Saturday, February 27, 2010

2010 State of Ohio Report

Two decades of weak job growth and skyrocketing government costs present daunting challenges for Ohio, according to the Buckeye Institute's "2010 State of the State" report.
In 19 years, Ohio's job market only created a net 176,100 new jobs, or just over 9,000 jobs per year.  That weak job growth means limited opportunities for everyone, making it harder for them to get ahead and attain the American dream, says the Institute. 
Other findings: 
  • As the job market weakened, the taxes and fees paid to government at all levels rose making the state and local tax burden the 7th highest in the United States; meanwhile, the tax climate for businesses in Ohio is the 47th worst in America.
  • One of the drivers of the state's high tax burden is the ever-increasing gold-plated compensation of government workers in Ohio; in the same period of time that Ohio only added 176,100 private-sector jobs, it added 75,100 government jobs.
  • Today, federal workers in Ohio make significantly more than their private-sector neighbors in 87 out of 88 counties; state workers make much more than their private-sector neighbors in 85 out of 88 counties; and local workers make more than their private-sector neighbors in 57 out of 88 counties. 
The only way to spur robust job creation and lower taxes is to eliminate Ohio's anti-business job policies and to reduce the cost of government.  These actions will not be easy but failure to make fundamental reforms will render Ohio even less competitive with other states in both job creation and taxes, says the Institute. 

Failure to enact pro-growth reforms also will guarantee that more Ohioans and their businesses will vote with their feet by moving to states where prosperity is a priority, says the Institute. 

Source: Matt Mayer and Mary McCleary, "2010 State of the State Report," Buckeye Institute, February 19, 2010. 

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