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Leader Russo Announces $9.2 million in Infrastructure for The Ohio State University

August 7, 2023
C. Allison Russo News

COLUMBUS- House Minority Leader Allison Russo (D-Upper Arlington) today announced that the Controlling Board has approved $9.2 million in capital funds for infrastructure projects for The Ohio State University. These projects include upgrading the OARnet, a high-speed fiber-optic network linking Ohio colleges and universities with research facilities to support education, research, and promote economic development. Network improvements to the Universities’ Integrated Library System (OhioLINK), new equipment for the OSU Library Book Depository, which provides long-term off-campus storage of research materials, and improvements to the Woody Hayes Drive bridge and Drake pedestrian bridge.

“Investing in higher education institutions is crucial to ensuring that Ohio remains competitive in developing the next generation of STEM professionals, especially as central Ohio becomes an expanding tech hub,” said Leader Russo. “These capital improvements are not only an investment in our higher education institutions, they are an investment in Ohio’s future.”

The OARnet network is a statewide data transportation system for schools, research institutions, and government that will provide the most cost-effective and scalable solution to higher education's long-term needs and can be customized to meet unique research and educational requirements.

OhioLINK was originally created to manage print materials, upgrading its infrastructure creates a competitive advantage for the state of Ohio through the pursuit of its goals: supporting students, increasing access to quality content, reducing costs, and fueling research.

Additionally, the Controlling Board approved $146,680 in ARPA funds for expanding trail projects across Ohio. The funds will support continued trail designs, permitting, and construction administration services.

Other approved Controlling Board items include:

  • $65M in FY 24 to support housing assistance programs throughout Ohio.
  • $28M in FY 24 for the Home Weatherization Assistance Program to target installing specific measures in households at or below federal poverty guidelines.
  • $5.9M across the biennium to continue opioid treatment programs and medication unit services at five correctional institutions across the state.
  • $100K in TANF funds to provide training and technical assistance for the workforce development program.