Lawmakers will kick off the second leg of the 130th General Assembly with a focus on a high profile resolution that seeks a 10-year extension and expansion of the State Capital Improvement Program.
They are also set to return attention to proposals on health care, the state’s Medicaid system and the oil and gas severance tax.
Upon returning to Columbus next week, the Senate Finance Committee will begin deliberations on the priority infrastructure improvement measure (SJR6), which Governor John Kasich and legislative leaders touted during a December Ohio Chamber of Commerce event.
The committee will hold hearings on both Tuesday and Wednesday, featuring sponsor testimony from Office of Budget and Management Director Tim Keen and Ohio Public Works Commission Director Michael Miller, as well as input from local government officials.
Senate Finance Chairman Sen. Scott Oelslager’s (R-N. Canton) office said the resolution will likely be starred for a committee vote around Jan. 14.
Senate President Keith Faber (R-Celina), who helped unveil the proposal, previously said the resolution would extend SCIP, which is up for renewal soon, for another decade, It would also increase the annual funding level to $175 million for the first five years and $200 million thereafter.
OBM has estimated that the total debt service load for the proposal to issue $1.875 billion in 20-year bonds would cost $3.01 billion. The estimate includes more than $1.13 billion in interest payments.
If approved by the General Assembly, the proposal, sponsored by Sen. Kevin Bacon (R-Minerva Park) and Sen. Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville), would go before voters in May 2014.