YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - For the first time since the great recession in 2008, Ohio will have money to use for capital projects.
State Senator Joe Schiavoni tells WFMJ News, there is a growing wish list of projects in the region. As the new year begins there could be significant state dollars available for capital improvement projects.
This marks the first time in six years Ohio will have a capital budget.
Schiavoni has already received a list of about 24 projects that people have submitted seeking funding in Mahoning and Columbiana counties. They include the Covelli Amphitheater, Tyler History Center, money for improvements at the Mahoning Courthouse, the Youngstown Incubator and more. Officials with the city of Struthers have requested several vehicles including a new fire truck.
"If you don't submit your capital improvement project there is no chance of any state funding," Schiavoni says. "If the project doesn't get approved, I will try to get help from the state through a different process."
Schiavoni emphasized Gov. John Kasich has not announced how much money will be set aside for this Capital Budget, but Schiavoni tells us he and elected leaders from our area will be fighting to get state dollars for projects that can improve the quality of life and create jobs.
The bill is expected to be in draft form by the end of February then must go through the Ohio House and Senate and the governor for final approval.