Democratic leaders are calling on the state to release some of the $2.7 billion in the state’s Rainy Day Fund. One senator says that money can be used to invest in the people.
Democratic state Sen. Joe Schiavoni is once again saying it’s time to use some savings to show communities the state cares about them by spending it on things like broadband, universal preschool and infrastructure.
“If you don’t invest in your people then you have people moving out of Ohio in order to build a life with their family,” Schiavoni says.
Gov. John Kasich has strongly opposed that. When adding to the fund last week, he said local government officials, in his words, "whine" about wanting money for special projects when it needs to be saved for an economic downturn.
The Ohio General Assembly would have to pass legislation in order for money from the Rainy Day Fund to be spent or transferred. Last year, Schiavoni proposed a bill, SB 154, that would allocate 10 percent of the reserve toward opioid addiction treatment and recovery. But it hasn't moved in the Ohio Senate since May 2017.