In the May 7, 2003 edition, Senate President Doug White discussed Ohio's budget crisis. He correctly outlined six steps for balancing a budget.
Governor Taft and the Ohio House of Representatives have a different idea: Increase spending by ten percent and then try to figure out a way to pay for it. They want to impose a so-called "temporary" one-cent sales tax and provide us with some additional rope to hang ourselves with at the racetrack. I'm referring to Video Lottery Terminals (VLTs).
(If VLTs become a reality, I wonder if the Ohio House factored in additional expenses for the increased crime and the degradation of families that always accompanies gambling?)
Senator White also discussed the positions of competing interests. He mentioned those who desire state sponsored services versus the taxpayers who are forced to pay for them.
I've met with Senator White. He's a good man and I'm confident that he'll find the right balance between these two broad groups.
Ohio's poor are among those that desire
state sponsored services. Let's explore an idea that could
satisfy their needs without making taxpayers poor.
I expect that Senator White
would probably agree that the sources for helping the poor
should be in the following sequence:
(Note that I
did not mention the Federal Government.)
What if the
state offered income tax credits (similar to the $50/$100
Ohio Political Contribution Credit) in exchange for
donations directly to charitable
organizations such as the multitude of United Way supported
A wide range
of possibilities exists. The
credit does not necessarily have to be dollar-for-dollar up
to some limit. The benefits
of this proposal are multiple:
I strongly disagree with Governor Taft and the Ohio House of Representatives' decision to increase state spending and increase taxes. Furthermore, I detest the idea of having to vote on (VLTs) as if it's an either/or proposition. This is a lose-lose situation for Ohio's families.
Does anybody else have any ideas on how to shift the burden of the poor away from government?
John E. Becker