COLUMBUS - With the stroke of a pen, Gov. Ted Strickland yesterday erased an income tax cut that has been showing up in Ohioans' paychecks all year.
The bill delays for two years the final installment of a five-year tax cut, patching an $851 million hole in the state K-12 education budget created when the Ohio Supreme Court at least temporarily derailed the state's plan to install and tax slot machines at racetracks.
"This bill balances the education budget and protects our schools from devastating cuts," Mr. Strickland said. "It advances construction reform at University System of Ohio institutions, and it affirms that education is the foundation of our plan to strengthen our economy and create opportunity for all Ohioans."
With the rollback in rates to the same levels paid in 2008, most taxpayers are expected to see smaller refunds next spring than expected as the state retroactively recoups what was not withheld from paychecks throughout 2009.
The bill was passed largely on the backs of Democrats, but five Republicans put up just enough votes to put the measure over the top in the GOP-controlled Senate.
For a family of four with an income of $60,000 a year, what would have been an $85 cut will be reduced to about $7. That $7 would be from an increase in the personal exemption that was not canceled by this bill.