COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio would more readily welcome ex-inmates back into the workforce as cosmetologists, optical dispensers, salvage-yard dealers, construction workers and security guards under a bill that has cleared the state Legislature.
The bill aims to curb "collateral sanctions," employment or professional hardships brought about by a person's conviction or decision to plead guilty to a crime. The Ohio House approved it Wednesday, and the Senate gave the final signoff.
The bill backed by Gov. John Kasich creates a mechanism for ex-offenders to get a state certificate of employment or professional licensure lifting certain bars on employment.
It also allows courts to order community service instead of fines or drivers' license suspensions, and permits adjusting child-support payments when someone's earning capacity falls because of serving time or having a felony record.
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With a busy holiday weekend ahead, state officials are planning safety improvements in the popular Hocking Hills region of southeastern Ohio after three people died recently in fatal falls from its high cliffs.
State officials say safety improvements are planned after a third fatal fall from a cliff recently in the Hockings Hills region of southeastern Ohio.