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Ohio Budget Pact Clears Legislature

A state budget compromise that calls for Ohioans to pay more in 2009 taxes than expected has cleared the state Legislature.

After eking through the Senate in a 17-15 vote, it cleared the Ohio House 54-42 with two Republican votes.

The bill is intended to fill an $851,000,000 gap in the state's two-year, $51,000,000,000 spending plan. Republicans who most vigorously opposed the plan behind the scenes delivered scathing floor speeches opposing the compromise and Gov. Ted Strickland's handling of the budget. Fellow Democrats defended Strickland as ushering a difficult budget through a historic economic crisis.

For the majority of Ohioans, the tax change means they will have to forgo tax savings of less than $150.