MEDINA, Ohio - Business owner Amy Douglass came up with a quick list of topics that she hopes Governor John Kasich addresses during his State of the State address Monday night at the Performing Arts Center in Medina.
Douglass, who owns The Interior Design Studio and JK Gift Shop, said she would like Kasich to create a statewide initiative to encourage people to shop at local stores.
"It's very difficult competing against the big box stores, number one, and there are so many small businesses in small towns around Ohio," Douglass said.
Another concern she would like discussed is the high cost of healthcare, something she has never been able to provide in 13 years as a small business owner.
Douglass only has four employees and they depend on their husbands for health benefits.
"We just can't afford to offer it and it's very important to be able to offer something like that to families."
A small group of Medina High School students was selected to attend the speech.
Caleb Parker, a 17-year-old senior and aspiring politician, said he's anxious to hear the State of State speech, especially since it's an election year.
"I'd like to see how Governor Kasich really wants to champion public education, really where our state needs to go and move forward to really make that a successful endeavor," Parker said.
Justine Wright, a junior, is also interested in education and, in particular, the rising cost of higher education.
"It's an issue for everyone, no matter where you are or where you go and... how it's going to help me when I go in two years," Wright said.
Medina resident Mark Kuhar is planning to protest in front of the high school before the speech.
He said it's "an insult" that Governor Kasich is using a public education setting for his State of the State address. Kuhar believes Kasich is too focused on charter schools and not doing enough to help public schools.
"He continues to support charter schools. He said he wants to support them more and now he chooses a public school to give his State of the State address. I think that's in insult to anybody who pays property taxes," Kuhar said.
Rob Nichols, a spokesman for Kasich, said the the last budget calls for the largest increase in public education funding in a decade and Kasich believes that "no child should be stuck in a failing school."