Dear Groundwork Team,
As you know, the Director of the Ohio Department of Budget and Management, Tim Keen, advised earlier this year that the legislature would have to adjust the executive budget proposal downward due to weaker than expected state revenue projections. The update we received today after May tax revenue numbers were analyzed, tells us that the state projections continue to lag estimates. This means it will be more challenging than ever for our legislative champions to both preserve current state programming and identify new funding. We have been thoughtful and sensitive to the state's current fiscal challenges throughout the budget process and, even with this new update, our priorities remain the same. Groundwork has first asked the Senate to restore the cuts made by the House to the early childhood education system totaling $7.5 million and then secure a new investment to begin correcting the accounting injustice affecting 38 counties and nearly 40,000 Ohio kids. Our strong network of advocates and early childhood stakeholders continue to be unified behind these priorities.
Just this afternoon, our Steering Committee Member, Katie Kelly, Executive Director of PRE4CLE, delivered testimony to the Ohio Senate Finance Committee supporting restoration of House cuts and a $22 million new investment to improve access to quality early childhood education programs for kids in over 1/3 of our state. Thank you for your continued support as we work to get the best outcome for kids during this budget cycle. I look forward to providing you with additional updates as they become available. Shannon Jones Executive Director