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Ghanbari's Bill for Local Public Officials and Law Enforcement Jurisdiction Passes Ohio House

The legislation allows township officers to protect highways within jurisdiction
May 12, 2021
Haraz N. Ghanbari News

State Rep. Haraz N. Ghanbari (R-Perrysburg) and the Ohio House today passed House Bill 206. The legislation gives township trustees the ability to allow township law officers to enforce laws on interstate highways within their jurisdiction. Ghanbari spoke to the bill on the House floor.

“This is about facilitating more cooperation and community organization between our local officials and departments as they work together to protect our fellow citizens on our roadways,” said Ghanbari.

For township officers to be able to do this, the following must be required:

  • The highway is part of the interstate highway system;
  • The township has a population between 5,000 and 50,000 residents;
  • Township Trustees grant authority to patrol the applicable interstate;
  • The highway is located within the township officer’s jurisdiction; and
  • There is a permanent access point on and off the highway located within the jurisdiction and open to the public.

The ultimate say is decided by township trustees, as a provision within the bill allows them to revoke this authority through a resolution if they so choose.

Within Ghanbari’s district, several groups announced their support during the committee process through submitted testimony. In particular, the Perrysburg Township Board of Trustees noted their gratitude in submitted testimony of the bill gaining traction and moving forward after being “stalled” over the last few years.

Other groups that announced support for the bill during committee hearings includes the Ohio State Highway Patrol, Perrysburg Township Police Department, Lake Township Police Department, Medina County Commissioners, Ohio Township Association, Ohio Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, Ohio Trucking Association, Ohio Fire Chiefs’ Association, and the Wood County Board of Commissioners.

“Now more than ever, cooperation between our local public officials and law enforcement is very critical. I am happy to stand here today to support this legislation, which will help in protecting Ohioans and bring more coordination among the interested parties as mentioned,” Ghanbari added.

Ghanbari also introduced the identical bill during the previous General Assembly and it passed out of the Ohio House last December.

The legislation and now moves over to the Senate for further consideration.