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United States : Ohio

Ohio is a state in the Midwestern United States. Ohio is the 34th largest, the 7th most populous, and the 10th most densely populated of the 50 United States. The state's capital and largest city is Columbus.

Region Added: Tue, 31 Mar 2015
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Ohio Latest News
People in the News: Jason Momoa, Gal Gadot, Chris Pratt, Johnny Depp, Nicole Kidman, James Wan, German astronaut Alexander Gerst

Stars superheroes to Comic-Con fans The post People in the News: Jason Momoa, Gal Gadot, Chris Pratt, Johnny Depp, Nicole Kidman, James Wan, German astronaut Alexander Gerst appeared first on Ohio.com.

Stars superheroes to Comic-Con fans

Warner Bros. brought out all the stops Saturday at Comic-Con with an army of stars, surprises and new footage from films like Aquaman, Shazam! and even Wonder Woman 1984, which is only 3½ weeks into production.

Jason Momoa, Gal Gadot, Chris Pratt, Johnny Depp and Nicole Kidman were just a few of the names to grace the stage at the comic book convention in San Diego.

Momoa, who stars as Aquaman, seemed to be as excited as those in the 6,500-seat audience, if not more so. The actor was downright giddy speaking about the film, which is over five years in the making.

“My heart is big and open,” he said. “I’m really, really happy.”

Director James Wan, best known for his Conjuring films, introduced some new footage in two trailers from the origin story, which hits theaters in December. “I wanted to create a superhero film that we’ve never quite seen before,” Wan said.

Astronaut joins gig from space

German astronaut Alexander Gerst “dropped in” on German electronic music pioneers Kraftwerk for a live performance from the International Space Station, shown on video posted Saturday by the European Space Agency.

Using a tablet computer with a virtual synthesizer, Gerst played a duet of Kraftwerk’s 1978 song Spacelab with the band Friday night in Stuttgart.

He’s not the first space musician. Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded a cover of David Bowie’s Space Oddity and played a duet with the Barenaked Ladies while 250 miles above Earth in 2013.

The post People in the News: Jason Momoa, Gal Gadot, Chris Pratt, Johnny Depp, Nicole Kidman, James Wan, German astronaut Alexander Gerst appeared first on Ohio.com.



Akron’s Bowery Development gets needed backing; brewery, restaurants may be part of downtown mix

The nearly $40 million Bowery Development, a key project aimed at revitalizing downtown Akron, appears back on track with work possibly starting before summer ends. The post Akron’s Bowery Development gets needed backing; brewery, restaurants may be part of downtown mix appeared first on...

The nearly $40 million Bowery Development, a key project aimed at revitalizing downtown Akron, appears back on track with work possibly starting before summer ends.

When all is complete some 15 to 18 months later, there could be a new downtown brewery, perhaps three restaurants and other retailers in the six long-vacant blighted buildings next to the Akron Civic Theatre — with apartments in the upper stories — the developer and financing partners say.

Another goal is to provide public access to and from South Main Street and Lock 4 and the canal at the rear of the buildings.

Complicated financing for the public-private venture should close soon, said James Hardy, chief of staff to Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan.

The project at West Bowery and South Main streets hit an unexpected setback when the state of Ohio earlier this year lost out in getting significant amounts of federal New Market Tax Credits; the Akron developers wanted to use $22 million in credits in the financing package, also called a capital stack.

The parties have succeeded in finding alternate sources of capital, Hardy and others said.

“We figured it out,” Hardy said.

The Bowery project is as important to Akron as was retaining Goodyear’s headquarters and Bridgestone’s technical center in recent years, said Chris Burnham, head of the Development Finance Authority, a principal partner in the Bowery Development.

“It’s the heart of our downtown,” Burnham said. “There’s a huge psychological boost here.”

Burnham and others expect the Bowery Development to foster further downtown redevelopment.

“It will prove the market,” Hardy said.

Hardy and Burnham said the financing is more complicated than the significantly larger Goodyear project that involved the sale and redevelopment of the tire maker’s former campus in East Akron. As part of that, Goodyear moved into its new, nearby $160 million headquarters in 2013 after construction started in 2011.

