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Gov. Kasich To Release State Budget

Office of Governor John Kasich

Today’s the day Gov. John Kasich unveils his third budget, which is expected to include $500 million in tax cuts plus benefits to lower-income Ohioans. But he has yet to talk about how he’ll pay for those.

Kasich wants to cut taxes on many small businesses and increase some tax benefits for lower-income Ohioans. And he’ll likely pay for those plans with a proposal to hike the tax on oil and natural gas drillers. But Kasich also suggested in December that he’ll take another swing at an increase in the tobacco tax.

“Why should taxes on tobacco not be higher to pay for reductions in the income tax?  I’ll tell you why – lobbyists – that’s why,” he said.

But tax cuts in previous budgets have been scaled back because of the legislature’s skittishness in raising other taxes. Republican leaders in the legislature have said they are concerned about tax shifting, and are demanding spending cuts in his budget as well as tax cuts.