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Ohio Budget Allocates $100M for School Safety Grants, Tech

In the wake of a deadly mass shooting in Texas, Ohio lawmakers are proposing grants that would allow for school security improvements, along with $1.1 billion to Intel for a chip fabrication plant.

At the start of the new fiscal year on July 1, the Ohio legislature still hadn't agreed on a budget.
(TNS) — Ohio lawmakers unveiled a budget proposal Tuesday that would offer $100 million to schools for safety improvements after last week’s deadly mass shooting in Texas. The budget also includes nearly $1.1 billion to Intel for a chip fabrication plant and millions to nonprofits across the state, including in Northeast Ohio.

The Ohio General Assembly passes a capital budget every two years, usually a year after it passes the state’s operating budget. The capital budget pays for construction projects for state agencies and colleges and universities.

Other potential recipients of money include the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame which is seeking a $1 million earmark for its expansion project, the Cleveland Museum of Natural History and the Cleveland Museum of Art, which each requested $900,000 and the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo which asked for $1.7 million for a planned primate rainforest.

Since the 1990s, lawmakers have also given hundreds of millions to local governments and nonprofits for capital improvement projects.

Spending in this year’s capital budget could total $3.5 billion, with community projects comprising about $191 million of that total, said Sen. Matt Dolan, a Chagrin Falls Republican who chairs the Senate Finance Committee.

The money for the budget is expected to come from the General Revenue Fund, other state funds and federal funds — including $809 million from the American Rescue Recovery Act that Congress passed in 2021, Dolan said.

The capital budget bill is expected to pass both chambers of the General Assembly on Wednesday. On Tuesday, the House and Senate finance committees reviewed its details.


Lawmakers are expected to direct $1.09 billion to the Ohio Department of Development for Intel, according to Rep. Scott Oelslager, a North Canton Republican who chairs the Ohio House Finance Committee:

  • $95 million to build local roads for Intel traffic.
  • $600 million for an “onshoring incentive” Ohio is offering because Intel is creating jobs that would otherwise likely be given to people overseas.
  • $101 million for local water and wastewater upgrades.
  • $300 million for a water reclamation facility.

The state had announced these incentives in January as part of a larger $2 billion in incentive package Ohio will give Intel to build a $20 billion manufacturing plant in suburban Columbus.


The school safety grants will be a fraction of the amount that Intel is getting from the capital budget.

Legislators plan to direct the $100 million to the Ohio Department of Public Safety, which will award the grants. The money comes from the American Rescue Recovery Act, Dolan said.

In the last capital budget, which lawmakers passed in 2020, only $5 million was given to schools for safety, Dolan said.

The increase in funding comes after last week’s mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas where 19 students and two adults were killed, and $93 million in recent school safety funding requests from across the state, Dolan said.

Local boards of education can spend the money on “hardening our schools,” Dolan said, repeating language that mostly conservative politicians, including Ohio’s Gov. Mike DeWine, have used in the wake of the Texas shooting on how to best prevent future mass shootings in schools.

That could be anything from a school resource officer to technology to better secure buildings, he said.

The Uvalde, Texas, the gunman got into the school by walking through an unlocked door, but it took an hour for law enforcement to stop him despite desperate pleas from parents outside the school.

The Republican-dominant General Assembly has shown no appetite in gun safety laws. It has loosened gun access laws since the state’s most recent mass shooting in Dayton in 2019.


Among the nonprofits vying for state money, University Settlement is expected to receive $150,000, according to a draft of the bill. The nonprofit serves Broadway Slavic Village residents.

University Settlement is finishing construction on a four-story building that will house the nonprofit’s offices on the first floor and 88 affordable apartments to rent and townhouses to own. The building will also have 20,000 square feet of commercial space, including a grocery store, said Jim Trakas, a former state lawmaker guiding University Settlement through the budget process.

The area of North Broadway where the buildings will be located is considered blighted and has seen almost no investment since the 1950s, Trakas said.

The building is at 5115 Broadway Ave., where St. Alexis Hospital once stood. Most recently, it had been an empty lot.

Also part of University Settlement’s $20 million capital project is a second building that will be used with Cuyahoga County Community College as an educational center.

The nonprofit is fundraising most of the cost for the project.

The legislature is providing money to other projects in Northeast Ohio, including:

  • Downtown Cleveland lakefront access project: $5 million
  • Cleveland Metroparks Zoo primate rainforest: $1.7 million
  • Bellefaire Jewish Children’s Bureau Child and Youth Service Center: $1 million
  • Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s expansion: $1 million
  • Lorain Nord Center: $900,000
  • Cleveland Museum of Art Horace Kelley Art Foundation Lobby, phase II renovation: $900,000
  • Cleveland Museum of Natural History: $900,000
  • UH Perrico Health Center Rainbow Babies: $750,000
  • Greater Cleveland Foodbank: $750,000
  • Cleveland Christian Home: $700,000
  • Cuyahoga County Mental Health Jail Diversion facility: $700,000
  • Cleveland Clinic/ Akron General: $700,000
  • The Cleveland Institute of Art: $550,000
  • Cleveland Clinic Mercy Hospital Cancer Center: $500,000
  • MetroHealth Senior Health and Wellness Center: $450,000
  • Salvation Army of Greater Cleveland Harbor Light Complex: $350,000
  • Cleveland Center for Arts and Technology: $325,000
  • Medina Christian Academy’s capital expansion phase II: $300,000
  • Sisters of Charity Health System and Sisters of Charity Foundation of Cleveland: $250,000
  • Building renovations for the United Way of Greater Cleveland Building Renovations: $150,000
  • West Side Catholic Center, Housing Self-Sufficiency Program: $150,000

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