Karen Kasler

Ohio Public Radio and TV Statehouse Bureau Chief

Karen is a lifelong Ohioan who has served as news director at WCBE-FM, assignment editor/overnight anchor at WBNS-TV, and afternoon drive anchor/assignment editor in WTAM-AM in Cleveland. In addition to her daily reporting for Ohio’s public radio stations, she’s reported for NPR, the BBC, ABC Radio News and other news outlets.  She hosts and produces the Statehouse News Bureau’s weekly TV show “The State of Ohio”, which airs on PBS stations statewide. She’s also a frequent guest on WOSU TV’s “Columbus on the Record”, a regular panelist on “The Sound of Ideas” on ideastream in Cleveland, appeared on the inaugural edition of “Face the State” on WBNS-TV and occasionally reports for “PBS Newshour”. She’s often called to moderate debates, including the Columbus Metropolitan Club’s Issue 3/legal marijuana debate and its pre-primary mayoral debate, and the City Club of Cleveland’s US Senate debate in 2012.

Karen is a graduate of Otterbein College, and earned her Master’s as a Fellow in the Kiplinger Program for Mid-Career Journalists at The Ohio State University. Karen has been honored by the Associated Press, the Association of Capitol Editors and Reporters, the Cleveland Press Club/Society of Professional Journalists, the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences/Ohio Valley Emmys, and holds a National Headliner Award. 

Ways to Connect

Daniel Konik / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

It would be easier for people wrongly convicted in Ohio to get compensation for the time they spent in prison, according to a provision in the budget that’s passed both the House and Senate. But critics say that could cost the state a lot of money.

photo of Dave Yost and Gary Mohr
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A controversial proposal in the state budget will be voted on this week. Supporters say it would cut down on prison overcrowding. Opponents say the prison-diversion program, now in eight counties, is the wrong tactic in Ohio’s deadly opioid crisis.

The Kasich administration has said a small business tax cut passed in 2013 to spark job creation is not the cause of the state’s budget shortfall, which is approaching a billion dollars. But Democrats are saying it’s not doing what it was intended to do. 

The tax cut is targeted toward small businesses that report revenue as personal income, and the Ohio Department of Taxation says it cost the state around $1.1 billion last year. But critics such as Democratic Sen. Michael Skindell say it hasn’t created jobs – just a huge tax loophole.

photo of school bus
PEXELS

Both the House and Senate increased the amount the state will spend on its 610 school districts beyond Gov. John Kasich’s original budget proposal. But school leaders are concerned about a big cut that’s remained through all three versions of the budget.

Photo of Troy Jackson
Karen Kasler / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

The issue of faith comes into state politics in issues such as abortion and health care. But faith leaders came to the Statehouse today to speak out on another issue that hasn’t seen much action in nearly a decade – payday lending. 

“Lord, we cannot imagine a Heaven where Your will includes poverty profiteering.”

Pages