State Rep. Thomas Hall, R-Madison Twp., was the primary sponsor of House Bill 99, which was signed into law today by Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine.
Hall’s initiative was spurred by so many mass shootings in schools, and notably, a 2016 shooting at Madison High School.
“We are doing something to help protect the lives of our children and staff at schools here in Ohio,” Hall said. “In Butler County, we dealt with this firsthand when my father who is a school resource officer at Madison High School chased a school shooter from the premises. With these emergencies, seconds matter and this legislation today really matters.”
What the bill means:
- An Ohio School Safety Center will be created and operated by the Ohio Mobile Training Team. “The team will consist of one chief mobile training officer and 16 regional officers that will be assigned to geographic locations around the state. The officers must be peace officers or veterans,” states a release from Hall’s office.
It will also:
- Help schools develop and implement emergency management plans and assist schools with security;
- Create a training curriculum for school personnel that wish to carry firearms in school safety zones when authorized by the board. The training must consist of 24 hours of initial instruction, followed by 8 annual hours, and include topics such as mitigation techniques.
The bill also states school boards may require more training if they choose. School boards may also develop their own training plans that are submitted to DPS for approval.
Also according to the bill, school personnel who are armed will get an annual criminal background check; and school boards must inform parents, by whatever way the board normally communicates with the public, if school personnel are authorized to be armed.
House Bill 99 will go into effect in 90 days.