Ohio Chamber Releases Interim Free Enterprise Index

Highlights accomplishments to date but also what’s still unfinished

On Tuesday, February 6, the Ohio Chamber of Commerce released its interim Free Enterprise Index scorecard of the Ohio General Assembly. The Free Enterprise Index is a compilation of how members of the Ohio General Assembly voted on bills that represent the Ohio Chamber’s public policy priorities. Each of the bills scored would have a significant impact on improving – or harming – Ohio’s overall business climate.

This release of the Free Enterprise Index is an interim scorecard, reflecting the key votes taken by the Ohio House and Senate during 2017, halfway through the current two-year session of the Ohio General Assembly. In addition, the interim Free Enterprise Index makes clear that several major priority issues of concern to Ohio employers remain unaddressed by the legislature.

“While it is important to tell Ohio Chamber members and other businesses how committed individual lawmakers are to creating a healthy economy and to hold lawmakers accountable for their actions to date, there is still a significant amount of work left to accomplish before the 132nd General Assembly ends in December,” explained Keith Lake, the Ohio Chamber’s vice president of government affairs. “For this reason, the theme of this Free Enterprise Index is everybody gets an incomplete”.

Since 1993 the Ohio Chamber has been tracking and scoring the key business votes taken by Ohio legislators. So far this session, there are 24 members of the Ohio Senate, but only two members of the Ohio House, who have 100 percent perfect pro-business scores. “These lawmakers can tout their accomplishments to their constituents as proof that they support a pro-jobs business agenda,” stated Lake.

The Ohio Chamber also gives special recognition to five legislators in the Free Enterprise Spotlight. They are Sens. Troy Balderson and Joe Uecker and Reps. Niraj Antani, Anthony DeVitis, and Bill Reineke. “Each of these legislators should be commended for their commitment to improving Ohio’s business environment”, said Lake. “Not only are their pro-business scores excellent, but they’ve earned special recognition for playing a key role in the development or passage of a variety of critical issues. Each one of them should be seen as a great friend of business.”