Ohio Senate president pledges action on drug sentencing bill


COLUMBUS (AP) — The leader of the Ohio Senate is pledging to take action by year’s end on a bill designed to reduce low-level drug possessions to misdemeanors and increase penalties for drug dealers.

The legislation is part of a long-running attempt by lawmakers to reduce Ohio’s prison population.

Gongwer News Service reports that GOP Senate President Larry Obhof, a Medina Republican, wants the bill made a priority as hearings continue this fall.

The bipartisan bill would also allow people convicted of low-level drug possession charges to have their records sealed on completion of drug court requirements.

The legislation also creates harsher penalties for trafficking, deeming it aggravated trafficking, major trafficking or trafficking, depending on the drug amounts involved.