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Week in Review: Aug. 6, 2023

Written on Aug 4, 2023


Ohio's annual back-to-school sales tax holiday kicks off Friday, Aug. 4 but will be replaced next year and potentially in future years by a broader sales tax holiday created in the recent biennial budget. Under HB33, this back-to-school sales tax holiday will be replaced by an expanded sales tax holiday for items priced at $500 or less starting in 2024 in any year in which at least $60 million in surplus revenue is available after the Rainy Day Fund target is met. This use of surplus revenue replaces the Income Tax Reduction Fund, a disused mechanism for sending surplus revenue back to taxpayers via income tax cuts. However, the school-focused holiday will remain in law as a backup plan for when state finances won’t support the broader holiday.


For the third consecutive month, sports betting handle and revenues are down in Ohio. Gamblers placed $362.1 million in sports bets (handle) in June, down from $446.2 million in May, $520.6 million in April, $737.2 million in March, $639.1 million in February and $1.1 billion in January. The vast majority of sports bets in June were placed online, with $348.4 million wagered on websites and $13.7 million placed in brick-and-mortar sportsbooks. Total taxable sports gambling revenue was $37.2 million in June, down from $57.9 million in May, $63.3 million in April, $94.9 million in March, $81.1 million in February and $209.6 million in January.


Ohioans seeking jobs at Intel and associated supplier businesses will be able to undergo training through a modular curriculum announced Monday by community and technical college leaders along with Lt. Gov. Jon Husted and Intel Ohio General Manager Jim Evers. The program was developed within seven months and will meet training needs that range from a single course to a full associate's degree.


Ohio craft brewers would no longer have to comply with the Ohio Alcoholic Beverages Franchise Act of 1974 under legislation introduced by Sen. Andrew Brenner (R-Delaware). Under SB138 (Brenner), a "manufacturer" under the Alcohol Franchise Law would not include "any person producing less than 250,000 barrels of beer a year." The Brewers Freedom Alliance (BFA) is urging lawmakers to support the legislation, noting Ohio is home to more than 430 independently-owned craft breweries.

The Ohio Department of Development (DOD) announced Monday that eight film productions in six Ohio communities will be supported through a total of $36 million in motion picture tax credits. This program provides refundable credits of 30 percent on production cast and crew wages and other in-state spending for a range of eligible production types. The eight projects total more than $170 million in production expenses -- $129 million of which were eligible for the credit -- and are expected to create 370 full-time jobs. DOD received 30 applications for this latest round, which would have totaled over $77 million in tax credits. Applications are reviewed and awarded in two rounds each year, with $40 million available annually.


Gov. Mike DeWine announced 10 projects in transportation improvement districts (TID) around the state will receive $3.5 million to help cover project development and construction costs through 2026. The funds will go to 10 different counties - Lucas, Medina, Mahoning, Stark, Summit, Coshocton, Clermont, Hamilton, Belmont, and Columbiana counties -- with $1 million going to fund development of projects while the remaining $2.5 million will fund construction. The projects range from roadway extensions to turn-lanes. The funding provided for each project is limited to $500,000 per fiscal year. This round helps fund projects that will support 16 businesses, creating 809 jobs and retaining another 650.

This feature was provided by Hannah New Service and selected for you by OSCPA Government Relations Staff.

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