Ohio Third Frontier bond issue headed for May ballot

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February 4, 2010

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COLUMBUS, Ohio: This week the House and the Senate compromised and voted to approve the proposed Ohio Third Frontier Bond Renewal for the May 4, 2010 ballot. The deadline to file proposed measures for the May 4th ballot was February 3rd and lawmakers filed the legislation just in time. The measure proposes to authorize the state to approve an estimated $700 million bond over four years on the Ohio Third Frontier program - "a program that promotes growth in the technology industry."[1] The Senate passed the revised plan 30-2 and the House 83-14.[2]

Previous proposals included a $950 million bond for five years and a $500 million bond for four years. The original proposal, sponsored by Reps. Jay Goyal and Sandra Williams, called for a $1 billion bond for five years.[3]

The "Third Frontier" program was started in 2002 under former Gov. Bob Taft and was designed to extend until 2012, however, according to officials, in light of low state revenue the program is scheduled to end early. According to the Ohio Department of Development, the program has created approximately 500 companies and 8,000 jobs since 2002.[4]

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