OCHLA Executive Director defends budget before Senate Finance Committee
Columbus, May 5, 2011: Lilleana Cavanaugh, Ohio Latino Affairs Executive Director, testified before the Senate Finance Committee. The Committee, chaired by Senator Chris Widener, will make budget recommendations to the Ohio Senate for a floor vote in the coming weeks.
Director Cavanaugh's testimony reinforced the value of OCHLA's role in connecting government to the fast-growing Latino constituency in Ohio and the shared goal of creating jobs & encouraging entrepreneurship. In addressing the Senators, Executive Director Cavanaugh noted:
“The 2010 Census shows our population increased 63.4% to a total of 354,000. Our expanding demographic is comprised of more than 11,000 Latino Veterans and active duty military personnel. Ohio has 9,725 Hispanic-owned businesses that create an estimated $1.9 billion in receipts. The total annual earnings of Hispanic Ohioans amount to approximately $5.2 billion. Put simply, your strategic investment of less than one dollar per person helps to return millions in needed revenue and billions in economic activity for our state.”
The full testimony is available at: http://ochla.ohio.gov
Ohio releases a budget every two years (called a biennial budget) and it runs from July 1st until June 30th of odd-numbered years. Governor John Kasich maintained the Ohio Latino Affairs Commission in the initial version of the biennial budget for fiscal years 2012/2013. While the Commission faces a 6.8% budget reduction, it will be able to continue its mandate to advise, connect, and build the Latino community at the proposed funding level. The Ohio House of Representatives would cut OCHLA's budget by another 8.63% and 6.41% in fiscal years 2012 and 2013, respectively. OCHLA's budget must now survive the Senate and Legislative Conference Committee's budget deliberations process.