Nan Whaley visits Chillicothe for roundtable discussion

CHILLICOTHE―As the race for the Ohio gubernatorial seat heats up both candidates, Mike DeWine (R) and Nan Whaley (D), have made visits to Southern Ohio campaigning for votes.

During their visits candidates have focused on Ohio's labor workers

Gov. DeWine recently visited the Pickaway-Ross Career & Technology Center where he spoke with students about their career goals. He asked a variety of questions during his visit to learn about how he could better help the school.

Whaley visited Wednesday as she hosted a roundtable discussion with Mayor Luke Feeney to talk about her One Good Job pledge. In this pledge, Whaley promises that anyone willing to work will get the training they need to get a good-paying union job. She also believes that a person should only need one job to take care of themselves and their family.

To help with this she is planning a $65 million apprentice program to help those looking to get into trade jobs. Whaley said these jobs are important for the economy and the people as they offer good wages, benefits and pensions. As a pipeline from the program to work Whaley aims to make all construction projects done by the state costing over $10 million have a project labor agreement. These agreements ensure that workers are being paid a living wage that they can then invest back into the community.

She vows to help with these projects across the state, not just in bigger cities. Whaley said for Ohio to grow it has to grow all around not just in Columbus. She said in the over 40 years DeWine has been in office every community except Columbus has seen a decline.

"We need to have all of our communities grow," said Whaley.

She also discussed her veteran plan that will help build 15 new veteran homes around the state to support those who have served their country. The money for this project, Whaley said, is already on the table it is just not being utilized properly.

"We always say nice things about veterans but we got to put our money where our mouth is," said Whaley.

While she visited to discuss her plan Whaley also took time to listen to concerns from community members. This ability to listen to the people she would represent is why Feeney said he supports her campaign.

"This is a campaign with substance," said Feeney. "This is a campaign about people."

Community members brought up concerns about public education, the cost of schooling, mental health and addiction services and predatory business practices. While attendees were talking Whaley took notes on what was important and later told them her plan to help each issue.

This is not the first time Whaley has visited Chillicothe this year, she previously held an event at the historic Atwood House downtown where she announced her plans for helping Appalachian communities. That plan includes affordable broadband internet and addressing the opioid crisis.

Whaley said she enjoys visiting Chillicothe and other smaller towns. If elected she said she will not forget the Appalachian region and the hardworking people in them.

During her Southern Ohio tour Whaley also visited Cincinnati, Athens and Jackson. During each of these visits she talked with voters about her plans, like keeping Ohio safe and providing abortion access to those who need it, if she were to become Governor of Ohio.

The gubernatorial seat will be on the ballot during the Nov. 8 General Election. Whaley is running with her Lt. Gov. choice Cheryl Stephens, DeWine is running with current Lt. Gov. Jon Husted. The winner of this election will begin their four-year term on Jan. 9 of next year.

Shelby Reeves is a reporter for the Chillicothe Gazette. You can email her at SReeves@gannett.com or follow her on Twitter @Shelby_Reeves_

This article originally appeared on Chillicothe Gazette: Nan Whaley visits Chillicothe for roundtable discussion