The Rundown

Joe Burrow, poverty, Ohio’s economy, the NEXUS pipeline and plastic bag bans

By: - December 17, 2019 9:26 am

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Catching our eye:

The Ohio Capital Journal is proud of Heisman winner Joe Burrow for highlighting issues of poverty and hunger in Southeast Ohio. Our reporters and editor spent years covering those issues as reporters in Southeast Ohio. I wrote a column about it, and Reporter Tyler Buchanan has the story.

Slow growth. The New York Times’ Ben Casselman and Karl Russel are reporting that while the “American economy has found its footing after a summer recession scare… much of the Midwest is still stumbling.

Data from the story shows Ohio has had the seventh slowest job growth in the country during President Trump’s tenure.

“The states are struggling in part because they depend heavily on manufacturing and agriculture, two sectors that have been hit especially hard by Mr. Trump’s trade war. Tariffs have driven up prices for imported parts and materials, and pushed down demand for American goods abroad.”

Pipe dreams. The Sandusky Register’s Tom Jackson is reporting that for years, as NEXUS campaigned to be allowed to build a 36-inch, 256-mile pipeline from Kensington in southeast Ohio through to Michigan, the company “circulated estimates of how much money local schools and governments would receive once it began operations.”

Now, Jackson reports, NEXUS has “filed an appeal seeking to cut the amount of tax dollars it is giving to local schools and governments when payments begin next year… (M)ost of the school systems and government agencies that are supposed to get money could see cuts of about 10 percent if the appeal succeeds, said Rick Jeffrey, Erie County’s auditor.”

Ohio needs a ban-aid. The Columbus Dispatch editorial board is weighing in on the Ohio General Assembly’s move toward banning plastic bag bans:

“Officials want to cut down on litter, discourage wasteful single-use plastic and spare their recycling machinery from the entangling clutches of the bags. Sponsors of Senate Bill 222 and House Bill 242, however, are listening only to grocers and other merchants who don’t want to deal with different rules in different locations.

“That concern is valid, but so is the real benefit of moving toward a more sustainable economy and cleaner neighborhoods — not to mention respecting the home-rule power that the Ohio Constitution purportedly grants local governments.”

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David DeWitt
David DeWitt

OCJ Editor-in-Chief and Columnist David DeWitt has been covering government, politics, and policy in Ohio since 2007, including education, health care, crime and courts, poverty, state and local government, business, labor, energy, environment, and social issues. He has worked for the National Journal, The New York Observer, The Athens NEWS, and He holds a bachelor’s degree from Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism and is a board member of the E.W. Scripps Society of Alumni and Friends. He can be found on Twitter @DC_DeWitt