Burnham said there are at least 12 different sources of funding for the Bowery project. One financial backer from outside the area, who Burnham declined to name, could have put its money anywhere in the nation but chose Akron, he said.

“They stayed with us,” Burnham said. “It’s pretty neat.”

In upcoming weeks, the public entities will be presenting the last remaining pieces of financing to their respective boards for approvals, Hardy said.

Akron City Council will get a presentation Monday on part of the financing, a request to approve up to $2 million in bonds to pay for a public easement through the C.E. Link Building, also known as the Lock 4 Arcade Building, at 172 S. Main St.

Without that public access in the center of the development, people would have to walk a significant distance to get to and from Main Street and Lock 4.

Council President Margo Sommerville called the project exciting and expects the council will be supportive. The Bowery, among other things, fits one of the city’s top goals of creating downtown housing, she said.

“The city is stepping up. We want to see the project be a success,” Sommerville said. “There was a lot of support for the Bowery project from the very beginning. … This is what people want.”

“We are, right now, expecting closing on all financing pieces, provided public approvals go well and everything else, in 60 to 90 days with construction to start immediately thereafter,” Hardy said. “The construction crew is ready to go.”

Private financing is proceeding parallel to the public portion, Hardy said. That involves the private developers, Bowery Development Group, utilizing conventional lending and tax credits.

“We had some starts and stops,” said Beth Borda, vice president at DeHoff Development Co., part of Bowery Development Group. “We remain excited about the project.”

The financial closing could take place as soon as the end of August, Borda said. Construction will start immediately afterward, she said.

“We are moving forward,” she said.

Borda said her role is primarily finding retail and housing tenants. She said she wants a brewery and as many as three restaurants that will help support the Akron Civic Theatre.

“We have a lot of interest, both residential and commercial,” Borda said. “I’m usually there twice a week showing space.”

Reporter Jim Mackinnon covers business and county government. He can be reached at 330-996-3544 or jmackinnon@thebeaconjournal.com. Follow him @JimMackinnonABJ on Twitter or http://www.facebook.com/JimMackinnonABJ.

The post Akron’s Bowery Development gets needed backing; brewery, restaurants may be part of downtown mix appeared first on Ohio.com.



British Open notebook: Rory McIlroy loses ground with tough finish

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland: Rory McIlroy pledged to “go down swinging” in his bid to win a major for the first time in four years. He might have to swing for the fences after the way he finished Saturday at the British Open. The post British Open notebook: Rory McIlroy loses ground with tough finish appeared first on...

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland: Rory McIlroy pledged to “go down swinging” in his bid to win a major for the first time in four years. He might have to swing for the fences after the way he finished Saturday at the British Open.

On a day of low scoring, McIlroy bogeyed two of his last three holes for a 1-under 70. Instead of being two shots behind, he was four back, certainly not out of it. And he wasn’t about to change his strategy of being aggressive.

“Go out and hit a lot of drivers,” McIlroy said. “I felt like today the course was perfectly set up to take advantage of it and attack it. Tried to do that for the most part. Maybe my wedge play wasn’t quite as good as it should have been, but I gave myself plenty of chances.”

McIlroy said he felt like he left some shots out on the course, and was disappointed at the way he finished. Still, he’s won the Open before and believes he has a reasonable shot to do it again.

“I’ve got a bit of experience at this,” he said. “Maybe more so than some of the other guys on the leaderboard. But the leaderboard is packed with a lot of very, very good players.”

McIlroy and other players on the leaderboard are keeping an eye on the notoriously fickle Scottish weather going into the final round. The wind is expected to pick up some and if it shifts direction the scores could go a different direction than they did on Saturday.

The best thing, McIlroy said, is there are only five players in front of the group bunched four shots off the lead.

“Just need to get off to a fast start tomorrow,” he said. “I’m obviously disappointed after the way I finished, but I’m still in the tournament. I’m only a few shots behind. The wind is supposed to pick up a little bit. So it will make things interesting.”

Windward finale

Kevin Kisner has been hearing all week that the strongest wind would be on Sunday, which is fine by him.

“I think it’s going to be a true test, and we’ll get to see really who’s hitting it the best and playing the best tomorrow,” Kisner said.

