Posted: 9:02 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013
Kasich speech highlights
Tax Reform: Kasich touted his plan to cut the income tax rates by 20 percent and lower the state sales tax rate to 5.0 percent, down from 5.5 percent, but apply the sales tax to more services and items. He also is proposing increasing taxes on oil and gas drilling. The governor said the reforms will make Ohio more attractive to businesses and job creators.
Education: The governor is proposing a new funding formula for K-12 schools that he promises will mean no district sees a state funding cut and more money will go to poor districts and those with growing enrollment. He also wants to link state aid to course completion at public universities and community colleges instead of just enrollment.
Medicaid: The Republican governor said he opposes Obamacare but expanding Medicaid will benefit Ohio by extending health care to more Ohioans, bringing billions of dollars in federal aid to the state and freeing up money for mental health services.
State Rep. Connie Pillich, D-Montgomery, wrote a letter to the House and Senate leaders in outrage over planned security procedures that included examination with metal detection wands. Pillich said the search is offensive and tells the public that lawmakers are not worthy of their trust.
“It is rumored that the governor has ordered the search,” Pillich wrote. “This is completely inappropriate and an overreach of his powers. This event is our session: a meeting of the General Assembly.”
The Ohio Christian Alliance opposed in a statement moving the event to Lima from the Statehouse. The nonpartisan group compared Kasich to King George of England when the founding fathers wrote the Declaration of Independence. They wrote:
“Among the list of grievances in which they stated their act of independence, was, and I quote, “He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, and for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.’”
The group also sent prayers and well-wishes for Kasich and lawmakers.
Governor’s Courage Awards
Neil Armstrong: Wapakoneta native and first man on the moon Neil Armstrong was honored posthumously. Armstrong, who died Aug. 25, was a naval aviator, engineer, test pilot, astronaut and administrator at NASA.
Sondra Williams: Williams is an adult with autism, author and advocate for others with autism.
Staff of Chardon High School: The teachers and staff were honored for their response to the Feb. 27 shooting. Three people were killed and three were injured.