Gov. John Kasich previewed a 2012 agenda Monday focused on education and workforce-development reforms and energy policy, while reflecting on his first budget and other developments in the past year. Reverting to his favored patient-in-the-ditch metaphor, Kasich said 2011 was about treating "acute" problems -- structural imbalance in the budget, job losses -- and that 2012 will be about addressing "chronic" problems, like a disconnect between Ohio's education systems and its workforce needs. He touted the number of job-retention and -creation announcements in the past year, downplayed the effects of the SB5 fight, reflected on his well-publicized "Get on the bus ..." remark and gave only a vague argument about the need for unity when asked about his feud with Ohio GOP Chairman Kevin DeWine.
Gov. John Kasich signed 13 bills this week, including two dealing with dyslexia (HB96 and HB157); HB79 (Bubp-Uecker), which prohibits qualified health plans from providing coverage for certain abortions; HB225 (Peterson-Landis), which includes a provision providing for the merger of three departments of job and family services in Ross, Hocking and Vinton counties; and HB364 (Roegner-Duffey), to establish standards for the securitization of costs for electric distribution utilities.