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Beavercreek, Ohio, United States

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Reflecting on our Independence

As a young child, I always looked forward to the 4th of July. Not only was it another day to enjoy my summer vacation from school, but it was a day filled with family and friends, great food, and fireworks. In my young mind, it was a day just for me. The 4th of July is my birthday. It didn’t take long for me to understand that it’s also our nation’s birthday and to recognize the significance that the Revolution has had on all of our lives.

What began as a resolution declaring our independence from Great Britain eventually led to an all-out war, in which many Americans gave their lives in the name of freedom. They were defending a people who wanted justice and a government instituted to secure their unalienable rights endowed upon them by God, including, but not limited to Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

Today, our nation continues to send our young men and women to uphold the same rights and freedoms fought so hard for back then. As the chair of the Ohio House Veterans Affairs Committee, I’m continually searching for ways that we can make a life a bit easier and more enjoyable for our service members. Why? Because just as it was in the days of the Revolution, our country continues to be a place of opportunity and hope for the world; and we must honor and respect those who defend it.

I’m definitely enjoyed spending the 4th of July with my family and friends. But while I enjoyed my time with them, the food we had, and many of the same activities we all partake in this time of year, I certainly took time to reflect upon the freedoms gained through our independence, the sacrifices of our military members, their families, and all that the United States represents to the world. It is my hope that, this Independence Day, you joined me in such reverence for our nation’s illustrious past and promising future.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Ohio Must Act Responsibly

With the poor economic conditions we are facing, there is a lot of talk about wanting to ensure the next generation has the same opportunities that we have had. In fact, I believe we all want to leave our children with an even better future. It’s human nature to want them to have more than we did.
Some of the life lessons we teach our kids as they grow older are that you have to work to be successful, you have to save up your money and you have to be responsible in the ways that you spend it. I’m working on this right now with my own kids; my seven year old thinks he’s saving to buy himself a cell phone! The question is: why can’t our government follow that advice?

With a budget that is $8 billion in the hole, we must do everything we can to reinvent the way our state government does business. That’s why I’m supporting legislation that will get us back on the right track, including a bill that will ensure our state spends its money as efficiently as possible.

House Bill 2 reduces wasteful government spending as well as ensures our state agencies are delivering services through the most efficient structure. It requires Ohio’s state auditor to conduct a performance audit of select state agencies every two years, which will make our government more productive and responsive. As the state’s fiscal watchdog, Ohio Auditor Dave Yost is in support of this legislation and is eager to see it move forward.

We must make sure that our government operates as cost-effectively as possible and is not bogged down by layers of waste or inefficiency. House Bill 2 will offer both short-term and long-term solutions, which will save tax dollars for our families and businesses down the road.

Another way Ohioans can keep more of their hard-earned money is to ensure that they are not taxed simply because they chose to die within our borders—an egregious policy known as the estate tax. House Bill 3 aims to abolish this “death tax” because when Ohioans are taxed for working, investing and spending in this state, I see no reason why we ought to tax them for dying here, too.

Most states do not have a “death” tax, which means Ohio is put at a disadvantage and causes people to flock to other states as a means of saving their money. The tax is a hit to the middle class—farmers and small business owners like those of the 70th House District—who must face this penalty if their assets obtain a value of just $338,333 (the lowest exemption of any state).

I believe people should keep their own money. I believe children should not be punished for what they inherit from their hard-working parents. And I believe that we need to find ways of ensuring Ohioans stay here to do business and raise their families, rather than contribute to the economies of other states.

The passage of House Bill 3 is an important part of strengthening Ohio. I expect to be working hard on this and other legislation that arise in the Ohio House of Representatives. As your voice in Columbus, I will certainly keep you informed and ensure that our state is not only taking initiative on the economy, but is doing so in the most responsible way.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


As we enter the final months of the 128th General Assembly, I hope that the Ohio House will take action to make state government work in the best interest of Ohio’s citizens. With 10.5 percent of Ohioans unemployed, it is clear that current laws and tax rates restrict the growth of small businesses and propel them to relocate to other states, taking thousands of jobs with them. This trend has become a status quo in Ohio, with many lawmakers still wondering why we can’t hold on to jobs and economic opportunity. However, if we don’t significantly change the way Ohio does business, can we really be surprised when we continue to hemorrhage jobs?

When my colleagues and I reconvene in the fall, I will continue to urge the passage of legislation that makes government more efficient and decreases the cost to taxpayers. My fellow Republican representatives and I have introduced numerous cost-saving proposals to address the issue of out-of-control spending and government bloat.

House Bill 25, for example, would consolidate state agencies and fix the business climate through a leaner, more responsive government. Currently, Ohio has 24 cabinet level departments and more than 300 boards and commissions, many of which operate inefficiently and needlessly drain state funding. HB 25 would reorganize the cabinet level departments into 11 core missions, eliminating excess payroll, overlapping services and bureaucratic red tape. It is projected that the consolidation would save Ohio taxpayers $1 billion annually.

