Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Rep. Brian Williams Reacts to State of the State

Excerpts from a press release from Brian Williams' office:

    Reflecting on Governor Strickland’s State of the State Address, State Representative Brian G. Williams (Ohio House District 41) said, “As an educator, Governor Strickland’s words will be appreciated by Ohio’s students, parents, teachers, and property owners. With this budget proposal, the State’s share of basic funding for public schools will reach 54% by 2009. I am very enthusiastic and motivated to act on these initiatives, which promise a bright future for Ohio.”

    In his first State of the State Address, Ted Strickland, offered words and phrases that will appeal to skeptical Ohioans weary after sixteen years of one-party rule. Strickland’s budget includes property tax breaks for senior citizens through expansion of Homestead exemptions; added opportunities for more senior citizens to stay in their own homes through additions to Ohio’s PassPort Program; cutting increases in college tuition for Ohio’s tuition-poor students and parents; and a budget that is one of the most streamlined in several decades, with only a 2.2 % rise in revenue annually. In part, these improvements will be made possible through accessing Federal funds. Strickland also plans trimming some State departments; harnessing the $5 billion Tobacco Settlement Revenue; cutting subsidies now going to the for-profit charter schools; and eliminating corporate welfare schemes. “This is not going to be an easy budget to implement,” Representative Williams pronounced. “…But for the first time in many years we see money being directed toward programs that our Ohio voters called for in the last election. This plan offers more equality for senior citizens, children, and parents. I particularly identify with the Governor’s comments that for the first time in over a decade Ohio’s public schools will be … constitutional, functional, and exceptional.” Williams said.