Budget Experts Tear Into Taxes, Offer Takeaways From New Budget

Bad news for Columbus this week, as the Democratic National Committee announced it would be taking its 2016 convention to Philadelphia. The day of the announcement, Ohio Democratic Party Chair David Pepper appeared with his GOP counterpart, Ohio Republican Party Chair Matt Borges, before members of the Ohio Newspaper Association. And there are now three potential ballot issues on legalizing marijuana in Ohio.

Gov. John Kasich’s budget is getting a going-over from lawmakers on the House Finance Committee, and this week those legislators grilled members of the governor’s team dealing with Medicaid about Medicaid expansion, and Tax Commissioner Joe Testa about the shift in reliance on income taxes to consumption or sales taxes, including an increase in the state sales tax and the commercial activity tax or CAT, and hikes in the taxes on tobacco and oil and gas drillers. To consider that and much more, two of Ohio’s leading budget gurus talk about what they see and don’t see in this budget. Neil Clark is the former chief financial officer of the Ohio Senate Republican Caucus. And Bill Shkurti was the state budget director under Democratic Gov. Richard Celeste.

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