Ohio Senate Dems offer slew of budget changes


COLUMBUS (AP) — Democrats in the Ohio Senate suggested today that budget writers take millions of dollars from a proposed income-tax cut for higher wage earners and direct it to schools instead, as work intensified on state’s spending plan.

The idea is among roughly 200 amendments that Democratic senators are offering to Ohio’s $61.5 billion, two-year budget. The Senate’s version of the plan is expected to be released next week. The budget must be completed by June 30.

The House-passed version of the budget contains a 7 percent permanent income-tax cut, though Senate Democrats want to see changes to the $1.5 billion income-tax reduction over two years.

State Sen. Nina Turner of Cleveland offered the education amendment. She said it would eliminate the income-tax cut for Ohioans making more than $106,150, while keeping the reduction for those in lower-income brackets. That would free up $508 million for schools to use in the classroom and for transportation.

The proposal is designed to steer the money to schools that need it the most, Turner said.

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