He only had one wish.

“As long as 18 is downwind, I don’t really care,” he said. “I played with Zach [Johnson] today and he said the last time they were here, they hit 3-woods all four days on 16 and 4-iron on 18. So I can’t imagine that direction and how difficult that finish would be.”

Redemption

Zander Lombard dropped two shots on the 17th hole when he pulled it into a ditch, took a drop, hit into a bunker and missed the cut.

He made up for it in a big way.

“I said to my caddie walking down the fairway, ‘Let’s have a finish for the crowds at least,’ ” Lombard said.

After a strong drive on the 18th, the South African hit a gap wedge from 132 yards that landed in front and to the left of the hole, checked and turned to the right and then dropped in for an eagle.

“It was just awesome soaking up the energy and taking it in,” Lombard said. “I feel really positive for tomorrow, and I’m going to fight for it.”

One bad swing

Rickie Fowler opened with two birdies in four holes and was one shot out of the lead with a par 5 coming up at No. 6.

That turned out to be his undoing.

Fowler pulled his tee shot so far left that it went out-of-bounds. He sent his next shot from the tee some 40 yards to the right, and he wound up making a triple-bogey 8. That wasn’t his only mistake. He made three more bogeys, including on the 18th, and that offset the eagle he made on the par-5 14th.

But it added to a 73 — only Pat Perez with a 74 had a higher score among the last 14 players to tee off Saturday.

“Obviously wanted to head in the right direction today, but didn’t do that,” Fowler said. “Back to the drawing board. We’ll come out hot tomorrow and see what we can do. Made some good swings coming in, but like I said, just didn’t execute through the middle of the front nine and [it] cost me.”

Fowler was eight shots behind and plays Sunday with Patrick Reed.

Rose rally

Justin Rose was about 18 feet away from going home Friday when he made the birdie putt on the 18th to make the cut on the number.

One day later, he was five shots out of the lead.

No one took advantage of the calm conditions like Rose, who played bogey-free from the third group out and shot 64. It was his lowest score at the British Open by two shots, and at the end of the day, Rose was in a tie for 13th.

“There’s a difference between being 3 over on Friday and way off the lead and 3 over and way off the lead on Saturday morning,” Rose said. “You kind of feel a bit more grateful to be here rather than Friday night, you feel frustrated to be there. So I think the birdie on 18 last night freed me up, and I’m just very happy to be out on this golf course and not down the road somewhere else this morning.

“Obviously, I had nothing to lose.”

He won’t be losing much sleep. Rose had the entire afternoon off to rest, and he gets to sleep more on Sunday.

The post British Open notebook: Rory McIlroy loses ground with tough finish appeared first on Ohio.com.



Democratic socialism surging in the age of Trump

PORTLAND, Maine: A week ago, Maine Democrat Zak Ringelstein wasn’t quite ready to consider himself a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, even if he appreciated the organization’s values and endorsement in his bid to become a U.S. senator. The post Democratic socialism surging in the age of Trump appeared first on...

PORTLAND, Maine: A week ago, Maine Democrat Zak Ringelstein wasn’t quite ready to consider himself a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, even if he appreciated the organization’s values and endorsement in his bid to become a U.S. senator.

Three days later, he told The Associated Press it was time to join up. He’s now the only major-party Senate candidate in the nation to be a dues-paying democratic socialist.

Ringelstein’s leap is the latest evidence of a nationwide surge in the strength and popularity of an organization that, until recently, operated on the fringes of the liberal movement’s farthest left flank. As Donald Trump’s presidency stretches into its second year, democratic socialism has become a significant force in Democratic politics. Its rise comes as Democrats debate whether moving too far left will turn off voters.

“I stand with the democratic socialists, and I have decided to become a dues-paying member,” Ringelstein told AP. “It’s time to do what’s right, even if it’s not easy.”

There are 42 people running for offices at the federal, state and local levels this year with the formal endorsement of the Democratic Socialists of America, the organization says. They span 20 states, including Florida, Hawaii, Kansas and Michigan.

