Rep. Amstutz, the chair of the House Finance Committee, announced on Thursday that the House would be making drastic changes to Kasich’s budget.  This will be interesting, to say the least.

His big hint is that they’ll be removing tax, education, and health care changes from the budget.

Let’s look at the state fiscal impact of various proposals to figure out the impact of removing portions of the proposal.


Note that Medicaid expansion saves $1 billion in the state budget over the next biennium.  We’ll have to pay an extra $1 billion in taxes if Rep. Amstutz wants to keep women from getting birth control.

Also note that the “additional” education funds are only a partial restoration of Kasich’s $1.8 B in cuts.  If they keep education spending as low as it is today, those budget cuts will be an albatross in any statewide race.

Of course, Rep. Amstutz says that the tax cuts for the rich will stay in the budget, which is $63 B for the biennium.  If the House drops the savings and education spending and keeps the tax cuts, that will give them a gap of $3.1 B, or 5% of the budget.

It seems plausible that they drop the sales and severance taxes as well as the investor tax cut and new education spending, then use the Medicaid expansion to finance a smaller income tax cut.  That lets them preserve their priorities of underfunding schools and giving the screw to local governments.

I don’t see how they can keep any kind of a tax cut if they don’t expand Medicaid.  And while the Tea Party may not want blah people to get health care, I don’t think they’ll spend their own money to deny the expansion.

That allows Kasich to run on a platform of “cut taxes, expanded health care, re-elect me to raise school funding” rather than letting a Dem run on “let me cut your taxes to give you health care and fund your school”.

* The is the “small business tax cut”, but it’s absurd to call it that.  90% of businesses would see less than $1000 in savings, while 20% of the cut goes to out-of-state investors.  Since more of the money goes to investors than to small businesses, we should call it an “investor tax cut”.


Tagged with: