As Dennis Cauchon reports in USA Today, Ohio is spending $1.4 billion on economic development and consuming the work of 400 employees. Most other states are spending a few million. Our largest state, California, has only 25 employees working on it...
A USA TODAY review of two dozen of Ohio’s state-funded projects found many behind schedule or failing to deliver the jobs or investment returns promised.
Mr. Boaz then asks:
And what of Governor Kasich, once a budget-cutting House Budget Committee chairman and opponent of corporate welfare, who was once pictured on 60 Minutes with the Cato Handbook for Congress sitting on his desk? Kasich would stop this nonsense, right? Well, not quite:Such massive governmental handouts to private corporations at a time of fiscal duress violates the spirit, if not technically the letter, of the Ohio Constitution (Article VIII, Section 4):
Kasich, the new governor, has moved some programs into a quasi-private operation called JobsOhio that he hopes will be faster and more effective.This new approach positions the government to act more like a risk-taking investor, [Kasich's economic development director Mark] Kvamme says…. [More here.]Kasich is expanding Ohio’s tradition of large-scale, government-directed development programs. His new budget proposes spending an extra $100 million a year in liquor profits on economic development. That amount alone dwarfs economic development spending in almost every other state.What have you done with John Kasich, Ohio? Is this like the movie Dave, where you’ve found an actor to stand in for the actual governor? If not, then I hope Governor Kasich will decide to add government-directed economic development to his list of needed budget cuts.
The credit of the state shall not, in any manner, be given or loaned to, or in aid of, any individual association or corporation whatever; nor shall the state ever hereafter become a joint owner, or stockholder, in any company or association in this state, or elsewhere, formed for any purpose whatever. (1851)
I think most Ohioans voted for the old budget-cutting Kasich, not the new corporation-building one. Please, let's have the old one back.