Policy Matters proposes state budget priorities for a better future
Posted January 14, 2021 in Press Releases
In coming weeks, Gov. Mike DeWine will send his 2022-2023 budget proposal to the Ohio General Assembly for consideration. In a new report, “A budget for everyone” Policy Matters Ohio outlines steps lawmakers can take to get Ohioans through the pandemic and recession while building a better future for everyone.
“Ohio does best when we all come together to do our part,” said Policy Matters Ohio Senior Project Director Wendy Patton. “For years, certain lawmakers have drained our community of resources with tax cuts and tax breaks to the wealthy few and corporations. Today, our state lawmakers can reverse course and pass a budget that puts the people of Ohio first, no matter where we live or what we look like.”
Lawmakers spend nearly $10 billion a year on special interest tax breaks. The last 15 years of tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations have drained the state budget of about $7 billion a year. With thousands of Ohioans being infected by the coronavirus each day, and hundreds of thousands still out of work, the state budget can ease the pain and pave the way for recovery.
The report identifies short- and long-term priorities to address six main areas:
- Getting people through the health and economic crisis
- Expanding opportunity and ensuring Ohioans meet their basic needs
- Protecting working people both on the job and if they are laid off
- Expanding health care and restoring Ohio’s public health system
- Strengthening the foundation of Ohio’s communities with resources for K-12 education reform, higher education, caring for seniors and more
- Making government more accountable and transparent.
The COVID-19 pandemic and recession it caused have fallen disproportionately on Black, brown and Indigenous people. Policy Matters identifies ways to knock down barriers that prevent too many Ohioans of color from being paid fairly, living in safe housing, attending well-resourced schools, and even surviving to their first birthday.
“Governor DeWine’s Minority Health Strike Force laid out a blueprint to address longstanding racial inequality in our state,” Patton said. “It points the way for our state budget to build a brighter future – and make sure all Ohioans of all races and backgrounds share in it.”