Posted Tuesday, June 16, 2009
The sour economy is giving state budget planners fits. The state Senate pared back the House budget substantially but even that doesn’t come close to balancing the budget and its $3-billion revenue shortfall. It’s up to a conference committee now to come up with solutions by the end of the month. What to cut, what to leave alone and is a tax hike inevitable? We'll discuss the options and invite your thoughts tomorrow morning on The Sound of Ideas.
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If we reduce the salaries of our state lawmakers, our state government will be filled with the ultra rich and the ultra stupid. To climb out of this hole, we have to abandon short sighted thinking and knee jerk reactions to issues. That’s what got us into this mess!
I feel that the public welfare system needs to be reviewed and gone over with a fine tooth comb. People who have been “on the system” for 5, 10 and in some cases 20 years should be told to find a job. We cannot keep having the cycle continue itself like this. I personally know a woman who has had 4 children on the system and has received every single benefit the system offers for over 20 years.
I couldn’t agree more that the Ohio government could be streamlined. My wife lost her job and was mandated to attend a “job retraining” program. She has a master’s degree in education and she observed that the department used 5 teachers for 22 students for retraining.
They told her she was overqualified to work in ohio and should leave.
One certain way of raising revenues is to finally allow casinos in our state--the proposal to allow casinos in Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo, and Columbus.
Every day of the year, thousands of Ohioans and their millions of dollars travel to surrounding states to casinos. Why aren’t our legislators clever enough to keep the revenue here in Ohio?
I know it wouldn’t provide tons of money, but if our elected officials agreed to take a 10% cut from their salaries, like many of us have already done, it would be a show of “we are all in this together”. And then, if they needed to raise taxes, people may be more willing to support this effort.
Somehow “no new taxes” has become a boogeyman…and the Ohio legislators need to knock it down.
In public as well as in personal life, things we need and want must be paid for – and in public life that means raising user fees and taxes, when justified.
We must continue to support our public schools and higher education system, our services for the young, the disabled, and the elderly, our state park system.
These are the assets that contribute to quality of life in Ohio…preserve them…even if it means modestly higher fees and/or taxes. This is the time to confront the “no new taxes” boogeyman.
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