With Ohio facing a projected $8 billion budget deficit, cost-saving initiatives such as HB 25 would minimize the tax burden on Ohio’s citizens and ensure that vital areas of the budget are funded. Being among the highest taxed people in the nation, Ohioans have less discretionary income to put into local businesses, which directly affects the state’s ability to create jobs. The current biennial budget needlessly increases spending and the need to tax Ohioans at a time when accountable spending and job creation should be the priority.

When my colleagues and I reconvene in November, I would also like to see the consideration of HB 302, legislation I introduced in October 2009. HB 302 is another cost-saving measure that can help put Ohio on the road to economic recovery. When enacted, HB 302 will prohibit using American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) 2009 funds on signs that indicate a project was funded with ARRA dollars. These signs, which you may have seen on local construction projects, cost $1,300 apiece. For these signs, Ohio has forfeited $1 million in stimulus funding that could have been directed toward job creation.

Both of these proposals are examples of the action we can take to reduce wasteful spending and get Ohioans back to work. As your neighbor and a father, I think there is nothing more important than getting Ohio’s economy back on track so there will be more employment opportunities for our citizens and children. If we continue to run our finances into the ground, our economy will continue to falter. My fellow state legislators and I should use the sessions in the fall to protect our economic future.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Ohio's Economy Continues to Struggle

As you are well aware, Ohio’s economy has continued to struggle while other states have seen a slight economic rebound. Unlike many of our neighbors, our economy cannot grow because our tax rate is so high. If we were able to lower taxes, small businesses would have more income to hire new employees and businesses across the state would expand because Ohioans would be spending more. However, House Democrats raised taxes in 2009 and passed a budget last July that will cost the taxpayers for years to come.

The biennial budget, which passed in 2009, increased spending by $1 billion in 2010 and $950 million more in 2011. Tax revenue alone cannot fund this budget nor repair the state’s deficit. The Office of Budget and Management projected that the state’s tax revenue will grow by $974 million in the next two years, but will not reach the $5 billion necessary to replace the losses from this budget’s out of control spending.

To otherwise fund this spending, the governor proposed 150 new fees that will take nearly $1 billion from the wallets of the taxpayers. Additionally, the budget usurps $8.5 billion from one-time sources that could have been more wisely spent. On top of these sources, the state received $900 million more from the taxpayers after Ohio’s Democrats passed House Bill 318, which repealed the final installment of the income tax reductions and raised your 2009 income tax rate by 4.2 percent.

With the government reform initiatives my Republican colleagues and I proposed, the state would have saved more than $1 billion annually. Our proposals include legislation to streamline the bloated executive branch and to weed out wasteful Medicaid spending. We found areas where we can painlessly eliminate excess spending; however, the House Democrats decided to cut spending from the areas that need funding the most, including education and elderly health care programs. Their shortsighted moves will jeopardize important programs and will not pay off in the long run.

Raising my three children in Beavercreek, I frequently think about their future here in Ohio and whether there will be enough incentives for them to stay when they are considering colleges and careers. I fear that our state will not grow jobs and hold as many economic opportunities for them if we continue to overspend and burden our taxpayers. All parents hope that their children will have as many opportunities—if not more—than they had, and I would like to do my part to make this a reality for all of our children in the Buckeye State.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Martin Joins State Lawmakers To Oppose Cap and Trade Trickery From Washington

COLUMBUS — Ohio State Representative Jarrod Martin (R-Beavercreek) today was joined by his fellow caucus members in signing and delivering letters to U.S. Senators George V. Voinovich and Sherrod Brown, regarding deep concern of the cap and trade and other impairing regulations.

“I fully support efforts to make the United States more energy independent and to protect the environment. However, it is doubtful these proposals would have any impact and would punish Ohio consumers with increased energy costs,” Martin said. “Our economy continues to struggle. We will not be helping anyone by putting into place policies that would drive more businesses out of Ohio and increase energy costs for every consumer."

In the letters, House Republicans outlined growing concerns of the economic consequences of legislative or administrative efforts to implement cap and trade policies or to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases as pollutants. Moreover, concerns in the letter also expressed that Ohio is so reliant on these energy producers that these increased costs are really another tax in disguise that will impact all Ohioans. The implementation of these policies would be extremely damaging to Ohio’s long-term success and budget sustainability.

House Republicans hope to encourage Senators Voinovich and Brown to oppose cap and trade and other proposed greenhouse gas regulations and assert that as the state budget continues to face ongoing revenue shortfalls, establishing new taxes on traditional energy sources as a way to subsidize will lead to a steeper economic downfall.

Cap and Trade Letter to Senators Voinovich and Brown

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Fee Increases Are Not A Budget Solution

Ohio’s economic crisis has presented lawmakers with the unique opportunity to examine state spending, rein in costs and create a more efficient, effective government structure. However, many of Ohio’s leaders chose to maintain the tax-and-spend status quo by placing a heavier financial burden on the people of our state.

