Fiscal Note & Local Impact Statement

126 th General Assembly of Ohio

Ohio Legislative Service Commission

77 South High Street, 9th Floor, Columbus, OH 43215-6136 ² Phone: (614) 466-3615

² Internet Web Site: http://www.lsc.state.oh.us/

BILL:

Am. H.B. 484

DATE:

May 25, 2006

STATUS:

As Enacted – Effective September 4, 2006

SPONSOR:

Rep. Boccieri

LOCAL IMPACT STATEMENT REQUIRED:

No

Minimal cost

 


CONTENTS:

Funeral protest prohibitions

 

State Fiscal Highlights

 

STATE FUND

FY 2007

FY 2008

FUTURE YEARS

General Revenue Fund (GRF)

     Revenues

Potential negligible gain

in locally collected

state court costs

Potential negligible gain

in locally collected

state court costs

Potential negligible gain

in locally collected

state court costs

     Expenditures

No fiscal effect

No fiscal effect

No fiscal effect

Victims of Crime/Reparations Fund (Fund 402)

     Revenues

Potential negligible gain

in locally collected

state court costs

Potential negligible gain

in locally collected

state court costs

Potential negligible gain

in locally collected

state court costs

     Expenditures

- 0 -

- 0 -

- 0 -

Note:  The state fiscal year is July 1 through June 30.  For example, FY 2007 is July 1, 2006 – June 30, 2007.

 

·        Court cost revenues.  If, subsequent to the bill’s enactment, an individual or association is convicted of, or pleads guilty to, one of its modified protest-related prohibitions, then the state may gain locally collected state court costs for deposit in the state treasury to the credit of the GRF and the Victims of Crime/Reparations Fund (Fund 402).  As the number of criminal cases that might be affected by the bill in some manner in any given local jurisdiction annually appears likely to be relatively small, the potential gain in state court cost revenues would be negligible.  For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, negligible means a revenue gain estimated at less than $1,000 per year per state fund.

·        Expenditures.  The bill appears unlikely to have a direct and immediate effect on state expenditures.


Local Fiscal Highlights

 

LOCAL GOVERNMENT

FY 2006

FY 2007

FUTURE YEARS

Counties and Municipalities

     Revenues

Potential gain in criminal court costs and fines, minimal at most

Potential gain in criminal court costs and fines, minimal at most

Potential gain in criminal court costs and fines,

minimal at most

     Expenditures

Potential criminal justice system cost increase, minimal at most

Potential criminal justice system cost increase, minimal at most

Potential criminal justice system cost increase,

minimal at most

Note:  For most local governments, the fiscal year is the calendar year.  The school district fiscal year is July 1 through June 30.

 

·        Local criminal justice system expenditures.  It would not appear that the bill’s protest-related prohibitions would generate a significant additional fiscal burden for any affected local criminal justice system, as the potential number of cases that could be affected or created by the bill is expected to be relatively small in any given county or municipality.  For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, a minimal expenditure increase means an estimated annual cost of no more than $5,000 for any affected county or municipal criminal justice system.

·        Local court cost and fine revenues.  If, as assumed above, the number of criminal cases that could be affected by the bill in some manner is relatively small in any affected local jurisdiction, then the potential amount of court cost and fine revenues that might be generated for that local jurisdiction is likely to be no more than minimal annually.  For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, a "minimal" revenue gain means an estimated increase of no more than $5,000 for any affected county or municipality per year.


 


 

 

Detailed Fiscal Analysis

 

Fiscally notable provisions

 

            For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, the bill most notably prohibits certain protest activities within 300 feet of:  (1) the site of a funeral service during and within one hour before and after the service and/or (2) a funeral procession.

 

Criminal caseload impact

 

Under current law, (1) no person may picket, nor may any association or corporation cause to be picketed, any residence, cemetery, funeral home, church, synagogue or other establishment within one hour before and during the conducting of an actual funeral or burial service at such place, and (2) no person may picket, nor may any association or corporation cause to be picketed, any funeral procession.  A violation of either prohibition by an individual is a misdemeanor of the third degree, and by an association is a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.  The existing sentences and fines for a misdemeanor of the third or fourth degree generally, unchanged by the bill, are summarized in Table 1 below.

 

Table 1

Existing Sentences and Fines for Certain Misdemeanors Generally

Offense Level

Fine

Term of Incarceration

Misdemeanor of the 3rd degree

Up to $500

Not more than 60 day jail term

Misdemeanor of the 4th degree

Up to $250

Not more than 30 day jail term

 

The bill further specifies that certain protest activities may not take place within 300 feet of the previously stated locations and that persons may not engage in “protest activities,” as defined by the bill, in addition to the other activities already prohibited under current law.  Therefore, the conduct prohibited by the bill in all likelihood involves an act that is already prohibited and for which an offender can be sanctioned.  Assuming that were true, then it seems unlikely that the bill will create many new criminal matters for any given county or municipal criminal justice system to resolve. 

 

As an indirect effect of the bill, it is possible that activities that were previously prohibited under current law could actually now be considered legal behavior if the activity occurs more than 300 feet from certain specified locations.  However, since it is rather problematic to predict the future behavior of those inclined to engage in such activities, LSC fiscal staff cannot readily predict how future cases could be affected.  For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, LSC fiscal staff has assumed that those choosing to engage in such protest activities will generally comply with the 300-foot restriction, and that the number of criminal cases that might be affected by the bill in some manner in any given local jurisdiction will be relatively small.


State fiscal effects

 

Court cost revenues 

 

If, subsequent to the bill’s enactment, an individual or association is convicted of, or pleads guilty to, one of these modified protest-related prohibitions, then the sentencing court will most likely impose, pursuant to current law, locally collected state court costs that, if collected, would then be forwarded for deposit in the state treasury to the credit of the GRF and the Victims of Crime/Reparations Fund (Fund 402).  For a misdemeanor offense, the state court cost totals $24, with $15 of that amount being credited to the GRF and the remaining $9 being credited to Fund 402.  As the number of criminal cases that might be affected by the bill in some manner in any given local jurisdiction annually appears likely to be relatively small, any gain in state court cost revenues would be negligible.  For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, negligible means a revenue gain estimated at less than $1,000 per year per state fund.

 

Expenditures 

 

The bill appears unlikely to have a direct and immediate effect on state expenditures.

 

Local fiscal effects

 

Criminal justice system expenditures

 

As of this writing, it would not appear that the bill’s protest-related prohibitions would generate a significant additional fiscal burden for any affected county or municipal criminal justice system.  Although the annual criminal justice system expenditures related to investigating, prosecuting, adjudicating, defending (if indigent), and sanctioning certain offenders may rise in some local jurisdictions, any such increase will be minimal at most, as the potential number of cases that could be affected or created by the bill is expected to be relatively small in any given county or municipality.  For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, a minimal expenditure increase means an estimated annual cost of no more than $5,000 for any affected county or municipal criminal justice system.

 

Court cost and fine revenues 

 

If, as assumed above, the number of criminal cases that could be affected by the bill in some manner is relatively small in any affected local jurisdiction, then the potential amount of court cost and fine revenues that might be generated for that local jurisdiction is likely to be no more than minimal annually.  For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, a "minimal" revenue gain means an estimated increase of no more than $5,000 for any affected county or municipality per year.

 

 

 

LSC fiscal staff:  Jamie L. Doskocil, Senior Budget Analyst

 

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