Just in Time for Halloween, Privatized Economic Development Leads to Phantom Jobs


When John Kasich was elected governor of Ohio in 2010, one of the centerpieces of his economic plans was to privatize the state’s economic development agency.

The reasoning went something like this: the public sector is too bureaucratized to be as responsive to changing economic conditions as the private sector demands, and so a privatized economic development agency would bring more jobs to Ohio by being much more immediately responsive to opportunities for the expansion of existing operations and the creation of new enterprises.

Good Jobs First has released another annual report on the activities of privatized development agencies in about a dozen states, including Ohio. Titled Creating Scandals instead of Jobs: The Failures of Privatized State Economic Development Agencies, the full report is available online at: http://www.goodjobsfirst.org/sites/default/files/docs/pdf/scandalsnotjobs.pdf

It summarizes the problems with JobsOhio very succinctly: “JobsOhio assembled a board of directors whose members included some of (Kasich’s) major…

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About martinkich

I am a Professor of English at Wright State University's Lake Campus, where I have been a faculty member for more than 25 years. I have now served multiple terms as the President of the WSU chapter of AAUP, which now includes all full-time instructional faculty, and as the Vice-President of the Ohio Conference of AAUP. I have also served several terms as an at-large member of the Executive Committee of AAUP's Collective Bargaining Congress. In addition to serving as co-editor of the Academe blog, I am also a member of the editorial board of Academe and have been a guest editor for an issue of the magazine on collective bargaining strategies. As co-chair of the Ohio Conference's Communication Committee, I began to do much more overtly political writing during the campaign to repeal Ohio's Senate Bill 5, which would have eliminated the right of faculty to be unionized. I have sustained that activism, and at the risk of stating the obvious, I have very much enjoyed contributing to the Academe Blog and to our chapter blog. I also maintain several other blogs to which I have re-posted, by topic, my posts to the Academe blog, as well as some other items.

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