130th Ohio General Assembly
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(123rd General Assembly)
(Substitute House Bill Number 331)



AN ACT
To amend sections 2925.32 and 2953.08 of the Revised Code to modify the procedure pursuant to which a court of appeals may modify or vacate and remand a sentence that imposes specified types of prison terms and to delay until July 1, 2001, the date on which requirements regarding the recording of transactions involving the dispensation of distribution of nitrous oxide will become operative.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Ohio:

SECTION 1 .  That sections 2925.32 and 2953.08 of the Revised Code be amended to read as follows:

Sec. 2925.32.  (A) Divisions (A)(1) and (2) of this section do not apply to the dispensing or distributing of nitrous oxide.

(1) No person shall knowingly dispense or distribute a harmful intoxicant to a person age eighteen or older if the person who dispenses or distributes it knows or has reason to believe that the harmful intoxicant will be used in violation of section 2925.31 of the Revised Code.

(2) No person shall knowingly dispense or distribute a harmful intoxicant to a person under age eighteen if the person who dispenses or distributes it knows or has reason to believe that the harmful intoxicant will be used in violation of section 2925.31 of the Revised Code. Division (A)(2) of this section does not prohibit either of the following:

(a) Dispensing or distributing a harmful intoxicant to a person under age eighteen if a written order from the juvenile's parent or guardian is provided to the dispenser or distributor;

(b) Dispensing or distributing gasoline or diesel fuel to a person under age eighteen if the dispenser or distributor does not know or have reason to believe the product will be used in violation of section 2925.31 of the Revised Code. Division (A)(2)(a) of this section does not require a person to obtain a written order from the parent or guardian of a person under age eighteen in order to distribute or dispense gasoline or diesel fuel to the person.

(B)(1) No person shall knowingly dispense or distribute nitrous oxide to a person age twenty-one or older if the person who dispenses or distributes it knows or has reason to believe the nitrous oxide will be used in violation of section 2925.31 of the Revised Code.

(2) Except for lawful medical, dental, or clinical purposes, no person shall knowingly dispense or distribute nitrous oxide to a person under age twenty-one.

(3) No person, at the time a cartridge of nitrous oxide is sold to another person, shall sell a device that allows the purchaser to inhale nitrous oxide from cartridges or to hold nitrous oxide released from cartridges for purposes of inhalation. The sale of any such device constitutes a rebuttable presumption that the person knew or had reason to believe that the purchaser intended to abuse the nitrous oxide.

(4) No person who dispenses or distributes nitrous oxide in cartridges shall fail to comply with either of the following:

(a) The record-keeping requirements established under division (F) of this section;

(b) The labeling and transaction identification requirements established under division (G) of this section.

(C) This section does not apply to products used in making, fabricating, assembling, transporting, or constructing a product or structure by manual labor or machinery for sale or lease to another person, or to the mining, refining, or processing of natural deposits.

(D)(1) Whoever violates division (A)(1) or (2) or division (B)(1), (2), or (3) of this section is guilty of trafficking in harmful intoxicants, a felony of the fifth degree. If the offender previously has been convicted of a drug abuse offense, trafficking in harmful intoxicants is a felony of the fourth degree. In addition to any other sanction imposed for trafficking in harmful intoxicants, the court shall suspend for not less than six months or more than five years the driver's or commercial driver's license or permit of any person who is convicted of or has pleaded guilty to trafficking in harmful intoxicants. If the offender is a professionally licensed person or a person who has been admitted to the bar by order of the supreme court in compliance with its prescribed and published rules, in addition to any other sanction imposed for trafficking in harmful intoxicants, the court forthwith shall comply with section 2925.38 of the Revised Code.

(2) Whoever violates division (B)(4)(a) or (b) of this section is guilty of improperly dispensing or distributing nitrous oxide, a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.

(E) It is an affirmative defense to a charge of a violation of division (A)(2) or (B)(2) of this section that:

(1) An individual exhibited to the defendant or an officer or employee of the defendant, for purposes of establishing the individual's age, a driver's license or permit issued by this state, a commercial driver's license or permit issued by this state, an identification card issued pursuant to section 4507.50 of the Revised Code, for another document that purports to be a license, permit, or identification card described in this division;

(2) The document exhibited appeared to be a genuine, unaltered document, to pertain to the individual, and to establish the individual's age;

(3) The defendant or the officer or employee of the defendant otherwise did not have reasonable cause to believe that the individual was under the age represented.

