Ohio budget a mixed bag for colleges, universities (Akron Beacon-Journal)

Excerpt:

February 8, 2013 – In the first year of Gov. John Kasich’s proposed $63.2 billion, two-year budget,  17 of the state’s 61 universities, branch campuses and community colleges are expected to receive cuts although state higher education funding rises overall in the budget’s first year by about 2 percent to $1.78 billion, according to newly released estimates. Ohio State University is projected to receive a 3 percent increase under the plan, with three branch campuses experiencing cuts. OSU President E. Gordon Gee helped design the funding deal. Kent State and Cleveland State would see increases of more than 5 percent, Wright State of 3.5 percent and others smaller increases.

Link to Full Article: http://www.ohio.com/news/break-news/ohio-budget-a-mixed-bag-for-colleges-universities-1.371676

JobsOhio may get $100 million from liquor privatization deal (Columbus Dispatch)

January 8, 2013 – JobsOhio may finally get its $100 million for economic development.  Gov. John Kasich’s privatized, nonprofit development agency announced this morning it will proceed with issuing about $1.5 billion in bonds to complete a complicated lease of the state of Ohio’s wholesale liquor profits stream. The move was triggered by two bond-rating agencies awarding high ratings to the bonds JobsOhio (Moody’s – A2) will use to fund the lease. The liquor profits deal is at least one year in the making. In January 2012, JobsOhio and the Kasich administration announced the parameters of the agreement. In that deal, JobsOhio would pay the state $500 million that would go into the general-revenue fund.

Link to Full Article: http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2013/01/08/JobsOhio-could-get-$100-million-for-economic-development.html

Link to JobsOhio Credit Ratings Press Release: http://jobs-ohio.com/images/JobsOhioBondratings.pdf

Court ruling clears Ohio to pen Medicaid contracts (Modern Healthcare)

January 2, 2013 – Ohio is prepared to move forward with certain Medicaid contracts after a court ruled in the state’s favor in a dispute over how the contracts were awarded. Amerigroup, a company that claimed it was improperly denied a contract under what it said was a flawed process, had sued the state’s Department of Job and Family Services alleging abuse of discretion in how the state scored applications. The companies awarded contracts will provide health care services to more than 1.6 million poor and disabled people, more than two-thirds of Ohio’s Medicaid population. The remaining Medicaid beneficiaries receive care under a fee-for-service model, in which doctors are reimbursed for each service through provider agreements with Ohio Medicaid.

Ohio schools’ budget squeeze means fewer teachers (AP / Akron Beacon Journal)

December 26, 2012 – Fewer dollars for Ohio schools has meant fewer teachers in classrooms in many districts across the state. State records show the number of full-time teachers in public schools fell by nearly 6 percent over a decade ending in the 2010-11 school year, and surveys by education associations and the Associated Press indicate the downward trend has continued the past two school years. There’s little expectation of immediate improvement as districts grapple with reduced state funding, declines in property tax revenue and voter reluctance in many districts to approve new levies as households slowly recover from the Great Recession.

Link to Full Article: http://www.ohio.com/news/local/ohio-schools-budget-squeeze-means-fewer-teachers-1.360437

Ohio loses thousands of public school teachers to budget cuts (Vindy . com)

December 23, 2012 – Fewer dollars for Ohio schools has meant fewer teachers in classrooms in many districts across the state. State records show the number of full-time teachers in public schools fell by nearly 6 percent over a decade ending in the 2010-11 school year, and surveys by education associations and The Associated Press indicate the downward trend has continued the last two school years. There’s little expectation of immediate improvement as districts grapple with reduced state funding, declines in property tax revenues and voter reluctance in many districts to approve new levies as households slowly recover from the Great Recession.

Link to Full Article: http://www.vindy.com/news/2012/dec/23/ohio-loses-thousands-of-public-school-te/?nw

Ohio population still lagging (Akron Beacon Journal)

December 20, 2012 – Ohio continues to lag behind other states in terms of population growth. The state gained only 3,218 residents last year, a miniscule 0.03 percent increase from the previous year, according to estimates the U.S. Census Bureau released Thursday. That meager growth rate ranked 48th among all states and the District of Columbia. Only West Virginia, Rhode Island and Vermont were worse. Rhode Island and Vermont actually saw their populations decline slightly. Ohio remains the seventh largest state, with a population of 11,544,225, despite being among the slowest growers. The state’s population has risen only 1.7 percent since the 2000 census.

Link to Full Article: http://www.ohio.com/news/local/ohio-population-still-lagging-1.359443?localLinksEnabled=false

Right-to-work would face public fight in Ohio, unlike Michigan (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

December 20, 2012 – Ohio can’t follow Michigan’s lead and quickly pass right-to-work legislation without a nasty public fight, a prospect that politicians and business leaders want to avoid at all costs. Lawmakers in Michigan earlier this month attached $1 million in spending to bills that would allow workers to stop paying dues at union-represented workplaces across the state. That procedural tactic prevents organized labor from holding a statewide referendum to repeal the law. State law in Michigan forbids recall votes on spending because such actions could wreak havoc with the state’s ability to pay its bills. That tactic won’t fly in Ohio.

Link to Full Article: http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2012/12/right-to-work_would_face_publi.html