I have been fortunate to serve parts of Clermont County in the Ohio House of Representatives for eight years now. The experience has been gratifying and humbling, to say the least. Beginning next year, I will start working in a different capacity—the Ohio Senate.

Before I begin my new venture, I want to thank all the people in the county who have reached out with comments, questions and concerns. Your participation is what makes our system of government work. Your letters, phone calls and face-to-face interactions with my office have been immensely helpful in knowing the needs and opinions of the 66th House District.

Sessions have now concluded for this year and also for the 129th General Assembly. I believe a lot of good work has been done—particularly over the past two years—in improving Ohio’s economy and getting people back to work. More than 100,000 jobs have been created in Ohio this year, largely because businesses have seen the competitive advantages to investing in our state. The unemployment rate in the state has also either decreased or stayed the same for 16 consecutive months, now standing at 6.9 percent. In January 2011, the unemployment rate was 9 percent.

Many challenges still exist, including some coming from Washington. Businesses must face the headwinds of the federal healthcare law, which will be fully implemented by the end of 2014. I know my colleagues in the House, and my new colleagues in the Senate, will continue to work hard to make it easier for businesses to hire new employees through competitive tax rates and regulations that are consistent and fair. With a national economy that is still struggling, the last thing our state or country needs is more government intrusion into the lives of entrepreneurs and innovators.

Once again, I’d like to thank all the people of the 66th House District for your support throughout the years. I am excited to serve the people of Clermont, Brown, Adams, Scioto and part of Lawrence counties in my new position as a state senator, and as always I look forward to hearing from you.

In the meantime, have a Merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year!


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