senate Bill S6040

Allows a member of the Niagara county clerk's office to access mental hygiene records to assist in the firearm permit application investigation process

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
view actions

actions

  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO CODES
  • 01 / May / 2012
    • 1ST REPORT CAL.645
  • 02 / May / 2012
    • 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • 07 / May / 2012
    • ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • 21 / Jun / 2012
    • COMMITTED TO RULES

Summary

Allows a member of the Niagara county clerk's office to access mental hygiene records to assist in the firearm permit application investigation process.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A8574
Versions:
S6040
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Rules
Law Section:
Penal Law
Laws Affected:
Amd ยง400.00, Pen L

Votes

12
1
12
Aye
1
Nay
3
aye with reservations
0
absent
0
excused
0
abstained
show Codes committee vote details

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S6040

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
amending the penal law, in relation to allowing a member of the Niagara
county clerk's office to access mental health records for firearm
license applications

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
To allow the Niagara County Clerk's
office to access mental hygiene records to assist in the firearm
permit application investigation process.
Access will only be granted to a certified employee of the Niagara
County Clerk's office who is authorized to access clinical records in
accordance with section 33.13 of the Mental Hygiene Law.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of the bill amends
subdivision 4 of Section 400.00 of the Penal Law to empower an
authorized member of the Niagara County Clerk's office to access the
appropriate records of the Office of Mental Health concerning
previous or present mental illness of an applicant for a firearms
license.

Section 2 of the bill is the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION:
Currently in Niagara County there has been a severe
backlog of pistol permit applications. It appears that the Office of
Mental Health (OMH) is behind in processing the background checks
due to staffing reductions from budget cuts. The Niagara County
Clerk's office, which processes the permits, has suggested that it
can perform the requisite background checks and reduce the time to
close on permit processing by over 60%. The Clerk's office has
indicated it understands that OMH deals with sensitive information,
and has a staff member who has the necessary security clearance to
perform this function.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
New bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS:
Undetermined savings to the State of New York.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
Immediately.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  6040

                            I N  S E N A T E

                               (PREFILED)

                             January 4, 2012
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. MAZIARZ -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Codes

AN ACT amending the penal law, in relation to allowing a member  of  the
  Niagara  county  clerk's  office  to  access mental health records for
  firearm license applications

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  Subdivision  4  of  section  400.00  of the penal law, as
amended by chapter 331 of the  law  of  2005,  is  amended  to  read  as
follows:
  4.  Investigation.  Before a license is issued or renewed, there shall
be an investigation of all statements required in the application by the
duly constituted police authorities of the locality where such  applica-
tion is made. For that purpose, the records of the appropriate office of
the  department  of mental hygiene concerning previous or present mental
illness of the applicant shall be available for inspection by the inves-
tigating officer of the police authority OR IN  NIAGARA  COUNTY  RECORDS
MAY BE ACCESSED BY A CERTIFIED EMPLOYEE OF THE COUNTY CLERK'S OFFICE WHO
IS  AUTHORIZED  TO  ACCESS  CLINICAL  RECORDS IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION
33.13 OF THE MENTAL HYGIENE LAW. In  order  to  ascertain  any  previous
criminal  record,  the investigating officer shall take the fingerprints
and physical descriptive data in quadruplicate  of  each  individual  by
whom  the application is signed and verified. Two copies of such finger-
prints shall be taken on standard fingerprint cards eight inches square,
and one copy may be taken on a card supplied for  that  purpose  by  the
federal  bureau of investigation; provided, however, that in the case of
a corporate applicant that has already been issued a dealer in  firearms
license  and seeks to operate a firearm dealership at a second or subse-
quent location, the original fingerprints on file may be used to  ascer-
tain  any criminal record in the second or subsequent application unless
any of the corporate officers have changed since the prior  application,
in  which  case  the  new corporate officer shall comply with procedures
governing an initial application for such license. When  completed,  one

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD13352-02-1

S. 6040                             2

standard  card  shall  be  forwarded  to and retained by the division of
criminal justice services in the  executive  department,  at  Albany.  A
search  of  the  files  of such division and written notification of the
results of the search to the investigating officer shall be made without
unnecessary delay.  Thereafter, such division shall notify the licensing
officer  and the executive department, division of state police, Albany,
of any criminal record of the applicant filed therein subsequent to  the
search  of its files. A second standard card, or the one supplied by the
federal bureau of investigation, as the case may be, shall be  forwarded
to that bureau at Washington with a request that the files of the bureau
be searched and notification of the results of the search be made to the
investigating  police  authority.  The failure or refusal of the federal
bureau of investigation to make the fingerprint check  provided  for  in
this  section shall not constitute the sole basis for refusal to issue a
permit pursuant to the provisions of this section. Of the remaining  two
fingerprint  cards,  one  shall  be filed with the executive department,
division of state police, Albany, within ten days after issuance of  the
license,  and  the  other  remain  on file with the investigating police
authority. No such fingerprints may be inspected  by  any  person  other
than a peace officer, who is acting pursuant to his special duties, or a
police  officer,  except  on  order  of a judge or justice of a court of
record either upon notice to the licensee  or  without  notice,  as  the
judge  or  justice may deem appropriate. Upon completion of the investi-
gation, the police authority shall report the results to  the  licensing
officer without unnecessary delay.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

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