Governor Strickland likes to make the claim that his record as Governor proves he is capable of handling the upcoming budget black hole approaching next year.
If so, Ohioans better pray he doesn’t get elected. Why? Well, tons of reasons, to be honest. But the latest is simply because he can’t even be straightforward with Ohioans about the massive use of one-time stimulus dollars included in his most recent budget.
- The state budget office acknowledges its $4.89 billion figure is outdated but says it’s not misleading to the public.
- A more updated figure isn’t available anywhere on OBMs website. And, there certainly are political considerations for having the number appear as low as possible.
- And Strickland budget officials question whether the $647 million raid on the state’s tobacco fund should be added to the total at all because the Ohio Supreme Count hasn’t yet ruled on whether that money can be put to use.
Whether you count the $647 million in tobacco money tied up in court or not, it’s clear that the $4.89 billion one-time money figure is off by at least $1 billion. The fact that reporters are apprised immediately by Wurst that the figure is incomplete shows that the administration realizes that it isn’t an accurate representation of how much one-time money is used in the state budget.
That suggests to us that the Strickland administration knows that continuing to use the $4.89 billion one-time money figure on its website could mislead the public.