The End of Cash

- February 26, 2013

In this edition of our eNews — More cuts to local government, another yes for Medicaid expansion, a sequester suggestion, some truth about business income, Cleveland Saves Week, transportation choices, and yes, the end of cash.

Local losses – It may be obvious by now, but in case you needed a reminder, here it is – Ohio communities shouldn’t look to the Kasich administration for relief. Our preliminary analysis shows that cuts to local governments would continue under the governor’s budget proposal, leaving cities, counties and other local entities with about half the funding they got in 2010 and 2011.

Medicaid matters –  We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: The Kasich administration’s move to expand Medicaid to more low-income families, while letting the federal government pick up most of the tab, will save money, improve lives, and create jobs. No surprise that lots of other governors – from both parties – are jumping on board.
Stop the cuts – The so-called “sequester,” scheduled for March 1, would cut some $300 million in federal funding for Ohio, including much-needed money for K-12 and higher education and other essential needs. We’ve already cut too much, and we’re suffering because of it. It’s time to restore some balance – new revenues have to be part of the next round.
Hot air – Cutting personal income taxes is about shrinking government, not about helping small business. A recent analysis by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, which we released in Ohio, finds that fewer than 3 percent of those who pay personal income tax are small business owners, only 11 percent of taxpayers reporting business income run a company with employees other than the owner, and small businesses hire based on product demand, not tax rates.
Savvy savers – It’s Cleveland Saves Week, and we’ve put together tips from people who know how to do it. This week’s promotions include raffles for new savers and those who deposit rolled or loose change at participating banks.
Transit time – In recent legislative testimony, Amanda Woodrum called on policy makers to create a Transportation Choice fund: “We believe Ohio needs a 21st century transportation system made up not only of roads and highways, but also a complete network of affordable, accessible, and environmentally friendly transportation options.”
The End of Cash – Beginning in March, nearly all federal payments, including Social Secuirty, will be made electronically, paid directly to bank accounts or with government-issued prepaid cards. David Rothstein will be on a panel this Friday to examine questions and concerns about this move. Sign up to attend if you’ll be in D.C., or watch it live here.

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