Last February John Kasich appeared at JPMorgan Chase’s Polaris Campus to announce big upcoming expansion plans for the financial company, which has strong ties to Kasich, the Ohio Republican Party and JobsOhio. Despite a lot of hoopla, handshaking and bell ringing on behalf of Kasich and his team at JobsOhio, things, as usual, didn’t go nearly as well as they had planned.
JobsOhio and the Kasich Administration officially and proudly announced job creation tax credits for JPMorgan’s planned expansion on May 21st, 2013. In exchange for these tax credits, JPMorgan was promising to create 500 new jobs. A Dispatch article about the announcement still appears on John Kasich’s official Governor’s Office website.
By August, things began falling apart as JPMorgan Chase announced it would be cutting 300 jobs in the Columbus area. In September, the company announced another 440 layoffs in Central Ohio. Earlier this week, they announced another 136 jobs would be cut.
That’s 876 jobs lost at JPMorgan Chase since the Kasich administration and JobsOhio helped push through job creation tax credits for the company.
This story is becoming all too familiar. Remember when John Kasich and JobsOhio gave American Greetings a $90 million incentive deal? And that $56 Million incentive package for Diebold? And then both companies went on to layoff thousands of Ohioans?
Kasich and JobsOhio asked us to trust them. They said they needed to shield JobsOhio from public scrutiny. They said JobsOhio needed billions in pubic money. And in return, we were going to get the Ohio Miracle! Jobs for everyone and a flourishing economy and a plump, free-range, organic-fed, magical chicken in every pot!
Instead, Ohio currently ranks almost last for job creation compared to other states over the past year. And our unemployment rate has continued to rise, staying above the national average for months.
Interestingly, just like American Greetings and Diebold, JPMorgan Chase has direct financial ties to Ohio Republicans, John Kasich and JobsOhio.
In 2012, JPMorgan Chase’s PAC gave $83,000 to the Ohio Republican Party. On May 10th, 2013, just days before the tax credits were announced, they gave another $5,000 to the ORP. In July, they gave $12,000 to Kasich’s campaign.
Also interesting: JPMorgan Chase was one of two financial companies awarded the contract to handle the $1.5 billion liquor bond deal for JobsOhio. And while JobsOhio has officially refused to name which companies provided it with nearly $7 Million in private donations, some have suggested that JPMorgan Chase, a company that has donated to similar organizations in other states, may be on that list.
John Kasich came into office promising a New Day for Ohio, a fantastic economic turnaround and a robust job market. And he promised his signature program, JobsOhio, was going to provide us all this and more. Instead, we have a big black box that takes in pubic money, churns out bad deal after bad deal for Ohioans, all while our unemployment rate shoots up and our job growth stagnates.
The only ones who seem to be benefiting from JobsOhio and its secretive dealing are John Kasich, the Ohio Republican Party and big companies like JPMorgan Chase.
For the rest of us Ohioans, the JobsOhio experiment has been a complete and dismal failure.