(F) Beginning July 1, 2000 2001, a person who dispenses or distributes nitrous oxide shall record each transaction involving the dispensing or distributing of the nitrous oxide on a separate card. The person shall require the purchaser to sign the card and provide a complete residence address. The person dispensing or distributing the nitrous oxide shall sign and date the card. The person shall retain the card recording a transaction for one year from the date of the transaction. The person shall maintain the cards at the person's business address and make them available during normal business hours for inspection and copying by officers or employees of the state board of pharmacy or of other law enforcement agencies of this state or the United States that are authorized to investigate violations of Chapter 2925., 3719., or 4729. of the Revised Code or the federal drug abuse control laws.

The cards used to record each transaction shall inform the purchaser of the following:

(1) That nitrous oxide cartridges are to be used only for purposes of preparing food;

(2) That inhalation of nitrous oxide can have dangerous health effects;

(3) That it is a violation of state law to distribute or dispense cartridges of nitrous oxide to any person under age twenty-one, punishable as a felony of the fifth degree.

(G)(1) Each cartridge of nitrous oxide dispensed or distributed in this state shall bear the following printed warning:

"Nitrous oxide cartridges are to be used only for purposes of preparing food. Nitrous oxide cartridges may not be sold to persons under age twenty-one. Do not inhale contents. Misuse can be dangerous to your health."

(2) Each time a person dispenses or distributes one or more cartridges of nitrous oxide, the person shall mark the packaging containing the cartridges with a label or other device that identifies the person who dispensed or distributed the nitrous oxide and the person's business address.

Sec. 2953.08.  (A) In addition to any other right to appeal and except as provided in division (D) of this section, a defendant who is convicted of or pleads guilty to a felony may appeal as a matter of right the sentence imposed upon the defendant on one of the following grounds:

(1) The sentence consisted of or included the maximum prison term allowed for the offense by division (A) of section 2929.14 of the Revised Code and was not imposed pursuant to division (D)(3)(b) of section 2929.14 of the Revised Code, and the court imposed it under one of the following circumstances:

(a) The sentence was imposed for only one offense.

(b) The sentence was imposed for two or more offenses arising out of a single incident, and the court imposed the maximum prison term for the offense of the highest degree.

(2) The sentence consisted of or included a prison term, the offense for which it was imposed is a felony of the fourth or fifth degree or is a felony drug offense that is a violation of a provision of Chapter 2925. of the Revised Code and that is specified as being subject to division (B) of section 2929.13 of the Revised Code for purposes of sentencing, and the court did not specify at sentencing that it found one or more factors specified in divisions (B)(1)(a) to (h) of section 2929.13 of the Revised Code to apply relative to the defendant. If the court specifies that it found one or more of those factors to apply relative to the defendant, the defendant is not entitled under this division to appeal as a matter of right the sentence imposed upon the offender.

(3) The person was convicted of or pleaded guilty to a sexually violent offense, was adjudicated as being a sexually violent predator, and was sentenced pursuant to division (A)(3) of section 2971.03 of the Revised Code, if the minimum term of the indefinite term imposed pursuant to division (A)(3) of section 2971.03 of the Revised Code is the longest term available for the offense from among the range of terms listed in section 2929.14 of the Revised Code. As used in this division, "sexually violent offense" and "sexually violent predator" have the same meanings as in section 2971.01 of the Revised Code.

(4) The sentence is contrary to law.

(5) The sentence consisted of an additional prison term of ten years imposed pursuant to division (D)(3)(b) of section 2929.14 of the Revised Code.

(B) In addition to any other right to appeal and except as provided in division (D) of this section, a prosecuting attorney, a city director of law, village solicitor, or similar chief legal officer of a municipal corporation, or the attorney general, if one of those persons prosecuted the case, may appeal as a matter of right a sentence imposed upon a defendant who is convicted of or pleads guilty to a felony or, in the circumstances described in division (B)(3) of this section the modification of a sentence imposed upon such a defendant, on any of the following grounds:

(1) The sentence did not include a prison term despite a presumption favoring a prison term for the offense for which it was imposed, as set forth in section 2929.13 or Chapter 2925. of the Revised Code.

(2) The sentence is contrary to law.

(3) The sentence is a modification under section 2929.20 of the Revised Code of a sentence that was imposed for a felony of the first or second degree.

(C) In addition to the right to appeal a sentence granted under division (A) or (B) of this section, a defendant who is convicted of or pleads guilty to a felony may seek leave to appeal a sentence imposed upon the defendant on the basis that the sentencing judge has imposed consecutive sentences under division (E)(3) or (4) of section 2929.14 of the Revised Code and that the consecutive sentences exceed the maximum prison term allowed by division (A) of that section for the most serious offense of which the defendant was convicted. Upon the filing of a motion under this division, the court of appeals may grant leave to appeal the sentence if the court determines that the allegation included as the basis of the motion is true.

