Republican Mike DeWine was in the Valley Wednesday campaigning for the governor’s seat. He stopped by the WKBN 27 First News studios to talk about the state’s economy, funding local governments and the Ohio law that allows the state to take over struggling school districts.
DeWine’s visit comes a day after Democrat challenger Rich Cordray told local energy experts Ohio needs to do more to pursue wind and solar power as well as conventional sources, DeWine said he’s focused on oil and natural gas.
“The petrochemical industry I think is going to really blossom in Eastern Ohio. This going to have a big impact on the Mahoning Valley,” DeWine said.
DeWine said he wants to continue building Ohio’s economy, saying it will mean more revenue to fund services as opposed to what he claims are Cordray’s plans to raise taxes.
“How do I know he is going to raise taxes? He has pretty much said he is going to raise taxes. He has made promises. He had made promises of $4 billion. We counted it up,” DeWine said.
Cordray said Tuesday the state needs to increase Ohio’s Local Government Fund to help communities. DeWine says he’s interested in doing that as well.
“How can we help you get the job done? We understand that they do not have enough money now. We have to help in that area,” DeWine said.
But DeWine wants to avoid tapping into the state’s multi-billion dollar Rainy Day Fund, saying those monies need to be set aside for future economic downturns not for one-time bailouts.
DeWine also addressed HB 70. The Ohio Supreme Court announced Wednesday it is going to hear an appeal by the Youngstown School Board over the legislation that allows for the state to take over a struggling school district and appoint a CEO, giving that person sole power in making decisions for the district.
“Something that happens prior to a total takeover pursuant to the way the law is written today,” DeWine said. “I think we have to somehow continue to involve the local community.”