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Investing in Ohio Means Investing in Our Future


March 15, 2019

Fellow Ohioans and Members of the General Assembly:

As I shared in my State of the State address, the Bible tells us that there is a time and a place for everything. Now is the time for us to invest in Ohio.

We must invest in our children to help our youngest Ohioans get the best start in life.

We must invest in efforts to fight mental health and substance use disorders so our fellow Ohioans can lead fulfilling, healthy lives.

We must invest in Ohio’s workers and in innovation and technology that spurs job creation so our families can prosper.

And, we must invest in preserving and protecting Lake Erie and all of Ohio’s waterways, so that all Ohioans have access to clean water and our outdoor spaces are preserved for generations to come.

The operating budget I have proposed for Fiscal Years 2020-2021 reflects these priorities. And, as you will see, I am asking that we make investments where the returns will not all be immediate. For example, we won’t see right away the productive adults that Ohio’s children become because of our investment in their health and wellbeing today, nor will we immediately know the lives that are saved through our efforts to prevent addiction. In many cases, we won’t see results from some of our budget investments during the term of this administration or even in our lifetimes --yet, we still must act.

As we introduce this budget, the state is in strong fiscal condition, finishing Fiscal Year 2019 with a surplus, maintaining a significant balance in the Budget Stabilization Fund, and continuing to operate with a budget which is structurally balanced. This strong fiscal position enables us to pay as we got to address important issues facing the citizens of Ohio with this budget that supports our vision for Ohio.

I quoted the words of Robert Louis Stevenson in my State of the State address. He said, “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but [rather] by the seeds that you plant.” The FY 2020-2021 budget we have proposed today plants the seeds of hope and possibility that will lead to opportunity for future generations of Ohioans, for our investments today will help our fellow Ohioans live lives of self-sufficiency tomorrow.

Very respectfully yours,


Ohio Governor Mike DeWine