issue.

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