130th Ohio General Assembly
The online versions of legislation provided on this website are not official. Enrolled bills are the final version passed by the Ohio General Assembly and presented to the Governor for signature. The official version of acts signed by the Governor are available from the Secretary of State's Office in the Continental Plaza, 180 East Broad St., Columbus.

(125th General Assembly)
(Amended Substitute House Bill Number 375)



AN ACT
To amend sections 103.73, 103.74, 2930.16, 2967.03, 2967.12, and 5149.101 and to enact sections 103.75, 103.76, 103.77, 103.78, and 103.79 of the Revised Code to require the Parole Board, at the request of the victim of a specified offense or certain other persons, to hold a full board hearing, to permit the victim of such an offense, the victim's representative, and the victim's immediate family and the prisoner's counsel or another designated person to testify at that hearing, and to permit the Correctional Institution Inspection Committee to inspect Department of Youth Services facilities.

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

SECTION 1. That sections 103.73, 103.74, 2930.16, 2967.03, 2967.12, and 5149.101 be amended and sections 103.75, 103.76, 103.77, 103.78, and 103.79 of the Revised Code be enacted to read as follows:

Sec. 103.73.  (A) The correctional institution inspection committee shall do all of the following:

(1) Subject to division (C) of this section, establish and maintain a continuing program of inspection of each state correctional institution used for the custody, control, training, and rehabilitation of persons convicted of crime and of each private correctional facility. Subject to division (C) of this section, the committee may inspect any local correctional institution used for the same purposes. Subject to division (C) of this section, the committee, and each member of the committee, for the purpose of making an inspection pursuant to this section, shall have access to any state or local correctional institution, to any private correctional facility, or to any part of the institution or facility and shall not be required to give advance notice of, or to make prior arrangements before conducting, an inspection.

(2) Evaluate and assist in the development of programs to improve the condition or operation of correctional institutions;

(3) Prepare a report for submission to the succeeding general assembly of the findings the committee makes in its inspections and of any programs that have been proposed or developed to improve the condition or operation of the correctional institutions in the state. The report shall contain a separate evaluation of the inmate grievance procedure at each state correctional institution. The committee shall submit the report to the succeeding general assembly within fifteen days after commencement of that general assembly's first regular session.

(B) Subject to division (C) of this section, the committee shall make an inspection of each state correctional institution each biennium and of each private correctional facility each biennium. The inspection shall include attendance at one general meal period and one rehabilitative or educational program.

(C) An inspection of a state correctional institution, a private correctional facility, or a local correctional institution under division (A) or (B) of this section or under section 103.74 of the Revised Code, or an inspection under section 103.76 of the Revised Code, is subject to and shall be conducted in accordance with all of the following:

(1) The inspection shall not be conducted unless the chairperson of the committee grants prior approval for the inspection. The grant of prior approval shall specify whether the inspection is to be conducted by a subcommittee appointed under section 103.74 of the Revised Code or is to be conducted other than by a subcommittee appointed under that section.

(2) The inspection shall not be conducted unless one of the following applies:

(a) If the inspection is to be conducted by a subcommittee appointed under section 103.74 of the Revised Code, at least two members appointed to the committee are present for the inspection;

(b) If division (C)(2)(a) of this section does not apply, at least one member appointed to the committee and at least one staff member of the committee are present for the inspection.

(3) Unless the chairperson of the committee determines that the inspection must be conducted outside of normal business hours for any reason, including emergency circumstances or a justifiable cause that perpetuates the mission of the committee, and the chairperson specifies in the grant of prior approval for the inspection that the chairperson has so determined, the inspection shall be conducted only during normal business hours. If the chairperson determines that the inspection must be conducted outside of normal business hours and the chairperson specifies in the grant of prior approval for the inspection that the chairperson has so determined, the inspection may be conducted outside of normal business hours.

(4) If the inspection is to be conducted by a subcommittee appointed under section 103.74 of the Revised Code, no staff member of the committee may be present on the inspection unless the chairperson of the committee, in the grant of prior approval for the inspection, specifically authorizes staff members to be present on the inspection. If the inspection is to be conducted other than by a subcommittee appointed under that section, staff members may be present on the inspection regardless of whether the grant of prior approval contains a specific authorization for staff members to be present on the inspection.