(D) A sentence imposed upon a defendant is not subject to review under this section if the sentence is authorized by law, has been recommended jointly by the defendant and the prosecution in the case, and is imposed by a sentencing judge. A sentence imposed for aggravated murder or murder pursuant to sections 2929.02 to 2929.06 of the Revised Code is not subject to review under this section.

(E) A defendant, prosecuting attorney, city director of law, village solicitor, or chief municipal legal officer shall file an appeal of a sentence under this section to a court of appeals within the time limits specified in Rule 4(B) of the Rules of Appellate Procedure, provided that if the appeal is pursuant to division (B)(3) of this section, the time limits specified in that rule shall not commence running until the court grants the motion that makes the sentence modification in question. A sentence appeal under this section shall be consolidated with any other appeal in the case. If no other appeal is filed, the court of appeals may review only the portions of the trial record that pertain to sentencing.

(F) On the appeal of a sentence under this section, the record to be reviewed shall include all of the following, as applicable:

(1) Any presentence, psychiatric, or other investigative report that was submitted to the court in writing before the sentence was imposed. An appellate court that reviews a presentence investigation report prepared pursuant to section 2947.06 or 2951.03 of the Revised Code or Criminal Rule 32.2 in connection with the appeal of a sentence under this section shall comply with division (D)(3) of section 2951.03 of the Revised Code when the appellate court is not using the presentence investigation report, and the appellate court's use of a presentence investigation report of that nature in connection with the appeal of a sentence under this section does not affect the otherwise confidential character of the contents of that report as described in division (D)(1) of section 2951.03 of the Revised Code and does not cause that report to become a public record, as defined in section 149.43 of the Revised Code, following the appellate court's use of the report.

(2) The trial record in the case in which the sentence was imposed;

(3) Any oral or written statements made to or by the court at the sentencing hearing at which the sentence was imposed;

(4) Any written findings that the court was required to make in connection with the modification of the sentence pursuant to a judicial release under division (H) of section 2929.20 of the Revised Code.

(G)(1) If the sentencing court was required to make the findings required by division (B) or (D) of section 2929.13, division (E)(4) of section 2929.14, or division (H) of section 2929.20 of the Revised Code relative to the imposition or modification of the sentence, and if the sentencing court failed to state the required findings on the record, the court hearing an appeal under division (A), (B), or (C) of this section shall remand the case to the sentencing court and instruct the sentencing court to state, on the record, the required findings.

(2) The court hearing an appeal of a sentence under division (A) or, (B)(1) or (2), or (C) of this section shall review the record, including the findings underlying the sentence or modification given by the sentencing court.

The appellate court may increase, reduce, or otherwise modify a sentence that is appealed under this section or may vacate the sentence and remand the matter to the trial sentencing court for resentencing. The appellate court's standard for review is not whether the sentencing court abused its discretion. The appellate court may take any action authorized by this division if the court it clearly and convincingly finds any either of the following:

(a) That the record does not support the sentence sentencing court's findings under division (B) or (D) of section 2929.13, division (E)(4) of section 2929.14, or division (H) of section 2929.20 of the Revised Code, whichever, if any, is relevant;

(b) That the sentence included a prison term, that the offense for which it was imposed is a felony of the fourth or fifth degree or is a felony drug offense that is a violation of a provision of Chapter 2925. of the Revised Code and that is specified as being subject to division (B) of section 2929.13 of the Revised Code for purposes of sentencing, that the court did not specify in the finding it makes at sentencing that it found one or more of the factors specified in divisions (B)(1)(a) to (h) of section 2929.13 of the Revised Code to apply relative to the defendant who brought the appeal, and either that the procedures set forth in division (B) of section 2929.13 of the Revised Code for determining whether to impose a prison term for such an offense were not followed or that those procedures were followed but there is an insufficient basis for imposing a prison term for the offense;

(c) That the sentence did not include a prison term, that the offense for which it was imposed is a felony of the first or second degree or is a felony drug offense that is a violation of a provision of Chapter 2925. of the Revised Code for which a presumption in favor of a prison term is specified as being applicable, and either that the procedures set forth in division (D) of section 2929.13 of the Revised Code that set forth the only circumstances in which the presumption may be overridden and a sanction other than a prison term may be imposed in lieu of a prison term were not followed or that those procedures were followed but there is an insufficient basis for overriding the presumption and imposing a sanction other than a prison term for the offense;

(d) That the sentence is otherwise contrary to law.

(2) The court hearing an appeal under division (B)(3) of this section of a trial court's modification pursuant to section 2929.20 of the Revised Code of a sentence that was imposed upon a defendant for a felony of a first or second degree may overturn the modification and reinstate the original sentence, or may vacate the modification of the sentence and remand the matter to the trial court for reconsideration, only if the court clearly and convincingly finds any of the following:

(a) That the record does not support the modification based on the criteria for modification set forth in division (H) of section 2929.20 of the Revised Code;

(b) That the modification was not made in accordance with the procedures set forth in section 2929.20 of the Revised Code, that the defendant was not eligible for the modification under that section, or that the modification otherwise was contrary to law.

