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Ingram Announces Priorities for Ohio Operating Budget

May 1, 2023
Catherine D. Ingram News

Today, state Senator Catherine D. Ingram (D-Cincinnati) announced her budget priorities for the Ohio Operating budget which include:

  • Fully implementing the Fair School Funding Plan
  • Increasing the phase-in percentages for targeted assistance—especially for disadvantaged pupil impact aid—to help our inner-city and rural schools
  • Increasing transparency for charter schools and other nonpublic schools
  • Raising the minimum salary for teachers from $30k to $40k to ensure our teachers are being respected and supported in Ohio

"At the top of my budget priorities is protecting and funding our public education systems to ensure that all students in Ohio may thrive,” said Ingram. “I applaud the continued implementation of the Fair School Funding Plan, also referred to as the Cupp-Patterson Plan. Requiring the use of fiscal year 2022 data gives us a more accurate measurement to calculate the cost of educating our students moving forward, rather than the previous measure utilizing fiscal year 2018.”

Senator Ingram also raised concerns regarding the need for increased transparency of charter and nonpublic schools in the wake of increased trends for school choice and the expansion of school voucher programs in the state of Ohio. The House version of the budget raises the threshold for EdChoice and voucher programs to 450% from the governor’s recommendation of 400%.

“This, unfortunately, shifts dollars from where they should be,” said Ingram. “This makes it more difficult to fund the level of disadvantaged pupil impact aid that we need to have equity in our school systems.”

Senator Ingram also highlighted two areas of the budget to revisit that had been cut in the version as passed by the house as compared to the governor’s budget recommendations such as:

  • Literacy Improvement 
    • Governor’s recommendation: Up to $43,000,000 in each fiscal year to reimburse school districts, community schools and STEM schools for stipends paid to teachers to complete a professional development course in reading
    • As Passed by the House: decreases the earmark to up to $21,500,000 in each fiscal year. (Section: 265.330)
  • Pediatric Behavioral Health 
    • Governor’s recommendation: Requires Fund 5CV3 ALI 336648 ($50,000,000 over the biennium), ARPA Pediatric Behavioral Health, to be used to support pediatric behavioral health workforce development, to support infrastructure improvements at health care facilities to improve access to pediatric behavioral health services, including OhioRISE psychiatric residential treatment facilities, and to improve integration of behavioral health and primary care services.
    • As Passed by the House: Removed