We blinked—now it’s February and Gov. John Kasich has just given his 4th annual State of the State address. Next? The Mid-Biennium Review—a Kasich administration creation that puts state government operations reforms up before the next budget process. But before that, let’s see how the priorities the governor outlined on Monday match up to our main issues for his address and the Ohio Chamber’s overall Policy Priorities.
Gov. Kasich spent the majority of his address emphasizing job creation, education reform, workforce development, and a friendly business environment. While he didn’t touch upon municipal tax or energy reform, he did hit on our other issues: regulatory reform and workforce development. Making it simpler for businesses to comply with regulations by getting rid of bureaucratic red tape helps cut costs and allows businesses to invest in creating jobs, while emphasizing a cohesive workforce development approach with educational institutions, employers, and state programs ensures a pool of skilled Ohio workers for jobs Ohio employers need to fill.
Where does this fit into our Policy Priorities? Gov. Kasich touched on four of nine Policy Priorities: reducing government red tape, reducing business costs, improving the tax climate for businesses, and workforce excellence. On the whole, half of this year’s State of the State emphasized Ohio Chamber priorities that support business growth and job creation. Considering the scope of the governor’s address, that’s a pretty good batting average and we’re glad the governor continues pushing to make Ohio more business friendly.
Andrew E. Doehrel, Ohio Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, summed it up best in a statement following the State of the State: “Gov. Kasich has never been one to rest on his laurels and tonight he once again pushed a bold agenda, focusing on job creation, economic opportunity, and training a highly skilled workforce, all of which are critical for Ohio to succeed. We are pleased the governor understands the need to improve the business climate in Ohio and we trust the forthcoming proposals will achieve this goal.”