Governor campaigns in Clermont County

May 23rd, 2010    Author: Brett A. Roller    Filed Under: News

Governor Ted Strickland held a fund raising event for his campaign Monday night at VFW Post 9630 in Batavia Township.

The Governor spoke on the importance of education funding and his plans to balance the 2012 biennial budget.

Strickland said the education of Ohio’s children is of vital importance for the future of the state and while surrounding states have cut their education budgets and increased college tuition he has increased tuition and frozen college funding slightly for the past two years.

The 2012 budget will need to be balanced by June 1 of next year, and currently without the aid of federal stimulus funds. Ohio educators are worried that the education reforms instituted in the 2010 budget, many of which require an increase in funding in 2012, could be hindered by funding cuts.

Strickland said he is hopeful additional cuts will not be made to any state programs.

"We've already cut a lot," Strickland said. "I've already reduced state employment by about 5,000 employees and that represents about 7.6 percent of our total state workforce. I tell people that I do what my Republican critics always say they want to do and never do. I've actually made government more efficient and reduced its size."

Strickland said in order to avoid additional cuts he is currently seeking additional federal funds to balance the 2012 budget.

"I'm continuing to seek federal assistance so that we won't have to raise taxes," Strickland said. "The federal funding will help us maintain funding. I was on the phone with (U.S. Secretary of Education) Arne Duncan last week. I called him earlier today and I'm continuing to seek additional federal resources so we can meet our obligations to our schools."

Strickland also talked about his opponent in the November general election, Republican John Kasich. Kasich was in Union Township on Thursday, May 13.

"As far as I know, he's only made one serious proposal. He wants to eliminate our state income tax," Strickland said. "Now, over the last 10 years, the state income tax has provided 46 percent of all the general revenue that we've had to operate our state with. You get rid of our income tax and there goes funding for schools, funding for libraries, funding for public safety, parks, it would decimate our state."

Strickland also emphasized the importance of the governor's race this year.

He said it is important to keep him in the governor's office in order to keep President Barrack Obama in the White House.

"We wouldn't be in the (economic) shape we're in tonight if it were not for the years of George Bush," Strickland said. "I don't want to be unfair, but I think that's a reasonable conclusion to reach."

He said the presidency cannot be won without winning Ohio. Strickland said President Obama was elected by winning nine states that had previously been won by Republicans, including Virginia and Indiana. Strickland said if the President lost eight of those states but kept Ohio he would still win.

"It's going to be the battleground race of 2010," Strickland said.
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