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Ohio Awarded Top Honor for Economic Development

March 6, 2020

Site Selection magazine has awarded its annual Governor’s Cup to Ohio and Gov. Mike DeWine for attracting the largest number of economic development projects per capita in 2019. Last year, the Buckeye State recorded 448 major projects — second overall only to Texas (859). To qualify, projects needed to meet one or more of the following: a minimum investment of $1 million; creation of 20 or more new jobs; or 20,000 square feet or more of new space.

When comparing U.S. communities that did well in attracting new business and investments, Site Selection ranked Cincinnati and Columbus in its top 10 of Tier 1 metros (populations over 1 million). Dayton was No. 1 among Tier 2 metros (populations between 200,000 and 1 million), while Toledo was No. 8. Lima was sixth among Tier 3 metros. In the comparison of small cities (under 50,000), Ohio led all states with 14 cities. Manufacturing-heavy Findlay was No. 1 out of 551 communities, while Tiffin and Zanesville also cracked the top 10. 3/2/2020

JobsOhio: $1.2B in Added Payroll During 2019

March 6, 2020

JobsOhio has released its 2019 Annual Report and 2020 Strategic Plan. New payroll stemming from JobsOhio projects was $1.2 billion in 2019 — down slightly from $1.3 billion in 2018 — as 306 projects led to $7 billion of capital investment, down from $9.6 billion. In the category of “advanced manufacturing,” JobsOhio projects yielded 3,163 new jobs and $657 million in capital investment.

As the last decade ended, Ohio claimed the second-highest advanced manufacturing location quotient in the region — more than two times the U.S. industry concentration, the report says. 3/2/2020

New Version of Term Limits (With a Reset Button) Could Make November Ballot

March 6, 2020

The Ohio Ballot Board voted 4-1 this week to OK the so-called “Lifetime General Assembly Term Limits Amendment” — a proposed constitutional amendment that would establish a 16-year lifetime cap on service in the state legislature, starting Jan. 1, 2021. If approved by voters, the amendment would prevent lawmakers from jumping from House to Senate (and vice versa) to avoid term limits. But current lawmakers who aren’t term-limited this cycle would get a fresh start with 16 additional years. Here’s a summary from OMA general counsel Bricker & Eckler.

To get the proposal on the November ballot, supporters will need to gather nearly 443,000 valid signatures from at least 44 of Ohio’s 88 counties. 3/3/2020

U.S. Manufacturing Growth Slowed in February

March 6, 2020

According to the Institute for Supply Management’s latest index of industry activity, U.S. manufacturing expanded in February, despite concerns over the coronavirus. OMA Connections Partner RSM says it does not expect the PMI index to rise in the near-term, and is recommending to its clients to consider alternative supply chains and evaluate their business models while continuing to invest in their people and technology. 3/3/2020

2020 Impact Ohio to Host Post-Primary Election Event

March 6, 2020

Since 1984, Impact Ohio has offered informative conferences to provide expert analysis of Ohio’s elections and policy choices that could affect the business community. This month, the organization will host its post-primary election conference on Monday, March 23, from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Columbus. For details or to register, click here. 3/4/2020

Governor Creates BroadbandOhio to Support Expansion of High-Speed Internet

March 6, 2020

This week, Gov. Mike DeWine announced the creation of BroadbandOhio, an office dedicated to improving access to high-speed internet across the state. BroadbandOhio will be housed within the Development Services Agency and will serve as a resource for local governments and private industry. 3/5/2020

OMA Takes Part in Ohio’s Initial Prescription Drug Task Force Meeting

February 28, 2020

This week in Columbus, the Ohio Prescription Drug Transparency and Affordability Advisory Council held its initial meeting. Created last year during the state’s budget negotiations, the 13-member panel includes the OMA, represented by Ryan Augsburger, OMA vice president and managing director of public policy services.

The council is charged with making recommendations to the governor and state lawmakers on ways to provide greater price transparency, while also ensuring that potentially life-saving medications are affordable and accessible. Recommendations are due by the end of June. 2/26/2020

Six Steps Manufacturers Can Take to Prepare for the Effects of a Possible ‘Coronavirus Downturn’

February 28, 2020

In an IndustryWeek article, Nada Sanders, Ph.D. — an expert in forecasting, analytics, global supply chain intelligence and sustainability — offers six steps that businesses, large and small, can take to develop an immediate response to threats posed by the coronavirus outbreak and to prepare for a possible larger-scale disruption. 2/27/2020

Sen. Matt Huffman to Headline OMA’s March 4 Government Affairs Committee

February 28, 2020

Senate Majority Floor Leader Matt Huffman (R-Lima) will keynote the OMA Government Affairs Committee on Wednesday, March 4, in Columbus. Sen. Huffman has been at the heart of the controversial school vouchers debate and will respond to members’ questions. Also invited to address the committee is political operative Jeff Longstreth, who will share his insights into this year’s Ohio House races.

It’s not too late for members to register to attend either in person or via phone. The meeting will held from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., and includes lunch. 2/27/2020

Distracted Driving Legislation Offered With Bipartisan Support

February 28, 2020

Bipartisan legislation was recently introduced to revise Ohio’s motor vehicle laws in an effort to reduce traffic accidents caused by drivers distracted by smartphones and other electronic devices. Sponsored by Sens. Stephanie Kunze (R-Hilliard) and Sean O’Brien (D-Bazetta), Senate Bill 285 — the “Hands-Free Ohio” plan — would significantly increase penalties for distracted drivers. Gov. Mike DeWine announced his support of the bill at a press conference earlier this month.

The bill will be discussed at next week’s OMA Government Affairs Committee meeting. 2/27/2020