Ohio lawmakers aren't moving forward on a comprehensive package of police reforms that came in the wake of George Floyd's death and the nationwide civil protests, a key legislative leader said Monday.
"It's dead for the year," said state Rep. Cindy Abrams, R-Harrison, a former police officer and a member of the Ohio House GOP leadership team.
In June 2020, Gov. Mike DeWine advocated a set of reforms that include:
banning the use of chokeholds in most situations.
requiring independent investigators and prosecutors for police use-of-force incidents.
mandating that potential recruits to be required to pass a psychological assessment before they can be admitted to an academy.
developing professional licensing beyond the certificate currently offered for police officers.
forcing local law enforcement agencies to report use-of-force incidents to the state for inclusion in a public database.
Abrams and state Rep. Phil Plummer, R-Dayton, who is the former Montgomery County Sheriff, pledged to take up the reform package. But a comprehensive bill was never introduced by the Republicans and lawmakers aren't scheduled to return to Columbus until after the November election.
Abrams, speaking to The Enquirer editorial board, said the focus now will be on providing state funding to cover continuing police training.
Ohio has about 34,000 sworn police officers.
In July following the police shooting death of Jayland Walker in Akron, DeWine again called on lawmakers to move on his police reform package.
DeWine spokesman Dan Tierney said "We would disagree that this issue is dead. There are many different pieces to this issue, some of which have been enacted, some of which still need to be enacted, including increasing money for continuing training."
This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: Ohio police reforms won't advance this year, lawmakers push training