News and Analysis
MAGNET — an OMA Connections Partner and northeast Ohio’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership — is conducting its annual survey of Ohio manufacturers. OMA members are encouraged to take the survey by clicking here. The deadline to complete the survey is July 31. 6/14/2023
Ohio’s U.S. Sen. J.D. Vance (R) has introduced bipartisan federal legislation to increase the number of “shovel-ready” manufacturing sites nationwide. According to reports, the bill would establish a $500 million grant program for communities to equip potential manufacturing sites with road access, water infrastructure, broadband, power hookups, and workforce training. 6/13/2023
New federal data show that goods exported from China to the U.S. have dropped to their lowest level in nearly 20 years, falling to 13.3% of total U.S. imports during the first four months of 2023. That’s down sharply from 21.6% in 2017. 6/12/2023
Manufacturers should consider these five factors if moving from China or other offshore location, advises Rosemary Coates with the non-partisan Reshoring Institute. In a column appearing in Business Facilities magazine, Coates writes that the Tax Reform Act of 2017 “has leveled the playing field for American manufacturers in terms of taxes.” 6/14/2023
This week, the Ohio Senate Finance Committee unveiled its substitute version of the state’s two-year operating budget (House Bill 33).
For manufacturers, the Senate’s $85.7 billion spending plan is a mixed bag. There are helpful provisions, such as tax relief, economic development funding, and K-12 education reform. But there are provisions that counter manufacturers’ policy goals — such as workforce funding that falls short of the governor’s recommendations, and utility-related provisions that would increase customer costs and weaken consumer protections. (See related stories.)
The Senate plan provides $1 billion for the DeWine-Husted administration’s All Ohio Future Fund, which would ensure more shovel-ready industrial sites. It also authorizes a $1 billion one-time Strategic Community Investments Fund, while nixing the House’s $1 billion earmark for rural highway projects.
Once the full Senate passes its version of the budget — expected to occur in mid-June — House and Senate leaders, along with the governor, will have until June 30 to sign off on a final plan. The state’s new fiscal year begins July 1. 6/7/2023
Gov. Mike DeWine’s chief of staff, Stephanie McCloud, and state Rep. Scott Oelslager (R-North Canton) — a key member of the House leadership team — addressed policy priorities during the OMA Government Affairs Committee meeting held June 7. The meeting was sponsored by OMA Connections Partner MAGNET.
In addition to updates on new legislation, much of the meeting focused on provisions in the Senate’s budget plan. Members were also briefed on State Issue 1, hearing arguments for and against the proposal to change the standard by which Ohio’s constitution can be amended. A special election has been set for Aug. 8, when voters will decide the issue. 6/7/2023
Late last year, the OMA helped stop two high-profile bills — one mandating union hiring and another establishing state requirements in construction contracts. Now both proposals, which would make Ohio less competitive, have been reintroduced in the current General Assembly.
House Bill 205 would infringe on employer rights by forcing defined manufacturers across Ohio to hire union workers, creating a precedent that could impact other industries. House Bill 203 would set payment terms in construction contracts, requiring contracts to be paid within 30 days with the threat of an 18% penalty.
Stay tuned for more information regarding these measures. 6/8/2023
Gov. Mike DeWine and the Ohio Department of Transportation recently announced ODOT is dedicating nearly $28 million to repair, replace, or demolish 24 aging bridges in Ohio. See the map. For updates on all ODOT projects, see this page and the agency’s press releases. 6/5/2023
Earlier this year, the OMA formally opposed Senate Bill 73, which would mandate the so-called “right to repair.” Manufacturers have warned that such legislation would expose trade secrets and threaten intellectual property.
Now Minnesota policymakers have passed the nation’s broadest right-to-repair law, according to reports, following in the footsteps of Massachusetts, Colorado, and New York. 6/6/2023
Secretary of State Frank LaRose has published this voting schedule for the special election. Early in-person absentee voting begins July 11. 6/1/2023