COLUMBUS—Rep. Paula Hicks-Hudson (D-Toledo) issued a statement Tuesday following the passage of the state budget, House Bill 110. Democrats expressed concerns about a number of provisions within the bill, including a more than $1.64 billion tax giveaway to largely benefit the wealthiest Ohioans and an increase in funding for the state’s EdChoice Voucher Program, which undermines public education in Ohio.
“A government’s budget reflects that government’s priorities. There are good parts to this budget, but as long as we don’t protect children from lead poisoning; as long as we help individuals in the top tax bracket at the expense of those in the middle tax bracket; and as long as there remains a refusal to provide to the citizens of Northwest Ohio with equal resources and access to opportunity as should be enjoyed by all Ohioans, I could not, in good conscience, vote in favor of this budget,” said Rep. Hicks-Hudson.
Additionally, Democrats opposed several public policy measures within the budget, including attacks on healthcare access for LGBTQ Ohioans and abortion care, as well as undermining police accountability measures and Ohio’s new redistricting reforms.
Democrats, however, did applaud the inclusion of $250 million for broadband development in underserved areas as well as the reinstatement of the Fair School Funding Plan, an improved public school funding formula that better addresses the needs of Ohio students, teachers and communities.
Democrats indicated they will send to the governor a list of requested budget line-item vetoes.