130th Ohio General Assembly
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(125th General Assembly)
(Substitute House Bill Number 30)



AN ACT
To amend sections 1901.41, 1907.231, 2301.141, 4521.01, 4521.02, and 4521.10 of the Revised Code to permit a local authority to consider for purposes of the Local Noncriminal Parking Law a fine of $250 to $500 for a violation of an ordinance, resolution, or regulation that regulates the standing or parking of a vehicle in a disability parking space, to provide that if a person fails to pay a fine for such a violation that person may not be permitted to register a motor vehicle in that person's name, and to establish retention and other guidelines for documentation of misdemeanor convictions.

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

SECTION 1. That sections 1901.41, 1907.231, 2301.141, 4521.01, 4521.02, and 4521.10 be amended to read as follows:

Sec. 1901.41.  (A) Notwithstanding section 149.39 of the Revised Code and subject to division (E) of this section, each municipal court, by rule, may order the destruction or other disposition of the files of cases that have been finally disposed of by the court for at least five years as follows:

(1) If a case has been finally disposed of for at least five years, but less than fifteen years prior to the adoption of the rule of court for destruction or other disposition of the files, the court may order the files destroyed or otherwise disposed of only if the court first complies with division (B)(1) of this section;

(2) If a case has been finally disposed of for fifteen years or more prior to the adoption of the rule of court for destruction or other disposition of the files, the court may order the files destroyed or otherwise disposed of without having copied or reproduced the files prior to their destruction.

(B)(1) Except as otherwise provided in this division, all files destroyed or otherwise disposed of under division (A)(1) of this section shall be copied or reproduced prior to their destruction or disposition in the manner and according to the procedure prescribed in section 9.01 of the Revised Code. The copies or reproductions of the files made pursuant to section 9.01 of the Revised Code shall be retained and preserved by the court for a period of ten years after the destruction of the original files in accordance with this section, after which the copies or reproductions themselves may be destroyed or otherwise disposed of.

Files destroyed or otherwise disposed of under division (A)(1) of this section that are solely concerned with criminal prosecutions for minor misdemeanor offenses or that are concerned solely with minor misdemeanor traffic prosecutions do not have to be copied or reproduced in any manner or under any procedure prior to their destruction or disposition as provided in this section.

(2) Files destroyed or otherwise disposed of under division (A)(2) of this section do not have to be copied or reproduced in any manner or under any procedure prior to their destruction or disposition.

(C) Nothing in this section permits or shall be construed as permitting the destruction or other disposition of the files in the Cleveland municipal court of cases involving the following actions and proceedings:

(1) The sale of real property in an action to foreclose and marshal all liens on the real property;

(2) The sale of real property in an action to foreclose a mortgage on the real property;

(3) The determination of rights in the title to real property either in the form of a creditor's bill or in any other action intended to determine or adjudicate the right, title, and interest of a person or persons in the ownership of a parcel or parcels of real property or any interest therein.

(D) All dockets, indexes, journals, and cash books of the court shall be retained and preserved by the court for at least twenty-five years unless they are reproduced in the manner and according to the procedure prescribed in section 9.01 of the Revised Code, in which case the reproductions shall be retained and preserved by the court at least until the expiration of the twenty-five year period for which the originals would have had to have been retained. Court dockets, indexes, journals, and cash books, and all other court records also shall be subject to destruction or other disposition under section 149.39 of the Revised Code.

(E) Notwithstanding section 149.39 of the Revised Code, each clerk of a municipal court shall retain documentation regarding each criminal conviction and plea of guilty involving a case that is or was before the court. The documentation shall be in a form that is admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding as evidence of a prior conviction or that is readily convertible to or producible in a form that is admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding as evidence of a prior conviction and may be retained in any form authorized by section 9.01 of the Revised Code. The clerk shall retain this documentation for a period of fifty years after the entry of judgment in the case, except that documentation regarding cases solely concerned with minor misdemeanor offenses or minor misdemeanor traffic offenses shall be retained as provided in divisions (A) and (B) of this section, and documentation regarding other misdemeanor traffic offenses shall be retained for a period of twenty-five years after the entry of judgment in the case. This section shall apply to records currently retained and to records created on or after the effective date of this amendment September 23, 2004.

