COLUMBUS — Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted announced that 2016, with 105,009 new filings, was a record-breaking year for new businesses forming in the Buckeye State. This marks the seventh consecutive year the state has seen a record number of new entities filing to do business. The previous record was set in 2015 when 97,746 new businesses registered with the Secretary of State’s office.
“We are offering better services to entrepreneurs at a lower cost and as a result, more are choosing Ohio for their new business than ever before,” Secretary Husted said.
Making it simpler and less costly to do business in Ohio has been a top priority for Secretary Husted since taking office in 2011. Some successes include:
The launch of Ohio Business Central, which enables all Ohio-based businesses to form and renew their business status online. This service has provided easier access, reduced processing time and saved taxpayer dollars.
The reduction of the cost of starting and maintaining a business in Ohio by 21 percent, making the Buckeye State the least costly state in the region for starting and maintaining a business. This move, which was made possible by Secretary Husted’s careful fiscal stewardship, has already saved Ohio businesses over $2.8 million.
The launch of the partnership with Google’s “Let’s Get Our Cities on the Map” program to put additional tools in the hands of new and growing Ohio businesses.
The launch of a partnership with the Cleveland Sight Center, which has improved customer experience by reducing the average wait time for callers into the Business Services Call Center from five minutes and 19 seconds to just 43 seconds with a 95.7 percent customer satisfaction rate.
These efforts to provide better services at a lower cost have enabled Secretary Husted to reduce spending in the Secretary of State’s Office by $14.5 million in his first term when compared to the previous administration, and in his second term, the Secretary became the only statewide officeholder to request a cut, not an increase, in his budget. Additionally, in December 2016, Secretary Husted requested a 100 percent cut in General Revenue Funds (GRF) for the next biennium while announcing his plan to run the Secretary of State’s Office for the remainder of his term without the use of taxpayer funds.
Though the most visible role of the Secretary of State is that of chief elections officer, the office is also the first stop for individuals or companies who want to file and start a business in Ohio. While recognizing these numbers can’t provide a complete picture of Ohio’s jobs climate, they are an important indicator of economic activity that Secretary Husted hopes will add to the ongoing discussion of how to improve the state’s overall climate for business.