Instead of creating a sustainable state budget, Governor Strickland and House Democrats raised taxes and created more than 150 new fines, fees and penalties to support Ohio’s ever-growing government spending. Specifically, these fees will affect each and every Ohioan because they will be imposed on everything from court costs and birth certificates to real estate licenses and hospice applications.

One way the Democrats are nickel-and-diming their way to a balanced budget is through a $20 late fee for renewing your vehicle registration and driver’s license. Since October, 400,000 individuals have been forced to pay this late fee, which has fattened the budget by more than $6 million to benefit the tax and spend party that is in control.

In times of economic hardship, state government should shrink its spending to fit its means, not grab at constituents’ pocketbooks to feed its growth. For this reason, I cosponsored legislation to repeal this $20 BMV late fee on motor vehicle registrations, driver’s licenses and motorcycle endorsements. House Bill 428, introduced by Representatives Ron Amstutz and Terry Boose, has bipartisan support in the House and will help keep Ohio’s government accountable to the public.

It is my belief that the government should serve the people, not the other way around. The day we start squeezing petty dollars out of hardworking families is the day we should finally commit to cost-saving measures to rein in state spending. There is no excuse to justify robbing the taxpayers of money that could have been used to put food on the table or help pay their bills—especially when there are so many alternatives on the table.

Since the beginning of the General Assembly, House Republicans have proposed numerous bills that would streamline state spending, reduce Medicaid waste and audit state agencies. Most of all, these bills would hold Ohio’s elected officials accountable for their expenditures and ensure that each dollar spent has a dollar’s return. Together, our bills would increase government efficiency by saving the taxpayers more than $1 billion annually, which would not only put our state on track toward a balanced budget but also eliminate the temptation to raid the wallets of our constituents.

Ohio has a spending problem, not a revenue problem. It is long overdue that state leaders stop pilfering money from individuals who are just trying to make an honest living and provide for their families. As always, I will continue the fight for an accountable, efficient state government.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

2009-2010: Commitment, Fulfillment, and Moving Forward

As we approach the 2010 campaign season, I would like to take a moment to share with you some of the issues I have been working on over the last thirteen months as your State Representative.


You may recall during my campaign that I committed to working on legislation to:

· Encourage the growth of existing businesses and promote jobs

· Put an end to wasteful government spending

· Improve our schools

· Limit the role of government in our daily lives

· Defend our rights, proud traditions and strong conservative values, including the rights of the unborn and the rights of our law-abiding gun owners


Below is an abbreviated description of legislation that I have sponsored in an effort to uphold my commitments to you:

· HCR 11: To claim sovereignty over certain powers pursuant to the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America

· HCR 14: To request that the members of the United States Congress refrain from enacting the Fairness Doctrine into law.

· HCR 15: To memorialize the Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency to refrain from adopting any new regulations governing greenhouse gas emissions from livestock

· HB 203: To allow a concealed carry licensee who is not consuming liquor and is not under the influence to carry a concealed handgun in a retail food establishment or food service operation with any class liquor permit

· HB 302: To prohibit the wasteful spending of nearly $1 million of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 funds on signs

· HB 315: To introduce the Ohio Firearms Freedom Act that will allow for firearms made and sold within the State of Ohio to be exempt from federal firearm regulations and to challenge the abuse by Congress of the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution

· HB 320: A part of the "Future of Ohio" package to afford to private sector employers the option to offer and to employees the option to accrue and use compensatory time off.

Moving Forward

I am currently working on numerous other pieces of legislation that are in various stages of the drafting process. I would like to share two of those that are very exciting.

The first is an unfunded mandate reduction for our schools. We have been working with the Ohio School Boards Association, the Buckeye Association of School Administrators, Ohio Association of School Business Officials and others to craft this legislation. An effort such as this has not taken place since 1994 when nearly $75 million of unfunded mandates were removed.

The second initiative is a pro-growth, pro-business initiative to place wind mills on Lake Erie. I have been working with the Lake Erie Task Force and other officials from the area on this. If passed, we believe this initiative would sky rocket Ohio to the forefront of wind energy development surpassing the states of New York, Pennsylvania, and Illinois who are competing with Ohio to both develop wind energy on Lake Erie and become the industry leader in wind turbine manufacturing. Ultimately, it's about retaining manufacturing jobs in Ohio.

In Closing

I am now serving on five standing House Committees which are: Public Utilities, Alternative Energy, Economic Development, Education, and Elections & Ethics Committees.

I have also been placed in a leadership position as the Ranking Member of the Alternative Energy Committee. In addition to those standing committees I serve on the Ohio Aerospace and Defense Commission and the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunities for Military Children.

I will be attending the Greene County Central Committee meeting on Thursday and invite any comments or questions you may have regarding the legislation I have introduced or the initiatives that I am currently working on with my colleagues. Please also visit my website at: wwww.electjarrod.com for more information.

It is a pleasure to serve as your State Representative. I am honored and humbled by your continued support and I look forward to seeing you soon.