As you visited your polling place yesterday, you most likely faced some sort of issue or levy on the ballot. Without the presence of statewide or national officials on the ballot, odd-numbered years tend to allow voters to focus more on local races and issue elections that have a more direct impact on individual communities.
Yesterday, voters faced 1,055 local tax questions, with 138 of those being school issues. Talk to any good liberal, and they’ll tell you that number is a direct result of Governor John Kasich’s evil cuts to local government and K-12 education.
First, Governor Kasich and Republicans in the legislature have increased state funding to K-12 education. That tired rhetoric doesn’t mesh well with reality.
And second, that number is on par with average number of tax levies on the ballot over the last decade. In the last ten years, Ohioans have seen an average of 1,035 tax levies each year, with an average of 153 of those being school issues.
Both Governor Kasich and former-Governor Ted Strickland saw two years where the number of levies exceeded that ten-year average, and never by more than 2.5% (2010, under Strickland). But school levies exceeded the average every year, save 2009, under Strickland, and only one year under Kasich—and then only by a whopping 2 additional levies (in 2012).
So, as you look at this year’s ballot results, let’s dispel the myth that levy requests have somehow gone up under Governor Kasich.
But you know what will cause them to go up in the near future? Obamacare.
Under President Obama’s signature healthcare legislation—the same one that is causing a healthcare train wreck, job losses and benefit reductions nationwide, and all 100% supported by Ohio Democrats—the “Cadillac tax” is going to hit local schools and municipalities hard.
A provision of the Affordable Care Act that doesn’t go into effect until 2018 will likely affect contract negotiations for school districts and employees starting next year.
The “Cadillac tax” charges an excise fee on high-dollar health insurance plans whose annual costs exceed $10,200 for individuals and $27,500 for families. That could add $100,000 to more than half a million dollars to some local districts’ expenses in the first year of the tax alone.
Over a five-year period, Marietta City Schools would have to pay nearly $5 million in excise tax on just one of its three insurance plans, based on current rates and projected increases, Treasurer Matt Reed said.
That isn’t just an issue facing Marietta. Backed by big labor unions, school and municipal employees have enjoyed lush benefits—paid for by you and I, the Ohio taxpayers—for years. We wrote on this in great detail during the Senate Bill 5 debate, with most government employees not even paying 10% of their healthcare costs, as the average family spends thousands upon thousands every year.
In other words, Ohio taxpayers pay not only for their own healthcare, but also for the vast majority of the cost for government workers’ “cadillac” healthcare. The latter costs are going to go up drastically when Obamacare kicks in. And it’s going to hit almost every district in the state:
Schwendeman Agency Inc. in Marietta represents 29 school districts in eastern and southeast Ohio, and company President Mark Schwendeman said most will feel the impact sooner rather than later.
“Every district we have at some point hits the Cadillac tax. I would say 80 percent hit it in the first year,” he said.
If Obama’s “Cadillac tax” is going to hit every district—and most of them in the first year—represented by one insurance agency, it’s safe to say it’s going to hit almost every district in Ohio. And when the district can’t find the funds, guess what they’re going to do?
Yep—go to the ballot and ask for more money. More local levies, courtesy of our Dictator-in-Chief, President Barack Obama, and his disastrous healthcare law.
The same law supported, no questions asked, by Ohio Democrats. And if you don’t do the same, well, you’re a no-good f*$%@r.
Something to remember when you head to the ballot box next year.