Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s may propose Tuesday to sell three to five state prisons to private entities, reports the Columbus Dispatch. Kasich’s first budget proposal will roil the landscape, the paper says, especially the public, nonprofit and private entities that count on the state’s largesse. There is a projected $8 billion hole in the next two-year state budget, and Kasich won’t fill it with tax increases.
He will cut, cut and then cut some more. Services will be consolidated and privatized. Some user fees probably will be raised. Mandates will be lifted. Far more than previous state budgets, Kasich’s will include significant policy changes with the usual taxing and spending decisions. In his State of the State speech last week, Kasich provided a partial roadmap for where cuts will be made. He warned government entities that used their one-time shares of the roughly $5.7 billion Ohio received in federal stimulus funds for operating costs to expect that money to be eliminated.