(D) As used in this section:

(1) "Local public entity," "out-of-state prisoner," and "private contractor" have the same meanings as in section 9.07 of the Revised Code.

(2) "Private correctional facility" means a correctional facility in this state that houses out-of-state prisoners and that is operated by a private contractor under a contract with a local public entity pursuant to section 9.07 of the Revised Code.

Sec. 103.74.  Subject to division (C) of section 103.73 of the Revised Code, the chairperson of the correctional institution inspection committee may appoint subcommittees, each to consist of at least two members, for the purpose of conducting inspections pursuant to section 103.73 or 103.76 of the Revised Code.

The committee may employ a director and any other nonlegal staff, who shall be in the unclassified service of the state, that are necessary for the committee to carry out its duties and may contract for the services of whatever nonlegal technical advisors are necessary for the committee to carry out its duties. The attorney general shall act as legal counsel to the committee.

The chairperson and vice-chairperson of the legislative service commission shall fix the compensation of the director. The director, with the approval of the director of the legislative service commission, shall fix the compensation of other staff of the committee in accordance with a salary schedule established by the director of the legislative service commission. Contracts for the services of necessary technical advisors shall be approved by the director of the legislative service commission.

The general assembly shall biennially appropriate to the correctional institution inspection committee an amount sufficient to enable the committee to perform its duties. Salaries and expenses incurred by the committee shall be paid from that appropriation upon vouchers approved by the chairperson of the committee.

Sec. 103.75.  As used in sections 103.76 to 103.79 of the Revised Code, "youth services facility" means a facility operated, or contracted for, by the department of youth services that is used for the care, protection, treatment, or secure confinement of any child committed to the department's custody.

Sec. 103.76.  Subject to division (C) of section 103.73 of the Revised Code, the correctional institution inspection committee may make an inspection of any youth services facility at such times as it determines.

Sec. 103.77.  Subject to division (C) of section 103.73 of the Revised Code, the correctional institution inspection committee, and each member of the committee, for the purpose of making inspections of youth services facilities shall have access to any youth services facility, or to any part of that facility and shall not be required to give advance notice of, or to make prior arrangements before conducting, an inspection.

Sec. 103.78.  The correctional institution inspection committee may do the following:

(A) Subject to division (C) of section 103.73 of the Revised Code, establish and maintain a continuing program of inspection of youth services facilities;

(B) Evaluate and assist in the development of programs to improve the condition or operation of youth services facilities;

Sec. 103.79.  If the correctional institution inspection committee conducts inspections of youth services facilities during a biennium, the committee shall prepare a report for submission to the succeeding general assembly of the findings the committee makes in its inspections and of any programs that have been proposed or developed to improve the condition or operation of youth services facilities. The committee shall submit the report to the succeeding general assembly within fifteen days after commencement of that general assembly's first regular session.

Sec. 2930.16.  (A) If a defendant is incarcerated, a victim in a case who has requested to receive notice under this section shall be given notice of the incarceration of the defendant. If an alleged juvenile offender is committed to the temporary custody of a school, camp, institution, or other facility operated for the care of delinquent children or to the legal custody of the department of youth services, a victim in a case who has requested to receive notice under this section shall be given notice of the commitment. Promptly after sentence is imposed upon the defendant or the commitment of the alleged juvenile offender is ordered, the prosecutor in the case shall notify the victim of the date on which the defendant will be released from confinement or the prosecutor's reasonable estimate of that date or the date on which the alleged juvenile offender will have served the minimum period of commitment or the prosecutor's reasonable estimate of that date. The prosecutor also shall notify the victim of the name of the custodial agency of the defendant or alleged juvenile offender and tell the victim how to contact that custodial agency. If the custodial agency is the department of rehabilitation and correction, the prosecutor shall notify the victim of the services offered by the office of victims' services pursuant to section 5120.60 of the Revised Code. If the custodial agency is the department of youth services, the prosecutor shall notify the victim of the services provided by the office of victims' services within the release authority of the department pursuant to section 5139.55 of the Revised Code and the victim's right pursuant to section 5139.56 of the Revised Code to submit a written request to the release authority to be notified of actions the release authority takes with respect to the alleged juvenile offender. The victim shall keep the custodial agency informed of the victim's current address and telephone number.

