On Wednesday, the Ohio House of Representatives voted to pass legislation intended to "enhance the safety of children while at school."
House Bill 215 is sponsored by State Rep. Anthony DeVitis (R-Green) and is also known as the Law Officer Volunteers in Education (LOVE) Program.
The legislation would allow current or retired law enforcement officers to volunteer in schools and patrol the premises "in order to prevent or respond to a mass casualty event".
â??We all share concerns about the safety of our kids when they go off to school. I believe House Bill 215 secures a major step toward providing increased safety in schools,â?? Rep. DeVitis said. â??House Bill 215 is a bipartisan, common-sense piece of legislation that will provide greater peace of mind for Ohioâ??s families.â??
Participation of officers in the LOVE Program would be on a volunteer basis only and each participant undergoing a criminal records check every five years, at the officerâ??s own expense.
The County Sheriff's Department would maintain a list of current and retired officers who qualify.
However, House Bill 215 would also provide the volunteers with a nonrefundable personal income tax credit of $2 for each hour that they patrol school grounds, not to exceed $500 a year.
The bill will now move to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.