Johnson met with ODYS Director Harvey Reed and Spohn prior to meeting with Kasich on Wednesday.
“Coming out of that meeting, as we all know, they have made their decision,” Johnson said. “They have decided that this is the facility to close. They stand by their decision. They are rock-solid, and won’t budge an inch.”
Johnson said he then met with Kasich, they discussed several issues concerning southern Ohio, and at the heart of that discussion was the closing of ORV.
“In his opinion, on what DYS has told him, it’s a good desicion. So I told him I disagreed,” Johnson said. “I told him, you’re relying on their data, their decision — I think they made a bad decision. I think they’re closing the wrong place. I think that they could save more money by closing another facility or facilities, and essentially this wasn’t a good decision on the part of the DYS. And he agreed to re-look at it.”
Johnson said Kasich understands that southern Ohio is an area that can’t afford the loss of any more jobs.
“When you look at executive positions, he has these departments that report to him, and he has to have confidence in their decisions,” Johnson said. “He has asked them to do a job. And his job is to sign off on it or not sign off on it. So what I have done now is introduce an element of doubt in the person who is going to make the decision. So he‘s going to re-look at it.”
Johnson cautioned that Kasich has made no promises as to reversing the decision to close the facility.
“I am very encouraged by the fact that he is going to take a look at it,” Johnson said.