Cool new look, same hard-hitting research: News from Policy Matters
Posted April 10, 2017 in eNews
Fresh new look: If you've been on PolicyMattersOhio.org lately -- and we know you're visiting our site multiple times a day -- you've probably noticed some changes. Click around and let us know what you think! A big thank you to the Cleveland Foundation and the FORM group for funding and developing the new site.
Ohio in motion: We're driving our pro-transit agenda forward - and beginning to see results. Last week state lawmakers voted to meet Governor Kasich's recommendation and provide $33 million a year for new buses and infrastructure improvements for Ohio's 61 public transit agencies. That's a $10 million increase over current levels. But we have a long way to go - especially when many transit agencies could lose millions due to changes in the state sales tax base. We testified asking the state to make transit agencies whole. Meanwhile, Senator Michael Skindell introduced legislation to increase state funding for public transportation to $25 million and up the use of federal flex funding for transit to $50 million.
Do it for the kids: In his State of the State Address, Governor John Kasich emphasized the importance of education. But in an issue brief released last week, State Policy Fellow Victoria Jackson explains how his proposed 2018-2019 budget cuts funding for two-thirds of Ohio's school districts, especially the ones struggling the most. Instead, the legislature should roll back tax cuts for the wealthiest and close some of our state's unnecessary tax loopholes.
Budget Bites: Our latest Budget Bites deal with two of Ohio's most pressing issues: housing and the drug epidemic. The 2018-2019 budget falls short on both fronts.
In 2015 more than 33,500 Ohioans were homeless and 400,000 spent more than half their income on rent, but Governor Kasich's 2018-2019 budget doesn't do enough to meet Ohio's housing needs.
Governor Kasichisissuednewrestrictionsonpain killers and is investing $20 million into addiction research. These aren't bad ideas, but what we really need in the middle of a public health crisis is resources for treatment.
Speaking Up in April: Policy Matters is out in our communities in April, discussing and fighting for good policy. Amy Hanauer runs a discussion on resistance at Cleveland State's Women's Leadership Symposium on 4/12; leads a reading on the Cleveland Race Anthology at Happy Dog - Euclid Tavern on 4/18; and debates a Buckeye Institute researcher on social policy at Capital University on 4/26; Daniel Ortiz speaks to Cleveland's Neighborhood Leadership Institute on 4/20; and talks transit at Services for Independent Living on 4/28; Victoria Jackson reviews education findings on America's Workforce Radio on 4/13; Our Columbus office will be out in force - Hannah Halbert, Wendy Patton and Kalitha Williams - for an Advocates for Ohio's Future webinar on work supports on 4/18; and Zach Schiller teams up with Hannah to tackle unemployment compensation (and how to save it) in a 4/19 webinar. And those are just the public events! C'mon out and see us, or invite us if you want to learn more.