Franklin County Commissioners Criticize State Budget Plan
Even before Thursday's announcement that state officials will trim the next two-year state budget by 800 million dollars, Ohio counties have been preparing for cuts related to the money they receive from the Medicaid Managed Care sales tax.
Last year, federal regulators ended a tax structure that allowed the state to collect sales tax on services provided by Medicaid Managed Care Organizations. The proposed state budget remedies the losses to Ohio, but not to its counties. Cuts to the state's 88 counties are expected to top 200 million dollars. Franklin County Commissioner John O'Grady says the county will lose 21 million per year from that and another 2 million in cuts to its indigent defense fund.
All 88 counties have signed a resolution urging the state to continue the funding, and O'Grady says lawmakers seem receptive. But that was before the governor and state legislative leaders proposed cutting the budget due to lagging tax revenue collections. The commission is controlled by Democrats, while state government is controlled by Republicans.