Ohio Clean Ohio Fund Act, Issue 2 (2008)

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The Ohio Environmental Bonds Amendment, also known as Issue 2, was on the November 4, 2008 ballot in Ohio as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment, where it was approved.[1] This amendment authorizes the issuance of $400 million in bonds for environmental revitalization and conservation.

Election results

Ohio Issue 2 (2008)
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 3,418,883 69.07%
No1,530,84330.93%

Election results via the Ohio Secretary of State.[2]

Text of measure

See also: Ohio Constitution, Article VIII, Section 2q

The language appeared on the ballot as:[3]

PROPOSED CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT

TO AUTHORIZE THE STATE TO ISSUE BONDS TO CONTINUE THE CLEAN OHIO PROGRAM FOR ENVIRONMENTAL REVITALIZATION AND CONSERVATION

(Proposed by Joint Resolution of the General Assembly of Ohio)

To adopt section 2q of Article VIII of the constitution of the state of Ohio.

This proposed amendment would:

  1. Authorize the state to issue up to two hundred million dollars ($200,000,000) of bonds for conservation and preservation of natural areas, open spaces and farmlands and other lands devoted to agriculture, including by acquiring land or interests in land; provision of state and local park and recreation facilities, and other actions that permit and enhance the availability, public use and enjoyment of natural areas in the state; and land, forest, water and other natural resource management projects.
  2. Authorize the state to issue bonds up to two hundred million dollars ($200,000,000) for environmental revitalization and re-development of publicly and privately owned lands, including environmental remediation, assessment or clean up of contamination or pollution.
  3. Limit the amount that could be borrowed in any one fiscal year for either conservation or revitalization purposes to no more than fifty million dollars ($50,000,000) plus the principal amount of those obligations that in any prior fiscal year could have been but were not issued.

If adopted, this amendment shall take effect immediately.

A “YES” vote means approval of the amendment.
A “NO” vote means disapproval of the amendment.

A majority YES vote is required for the amendment to be adopted. Shall the proposed amendment be approved? [4]

Support

The measure had a bipartisan base of support. Gov. Ted Strickland, Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher, House Speaker Jon Husted and Senate President Bill Harris were co-chairmen of the Clean Ohio Campaign which supported the passage of Issue 2.[5]

Arguments in favor

The following reasons were given in support of Issue 2 by a committee appointed by the Ohio Ballot Board:[3]

Voting Yes for Issue 2 to continue Clean Ohio protects clean water, creates jobs, conserves natural habitat, preserves family farms and DOES NOT

RAISE TAXES.

Voting YES for Issue 2 continues the Clean Ohio Fund – a highly successful conservation, preservation and revitalization effort critical to Ohio’s new job stimulus package. ISSUE 2 WILL NOT RAISE TAXES.

Voting YES for Issue 2 continues the good work Clean Ohio is doing. For example, Clean Ohio has helped Cincinnati clean up eight abandoned, polluted industrial sites….an effort that will create nearly 14,000 jobs and produce an economic impact of over $1 billion when completed.

...and this is just one example. Clean Ohio has made a difference in nearly every county in Ohio. Clean Ohio is creating tens-of-thousands of permanent jobs and generating millions in new revenues for communities across Ohio.

Voting YES for Issue 2 will…

  • Keep our drinking water clean & safe
  • Clean up and redevelop polluted abandoned industrial sites
  • Protect our lakes, rivers and streams
  • Conserve wildlife habitat
  • Preserve working family farms
  • Expand outdoor recreational opportunities
  • Create new jobs and economic development
  • Ensure that our children and grandchildren can enjoy Ohio’s land, water, and natural habitats – now and for generations to come.

YES for Issue 2 has received broad bi-partisan support. Governor Strickland, Senators Voinovich and Brown, Senate President Harris, House Speaker Husted and elected officials and organizations across Ohio all urge a YES Vote on Issue 2.

Across the state, Clean Ohio is protecting our drinking water, wildlife habitat, creating jobs and improving the quality of life for all Ohioans... WITHOUT RAISING TAXES.

Keep this critical program. Continue clean Ohio.

On Tuesday, November 4th VOTE YES for ISSUE 2.

For more information visit www.CleanOhio.org[4]

The official ballot argument in support of Issue 2 was signed by Ohio State Representative Barbara Sears and State Senators Mark Wagoner and Sue Morano.

Opposition

Arguments against

The following reasons were given in opposition of Issue 2 by the Ohio Ballot Board due to the absence of any voluntary opposing submission:[3]

Issue #2 would authorize the government to spend more in bond money.

The economy is in bad condition. When times are hard, this is when we must tighten our belts and spend only what is necessary and only what we can cover with incoming revenues. Issue #2 authorizes the government to take out more debts to pay for environmental revitalization and conservation. While this may be worthwhile, the State of Ohio should not be going into further debt.

Passing Issue #2 means taxpayers will have to pay back these bonds.

Issue #2 authorizes $400 million dollars in debt to be used for conservation purposes. You and your children will have to pay this money back. This money could be retained by taxpayers for their own purposes or used for other plans and directly helping people in need.

Vote no on Issue #2[4]

The official ballot argument in opposition of Issue 2 was not signed by anyone.

Polls

Month of Poll Polling company In Favor Opposed Undecided
September 2008 Columbus Dispatch 56% 22% 22%[6]

See also

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References