Cleveland's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Cleveland, Oh | WKYC.com

Ohio Senate president pledges action on drug sentencing bill

The legislation is an attempt to reduce the state's prison population.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — (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.

RELATED: Officials seize enough suspected fentanyl to kill Ohio’s entire population ‘many times over’

RELATED: Ohio lawmaker wants to use seized fentanyl in executions of inmates on death row