This week, Governor DeWine signed House Bill 33, the final version of Ohio's operating budget, into law.
Despite the disappointing outcome of the budget, the progress we made would not have been possible without YOUR voice. Thanks to YOUR efforts, the final budget included:
A restoration of $47 million in Senate cuts to the investments proposed by the Governor and Ohio House of Representatives, ending state budget deliberations with $154 million in new investment.
$30 million for child care.
$124 million for preschool.
This preschool investment is a strong commitment led by the Governor and bolstered by the House that will benefit more than 11,525 children.
A line-item veto from Governor DeWine that improves the state operating budget by striking a provision that would have exempted more licensed child care programs from meeting Step Up to Quality rating requirements.
A line-item veto from Governor DeWine that improves the state operating budget by striking a provision that would have limited Medicaid coverage of doula services to only five years.
Unfortunately, this budget falls short in several ways. This budget includes:
A prohibition on requiring licensed childcare administrators or employees to hold a bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree.
A prohibition on Step Up To Quality from looking at whether administrators and teachers at a given facility have college diplomas when determining a rating for that program.
A failure to dramatically expand publicly funded child care eligibility to 160% FPL.
The budget is complete, but the work continues. And Groundwork Ohio is up for the challenge. We know that change takes time. That every action matters. And that there is strength in numbers. We will continue to work tirelessly in service to Ohio’s children today and our state’s future strength.
Investing in children and child care is critical to ensuring that Ohio is the best place to work, live, and start a business. THANK YOU for using YOUR voice to tell policymakers that Ohio children must come first.
To see our line-item veto request letter, along with records of all the powerful testimonies given by passionate advocates, professionals, and families over the last few months, visit our voices page.