The most ambitious Democrats in Washington have been reluctant to embrace the label, even as they embrace the policies defining modern-day democratic socialism: Medicare for all, a $15 minimum wage, free college tuition and the abolition of the federal department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also known as ICE.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Congress’ only self-identified democratic socialist, campaigned Friday with the movement’s newest star, New York City congressional candidate Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, a 28-year-old former bartender who defeated one of the most powerful House Democrats last month.

Her victory fed a flame that was already beginning to burn brighter. The DSA’s paid membership has hovered around 6,000 in the years before Trump’s election, said Allie Cohn, a member of the group’s national political team.

Last week, its paid membership hit 45,000 nationwide.

There is little distinction made between the terms “democratic socialism” and “socialism” in the group’s literature. While Ringelstein and other DSA-backed candidates promote a “big-tent” philosophy, the group’s constitution describes its members as socialists who “reject an economic order based on private profit” and “share a vision of a humane social order based on popular control of resources and production, economic planning, equitable distribution, feminism, racial equality and non-oppressive relationships.”

Members during public meetings often refer to each other “comrades,” wear clothing featuring socialist symbols like the rose and promote authors such as Karl Marx.

The common association with the failed Soviet Union has made it difficult for sympathetic liberals to explain their connection.

“I don’t like the term socialist, because people do associate that with bad things in history,” said Kansas congressional candidate James Thompson, who is endorsed by the DSA and campaigned alongside Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez, but is not a dues-paying democratic socialist. “There’s definitely a lot of their policies that closely align with mine.”

Thompson, an Army veteran turned civil rights attorney, is running again after narrowly losing a special election last year to fill the seat vacated by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Even in deep-red Kansas, he embraces policies like “Medicare for all” and is openly critical of capitalism.

In Hawaii, 29-year-old state Rep. Kaniela Ing isn’t shy about promoting his status as a democratic socialist in his bid for Congress. He said he was encouraged to run for higher office by the same activist who recruited Ocasio-Cortez.

“We figured just lean in hard,” Ing told the AP of the democratic socialist label. He acknowledged some baby boomers may be scared away, but said the policies democratic socialists promote — like free health care and economic equality — aren’t extreme.

Republicans, meanwhile, are encouraged by the rise of democratic socialism — for a far different reason. They have seized on what they view as a leftward lurch by Democrats they predict will alienate voters this fall and in the 2020 presidential race.

The Republican National Committee eagerly notes that Sanders’ plan to provide free government-sponsored health care for all Americans had no co-sponsors in 2013. Today, more than one-third of Senate Democrats and two-thirds of House Democrats have signed onto the proposal, which by one estimate could cost taxpayers as much as $32 trillion.

The co-sponsors include some 2020 presidential prospects, such as Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and California Sen. Kamala Harris.

Those senators aren’t calling themselves democratic socialists but also not disassociating themselves from the movement’s priorities.

Most support the push to abolish ICE, which enforces immigration laws and led the Trump administration’s recent push to separate immigrant families at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Of the group, only Booker hasn’t called for ICE to be abolished, replaced or rebuilt. Yet Booker’s office notes that he’s among the few senators backing a plan to guarantee government-backed jobs to unemployed adults in high-unemployment communities across America.

“Embracing socialist policies like government-run health care, a guaranteed jobs program and open borders will only make Democrats more out of touch,” RNC Chair Ronna Romney McDaniel said.

Despite Ocasio-Cortez’s recent success, most DSA-endorsed candidates have struggled.

Gayle McLaughlin finished eighth in last month’s Democratic primary to become California’s lieutenant governor, earning just 4 percent of the vote. All three endorsed candidates for Maryland’s Montgomery County Council lost last month as well. And Ryan Fenwick was blown out by 58 points in his run to become mayor of Louisville, Kentucky.

Ringelstein, a 32-year-old political neophyte, is expected to struggle in his campaign to unseat Maine Sen. Angus King, an independent who caucuses with Democrats. He is refusing to accept donations from lobbyists or corporate political action committees, which has made fundraising a grind. At the end of June, King’s campaign reported $2.4 million cash on hand while Ringelstein had just $23,000.

