State rep eyes the Ohio auditor seat

By David Skolnick


State Rep. John Carney, a Democrat, is looking at a potential run next year for Ohio auditor, but he hasn’t made a decision.

Carney, of Columbus, D-22nd, came to Youngs-town on Monday to, among other things, talk to a Vindicator reporter and meet with Bruce Zoldan, president and chief executive officer of B.J. Alan Co./ Phantom Fireworks, and William Weimer, the company’s vice president and general counsel. Zoldan is a prominent local political-campaign contributor and has hosted fundraisers for candidates.

As his meeting with Carney wrapped up, Zoldan said Carney would make a “great state auditor.”

“Certainly, I appreciate Bruce’s encouragement, but I’m not making any announcement on a statewide run,” said Carney, who added he doesn’t have a specific time in mind for an announcement.

Auditor Dave Yost, a Republican, says he’s running for re-election next year.

Carney, in his third term in the Ohio House, said he’s been traveling around the state meeting with people to talk about his concerns with Gov. John Kasich’s budget proposal.

The Republican governor’s proposal includes significant changes to the state’s tax system. Kasich wants to cut the sales tax from 5.5 percent to 5 percent while applying it to a broad range of additional items. The governor also wants to reduce the income tax by 20 percent over three years.

Carney disagrees with broadening the sales tax, and said Kasich’s “policy is flawed.”

In recent months, Carney has been vocal on behalf of the party against Kasich’s plan to use the Ohio Turnpike to leverage money for road and bridge projects and the governor’s education plan.

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