From the daily archives: Tuesday, January 25, 2011

It looks like helping to sabotage one of Ted Strickland’s solutions for helping to balance the budget has earned Carlo Loparo a job with the Kasich administration.

Or maybe its his experience working for a group that has spent the past year fighting tooth and nail against Ohio’s transparency laws to keep the source of it’s funding private.

Either way, Carlo’s got a new job as the new spokesperson for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and by every metric Kasich seems to consider important, Carlo totally deserves the job.

As we’ve noted many times […]

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JobsOhio employees can lobby JobsOhio legally while they work (and be lobbied secretly.)

Section 187.03(B)(2) of the bill explicitly states that the Governor’s ethics reporting requirements do not change, but the rest of JobsOhio’s directors, executives, and staff have different requirements.  The bill specifically states that they do not need to report:

Income in the ranges specified as required to otherwise be filed with the Ohio Ethics Commission (R.C. 102.02(A)(2)); Gifts worth $75 or more paid by someone lobbying the agency (R.C. 102.02(A)(7)); Any free food, beverage, or travel paid for by someone other than the agency or the […]

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There few things treated as public records for JobsOhio except that which the Kasich Administration’s JobsOhio corporation and his Department of Development agree by contract

The bill explicitly exempts JobsOhio from public records laws by, again, exempting it from the definition of “public agency” in R.C. 149.43.  It later says that the following documents will be public records:

The corporation’s federal (but not State?) tax returns; A report of expenditures of who JobsOhio wined and dined the following year;   A copy of its “independently” done audit; A self-analysis of how Ohio’s economy is doing; An annual description of the […]

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Employees of JobsOhio can’t join a public union or have civil service protection, and no longer contribute to PERS.

John Kasich has yet to give a single example of how having a public agency with employees protected by Ohio’s civil service laws (which prevent cronyism, nepotism, etc.) has harmed the State’s economic development efforts, and yet, as promised, he’s removing the civil service protections by privatizing the agency.  Kasich’s bill would, of course, also means that the employees would lose other benefits such as a defined benefit plan like PERS.  Worse benefits and more nepotism and political cronyism…. hurrah!

Our […]

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Joseph hit the highlights, but I wanted to write another post that put some more meat on just how galling Kasich’s JobsOhio legislation really is.  Remember as you read this that last week Kasich’s legislative allies suggested that this bill was the transparency and ethics guidelines they were able to get Kasich to agree with.  So, I’d hate to see what the starting point was during those close-door negotiations.

In short, if you set out to create a privatized economic development entity that ignored the cautionary tales of waste, fraud, abuse, and exaggerated claims of economic benefit, you’d […]

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When the Dispatch endorsed David Yost for Auditor they expressed the importance of “clear financial and performance audits, free of political bias“. They claimed that “Yost’s party loyalty has been tried, too, and he has come down on the side of taxpayers” and gave Yost kudos for prosecuting a fellow Republican for falsifying an employee’s time sheets.

Yost had an opportunity to put aside political bias in the past to help protect state funds. The question is: will he do it again?

Today the Republicans started hearings on a bill that would completely exclude Kasich’s JobsOhio group not only […]

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Plunderbund has spoken to people who have seen a draft of the JobsOhio legislation that’s headed to committee today. We’ll have a much more detailed analysis coming up but I wanted to give you a quick overview of the GIGANTIC ethics and transparency problems this bill has.

JobsOhio and its staff are not subject to audits by the Auditor of State JobsOhio and its staff are not subject to the state ethics law JobsOhio and its staff are only partially subject to state lobbying laws JobsOhio employees are exempt from definition of state employees and ineligible for PERS JobsOhio is […]

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Remember how shortly after the election, Governor Kasich declared war on Ohio’s public unions and collective bargaining?

(Source: Marc Kovac @ Capitol Blog, 12/9/10)

To hear Kasich and his political allies tell it, Ohio’s collective bargain law is bankrupting the State and it, and not the massive tax cut passage conservatives passed in 2005 which cut the income tax by nearly a quarter with no plan to pay for them, is responsible for our budgetary situation.

Even the Dispatch’s editorial board earlier this month applauded Kasich’s willingness to take on binding arbitration which the editorial presented […]

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The Columbus Dispatch reports how a Mike DeWine staffer hit a bicyclist while driving the Attorney General around:

According to a Columbus police report, confirmed by accounts from DeWine and Kirk, Kirk rode his bicycle against a red light at Front and Main streets. He was knocked to the pavement by a 2008 Chrysler 300 in which DeWine was a passenger. A DeWine staff member, Robert Lagergren, was driving DeWine’s personal car.

Kirk, who said he has no insurance because he can’t afford it, didn’t want to go to a hospital emergency room and left the scene to […]

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