Posts Tagged 'JobsOhio'

Don’t Cut Ohio off from the World, Says Leader Budish

Democratic House Leader Armond Budish sent a letter to Gov. Kasich  urging him to reconsider closing the Ohio foreign trade offices and the Global Markets Division of the Ohio Department of Development. The announcement that all eleven trade offices will close as the division will be eliminated due to the new JobsOhio plan was made this week. A copy of the letter is below.

Dear Governor Kasich:

I write to you today to urge that you reconsider the closing of the Ohio foreign trade offices and the Global Markets Division of the Ohio Department of Development. The elimination of these offices will only further hinder Ohio’s economic growth and recovery in already difficult times.

In today’s highly competitive global economy, it is critical that we have international representation not only to help connect Ohio products to markets abroad, but also to help attract new companies to Ohio.

Attracting foreign companies to Ohio has been a bright spot in Ohio’s economic development efforts.  Over the last several years, Ohio’s ability to attract foreign companies has yielded very positive results.  According to your administration’s website, nearly 200,000 Ohioans hold jobs because of the 3,363 foreign-based companies from more than 40 countries doing business right here in Ohio.

Furthermore, the Global Markets Division has helped Ohio become a leading exporter over the last decade, consistently ranking our state in the top ten exporting states nationally.  In 2010, Ohio was ranked eighth in the U.S. exporting $41.4 billion in products and goods. 

Clearly, the Global Markets Division has a proven track record and is well respected globally and throughout the United States. Ohio’s Global Markets Division has become a business development model for other states looking to grow their exports and import job-creating businesses to their states.

Closing these offices sends a terrible message to the world about our economic viability and attractiveness.  Frankly, it is my view that eliminating this well respected and established program will hurt Ohio’s ability to attract new business from around the world, and will potentially destroy partnerships that help support Ohio’s economy.

At a time when our economy is so fragile and when the unemployment rate increased for the first time in over 14 months, we must do everything we can to bring jobs to Ohio and foster economic growth. Again, I urge you to reconsider eliminating the Global Markets Division of the Department of Development.

Sincerely,

Armond Budish
House Minority Leader
State Representative
8th District

 

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GOP Policies Threaten Recovery, Layoffs Devastating Choice to Fill Budget Gap-Thoughts from State Rep. Dan Ramos

The new state budget attempts to battle unemployment by firing Ohioans.

Fueled by shortsighted ideology, Governor Kasich and the Republican dominated Legislature have forgone the popular option of closing tax loopholes that amount to $7 billion annually in this state, choosing instead to balance the budget entirely by selling public assets, cutting local funds and eliminating thousands of jobs.

In what they’ve called the “Jobs Budget,” the GOP has shown that they would rather have Ohioans idle on unemployment than let them earn a real wage and add value to our communities and economy.

The party in power is out of touch at best, and at worst, recklessly neglectful to the needs of this state.

Two recent announcements should strike Ohioans as deeply concerning.  First, Ohio’s unemployment strayed from the national average and went up in June for the first time in 22 months – nearly 2 years of recovery – in part due to the loss of 7,300 government jobs.  Second, because of the fire sale of two prisons in Lorain and Marion County to private owners, over 1,100 prison jobs in our area will soon be eliminated, go without being filled, or for those fortunate enough to stay on – pay less competitively in a setting where staff are statistically more likely to be assaulted by a prisoner. 

No doubt, every Ohioan hopes that we won’t see unemployment rise to 8.9% in July; that June was a blip and we will resettle, but whether or not it does rise, we should not pretend that the layoffs created by the Majority Party’s budget are happening in a vacuum.  Their ideological single-mindedness will test the limits of our recovery; forcing Ohioans to create two jobs for every one eliminated if we are to make any progress.

All the while, Ohio’s Republicans are behaving as though we’ve gotten something for free and that nothing is wrong, but Ohioans know better than most that nothing comes for free.

Our children will bear the brunt of it using outdated learning materials in classrooms with 40 or 50 of their peers.  They’ll have diminished access to honors classes, fine arts, foreign languages and sports, and will be taught by teachers who are in financial ruin, whose efforts aren’t respected, let alone supported by their elected representation.

Our communities will wonder why police responses are slower and why regular patrols aren’t keeping our street corners safe.  We’ll wish that the fire department could respond more quickly, or in fuller force.  We’ll lose mementos and purses; we’ll lose loved ones.

Our automobiles will feel it with each grinding pothole that the city can’t afford to fix.  Our neighborhoods will be plagued by the barren, foreclosed properties of our friends who have lost jobs, public or private, and we will wonder why the city won’t keep them up to code or demolish them.

