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Government & Politics

Ohio Lawmakers To Gain Access to More of the Budgeting Process

photo of Republican Representative Christina Hagan
Republican Representative Christina Hagan is one of two lawmakers frustrated with surprise deficits and inaccurate economic forecasts.

After a fiscal year that showed budget estimates were off for 11 months, a pair of Republican lawmakers wants to change up the budget-making process. They want to create a panel to look at the state’s economic forecast on a more consistent basis. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, this could ultimately shift power from the governor’s office.

Republican Rep. Christina Hagan wants to create a financial outlook council that can alert lawmakers of important economic indicators, both good and bad.

Right now, it’s the governor’s office that reports to the Legislature every two years. Hagan says the there’s too much politics involved with the current process, noting how lawmakers had to scramble to fill a $900 million budget gap that they didn’t know existed until earlier this year.

“My guess is that there were certain individuals who knew that we had a significant shortfall far before the entire General Assembly had a heads up," Hagan says.

Council members would be appointed by the state House, Senate and governor’s office. However, there are no spots carved out to represent whichever party is in the minority.