State Rep. Derek Merrin (R-Monclova) voted to support Senate Bill 310, which is now headed to the Governor for his signature. The legislation is the two-year state construction budget that includes funding for initiatives across the state and aid for local projects throughout Lucas and Fulton Counties.
Known as the "capital bill," these additions were accepted into Senate Bill 310 earlier this week through a House-Senate conference committee.
"I'm thrilled to secure funds for local communities that have never seen state capital budget investments in the past. Sylvania, Waterville, Ottawa Hills, Monclova Township, Fayette, Swanton, and Lyons communities are receiving financial support to improve their communities," said Merrin.
Rep. Merrin reached out to communities before the capital budget process and offered to help. "I told many folks I need projects in the suburbs and rural communities to support. We started getting projects early in the pipeline. That led to a lot of success we see today."
In addition, Merrin strongly advocated for many capital projects throughout Lucas County that will benefit the Northwest Ohio region. "There are many exciting projects like the Jeep Museum, SeaGate Convention Center, Imagination Station, and a host of local projects that will enrich our community and spur economic development."
In total, Lucas and Fulton Counties are set to receive a combined total of $5.29 million within the legislation. Specifically, project totals for Lucas and Fulton Counties are $4.7 million and $320,000 respectively. The local projects funded within the bill include:
- Jeep Museum, $1,000,000;
- Toledo Zoo Entry Complex and Tiger and Bear Exhibit, $800,000;
- Imagination Station, $400,000;
- Sylvania Tam O'Shanter Renovations, $250,000;
- Valentine Theatre HVAC System Upgrade, $200,000;
- Sylvania Burnham Park Upgrade/Plummer Pool Renovations, $200,000;
- YWCA of Northwest Ohio Building Renovations, $200,000;
- Ottawa Hills Recreation Field/Renovation, $150,000;
- Waterville Parker Square and Memorial Park Improvements Project, $150,000;
- Toledo Museum of Art, $150,000;
- Glass City Enrichment Center, $150,000;
- Boys and Girls Club of Toledo, $150,000;
- Mercy College of Ohio Physician Assistant Program, $125,000;
- Lourdes University Health Sciences Building - Campus Gateway, $125,000;
- Mosaic Lodge Community Center, $100,000;
- Polish Cultural Center, $100,000;
- University of Toledo MBDC/MBAC Relocation, $125,000;
- University of Toledo Hillel, $50,000; and
- Monclova Keener Park Renovations/Pickleball Courts, $50,000.
- Swanton Railroad Park Attraction, $150,000;
- Fayette Opera House Roof Replacement, $100,000;
- Fayette Normal Memorial Park Community Splash Pad, $50,000; and
- Lyons Community Park Improvements, $20,000.
Statewide, the bill commits over $2 billion in new capital appropriations for a wide variety of infrastructure across Ohio. This is in addition to more than $500 million previously approved by lawmakers for schools and local infrastructure projects.
Statewide highlights include:
- $452 million for the Department of Higher Education, which includes funding for traditional and regional campuses and community colleges;
- $300 million for K-12 school building construction and improvements;
- $10 million for safety grants for K-12 schools and Ohio's colleges and universities;
- $280 million for the Ohio Public Works Commission, which supports a variety of infrastructure initiatives, including local water, sewer and road projects;
- $62.5 million for the Clean Ohio Program; and
- $50 million for county jail projects. Funding will be allocated through a competitive, needs-based process.
After being approved by the General Assembly, the legislation now heads to the governor's desk to be signed into law.