Ohio Municipalities and Sex Offender Residency Restrictions

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In recent weeks, questions have arisen regarding what a municipality may do when a convicted sex offender chooses to reside within the municipal border. These questions are legitimate, and it is worth our time to fully understand what both the municipality and its citizens can and should do in the face of real and perceived threats to the safety and welfare of our children.

State law provides that a municipality may prevent sex offenders from residing in certain areas. The General Assembly first enacted sex offender residency restrictions effective July 31, 2003. At that time, the restrictions allowed municipalities to prohibit sex offenders from residing within 1,000 feet of any “school premises.” In July 2007, the General Assembly expanded the scope of the law to allow a municipality to prevent sex offenders from residing within 1,000 feet of a preschool or child day-care center. Therefore, as a general matter under current law, the municipality may initiate legal proceedings to prevent a sex offender from residing within 1,000 feet of any school, preschool, or child day-care center.

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Published In: Administrative Agency Updates, Criminal Law Updates, Education Updates, Residential Real Estate Updates, Zoning, Planning & Land Use Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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