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Democrats Push for More Transparency from JobsOhio

Friday, August 2, 2013 at 5:53 PM

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Some Democrats in the Ohio legislature are proposing legislation that would make JobsOhio’s activities more transparent.

State Rep. John Carney says he’s concerned about reports that there might be a conflict of interest, at best, in the state’s not-for-profit job creation corporation. Carney says the money in JobsOhio belongs to voters and they deserve to know how it is being spent.

“This idea that somehow we took a stream of liquor profits and turned them into private money, and now private actors get to decide what to do with it and can hand it out to whoever they want, can use the money to run ads back to Ohioans to tell them what a great job they are doing seems totally absurd to me,” Carney said. “And frankly, I’ve gone out and talked to a lot of Ohioans, and it seems absurd to them.”

Carney says he knows his legislation won’t have a chance in the Republican-dominated legislature, but he hopes Ohioans will start asking questions about it. The legislature recently passed a law that prevents Auditor Dave Yost, a Republican, from auditing JobsOhio. Gov. Kasich and backers of JobsOhio say much of the information critics want needs to be confidential so that the state doesn’t give away trade secrets when competing for jobs.

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