February 25, 2014
Kasich's State of State aligns with Chamber priorities
The Chamber is encouraged by last night's State of the State speech as Ohio Governor John Kasich signaled a continuing commitment to job growth in the state. Over the past three years, Ohioans created more than 170,000 new private-sector jobs, which is evidenced by Ohio moving to #9 in the nation for job creation, up from #47 four years ago.
The Governor mentioned further reducing Ohio’s income tax as Kasich outlined, has been identified as a top priority for the Chamber, which has more than 4,000 small business members. Reducing the income tax rate under 5% would allow these small businesses to keep more resources to invest in jobs, grow their businesses and the Cincinnati economy.
“The Chamber is encouraged by what it heard in last night’s State of the State address and it applauds Governor Kasich for his commitment to continued advancement of job growth policies in Ohio,” said Jason Kershner, Interim Managing Director of Government Affairs.
Unemployment in Ohio has improved to 7.2%, down from 9% in 2011. However, employers continue to have trouble identifying workers with the appropriate skills needed to fill the available positions. Ohio Means Jobs shows there are more than 25,000 job openings within 30 miles of Cincinnati. The Chamber believes the Governor’s statement last night, regarding a mentorship between education institutions and businesses will be a productive step toward addressing the skills gap.
“Education and workforce polices have been identified by the Chamber as a top priority while businesses work to identify future employees with the skills needed to fill the actual jobs that are available,” said Kershner. “The Chamber looks forward to working with the Governor on these common goals to grow Cincinnati’s regional businesses,” he added.
Tomorrow, key leaders will convene in Columbus for the annual Columbus Drive-In event. Elected officials, business and community leaders and Chamber members will travel to Columbus to discuss state legislation and its impact on business in the region, including a meeting with Governor Kasich.