Monday, July 13, 2009

State Rep. Combs on Budget

On the budget passed (54-44 with Combs voting in opposition) by the Democrats in Columbus:
“Governor Strickland and the House Democrats have failed to make the tough decisions during these budget proceedings. This budget’s over-reliance on one-time federal stimulus money paves the way for financial disaster two years down the road during the next biennium budget. In a time when Ohio’s families and small business owners are tightening their budgets why shouldn’t Ohio do the same?”
“Our children’s future should not be mortgaged on slot machines. We were promised the lottery was going to save education funding during the 1970s. This is the same type of charade.”
The measure still contains items for which House Republicans have repeatedly raised objections. The plan is the Governor Strickland’s framework which includes $4.3 billion in one-time revenue sources, with approximately $2.2 billion in temporary federal funding; institutes more than $1 billion in fee increases which the governor has previously equated to a tax increase; and paves the way for the governor to expand gambling in Ohio with slot machines.

House Republicans have continually called for measures to be added to the budget that would streamline government operations and the Medicaid system to save the state nearly $3 billion over the next two years. Two proposals, House Bill 25 and House Bill 240, were dismissed as amendments to the budget by House Democrats, who currently hold the majority of seats in the Ohio House. Republicans have stressed the need for these long-term solutions as important to the stability of future budgets, and as a means to protect vital services for all Ohioans.