By a vote of 59-38, a strict party-line vote, the Ohio House of Representatives passed Am. Sub. H.B. 1 to create Kasich’s JobsOhioRobsOhio—the privatization of the Ohio Department of Development.  The bill goes to the Senate for a mockery of committee hearings and quick party-line vote passage.

Technical difficulties plagued my ability to watch the debate but by a strict party-line vote the Republican majority defeated every amendment (all of which were offered by Democrats) to improve the accountability, transparency, and ethical safeguards of the bill.

House Republican after Republican claimed it was false to suggest that RobsOhio would potentially allow $1 billion in State taxpayer economic development assistance to pass through secretly, claiming that the bill only appropriated $1 million to the newly created agency.  As if that’s all the taxpayer money RobsOhio will be appropriated (that $1 million actually comes from the current budget passed under Governor Strickland.)

The Democrats not only criticized the bill on transparency but pointed out the lack of such private entities working in Florida, Michigan, and Indiana.  The Republicans seemingly acknowledged that it was a risky plan, but basically said they saw no other option than to go through with it.  I didn’t see a single Republican make the case that these entities have worked on a statewide level.  Basically, they passed this, crossed their fingers, and are hoping for the best.

House Minority Leader Budish gave an impassioned speech against the bill.  Start the video clip at 25:00 mark roughly to watch the entire debate and House floor amendment process.

Ironically, the very Democratic amendments that were rejected today were rejected in the committee process.  At the time, the Republicans said that they should be rejected for now but would be considered later.  Today, they were rejected because… they were rejected in the committee.

The House State Government Chairman suggested that House Finance Amstutz was generous in allowing the same opponents who testify in his comment as who testified in the State Government Committee.

Given that I was the only person who testified in opposition to the bill in the House Finance Committee, I found that an interesting claims because I was unaware that I apparently had already testified against the bill in the other committee.

The proponents of the bill suggested that the opponents of the bill were grandstanding for the Ohio media and engaged in hyperbole over the system.  Seriously.

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  • Bradley L. Cromes

    If you’re looking for Budish, his comments start at roughly 2:35:00 in the video.

  • Ephtut

    Here is a link to a Dayton Daily News article,

    http://www.daytondailynews.com/blogs/content/shared-gen/blogs/dayton/ohiopolitics/entries/2011/02/01/house_approves_jobsohio_plan_f.html

    with the following quote:

    “House Speaker William Batchelder, R-Medina, said Budish’s rhetoric was exaggerated but Batchelder said that he, too, has concerns about the bill – which he wouldn’t detail – and that he hopes they are cleared up when the Senate deals with it.”

    Batchelder is the Head of the House and he hopes the Senate will clear up the problems???

  • Anonymous

    I JUST read the same story and thought the same thing…. Post coming soon!

  • Pingback: Ohio House approves JobsOhio bill, looks forward to privatizing Dept. of Development « The Telescope()

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    This saddens me –in the long run a lot of people will be out of jobs ,replaced with cheap labor UNLESS you are one the chosen to get the contracts for the proposed projects then you get top dollar
    As a taxpayer I resent the fact that they act like I have no right to know how my tax money is spent except for once a year they might put out a report saying where it went by then if you object its to late
    I would have loved to see the fighting and bickering if Strickland had done this
    Amazing isnt it –this didnt work in how many states but lets do it anyway–is this called leading by example? even a bad one ?
    It saddens me about the TVs at Odots lunchroom– isnt this in violation of freedom of speech?Told you must watch this certain program-do not change the channel ( sounds like the old Outer Limits show when it came on )
    and then the house speaker(?) was it says he hopes the senate can fix the problems ,isnt this called “passing the buck”?
    Modern Esq. thanks for going to bat — remember they are the ones that struck out — you threw every pitch you had

  • Annekarima

    If Batchelder and company have doubts and reservations, then why the devotion to the Piped Piper?

  • Anonymous

    RobsOhio isn’t about jobs. It’s about power. That’s what the previous twenty-years of States experimenting with this kind of thing has shown us. They don’t create or retain jobs any better than a public economic development entity. In fact, they may do worse.

    The very concerns we’ve been raising here have already been shared and agreed with by both the Speaker of the House and the Senate President. Our objections to RobsOhio isn’t partisan, it’s factual.

    Sorry that you’re so pathetically partisan and myopic not to understand that.

  • Anonymous

    I wish I knew.

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