1702.80 Qualified nonprofit corporation may establish police department.

(A) As used in this section:

(1) "Qualified nonprofit corporation" means a nonprofit corporation that is established under this chapter and to which all of the following apply:

(a) The nonprofit corporation is a tax-exempt charitable organization;

(b) The nonprofit corporation has other organizations as members, and at least twenty of its members are tax-exempt charitable organizations;

(c) The nonprofit corporation, together with its members that are organizations, owns, leases, occupies, or uses an area of not less than three hundred acres within which its police department established under division (B) of this section will provide police services;

(d) The chief of police of each municipal corporation within which the police department of the nonprofit corporation will be eligible to provide police services has given approval for persons who are appointed as police officers of that department to carry out their powers and duties as police officers.

(2) "Authorizing agreement" means the written agreement entered into between a qualified nonprofit corporation and a municipal corporation pursuant to division (B) of this section for the provision of police services within the municipal corporation by the police department of the nonprofit corporation established under division (B) of this section.

(3) "Tax exempt" means that a corporation or organization is exempt from federal income taxation under subsection 501(a) and is described in subsection 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and that the corporation or organization has received from the internal revenue service a determination letter that currently is in effect stating that the corporation or organization is exempt from federal income taxation under that subsection and is described in that subsection.

(4) "Internal Revenue Code" means the "Internal Revenue Code of 1986," 100 Stat. 2085, 26 U.S.C.A. 1 , as amended.

(5) "Felony" has the same meaning as in section 109.511 of the Revised Code.

(B) A qualified nonprofit corporation may establish a police department to provide police services, subject to the requirements and limitations set forth in this division and divisions (C) and (D) of this section, within one or more municipal corporations. Subject to division (E) of this section, the board of trustees of a qualified nonprofit corporation that establishes a police department may appoint persons as police officers of the department, and the corporation may employ the persons so appointed as police officers.

A person so appointed and employed as a police officer is authorized to act as a police officer only to the extent and in the manner described in this section and only when directly engaged in the discharge of that person's duties as a police officer for the qualified nonprofit corporation. No person so appointed and employed as a police officer shall engage in any duties or activities as a police officer for a police department established by a qualified nonprofit corporation unless both of the following apply:

(1) The person successfully has completed a training program approved by the Ohio peace officer training commission and has been certified by the commission as having successfully completed the training program, or the person previously has successfully completed a police officer basic training program certified by the commission and has been awarded a certificate to that effect by the commission.

(2) The qualified nonprofit corporation has entered into a written authorizing agreement, as described in division (C) of this section, with the chief of police of each municipal corporation within which the police department of the qualified nonprofit corporation will provide police services.

(C) An authorizing agreement entered into between a qualified nonprofit corporation and a chief of police of a municipal corporation shall apply only to the agreeing municipal corporation, and a separate authorizing agreement shall be entered into for each municipal corporation within which the police department of the qualified nonprofit corporation will provide police services. An authorizing agreement shall not require, or contain any provision granting authority to, the chief of police or any other officer, official, or employee of the municipal corporation that enters into the agreement, to appoint or to approve or disapprove the appointment of any police officer appointed and employed by the qualified nonprofit corporation police department under division (B) of this section. An authorizing agreement shall comply with any statutes and with any municipal charter provisions, ordinances, or resolutions that may apply to it. An authorizing agreement may prescribe, but is not limited to, any of the following:

(1) The geographical territory within the municipal corporation in which the police department established by the qualified nonprofit corporation under division (B) of this section may provide police services;

(2) The standards and criteria to govern the interaction between the police officers employed by the police department established by the qualified nonprofit corporation under division (B) of this section and the law enforcement officers employed by the municipal corporation, which standards and criteria may include, but are not limited to, either of the following:

(a) Provisions governing the reporting of offenses discovered by the police officers employed by the qualified nonprofit corporation police department to the police department of the municipal corporation;

(b) Provisions governing the processing and confinement of persons arrested by police officers of the qualified nonprofit corporation police department.

(3) Any limitation on the qualified nonprofit corporation police department's enforcement of municipal traffic ordinances and regulations;

(4) The duration, if any, of the agreement.

(D) If a qualified nonprofit corporation establishes a police department under this section, the qualified nonprofit corporation, within the geographical territory specified for each municipal corporation that has entered into an authorizing agreement with it, concurrently with the municipal corporation, shall preserve the peace, protect persons and property, enforce the laws of the state, and enforce the charter provisions, ordinances, and regulations of the political subdivisions of the state that apply within that territory. Except as limited by the terms of any applicable authorizing agreement, each police officer who is employed by a police department established by a qualified nonprofit corporation and who satisfies the requirement set forth in division (B)(1) of this section is vested, while directly in the discharge of that police officer's duties as a police officer, with the same powers and authority as are vested in a police officer of a municipal corporation under Title XXIX of the Revised Code and the Rules of Criminal Procedure, and with the same powers and authority, including the operation of a public safety vehicle, as are vested in a police officer of a municipal corporation under Chapter 4511. of the Revised Code.

(E)

(1) The board of trustees of a qualified nonprofit corporation that establishes a police department shall not appoint a person as a police officer of the department pursuant to division (B) of this section on a permanent basis, on a temporary basis, for a probationary term, or on other than a permanent basis if the person previously has been convicted of or has pleaded guilty to a felony.

(2)

(a) The board of trustees of a qualified nonprofit corporation shall terminate the employment of a police officer of its police department appointed under division (B) of this section if the police officer does either of the following:

(i) Pleads guilty to a felony;

(ii) Pleads guilty to a misdemeanor pursuant to a negotiated plea agreement as provided in division (D) of section 2929.43 of the Revised Code in which the police officer agrees to surrender the certificate awarded to the police officer under section 109.77 of the Revised Code.

(b) The board of trustees of a qualified nonprofit corporation shall suspend from employment a police officer of its police department appointed under division (B) of this section if the police officer is convicted, after trial, of a felony. If the police officer files an appeal from that conviction and the conviction is upheld by the highest court to which the appeal is taken or if the police officer does not file a timely appeal, the board shall terminate the employment of that police officer. If the police officer files an appeal that results in the police officer's acquittal of the felony or conviction of a misdemeanor, or in the dismissal of the felony charge against the police officer, the board shall reinstate that police officer. A police officer who is reinstated under division (E)(2)(b) of this section shall not receive any back pay unless that police officer's conviction of the felony was reversed on appeal, or the felony charge was dismissed, because the court found insufficient evidence to convict the police officer of the felony.

(3) Division (E) of this section does not apply regarding an offense that was committed prior to January 1, 1997.

(4) The suspension from employment, or the termination of the employment, of a police officer under division (E)(2) of this section shall be in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 01-01-2004