He has tapped into the party’s national progressive movement and the southern Maine chapter of the DSA for the kind of grassroots support that fueled Ocasio-Cortez’s victory. As he has done almost every month this year, Ringelstein attended the group’s monthly meeting at Portland’s city hall last Monday.

More than 60 people packed into the room. The group’s chairman, 25-year-old union organizer Meg Reilly, wore a T-shirt featuring three roses.

She cheered the “comrades” softball team’s recent season before moving to an agenda that touched on climate change legislation, a book share program “to further your socialist education,” and an exchange program that lets community members swap favors such as jewelry repair, pet sitting or cooking.

Near the end of the two-hour gathering, Ringelstein thanked the group for “standing shoulder to shoulder with us throughout this entire campaign.”

“We could win a U.S. Senate seat!” he said. “I want to say that over and over. We could win a U.S. Senate seat! So, let’s do this.”

The post Democratic socialism surging in the age of Trump appeared first on Ohio.com.



Michael Douglas: Fuel efficiency fuels the auto sector

How smart was the rescue of the auto industry nine years ago? Consider this eye-catching number in a recent post from the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution: Auto suppliers have increased employment more than 50 percent since 2008. The post Michael Douglas: Fuel efficiency fuels the auto sector appeared first on...

How smart was the rescue of the auto industry nine years ago? Consider this eye-catching number in a recent post from the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution: Auto suppliers have increased employment more than 50 percent since 2008.

Yes, more than 50 percent, the auto supply chain today with 1.5 million workers, or four times the number employed by auto manufacturers.

The authors of the post, Susan Helper of Case Western Reserve University and Jason S. Miller and Mark Muro of Brookings, see as “central to all this” the creation of a single national standard for fuel efficiency. Now the standard faces a threat. The Trump White House wants to weaken, or freeze, the regulation. Helper, Miller and Muro warn that doing so would bring harm to the auto industry.

Recall the origin of the standard. Put simply, in exchange for financing the rescue, the Obama White House wanted what the post describes as “a coherent strategy to facilitate investment in the auto sector.” A new national fuel efficiency standard is one component.

All major stakeholders agreed, and applauded the regulatory clarity and consistency, the balance between ambitious and what actually could get done. So, the industry set out to double roughly the average fuel economy of new cars, SUVs and light trucks by 2025.

The progress has been real. Helper, Miller and Muro go beyond the savings to consumers and the reduction in greenhouse gases. They highlight the achievement in advanced manufacturing, or the innovation practically everyone views as crucial to a stronger economy.

Auto suppliers have been busy looking to make the notoriously wasteful internal combustion engine more efficient. Experts note one-fifth of a car’s gasoline consumption on average goes to moving forward. Suppliers have been developing new products, in the shape of such things as lighter materials and reduced friction in the moving parts.

As a result, the fuel efficiency standard has proved green, so to speak, on another front, for many small- and medium-sized businesses and their workers in the auto supply chain. Which is good for Ohio.

One provision of the standard calls for a midterm evaluation, a logical step that allows for assessing the fallout and making needed tweaks to the regulation. The Obama team delivered a hurried review as it exited. Automakers asked the new administration to reopen the process. That is the vehicle for the changes proposed by the Trump team.

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers has argued for keeping the current fuel efficiency framework, in part, as it noted in a May letter to the White House, “because climate change is real.” What also drives its concern is that the weakening or freeze the administration has pitched would invite “disruptive and costly consequences” for the industry and workers.

How?

California long has had permission to apply tougher fuel efficiency standards, and other states have chosen to follow its lead. The White House would trigger a prolonged legal battle if it sought to deny California such authority.

Such a turn would mean dreaded regulatory uncertainty for automakers and suppliers. Or worse, the country ending up with two or three sets of fuel efficiency standards. Both outcomes promise diminished investment, sapping the momentum for innovation and growth.

Automakers want the White House to work out a compromise with California that preserves the single national standard.

Helper, Miller and Muro add to the reasons for reaching an agreement. They point out that auto suppliers already have invested in retooling and redesigning their operations around steady increases in fuel efficiency. Back away, and profitability suffers. So does the capacity to recoup investments.