(H) A judgment or final order of a court of appeals under this section may be appealed, by leave of court, to the supreme court.

(I)(1) There is hereby established the felony sentence appeal cost oversight committee, consisting of eight members. One member shall be the chief justice of the supreme court or a representative of the court designated by the chief justice, one member shall be a member of the senate appointed by the president of the senate, one member shall be a member of the house of representatives appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives, one member shall be the director of budget and management or a representative of the office of budget and management designated by the director, one member shall be a judge of a court of appeals, court of common pleas, municipal court, or county court appointed by the chief justice of the supreme court, one member shall be the state public defender or a representative of the office of the state public defender designated by the state public defender, one member shall be a prosecuting attorney appointed by the Ohio prosecuting attorneys association, and one member shall be a county commissioner appointed by the county commissioners association of Ohio. No more than three of the appointed members of the committee may be members of the same political party.

The president of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, the chief justice of the supreme court, the Ohio prosecuting attorneys association, and the county commissioners association of Ohio shall make the initial appointments to the committee of the appointed members no later than ninety days after July 1, 1996. Of those initial appointments to the committee, the members appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives and the Ohio prosecuting attorneys association shall serve a term ending two years after July 1, 1996, the member appointed by the chief justice of the supreme court shall serve a term ending three years after July 1, 1996, and the members appointed by the president of the senate and the county commissioners association of Ohio shall serve terms ending four years after July 1, 1996. Thereafter, terms of office of the appointed members shall be for four years, with each term ending on the same day of the same month as did the term that it succeeds. Members may be reappointed. Vacancies shall be filled in the same manner provided for original appointments. A member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term for which that member's predecessor was appointed shall hold office as a member for the remainder of the predecessor's term. An appointed member shall continue in office subsequent to the expiration date of that member's term until that member's successor takes office or until a period of sixty days has elapsed, whichever occurs first.

If the chief justice of the supreme court, the director of the office of budget and management, or the state public defender serves as a member of the committee, that person's term of office as a member shall continue for as long as that person holds office as chief justice, director of the office of budget and management, or state public defender. If the chief justice of the supreme court designates a representative of the court to serve as a member, the director of budget and management designates a representative of the office of budget and management to serve as a member, or the state public defender designates a representative of the office of the state public defender to serve as a member, the person so designated shall serve as a member of the commission for as long as the official who made the designation holds office as chief justice, director of the office of budget and management, or state public defender or until that official revokes the designation.

The chief justice of the supreme court or the representative of the supreme court appointed by the chief justice shall serve as chairperson of the committee. The committee shall meet within two weeks after all appointed members have been appointed and shall organize as necessary. Thereafter, the committee shall meet at least once every six months or more often upon the call of the chairperson or the written request of three or more members, provided that the committee shall not meet unless moneys have been appropriated to the judiciary budget administered by the supreme court specifically for the purpose of providing financial assistance to counties under division (I)(2) of this section and the moneys so appropriated then are available for that purpose.

The members of the committee shall serve without compensation, but, if moneys have been appropriated to the judiciary budget administered by the supreme court specifically for the purpose of providing financial assistance to counties under division (I)(2) of this section, each member shall be reimbursed out of the moneys so appropriated that then are available for actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of official duties as a committee member.

(2) The state criminal sentencing commission periodically shall provide to the felony sentence appeal cost oversight committee all data the commission collects pursuant to division (A)(5) of section 181.25 of the Revised Code. Upon receipt of the data from the state criminal sentencing commission, the felony sentence appeal cost oversight committee periodically shall review the data; determine whether any money has been appropriated to the judiciary budget administered by the supreme court specifically for the purpose of providing state financial assistance to counties in accordance with this division for the increase in expenses the counties experience as a result of the felony sentence appeal provisions set forth in this section or as a result of a postconviction relief proceeding brought under division (A)(2) of section 2953.21 of the Revised Code or an appeal of a judgment in that proceeding; if it determines that any money has been so appropriated, determine the total amount of moneys that have been so appropriated specifically for that purpose and that then are available for that purpose; and develop a recommended method of distributing those moneys to the counties. The committee shall send a copy of its recommendation to the supreme court. Upon receipt of the committee's recommendation, the supreme court shall distribute to the counties, based upon that recommendation, the moneys that have been so appropriated specifically for the purpose of providing state financial assistance to counties under this division and that then are available for that purpose.

SECTION 2 .  That existing sections 2925.32 and 2953.08 of the Revised Code are hereby repealed.

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