(B)(1) Upon the victim's request, the prosecutor promptly shall notify the victim of any hearing for judicial release of the defendant pursuant to section 2929.20 of the Revised Code or of any hearing for judicial release or early release of the alleged juvenile offender pursuant to section 2151.38 of the Revised Code and of the victim's right to make a statement under those sections. The court shall notify the victim of its ruling in each of those hearings and on each of those applications.

(2) Upon the request of a victim of a crime that is a sexually violent offense and that is committed by a sexually violent predator who is sentenced to a prison term pursuant to division (A)(3) of section 2971.03 of the Revised Code, the prosecutor promptly shall notify the victim of any hearing to be conducted pursuant to section 2971.05 of the Revised Code to determine whether to modify the requirement that the offender serve the entire prison term in a state correctional facility in accordance with division (C) of that section, whether to continue, revise, or revoke any existing modification of that requirement, or whether to terminate the prison term in accordance with division (D) of that section. The court shall notify the victim of any order issued at the conclusion of the hearing. 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.

(C) Upon the victim's request made at any time before the particular notice would be due, the custodial agency of a defendant or alleged juvenile offender shall give the victim any of the following notices that is applicable:

(1) At least three weeks before the adult parole authority recommends a pardon or commutation of sentence for the defendant or at least three weeks prior to a hearing before the adult parole authority regarding a grant of parole to the defendant, notice of the victim's right to submit a statement regarding the impact of the defendant's release in accordance with section 2967.12 of the Revised Code and, if applicable, of the victim's right to appear at a full board hearing of the parole board to give testimony as authorized by section 5149.101 of the Revised Code;

(2) At least three weeks before the defendant is transferred to transitional control under section 2967.26 of the Revised Code, notice of the pendency of the transfer and of the victim's right under that section to submit a statement regarding the impact of the transfer;

(3) At least thirty days before the release authority of the department of youth services holds a release review, release hearing, or discharge review for the alleged juvenile offender, notice of the pendency of the review or hearing, of the victim's right to make an oral or written statement regarding the impact of the crime upon the victim or regarding the possible release or discharge, and, if the notice pertains to a hearing, of the victim's right to attend and make statements or comments at the hearing as authorized by section 5139.56 of the Revised Code;

(4) Prompt notice of the defendant's or alleged juvenile offender's escape from a facility of the custodial agency in which the defendant was incarcerated or in which the alleged juvenile offender was placed after commitment, of the defendant's or alleged juvenile offender's absence without leave from a mental health or mental retardation and developmental disabilities facility or from other custody, and of the capture of the defendant or alleged juvenile offender after an escape or absence;

(5) Notice of the defendant's or alleged juvenile offender's death while in confinement or custody;

(6) Notice of the defendant's or alleged juvenile offender's release from confinement or custody and the terms and conditions of the release.

Sec. 2967.03.  The adult parole authority may exercise its functions and duties in relation to the pardon, commutation of sentence, or reprieve of a convict upon direction of the governor or upon its own initiative. It may exercise its functions and duties in relation to the parole of a prisoner who is eligible for parole upon the initiative of the head of the institution in which the prisoner is confined or upon its own initiative. When a prisoner becomes eligible for parole, the head of the institution in which the prisoner is confined shall notify the authority in the manner prescribed by the authority. The authority may investigate and examine, or cause the investigation and examination of, prisoners confined in state correctional institutions concerning their conduct in the institutions, their mental and moral qualities and characteristics, their knowledge of a trade or profession, their former means of livelihood, their family relationships, and any other matters affecting their fitness to be at liberty without being a threat to society.

