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Stark County Representatives Champion Strategic Community Investment Fund

February 7, 2024
Jim Thomas News

COLUMBUS— The Ohio House of Representatives today passed the $350 million Strategic Community Investment Fund, Substitute House Bill 2, announced State Reps. Scott Oelslager (R-North Canton) and Jim Thomas (R-Jackson Twp.).

The Strategic Community Investment Fund includes historic funding for statewide, regional, and local projects. Due to the benefit of conservative fiscal leadership, $9.5 million will now be able to be directed toward projects in Stark County and the greater region. 

“Both the tourism and aviation industries are pillars of our state,” said Oelslager. “By investing in projects like these today, we will see transformational growth in our county and throughout the rest of the state tomorrow.”

“I look forward to the growth of Stark County’s economy thanks to the investments in our airport and the Pro Football Hall of Fame,” said Thomas. “We must support the attractions that make our area unique to the rest of the state.”  

Stark County area representatives were able to secure investments into the following projects:

$7 million to modernize the Pro Football Hall of Fame, stimulating tourism in the greater Canton area; and 
$2.5 million to expand the Akron-Canton Airport, boosting the aviation industry and economic development in Ohio.    

In addition to these local investments, this legislation also includes additional statewide capital investments of:

$600 million for the School Building Program Assistance Fund;
$400 million for the Public Works Commission Local Public Infrastructure and State Capital Improvement Program; 
$397.6 million for higher education projects; and
$250 million for jail construction across Ohio. 

These project investments will be incorporated as part of the greater State Capital Budget bill, a two-year construction budget for capital projects. 

The Strategic Community Investment Fund was established under the state’s main operating budget passed in 2023 and includes excess funding from the previous fiscal year.