(1) The director of rehabilitation and correction, by rule, shall promulgate minimum standards for jails in Ohio, including minimum security jails dedicated under section 341.34 or 753.21 of the Revised Code. Whenever the director files a rule or an amendment to a rule in final form with both the secretary of state and the director of the legislative service commission pursuant to section 111.15 of the Revised Code, the director of rehabilitation and correction promptly shall send a copy of the rule or amendment, if the rule or amendment pertains to minimum jail standards, by ordinary mail to the political subdivisions or affiliations of political subdivisions that operate jails to which the standards apply.
(2) The rules promulgated in accordance with division (A)(1) of this section shall serve as criteria for the investigative and supervisory powers and duties vested by division (D) of this section in the division of parole and community services of the department of rehabilitation and correction or in another division of the department to which those powers and duties are assigned.
(B) The director may initiate an action in the court of common pleas of the county in which a facility that is subject to the rules promulgated under division (A)(1) of this section is situated to enjoin compliance with the minimum standards for jails or with the minimum standards and minimum renovation, modification, and construction criteria for minimum security jails.
(C) Upon the request of an administrator of a jail facility, the chief executive of a municipal corporation, or a board of county commissioners, the director of rehabilitation and correction or the director's designee shall grant a variance from the minimum standards for jails in Ohio for a facility that is subject to one of those minimum standards when the director determines that strict compliance with the minimum standards would cause unusual, practical difficulties or financial hardship, that existing or alternative practices meet the intent of the minimum standards, and that granting a variance would not seriously affect the security of the facility, the supervision of the inmates, or the safe, healthful operation of the facility. If the director or the director's designee denies a variance, the applicant may appeal the denial pursuant to section 119.12 of the Revised Code.
(D) The following powers and duties shall be exercised by the division of parole and community services unless assigned to another division by the director:
(1) The investigation and supervision of county and municipal jails, workhouses, minimum security jails, and other correctional institutions and agencies;
(3) The review and approval of proposals for community-based correctional facilities and programs and district community-based correctional facilities and programs that are submitted pursuant to division (B) of section 2301.51 of the Revised Code;
(4) The distribution of funds made available to the division for purposes of assisting in the renovation, maintenance, and operation of community-based correctional facilities and programs and district community-based correctional facilities and programs in accordance with section 5120.112 of the Revised Code;
(5) The performance of the duty imposed upon the department of rehabilitation and correction in section 5149.31 of the Revised Code to establish and administer a program of subsidies to eligible municipal corporations, counties, and groups of contiguous counties for the development, implementation, and operation of community-based corrections programs;
(7) Contracting with a public or private agency or a department or political subdivision of the state that operates a licensed halfway house or community residential center for the provision of housing, supervision, and other services to parolees, releasees, persons placed under a residential sanction, persons under transitional control, and other eligible offenders in accordance with section 2967.14 of the Revised Code.
Other powers and duties may be assigned by the director of rehabilitation and correction to the division of parole and community services. This section does not apply to the department of youth services or its institutions or employees.
Effective Date: 01-01-2004.