The authority may recommend to the governor the pardon, commutation of sentence, or reprieve of any convict or prisoner or grant a parole to any prisoner for whom parole is authorized, if in its judgment there is reasonable ground to believe that granting a pardon, commutation, or reprieve to the convict or paroling the prisoner would further the interests of justice and be consistent with the welfare and security of society. However, the authority shall not recommend a pardon or commutation of sentence of, or grant a parole to, any convict or prisoner until the authority has complied with the applicable notice requirements of sections 2930.16 and 2967.12 of the Revised Code and until it has considered any statement made by a victim or a victim's representative that is relevant to the convict's or prisoner's case and that was sent to the authority pursuant to section 2930.17 of the Revised Code and any other statement made by a victim or a victim's representative that is relevant to the convict's or prisoner's case and that was received by the authority after it provided notice of the pendency of the action under sections 2930.16 and 2967.12 of the Revised Code. If a victim or, victim's representative, or the victim's spouse, parent, sibling, or child appears at a full board hearing of the parole board and gives testimony as authorized by section 5149.101 of the Revised Code, the authority shall consider the testimony in determining whether to grant a parole. The trial judge and prosecuting attorney of the trial court in which a person was convicted shall furnish to the authority, at the request of the authority, a summarized statement of the facts proved at the trial and of all other facts having reference to the propriety of recommending a pardon or commutation, or granting a parole, together with a recommendation for or against a pardon, commutation, or parole, and the reasons for the recommendation. The trial judge of the court, and the prosecuting attorney in the trial, in which a prisoner was convicted, specified law enforcement agency members, and a representative of the prisoner may appear at a full board hearing of the parole board and give testimony in regard to the grant of a parole to the prisoner as authorized by section 5149.101 of the Revised Code. All state and local officials shall furnish information to the authority, when so requested by it in the performance of its duties.

The adult parole authority shall exercise its functions and duties in relation to the release of prisoners who are serving a stated prison term in accordance with section 2967.28 of the Revised Code.

Sec. 2967.12.  (A) Except as provided in division (G) of this section, at least three weeks before the adult parole authority recommends any pardon or commutation of sentence, or grants any parole, the authority shall send a notice of the pendency of the pardon, commutation, or parole, setting forth the name of the person on whose behalf it is made, the offense of which the person was convicted, the time of conviction, and the term of the person's sentence, to the prosecuting attorney and the judge of the court of common pleas of the county in which the indictment against the person was found. If there is more than one judge of that court of common pleas, the authority shall send the notice to the presiding judge.

(B) If a request for notification has been made pursuant to section 2930.16 of the Revised Code, the adult parole authority also shall give notice to the victim or the victim's representative prior to recommending any pardon or commutation of sentence for, or granting any parole to, the person. The authority shall provide the notice at the same time as the notice required by division (A) of this section and shall include in the notice the information required to be set forth in that notice. The notice also shall inform the victim or the victim's representative that the victim or representative may send a written statement relative to the victimization and the pending action to the adult parole authority and that, if the authority receives any written statement prior to recommending a pardon or commutation or granting a parole for a person, the authority will consider the statement before it recommends a pardon or commutation or grants a parole. If the person is being considered for parole, the notice shall inform the victim or the victim's representative that a full board hearing of the parole board may be held and that the victim or victim's representative may contact the office of victims' services for further information. If the person being considered for parole was convicted of or pleaded guilty to violating section 2903.01 or 2903.02 of the Revised Code, the notice shall inform the victim of that offense, the victim's representative, or a member of the victim's immediate family that the victim, the victim's representative, and the victim's immediate family have the right to give testimony at a full board hearing of the parole board and that the victim or victim's representative may contact the office of victims' services for further information. As used in this division, "the victim's immediate family" means the mother, father, spouse, sibling, or child of the victim.

(C) When notice of the pendency of any pardon, commutation of sentence, or parole has been given as provided in division (A) of this section and a hearing on the pardon, commutation, or parole is continued to a date certain, the authority shall give notice by mail of the further consideration of the pardon, commutation, or parole to the proper judge and prosecuting attorney at least ten days before the further consideration. When notice of the pendency of any pardon, commutation, or parole has been given as provided in division (B) of this section and the hearing on it is continued to a date certain, the authority shall give notice of the further consideration to the victim or the victim's representative in accordance with section 2930.03 of the Revised Code.

