News Home
Quick Bites
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
On AirNewsClassical
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Hennes Paynter Communications

Knight Foundation

Greater Akron Chamber

For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )

Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Government and Politics

Kasich says he's backing away from business tax credits
Ohio also checking on businesses with existing credits

Karen Kasler

Almost exactly a year ago, a major retailer announced that it was rejecting Ohio’s offer to come to the Buckeye State. Now the governor suggests that Ohio is backing off on using tax credits to lure in companies. But Ohio Public Radio’s Karen Kasler reports not everyone is sure of that.

Kasler on Kasich's turn on tax credits

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:57)

Listen to a shorter version

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (1:00)

Last December, Ohio was in the midst of a competitive campaign to bring Sears Holdings to Ohio from Illinois. The state had offered an package to lure in Sears that was reported to be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. But while Gov. John Kasich said he would love to have the retailer in Ohio, there would be no bidding war to secure it. 

“A bidding war implies there’s no ceiling. No, there are ceilings as to what we can do.” 

A year later, it seems that ceiling is being lowered.  In 2011, Kasich gave out more in tax credits to businesses than any other governor, making $132 million in job creation tax credits and nearly $242 million in job retention tax credits. These incentives were offered to companies such as Bob Evans, American Greetings and Diebold. In 2012, the state only offered $27 million in job retention tax credits, while approving $70.5 million in job creation credits. Kasich says the state is paying a lot of attention to the return on its investment. 

“Almost all of these packages are ROI positive in year one, and secondly, if you take a look at the incentives, our incentives for jobs created has shrunk, because I treat that dollar just like I treat the money in my back right hand pocket.”

And Kasich offers this caution to corporate leaders considering Ohio…. 

“Giving away the store and getting into bidding wars – I tell all CEOs now, if that’s what you think we’re going to do, you’re wrong, because we are not going to get into bidding wars with other states.”

Meanwhile, the state is also checking into what’s happened with incentives it has offered. The Ohio Tax Credit Authority voted earlier this month to take what it calls “remedial action” against 16 companies which it says failed to deliver on promised jobs. Those actions range from reductions in the rate or term of the credits to a demand for payment, or clawback. This year, the Tax Credit Authority has ordered remedial action against 59 tax credit projects and has referred eight grants and loans totaling almost $7.5 million to the attorney general for what’s called “clawback”. Daryl Hennessy is with the Ohio Tax Credit Authority. 

“It’s sort of consistent with the notion that the companies have made a commitment to us, and we just want to make sure that they’re accountable and responsible for those commitments that they’ve made.”

This practice isn’t unique to the Kasich administration – others have done clawbacks too. And they’re important, says Zach Schiller with the progressive-leaning think tank Policy Matters Ohio. But he says what’s more important is the reasons that tax credits are awarded in the first place. 

“This should be a negotiation and this is not a matter of us throwing the goodies at anybody who shows up. We should make a critical evaluation of whether incentives are needed and we should walk away when they aren’t. And this administration has done that at least on occasion.”

And Schiller notes that the state offered $78 million in incentives to Marathon, though company officials acknowledged it was unlikely to move. And he says the state proposed what he calls “gigantic” incentives to Shell to get a chemical plant known as a cracker. That facility ended up going to Pennsylvania, and that if the company had accepted, that would throw off the state’s totals. 

“With these kinds of questions still out there, it’s way too soon to be concluding that there’s been a sea change in the way the administration operates. That said, the numbers are, do suggest that there may have been a change, and if there has been, great.”

Schiller says tax credits should be used less and with strict criteria, and he proposes that criteria include jobs with certain wage requirements and what he calls “desirable” economic development.

Add Your Comment


E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook

Stories with Recent Comments

Backers of legalizing marijuana in Ohio promise to be back in 2016
We should be aloud to grow more than 4 plants and not have to register with the state considering it will be a free market.

Akron says it's had no second thoughts about welcoming refugees
What business does Councilman Neal own on North Hill? I'd love to support him. I am so glad to have the refugees in our neighborhood. I have lived here for 25 ...

Scarborough says the University of Akron is trying to rebuild relationships
In order for the University of Akron to grow and become a desirable place for students across Ohio and elsewhere, it must address the crime problem in the Akron...

Ohio Sen. Cliff Hite wants to end pay-to-play sports fees at Ohio's schools
You can bet Hite and Husted will also rush to the rescue of the Academic Challenge team, the speech-and-debate squad, the Science Olympians and the chess club. ...

Ohio lawmakers consider new gun bills
States that have gun restrictions/cities have reduced gun violence is false. CHICAGO has some of the toughest gun laaws/restrictions but yet fun violence is off...

Cleveland's public transit system considers fare increase for 2016
I work with individuals with disabilities. Yes some of my folks need more help than the average person. As a whole, the group I work with however can manuver ju...

Community group sues to re-open part of Wadsworth hospital
My father was part of the founding group of citizens which started the "new" Wadsworth/Rittman Hospital. For some reason the leadership for the future of the ho...

The Cleveland Museum of Art presents painters who loved their gardens
brilliant masterpiece, Greetings from

Ohio Sen. Tom Patton proposes bill for firefighter cancer benefits
Thank you Senator Patton. On behalf of all of those who love our firefighters; we appreciate that someone is standing up for them and their continued health. ??...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University