Let us look toward Ohio's future

Here in Cuyahoga County, 8.5 percent of our friends and neighbors are unemployed and trying to provide for their families. As Ohioans struggle to make ends meet during this difficult economy, I will continue to fight for my number one priority – creating and retaining jobs for residents of the 16th Ohio House District.

In the past three years, more than 330,000 Ohio jobs have been lost, and our population has suffered a net loss of nearly 36,000 people to other states from 2007 to 2008. Ohioans are facing the most difficult economy in decades, and they are looking to their state representatives for leadership and direction. As our economic situation becomes increasingly urgent, the Ohio Legislature needs to work to retain and create jobs and assist small businesses. 

As I continue to meet with constituents in the district, my number one priority continues to be jobs.  In my view, the state of Ohio needs to create the environment to bring about economic prosperity to our state by keeping taxes low, having less mandates and regulations for small businesses, and containing the costs of state government.

In September, my House Republican colleagues and I presented “The Future of Ohio,” a package of ten proposed bills designed to retain and create jobs and jump-start the economy. These bills include measures that would offer a tax credit to employers who hire previously unemployed Ohioans; authorize the creation of a low interest loan program for small businesses; reform regulations to allow small businesses to cut through bureaucratic red tape; and create an online small businesses resource through the Ohio Department of Development. If enacted, these proposals will help Ohio retain its educated workforce, foster entrepreneurialism and assist economic growth within our borders.

It is my hope that our economic plan will finally initiate a constructive, bipartisan discussion. I am optimistic that if we are able to present these proposals in the committee format and allow for a full-length debate, the discussion and passage of these proposals will bring about the economic prosperity we seek. As ranking member of the Economic Development Committee and primary leader of “The Future of Ohio” job’s package, I’m thrilled by the progress we have made and the responses we have received in our communities and with business leaders. As we progress forward and engage in discussions on long-term economic solutions, I assure you that as your elected voice in state government, “It’s All About Jobs!”

If you have any ideas how the Ohio House can improve the economy, or if you have any questions or comments regarding “The Future of Ohio,” please do not hesitate to contact my office. You may write to me at Representative Nan Baker, 77 S. High Street, 10th Floor Columbus, Ohio 43215. You may also email me at District16@ohr.state.oh.us.

Read More on Readers' Opinions
Volume 1, Issue 6, Posted 2:58 PM, 10.27.2009