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McColley Announces Senate Budget Providing $3.1 Billion in Tax Relief

June 15, 2023
Rob McColley News

COLUMBUS - State Senator Rob McColley (R-Napoleon) strongly supports the final version of the Senate’s $85.8 billion budget plan the Ohio Senate passed today, especially the historic $3.1 billion in tax relief that takes that money out of the hands of government and restores it to its owners, the taxpayers.

"I can't overemphasize the importance of this significant tax cut -- we worked long and hard to make it a reality and to ensure this budget benefits every taxpayer in Ohio," said McColley. "This historic tax relief will especially help our hardworking families and small businesses."

The senator noted how further relief includes a move toward a fair and simplified flat tax approach, as the budget reduces the number of tax brackets to only two over the biennium. The marginal rates will be 2.75% over $26,050 and 3.5% over $92,150. Ohioans making $26,050 or less pay no income taxes.

Taxpayers will also enjoy an extended sales tax holiday that will run for two weeks.

The Senate’s budget provides significant tax relief to businesses by implementing considerable reforms to the Commercial Activity Tax. Businesses will pay no taxes on the first $3 million of gross receipts in tax year 2024, and will pay no taxes on the first $6 million of gross receipts in tax year 2025.

 Watch Senator McColley describe the importance of the historic tax cut


"First and foremost, this budget will increase prosperity and the quality of life in our state, but it also contains several other groundbreaking and extremely beneficial provisions," said McColley.

The senator cited the inclusion of Senate Bill 117 he cosponsored with Senator Jerry Cirino (R-Kirtland), establishing the Salmon P. Chase Center for Civics, Culture, and Society as an independent unit within the Ohio State University. It also creates the Institute of American Constitutional Thought and Leaderships as an academic unit within the University of Toledo.  

“These two new centers will focus on the United States Constitution and the legal profession to make sure law students are prepared for their legal careers," said McColley. "Students, especially law students, should feel free to have thoughtful and open debate on our founding documents and their historic role in our country.”

The senator also praised the inclusion of Senate Bill 83, especially its education reforms aimed at restoring and protecting free speech and intellectual diversity on campus at Ohio's public institutions of higher learning. 

And, McColley noted the importance of a change in this budget clarifying the language regarding the Residential Broadband Expansion Grant. He said that will help ensure the program benefits those Ohio households in most need of access to essential broadband services, especially high-speed internet. 
Historic Funding Increase for K-12 Education
The Senate’s budget plan includes historic funding and policy improvements to K-12 funding that is focused on accountability and options for parents.

The Senate school funding plan maintains the updated 2022 salary and spending criteria used for determining the base cost, and then adds an additional $1.3 billion to school funding. Total foundation funding for students in public schools under the Senate plan is a record $9.3 billion in FY24 & almost $9.6 billion FY25.


 Watch Senator McColley describe the benefits of record funding for public schools and increased access to vouchers 

 Parents’ Education Choices Matter
Flexibility and options are key for today’s families and students. Parents should have an option.
The Senate’s budget makes Ed Choice Scholarships universally available to every Ohio student based on a sliding scale of income eligibility. 
Families earning 450% of the federal poverty level ($135,000 for a family of four) will qualify for a full scholarship award: $6,165 for K-8 students and $8,407 for high school students. Scholarships for students in families with incomes above 450% will be means-tested with scholarship amounts adjusted based on their income. Every student in Ohio will be eligible for a scholarship worth at least 10% of the maximum scholarship regardless of income.
“Parents know that where their children attend school makes a difference,” said Senate President Matt Huffman (R-Lima). “Children should never dread going to class, and parents should always have confidence that their children are walking into a positive, results-focused learning environment.” 
Department of Education Accountability
The Senate’s budget plan includes historic reforms to the Department of Education and to the duties of the State School Board. The plan restructures the Department of Education into the Department of Education and Workforce, which will fall under the authority of the Executive Branch of government.  This structural change provides significant and much needed accountability over the department regarding education policy development and implementation that will greatly improve its operations.
Additional Funding for Critical Programs and Accountability Improvements

  • Provides an additional $25M to support pediatric behavioral health workforce development and infrastructure bringing the total allocation in the bill to $50M (ARPA).
  • Provides an additional $10M each FY for the Continuum of Care Services line for ADAMH boards in the Department of Mental Health (Restoring to As-Introduced levels). Also increases the Criminal Justice Services line in Mental Health by $9M in FY24 for one-time expenses.
  • Preserves a $1.0 Billion One-Time Strategic Community Investments Fund to be set aside during this budget and used in FY25 once all Ohioans, local officials, community leaders, State Representatives, State Senators, and others have time to advance requests to benefit their communities and all of Ohio.
  • Clarifies that websites hosting video content are subject to the parental consent requirements in the bill.
  • Modifies Ohio College Opportunity Grant award amounts contained in the sub bill to provide additional increases in FY24 and further increases the EFC in both FYs to $3,750.
  • Provides $1.25M (GRF) each FY for the Appalachian Children Coalition. Funding will be used for training, hiring, and retention of entry-level child mental and behavioral health workers in school and health provider settings.
  • Appropriates $300K (GRF) per FY for the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center.
  • Prohibits state employees from working remotely more than eight hours a week other than as an accommodation under the ADA or other Civil Rights laws.
  • Increases the category amounts and raises the statutory cap for the Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship in FY25, adding $9M (GRF) for this purpose.
  • Provides $1M over the biennium to expand eligibility for the Program for Medically Disabled Children (renamed the Program for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs in the bill) by extending the age limit by one year each year in 2023 and 2024.
  • Provides $2.3M (TANF) funds in FY24 only for the Open Doors Academy to support out-of-school programs.
  • Requires school districts and community schools to provide academic intervention services to students who score “limited” on state assessments in math, science, or English.

The budget now moves to the Ohio House, and must be balanced and signed into law by June 30th.