Kasich Proposes Tax Cuts, Hikes for Ohioans in $67B Budget

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – The Latest on Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s proposed state budget (all times local):

3:00 p.m.

Certain Medicaid beneficiaries would be required to pay a new monthly premium under Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s proposed state budget.

The $66.9 billion, two-year spending blueprint rolled out Monday relies on $200 million from new premiums paid by childless, non-pregnant participants in the federal-state health care program with incomes above poverty.

Last year, federal regulators rejected Ohio’s plan to require Medicaid beneficiaries to pay a new monthly premium, saying the proposal could lead to tens of thousands of low-income people losing health care coverage.

The administration says the state will seek federal approval for its new premium plan, which would cap monthly premiums at 2 percent of household income. Premiums are estimated at about $20 a month.

The proposal also makes prescription-drug changes to Medicaid saving roughly $40 million.


2:20 p.m.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich is proposing a two-year freeze on tuition and fees at all Ohio public colleges and universities and changes for local school districts.

The Republican governor said Monday that college affordability is a key component of boosting Ohioans’ preparedness for college and work.

Kasich’s two-year, $66.9 billion state budget unveiled Monday would require the schools to begin providing student textbooks starting in fall 2018 and allow a charge of up to $300 to help offset the costs. Increases in general fees and special fees would otherwise be barred.

K-12 schools would see a $200 million funding increase under the plan. It requires superintendents to appoint three non-voting businesspeople to their local school boards and streamlines high-school and college credit for job experience, competencies and apprenticeships.


2 p.m.

Gov. John Kasich is proposing paying for a 17 percent income-tax cut for Ohioans through a combination of increases to other taxes, including those on alcohol, tobacco, gas drilling and sales.

The Republican governor said Monday that leading economists believe taxing consumption, rather than income, encourages investment and job creation.

Kasich’s $66.9 billion, two-year budget shrinks the number of income-tax brackets in Ohio from nine to five and increases personal exemptions for low- and middle-income taxpayers. The administration says the plan eliminates all state income taxes for more than 350,000 low-income households.

The budget proposes a half-percent sales-tax increase, from 5.75 percent to 6.25 percent, and extends the tax to cable TV subscriptions, elective cosmetic surgery, lobbying and some other services currently not subject to the tax.


1:30 p.m.

Gov. John Kasich is proposing a trimmed-down state budget for the next two years that delivers a 17 percent income-tax cut to Ohioans and temporarily freezes tuition and fees at the state’s public colleges and universities.

The Republican governor helps pay for the proposals with tax hikes on alcohol, tobacco products and gas drilling. He also imposes a half-percent increase in the state sales tax, from 5.75 percent to 6.25 percent, and extends it to additional services.

The spending blueprint was rolled out Monday. It spends $66.9 billion over the two years beginning July 1, down $4.3 billion from the previous biennium amid declining state tax revenues.

Kasich proposes modest additional spending for K-12 schools, higher education and prisons, while flat-funding or cutting many other agencies.