The Kasich team is pleased with its budgeting feats, turning a huge deficit into a substantial state surplus — all while reducing taxes. Writing in the Lima News last week, Joe Testa, the state tax commissioner, attributed the result to “streamlining state government and reforming costly programs in the governor’s first budget.”
What then explains “general government” (itemized in the Ohio Legislative Service Commission budget in brief) increasing 26 percent, from $1.5 billion to $1.9 billion, during the two Kasich budgets? The governor did slash public schools in his first spending plan. Is that what the commissioner means by “costly programs”?