Fix occupational licensing to restore Ohio’s economyJan 09, 2020
This letter to the editor appeared in The Columbus Dispatch.
In the Saturday editorial “Ohio has work to do to attract growth for a stronger economy,” The Dispatch identified a common trend seen in recent years: Ohio lags the nation in important economic indicators. Ohio has a higher unemployment rate and slower job growth and population growth.
There are innovative policy solutions that can help reverse these trends.
Starting a job is the No. 1 reason people leave Ohio, and reforming the state’s occupational licensing regime will reduce barriers to work.
Ohio can be one of the first states to implement universal license reciprocity, making it easier for professionals licensed out of state to continue working in Ohio. And eliminating unnecessary licenses can open doors for Ohioans looking to start a new career.
Our state needs innovative education alternatives that train workers for in-demand jobs at a low cost. Micro-credential programs train people in skills that employers are looking for and expanding these types of programs will lead to better-paying jobs for workers.
We agree with The Dispatch that policymakers cannot maintain the status quo and expect Ohio to turn around economically.
Andrew J. Kidd, economist, The Buckeye Institute, Columbus