Sec. 1907.231. Notwithstanding section 149.38 of the Revised Code, each clerk of a county court shall retain documentation regarding each criminal conviction and plea of guilty involving a case that is or was before the court. The documentation shall be in a form that is admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding as evidence of a prior conviction or that is readily convertible to or producible in a form that is admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding as evidence of a prior conviction and may be retained in any form authorized by section 9.01 of the Revised Code. The clerk shall retain this documentation for a period of fifty years after the entry of judgment in the case, except that documentation regarding cases solely concerned with minor misdemeanor offenses or minor misdemeanor traffic offenses shall be retained as provided in divisions (A) and (B) of section 1901.41 of the Revised Code, and documentation regarding other misdemeanor traffic offenses shall be retained for a period of twenty-five years after the entry of judgment in the case. This section shall apply to records currently retained and to records created on or after the effective date of this section September 23, 2004.

Sec. 2301.141. Notwithstanding section 149.38 of the Revised Code, each clerk of a court of common pleas shall retain documentation regarding each criminal conviction and plea of guilty involving a case that is or was before the court. The documentation shall be in a form that is admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding as evidence of a prior conviction or that is readily convertible to or producible in a form that is admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding as evidence of a prior conviction and may be retained in any form authorized by section 9.01 of the Revised Code. The clerk shall retain this documentation for a period of fifty years after the entry of judgment in the case, except that documentation regarding cases solely concerned with minor misdemeanor offenses or minor misdemeanor traffic offenses shall be retained as provided in divisions (A) and (B) of section 1901.41 of the Revised Code, and documentation regarding other misdemeanor traffic offenses shall be retained for a period of twenty-five years after the entry of judgment in the case. This section shall apply to records currently retained and to records created on or after the effective date of this section September 23, 2004.

Sec. 4521.01.  As used in this chapter:

(A) "Parking infraction" means a violation of any ordinance, resolution, or regulation enacted by a local authority that regulates the standing or parking of vehicles and that is authorized pursuant to section 505.17 or 4511.07 of the Revised Code, or a violation of any ordinance, resolution, or regulation enacted by a local authority as authorized by this chapter, if the local authority in either of these cases also has enacted an ordinance, resolution, or regulation of the type described in division (A) of section 4521.02 of the Revised Code in relation to the particular regulatory ordinance, resolution, or regulation.

(B) "Vehicle" has the same meaning as in section 4511.01 of the Revised Code.

(C) "Court" means a municipal court, county court, juvenile court, or mayor's court, unless specifically identified as one of these courts, in which case it means the specifically identified court.

(D) "Local authority" means every county, municipal corporation, township, or other local board or body having authority to adopt police regulations pursuant to the constitution and laws of this state.

(E) "Disability parking space" means a motor vehicle parking location that is reserved for the exclusive standing or parking of a vehicle that is operated by or on behalf of a person with a disability that limits or impairs the ability to walk and displays a placard or license plates issued under section 4503.44 of the Revised Code.

(F) "Person with a disability that limits or impairs the ability to walk" has the same meaning as in section 4503.44 of the Revised Code.

Sec. 4521.02.  (A) A local authority that enacts any ordinance, resolution, or regulation that regulates the standing or parking of vehicles and that is authorized pursuant to section 505.17 or 4511.07 of the Revised Code also by ordinance, resolution, or regulation may specify that a violation of the regulatory ordinance, resolution, or regulation shall not be considered a criminal offense for any purpose, that a person who commits the violation shall not be arrested as a result of the commission of the violation, and that the violation shall be handled pursuant to this chapter. If such a specification is made, the local authority also by ordinance, resolution, or regulation shall adopt a fine for a violation of the regulatory ordinance, resolution, or regulation and prescribe an additional penalty or penalties for failure to answer any charges of the violation in a timely manner. In no case shall any fine adopted or additional penalty prescribed pursuant to this division exceed the fine established by the municipal or county court having territorial jurisdiction over the entire or a majority of the political subdivision of the local authority, in its schedule of fines established pursuant to Traffic Rule 13(C), for a substantively comparable violation. In Except as provided in this division, in no case shall any fine adopted or additional penalty prescribed pursuant to this division exceed one hundred dollars, plus costs and other administrative charges, per violation.

If a local authority chooses to adopt a specific fine for a violation of an ordinance, resolution, or regulation that regulates the standing or parking of a vehicle in a disability parking space, the fine the local authority establishes for such offense shall be an amount not less than two hundred fifty dollars but not more than five hundred dollars.

(B) A local authority that enacts an ordinance, resolution, or regulation pursuant to division (A) of this section also may enact an ordinance, resolution, or regulation that provides for the impoundment or immobilization of vehicles found standing or parked in violation of the regulatory ordinance, resolution, or regulation and the release of the vehicles to their owners. In no case shall an ordinance, resolution, or regulation require the owner of the vehicle to post bond or deposit cash in excess of one thousand dollars in order to obtain release of the vehicle.

