County leaders to discuss state/county partnershp in state budget

Staff report

SIDNEY — County commissioners from Shelby will be meeting on March 10 at Casa Lu Al in Lima with area members of the Ohio General Assembly to discuss the state/county partnership and its ability to deliver services to the citizens of Ohio during a period of increasing responsibilities and limited resources.

“It is essential that state and county governments work together closely and cooperatively for the good of their mutual constituents, the people of Ohio,” said Commissioner Robert Guillozet in announcing the upcoming regional meeting.

Critical to the partnership, said the release, is the need to ensure the fiscal stability that is currently at risk because of the impending loss of the Medicaid Managed Care Organization sales tax received by the counties. This lost revenue must be fully and permanently replaced. In addition, commissioners will express their concerns about the impact of the opiate epidemic upon the counties and continue to urge their legislators to support the state/county partnership on the issues of indigent defense reimbursement and purchase of new voting machines.

Commissioner Anthony Bornhorst said, “Counties are the primary agents of the state in administering justice and prosecuting criminals; providing health and human services to needy citizens; managing the property tax system; improving infrastructure to foster economic development; and, providing a myriad of other important governmental services to improve the quality of life for all Ohioans.”

“It is vital that the partnership between the state and county government be reaffirmed and strengthened,” stated Commissioner Julie Ehemann. “Ohio’s county governments will be seeking a commitment from the administration and the General Assembly to county government fiscal security as one of the centerpieces of Ohio’s SFY 2017/2018 biennial budget.”

The County Commissioners Association of Ohio advances effective county government for Ohio through legislative advocacy, education and training, technical assistance and research, quality enterprise service programs, and greater citizen awareness and understanding of county government.

Staff report