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JobsOhio is not delivering for Ohio

DEAR EDITOR:

Former Gov. John Kasich pushed the Republican-led legislature in 2011 to create JobsOhio, which created a nonprofit corporation that takes the liquor tax revenue before it goes in the state treasury to “empower world-class corporations, entrepreneurs and talented individuals to build their businesses and careers in Ohio.”

The economic development agency has spent more than $1 billion since 2015 and now is working to spin its results in order to look like it has actually made progress on Ohio’s economy.

JobsOhio insists on grading itself according to its chosen criteria. They say their evaluation should only be limited to the 10 sectors on which they choose to focus.

However, even the partial analysis the agency shared last week shows that Ohio either lost or didn’t gain market share in four of the 10 sectors between 2010 and 2020 when compared to West Virginia, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois and Pennsylvania. Between 2010 and 2019, Ohio lost market share in half of the sectors, a table shared by JobsOhio shows.

Maybe instead of producing jobs, they are producing paychecks for themselves. Last year, the agency employed 106 people with the average pay and benefits package of $180,000 per year.

Or maybe they were all working on the massive Intel chip factory to boost Gov. Mike DeWine’s stock holdings in the company.

Nevertheless, JobsOhio clearly hasn’t delivered on the economic development promises that were made more than a decade ago.

TOM SHAY

Leavittsburg

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