Breaking down Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s first budget proposal calling for $1B in new spending

Democrats want to know where the money is coming from

Breaking down Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s first budget proposal calling for $1B in new spending
Governor Mike DeWine released his first executive budget for 2020-2021. (Source: VIVMCCLAINPHOTO.COM)

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -On Friday, new Ohio Governor Mike DeWine released his first executive budget proposal for 2020-2021 which included $1 billion in new spending.

The spending targets services for children and families, jobs, mental health, addiction and even natural resources like Lake Erie.

“The budget we are sending to the Legislature today is a budget for Ohio’s future, and it reflects our need to invest in Ohio and Ohioans,” said Governor DeWine.

DeWine’s office described the budget as, “structurally balanced and does not include an increase in taxes.”

“We have serious concerns regarding the fiscal stability of the current proposal," House Democratic Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) said in a statement. “We can’t build a budget on broken economic assumptions or wishful thinking. We need to be honest and realistic about where new spending comes from."

Here is some the spending DeWine has asked for:

Children and Families

  • Investing $22 million to make more of Ohio’s homes lead-safe for children and families.
  • Investing new, targeted funding to support student wellness and success in schools.
  • Investing an additional $50 million in evidence-based home visiting programs to give children the best possible start in life.
  • Nearly doubling the state’s investment in children services agencies.

Mental Health and Addiction

  • Increasing treatment capacity in Ohio through an investment of more than $56 million to respond to local needs.
  • Investing $20 million to provide Ohio’s schools with free, evidence-based prevention curricula and professional development for school personnel.
  • Investing an additional $5 million to create at least 30 more specialized courts during the biennium.
  • Investing $12 million to expand the Ohio START (Sobriety, Treatment and Reducing Trauma) program to provide support to children and parents impacted by substance use disorder.

Local Communities

  • Increasing the state’s child protective allocation by $30 million per year for a total of $90 million annually.
  • Increasing funding to the Local Government Fund to fund local crisis services related to substance use disorder with money from the General Revenue Fund instead of diverting funds from the Local Government Fund.
  • Increasing state support for indigent defense by $60 million per year to assist local partners in providing counsel for defendants who cannot afford an attorney.

Workforce Investment

  • Creating a culture of innovation in state government by launching the new InnovateOhio, led by Lt. Governor Jon Husted.
  • Investing in businesses in Ohio by establishing Opportunity Zones for economically-distressed communities. 
  • Fast tracking Ohioans seeking new workforce skills by providing micro-degrees, primarily for those in the incumbent workforce.

Natural Resources:

  • Creating the H2Ohio Fund to ensure safe and clean water across Ohio by providing the resources necessary to plan, develop, and implement targeted, long-term water solutions.

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