In short, after years of working to do more with less, we’ll simply do less. 

What Ohioans must remember is that this course, which will cost so much to so many, is the choice that the Ohio GOP made with exuberant smiles on the floors of the House and Senate.  This is the option that they chose over all others and have continued to defend even as the pink slips are printing in Lorain County.  While weary local governments and school districts contemplate the levies they so desperately need to pass in the fall, their state officials have gone on break for the summer.

We cannot afford to view these issues through the happy fiction of Governor Kasich’s JobsBudget, and we must not let his allies deconstruct the civic and social achievements of this state. 

In truth, we don’t just need jobs, we need careers, but that’s a lot to ask of our current leadership, which seems poorly equipped to provide honest Ohioans with either.

Dan Ramos
State Representative
Ohio House District 56

House, Senate Lawmakers Urge Kasich to Consider More Women on JobsOhio Board

Female lawmakers from both the Ohio House and Senate today raised concerns over the lack of women appointed the JobsOhio corporate board and the underrepresentation of women in state government as a whole. 

Sen. Minority Leader Capri Cafaro (D-Hubbard) and State Rep.  Nancy Garland (D- New Albany), Chair of the Ohio House Democratic Women’s Caucus, sent a letter to Gov. Kasich today requesting a woman be appointed to fill the final vacancy on the JobsOhio Board. They also raised concerns about the overall lack of female representation currently in state government.

See the a copy of the letter below:

Dear Governor Kasich: 

We write to you today to express our great disappointment about the seriously deficient representation of women on the JobsOhio corporate board, as well as throughout your administration.

Among the appointments you made last week to the JobsOhio Board, only one of the eight appointees was female.  Yet, nearly 28 percent of small businesses in Ohio are owned by women.  Women play a vital role in Ohio’s economic mix and should be more adequately represented on the JobsOhio board. [Small Business Association, 2/2011]

As you know, equality in the work place has been an enduring struggle.  In recent years, women have surpassed men in the number of advanced degrees, yet they continue to be compensated at 78 percent the rate of their male counterparts. Regrettably, the limited representation of women on this board will only perpetuate this struggle for equality of women in the workplace and in leadership roles here in Ohio. [Times Reporter, 4/27/2011]

Unfortunately, this is not the only example an underrepresentation of women in important leadership roles within state government.  There are 26 members of your cabinet and only four of them are women.  This is far fewer than previous governors.  Moreover, the women you have chosen for cabinet positions are entrusted with smaller agencies, smaller budgets and smaller staffs than their male cabinet members. 

At the same time that we see a lack of women in executive offices and appointments, we look at our legislative chambers and see far fewer women in leadership positions.  In the Ohio House, among the 25 chairs of the standing committees and subcommittees, there is only one female chair.  In the Ohio Senate, there are 14 different committee chairs and again only one is female. 

In addition to this gross underrepresentation of women in state government, it has also come to our attention that the Governor’s Office of Women’s Initiatives and Outreach has been inexplicably dismantled.  This is yet another troubling sign that public policy issues concerning women are not getting the attention or support from your administration.

Not giving women a voice in important decision-making roles is a trend that could do long-term damage to the women in our state and to the state as a whole.  Women are being hit hardest by state and local government budget cuts across the country because women make up a larger proportion of the public sector workforce.  Women are also recovering more slowly than men from the national recession caused by the recklessness of the financial industry.  This is a problem that we ignore at our peril [Chicago Sun Times, 6/15/2011].

Governor, we need your commitment to diversity for our state to advance and succeed.  Fairness, diversity, and inclusion are important values that are keys to building a stronger more vibrant Ohio. The business community has found this to be a formula for success and we must heed their example. 

Please do not let your time in office go down in the history books as the time we marched backwards and undid decades of progress toward a more diverse and successful state.  We ask that you find and appoint a qualified woman to the final open position on the Jobs Ohio Board.

 Respectfully,

 Sen. Minority Leader Capri Cafaro  State Rep. Nancy Garland
Sen. Edna Brown State Rep. Connie Pillich
Sen. Charleta B. Tavares State Rep. Denise Driehaus
Sen. Nina Turner State Rep. Nickie Antonio
Sen. Shirley A. Smith State Rep. Teresa Fedor
  State Rep. Lorraine M. Fende
  State Rep. Debbie Phillips
  State Rep. Kathleen Clyde
  State Rep. Tracy Maxwell Heard
  State Rep. Barbara H. Boyd
   

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