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Questions Remain As Ohio Prepares To Reopen

Two protestors hold signs in front of the Ohio Statehouse criticizing DeWine and Acton.
David Holm
Two protestors hold signs in front of the Ohio Statehouse criticizing DeWine and Acton.

In this week's episode of Snollygoster, Ohio's politics podcast from WOSU, hosts Mike Thompson and Steve Brown discuss the case for reopening the state as Gov. DeWine targets May 1 for a gradual comeback.

Listen to Snollygoster on the WOSU Public Media mobile app, on Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. And make sure to leave a rating and review!

In this week's episode:
Getting Back To Business  

With nearly 1 million Ohioans claiming unemployment, Gov. Mike DeWine is hoping the reopening of Ohio's economy can begin. Details of his plan are still scarse, but the May 1 target date is in place.

We know some medical procedures will begin again at hospitals, but all other non-essential businesses are waiting to hear when they can expect to reopen.

It seems certain Ohio will not meet a key federal guideline for reopening, that states must have a two-week trend of declining case numbers. Becasue testing is still limited, we don’t really know if the number of actual cases is growing or declining.

And Department of Health director Amy Acton says we won't have adequate testing before May 1.

A Taxing Situation

If people are not getting a paycheck, they can't pay state or city income taxes. If they are not shopping, they are not paying sales taxes. That means government budgets are taking a huge hit. 

Not even Ohio's ample "Rainy Day Fund" will be able cover the decline in revenue. Both the state and cities are looking at up to 25% budget cuts.

Godwin's Law

Republican State Sen. Andrew Brenner of Delaware faced criticism this week for comments he and his wife made on Facebook, which compared statements made by Dr. Amy Acton to Nazi Germany.

Mugwump Of The Week

This one goes out to all those good dogs out there.

The Franklin County Animal Shelter reports a 90% increase in inquiries about pet adoptions during the pandemic. We don’t have statewide numbers, but we can rest assured that people being ordered to stay away from other humans are adopting more dogs.

Send questions and comments to snollygoster@wosu.org.

Steve Brown grew up in nearby Richwood, Ohio and now lives there with his wife and sons. He started his journalism career as a weekend board operator at WOSU while majoring in journalism at Ohio State, where he also wrote for the student newspaper The Lantern and co-founded the organization Students for Public Broadcasting.
Mike Thompson spends much of his time correcting people who mispronounce the name of his hometown – Worcester, Massachusetts. Mike studied broadcast journalism at Syracuse University when he was not running in circles – as a distance runner on the SU track team.
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