This is a global competition. Nearly 90 percent of the global market falls under fuel efficiency requirements. Companies in Europe and Asia are seeking to gain an edge in product development. Helper, Miller and Muro argue that eroding the standards here, or adding complexity, would result in our companies becoming less competitive, less innovative, less prosperous.

Thus, a single national standard provides the necessary scale.

In 1975, Americans were the first to set fuel efficiency standards. Today, they serve as evidence that good environmental policy makes good economic policy. During the debate over the auto rescue, many in the industry warned that failing to act would devastate the supply chain, one-quarter of manufacturing jobs linked in some way to automakers. Now that supply chain is thriving, Let’s sustain a key reason why.

Douglas is the Beacon Journal/Ohio.com editorial page editor. He can be reached at 330-996-3514 or emailed at mdouglas@thebeaconjournal.com.

The post Michael Douglas: Fuel efficiency fuels the auto sector appeared first on Ohio.com.



Beacon Journal/Ohio.com editorial board: Try bold, Ohio

Ohio has been here before. Go back to the 1980s, with Richard Celeste in the governor’s office pushing the cause of innovation, the state moving to a new economy through the attraction of top researchers and seed money to accelerate the creation of new companies and jobs. Bob Taft sought something similar via the Third Frontier project, and John Kasich privatized economic development with JobsOhio. The post Beacon Journal/Ohio.com editorial board: Try bold, Ohio appeared first on...

Ohio has been here before. Go back to the 1980s, with Richard Celeste in the governor’s office pushing the cause of innovation, the state moving to a new economy through the attraction of top researchers and seed money to accelerate the creation of new companies and jobs. Bob Taft sought something similar via the Third Frontier project, and John Kasich privatized economic development with JobsOhio.

On Thursday, the research foundation of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce unveiled Ohio Bold, a set of proposals designed to accelerate the innovation economy across the state. The foundation acted with the current race for governor in mind. The idea isn’t that Richard Cordray or Mike DeWine or both would embrace the plan readily and entirely. Rather, the message to each goes: The next governor must take up the challenge of making Ohio more innovative. Here are some ideas. What would you do?

One strength of the foundation report is the process the authors used for arriving at the proposals, tapping data and trends yet also listening to businesses and other stakeholders. What they discovered, in part, is that the state doesn’t leverage effectively enough its many assets. Businesses, entrepreneurs and others often are not in position to take advantage of available strengths, say, pertinent knowledge at a university or a company with relevant technology.

Past efforts haven’t been sufficient to break from a troubling economic performance. The state’s income and job growth long have lagged behind the national pace. Its rate of poverty has climbed while the country has seen a decrease. Ohio hasn’t fared well compared to peer states.

To leverage better the state’s many assets, the foundation calls for the creation of four statewide hubs for innovation, each driven by a leading area of opportunity, advanced, or next generation, manufacturing, health care treatment and services, smart infrastructure, including self-driving cars, and analytics, the crunching of data to elevate organizational performance.

Consider America Makes in Youngstown, which engages in research around advanced manufacturing. The foundation envisions taking the effort statewide, adding partners, knowledge and opportunity. That requires a change in perspective, so much of economic development viewed through the frame of a region. The insight of the report is that the state shortchanges itself in failing to draw fully on its assets.

The foundation proposes complementing the hubs with changes to the state tax code, adjusting incentives for such things as research and development and enhancing the skills of employees. The report includes steps to improve the availability of risk capital for entrepreneurs. The state’s regions have made progress yet have much to do in this key area for innovation.

No surprise, either, that the foundation urges steps to keep and attract talent, including incentives to bring back professionals and executives who left the state and succeeded elsewhere.

Again, the expectation isn’t universal acclamation. The point is to start a conversation, reflecting the depth and care that clearly went into the proposal. At the center of the conversation belong the candidates for governor, applying past lessons, refining ideas and understanding the cost. As the foundation acknowledges, this cannot be done on the cheap, thus Bold. Massachusetts is looking at roughly $1 billion for a decade.

If not done right, as Ohio should know, the result is certain to be more costly. The state is running behind in the realm of innovation.

The post Beacon Journal/Ohio.com editorial board: Try bold, Ohio appeared first on Ohio.com.