Editorial from The Plain Dealer
Republican Gov. John Kasich could make JobsOhio and his allied economic development efforts less vulnerable to attacks by partisan Democrats.
So could the legislature, by fixing the flaws and inconsistencies in JobsOhio’s governing law and making its operations more transparent to taxpayers and the state auditor.
But Kasich and GOP legislators haven’t. They evidently forget that how the state appears to do business is as important as the business itself.
The Dayton Daily News reported recently that six of nine JobsOhio directors “have direct financial ties to companies that have received tax credits and other assistance from [the state] or JobsOhio” since Kasich became governor.
A spokeswoman said the assistance was granted before JobsOhio began, and that JobsOhio doesn’t decide who gets what. Instead, it recommends tax breaks to the Ohio Tax Credit Authority, chaired by state Development Services Director David Goodman, a Columbus Republican appointed by Kasich.
JobsOhio has a conflict of interest policy. But that’s cold comfort given something the Daily News also noted: The JobsOhio law exempts JobsOhio “from state audits, public records law and some ethics laws.”