Government tax revenues in some parts of the US are rebounding

SEPTEMBER 22, 2020 | CRAIN’S CLEVELAND BUSINESS

Government tax revenues in some parts of the U.S. are rebounding as the economy emerges from the coronavirus lockdown, a positive sign for governors and mayors who had been bracing for the biggest fiscal crisis in decades.

Thirty-nine states ill-prepared for coronavirus pandemic

SEPTEMBER 22, 2020

The 2020 Financial State of the States report surveys the fiscal health of the 50 states prior to the coronavirus pandemic. This data is released today by Truth in Accounting (TIA), a think tank that analyzes government financial reporting.

City of Cincinnati avoids borrowing to balance its budget this year

SEPTEMBER 16, 2020 | CINCINNATI BUSINESS COURIER | by Chris Wetterich

The city of Cincinnati will not have to borrow money to make its fiscal year 2021 budget, which began on July 1, come into balance.

Hedge fund managers can’t lose with public pensions

SEPTEMBER 2, 2020 | FREMONT NEWS MESSENGER (OHIO) | by John Damschroder

If I don’t do this no one else in Ohio media will.

When utility money talks

AUGUST 3, 2020 | THE NEW YORK TIMES | by Justin Gillis

The billion-dollar bailout of one of Ohio’s biggest utilities seemed suspicious from the start. It turns out the F.B.I. was paying attention, too.

Unholy alliance of power, money fueled corruption scheme

JULY 30, 2020 | DETROIT LEGAL NEWS | by Mark Gillispie

An accused co-conspirator called it an “unholy alliance” — dealings between a longtime Ohio politician seeking to restore his power and an energy company in desperate need of a billion-dollar bailout to rescue two nuclear plants in the state.

Balancing the debt with pandemic spending

JULY 27, 2020 | SPECTRUM NEWS 1 (OHIO) | by Taylor Popielarz

As Congress negotiates another coronavirus relief package, the federal deficit and debt are rising at record pace.

Ohio educators call for federal bailout

JULY 22, 2020 | WYSO 91.3FM RADIO (OHIO)

On Monday afternoon, Ohio teachers and union leaders called on the U.S. Senate to pass a COVID relief bill immediately.

Ohio House Speaker arrested in case related to nuclear power plant bailout law

JULY 22, 2020 | WKSU 89.7FM RADIO (OHIO) | by Karen Kasler

House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) has been arrested in connection to a $60 million public corruption racketeering conspiracy case. Federal agents were at his farm in Perry County Tuesday morning.

Cities across the state face budget deadlines and deficits

JUNE 23, 2020 | WRVO PUBLIC MEDIA (NEW YORK) | by Karen Dewitt

Many of New York’s cities begin their new fiscal year July 1, and they are struggling to balance their budgets after the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Recent protests in some cities are straining budgets even further.

Ohio made more than $1 million in duplicate payments, analysis finds

JUNE 18, 2020 | THE CENTER SQUARE: OHIO | by Todd Defeo

An initiative designed to identify duplicate payments the state made and recoup taxpayer dollars has identified more than $1 million in redundant payments made during the past 16 months.

State general revenue shortfall projections

JUNE 1, 2020 | by Bill Bergman, Sheila Weinberg

How large could the shortfall in state government general revenues be, amidst the coronavirus and related crises? 

We’re from the government and we’re here to build a bike path

FEBRUARY 25, 2020 | THE WALL STREET JOURNAL | by Steven Malanga

A handful of farmers in Ohio’s Mahoning County are getting an unpleasant lesson in government power at the hands of a local park district. Mill Creek MetroParks, a public agency governed by five unelected commissioners, wants to take over an abandoned railroad line running through about a dozen local farms for a recreational bike path. 

Ohio lawmakers pushing pension oversight bills

JANUARY 28, 2020 | CLEVELAND.COM | by Andrew Tobias

Some Ohio lawmakers are pushing for increased oversight of the state’s public pension systems, amid recent moves by some of the systems to cut benefits for hundreds of thousands of current and future retirees.

Unfortunately, bad government will be rewarded

JANUARY 22, 2020 | FREMONT NEWS MESSENGER (OHIO) | by John Damschroder

OPERS joins the rest of Ohio’s public employee pensions in making benefit cuts, 

Debate rages over who should pick banks, lawyers for Ohio’s public pension funds

NOVEMBER 18, 2019 | DAYTON DAILY NEWS (OHIO) | by Laura Bischoff

Outside auditors are recommending that the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System should pick the custodial banks to oversee billions of pension dollars – not the state treasurer – and system should hire the fund’s lawyers – not the state attorney general.

Ohio’s public pension funds turn to outside lobbyists for clout

NOVEMBER 4, 2019 | DAYTON DAILY NEWS (OHIO) | by Laura Bischoff

Ohio’s four largest public pension systems, which control $200 billion on behalf of 1.9 million workers and retirees, are paying more than $407,000 a year for outside lobbyists to make their cases with state lawmakers and federal officials, public records show.

It really is that hard to balance the budget

APRIL 17, 2019 | SENTINEL-TRIBUNE (OHIO) | by Gary Lee

Is federal deficit spending a problem? You bet. But it isn’t our biggest problem yet.

OPERS pension plans are secure

FEBRUARY 5, 2019 | THE NEWS RECORD (UNIVERSITY OF CINCINNATI STUDENT NEWSPAPER)

“I would like to clear up several misstatements in the recent News Record article about University of Cincinnati employee pensions. … The crux of the article — the university’s net pension liabilities — is a figure that the Governmental Accounting Standards Board requires the university to report in their financial statements. However, the university’s only responsibility is to remit the statutorily required contribution rates, and this liability is reflected for accounting purposes only. …”

Ohio police & fire pension targets real assets in 2018

JANUARY 10, 2019 | CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER | by Elijah Owens

“The Ohio Police & Fire Pension Fund (OPFP) is making a concerted effort to build out its real assets portfolio, after the board approved a pacing plan to invest $290 million in the asset class throughout the 2019 calendar year. … Private infrastructure has been trending amongst institutional investors lately, since the characteristics of a long-term investment with stable, sometimes predictable cash flows fit the long-term and risk-adverse [sic] nature of public pension plans.” (Note: Looks like the 2009-2010 bailouts “worked.” Look out below.)

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