(D) In case of an application for the pardon or commutation of sentence of a person sentenced to capital punishment, the governor may modify the requirements of notification and publication if there is not sufficient time for compliance with the requirements before the date fixed for the execution of sentence.

(E) If an offender is serving a prison term imposed under division (A)(3) of section 2971.03 of the Revised Code and if the parole board terminates its control over the offender's service of that term pursuant to section 2971.04 of the Revised Code, the parole board immediately shall provide written notice of its termination of control or the transfer of control to the entities and persons specified in section 2971.04 of the Revised Code.

(F) The failure of the adult parole authority to comply with the notice provisions of division (A), (B), or (C) of this section or the failure of the parole board to comply with the notice provisions of division (E) of this section do not give any rights or any grounds for appeal or post-conviction relief to the person serving the sentence.

(G) Divisions (A), (B), and (C) of this section do not apply to any release of a person that is of the type described in division (B)(2)(b) of section 5120.031 of the Revised Code.

Sec. 5149.101.  (A)(1) A board hearing officer, a board member, or the office of victims' services may petition the board for a full board hearing that relates to the proposed parole or re-parole of a prisoner. At a meeting of the board at which at least seven a majority of board members are present, a the majority of those present shall determine whether a full board hearing shall be held.

(2) A victim of a violation of section 2903.01 or 2903.02 of the Revised Code, the victim's representative, or any person described in division (B)(5) of this section may request the board hold a full board hearing that relates to the proposed parole or re-parole of the person that committed the violation. If a victim, victim's representative, or other person requests a full board hearing pursuant to this division, the board shall hold a full board hearing.

(B) At a full board hearing that relates to the proposed parole or re-parole of a prisoner and that has been petitioned for or requested in accordance with division (A) of this section, the parole board shall permit the following persons to appear and to give testimony or to submit written statements:

(1) The prosecuting attorney of the county in which the original indictment against the prisoner was found and members of any law enforcement agency that assisted in the prosecution of the original offense;

(2) The judge of the court of common pleas who imposed the original sentence of incarceration upon the prisoner, or the judge's successor;

(3) The victim of the original offense for which the prisoner is serving the sentence or the victim's representative designated pursuant to section 2930.02 of the Revised Code:

(4) The victim of any behavior that resulted in parole being revoked;

(5) With respect to a full board hearing held pursuant to division (A)(2) of this section, all of the following:

(a) The spouse of the victim of the original offense;

(b) The parent or parents of the victim of the original offense;

(c) The sibling of the victim of the original offense;

(d) The child or children of the victim of the original offense.

(6) Counsel or some other person designated by the prisoner as a representative, as described in division (C) of this section.

(C) Except as otherwise provided in this division, a full board hearing of the parole board is not subject to section 121.22 of the Revised Code. The persons who may attend a full board hearing are the persons described in divisions (B)(1) to (3)(6) of this section, and representatives of the press, radio and television stations, and broadcasting networks who are members of a generally recognized professional media organization.

At the request of a person described in division (B)(3) of this section, representatives of the news media described in this division shall be excluded from the hearing while that person is giving testimony at the hearing. The prisoner being considered for parole has no right to be present at the hearing, but may be represented by counsel or some other person designated by the prisoner.

If there is an objection at a full board hearing to a recommendation for the parole of a prisoner, the board may approve or disapprove the recommendation or defer its decision until a subsequent full board hearing. The board may permit interested persons other than those listed in this division and division (B) of this section to attend full board hearings pursuant to rules adopted by the adult parole authority.

(D) The adult parole authority shall adopt rules for the implementation of this section. The rules shall specify reasonable restrictions on the number of media representatives that may attend a hearing, based on considerations of space, and other procedures designed to accomplish an effective, orderly process for full board hearings.

SECTION 2. That existing sections 103.73, 103.74, 2930.16, 2967.03, 2967.12, and 5149.101 of the Revised Code are hereby repealed.

Please send questions and comments to the Webmaster.
© 2017 Legislative Information Systems | Disclaimer