Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) spoke to a gathering of the County Commissioners’ Association of Ohio in December 2018. [Karen Kasler | Statehouse News Bureau]

Senate President “Absolutely” Wants Income Tax Cut If Gas Tax Is Hiked

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Gov. Mike DeWine’s proposed 18-cent hike in the gas tax is still before state lawmakers. They would have to approve it as part of the transportation budget, which must be signed into law by March 31.

Senate President Larry Obhof said if lawmakers have to hike the gas tax, it should be paired at some point with a tax cut.

“I think we should do an income tax cut anyway. But I absolutely would support doing an offset,” Obhof said.

Obhof also would like to pare down Ohio’s seven tax brackets by one or two. And he said he’s not certain that Gov. Mike DeWine’s request to hike the gas tax won’t get altered: “18 cents is a very generous prediction.”

DeWine proposed the 18 cent hike after a group he appointed recommended an increase in the tax to plug a hole in the budget of the Ohio Department of Transportation.

The increase is expected to raise $1.2 billion.