(C) A local authority that enacts any ordinance, resolution, or regulation pursuant to division (A) of this section also shall enact an ordinance, resolution, or regulation that specifies the time within which a person who is issued a parking ticket must answer in relation to the parking infraction charged in the ticket.

Sec. 4521.10. (A)(1) If a judgment or default judgment is entered against a person pursuant to section 4521.08 of the Revised Code for a violation of an ordinance, resolution, or regulation that regulates the standing or parking of a vehicle in a disability parking space and the person has not paid the judgment or default judgment within ten days of the date of entry of the judgment, the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau in which the judgment was entered may give notice of that fact to the registrar of motor vehicles. The notice, if given, shall be given not earlier than sixteen days nor later than three years after the date of entry of the judgment, and shall be in a form and manner, and contain such information, as the registrar prescribes.

(2) If three or more judgments or default judgments have been entered against a person pursuant to section 4521.08 of the Revised Code and the person has not paid the judgments or default judgments within ten days of the date of entry of the third judgment, the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau in which the judgments were entered may give notice of that fact to the registrar of motor vehicles. The notice, if given, shall be given not earlier than sixteen days nor later than three years after the date of entry of the third judgment, and shall be in a form and manner, and contain such information, as the registrar prescribes.

(B)(1) Upon receipt of a notice as provided in division (A) of this section, neither the registrar nor any deputy registrar shall accept any application for the registration or transfer of registration of any motor vehicle owned or leased by the person named in the notice unless the person presents a release as provided in division (C) of this section or unless the registrar is properly notified by the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau that the judgment or default judgment described in division (A)(1) of this section or the judgments or default judgments described in division (A)(2) of this section have been paid, dismissed, or reversed on appeal, or that the initial notice was given in error and is therefore canceled.

(2) The registrar shall not be required to give effect to any notice provided by a parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau under division (A) of this section unless the information contained in the "Ohio uniform traffic tickets" described in Traffic Rule 3 (A) and (B) that the bureau processes is transmitted to the registrar by means of an electronic transfer system.

(C) When a notice as provided in division (A) of this section is given to the registrar and the judgments or default judgments are subsequently paid, dismissed, or reversed on appeal, or it is discovered that the notice was given in error and is therefore canceled, the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau giving the initial notice shall immediately notify the registrar of such payment, dismissal, reversal, or cancellation. The notification shall be in a form and manner, and contain such information, as the registrar prescribes. If the initial notice was not given in error, the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau shall charge the person a five dollar processing fee for each judgment or default judgment to cover the costs of the bureau of motor vehicles in administering this section. Upon payment of the fee, the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau shall give to the person a release to be presented at the time of registering or transferring the registration of a motor vehicle owned or leased by him the person. All fees collected under this division shall be transmitted monthly to the registrar for deposit in the state bureau of motor vehicles fund established by section 4501.25 of the Revised Code.

(D) The registrar shall cause the information contained in each notice received pursuant to division (A) of this section to be removed from the records of the bureau of motor vehicles and of the deputy registrars thirteen months after the date the information was entered into the records, unless the registrar receives a further notice from the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau submitting the initial notice that the judgments or default judgments are still outstanding.

(E) When any application for the registration or transfer of registration of a motor vehicle is refused as provided in division (B) of this section, the registrar or deputy registrar to whom application is made shall inform the person that no such application may be accepted unless the person presents a release as provided in division (C) of this section or the records of the bureau of motor vehicles and of the deputy registrar indicate that each judgment and default judgment against the person is paid, dismissed, reversed on appeal, or canceled.

(F) When any person named in a notice as provided in division (A) of this section applies for the registration or transfer of registration of any motor vehicle owned or leased by him the person and presents a release as provided in division (C) of this section or the records of the bureau of motor vehicles and of any deputy registrar to whom the application is made indicate that each judgment and default judgment against the person has been paid, dismissed, or reversed on appeal, the registrar or deputy registrar shall accept the application for registration or transfer of registration and may issue a certificate of registration or amended certificate of registration for the motor vehicle.

(G) In determining whether the judgments or default judgments that have been entered against a person as provided in division (A)(2) of this section total three or more, the parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau may apply to that total any violation the person committed during the relevant time period by illegally standing or parking a vehicle in a disability parking space, irrespective of the amount of the fine imposed for such violation.

(H) The registrar shall adopt such rules as he the registrar considers necessary to ensure the orderly operation of sections 4521.09 and 4521.10 of the Revised Code, and any parking violations bureau, joint parking violations bureau, or traffic violations bureau shall conform to those rules.

SECTION 2. That existing sections 1901.41, 1907.231, 2301.141, 4521.01, 4521.02, and 4521.10 the Revised Code are hereby repealed.

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