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Bill Makes Ohio Requirement Of Presentence Report Optional

Lawmakers in the Ohio Senate consider a bill aimed at saving money and time some inmates spend in jail before they're are officially sentenced.

Ohio Senate lawmakers are considering a bill aimed at saving money and the amount of time some inmates spend in jail before sentencing.

The bill makes the preparation of a presentence report optional if both the prosecution and defense agree.

Co-sponsor Greta Johnson, an Akron Democrat, says preparing a report can cost up to $800 and take three to six weeks, during which time an offender is often still in jail.

The bill eliminates that requirement when an offender will be sentenced to some type of probation rather than prison time, though a judge can still order it.

The Ohio House approved the bill in May. The Senate Criminal Justice Committee held a first hearing Wednesday.

The Ohio Supreme Court calls presentence investigations in non-prison felony cases "excessive and unwarranted."